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Speleology in Kazakhstan

Shakalov on 04 Jul, 2018
Hello everyone!   I pleased to invite you to the official site of Central Asian Karstic-Speleological commission ("Kaspeko")   There, we regularly publish reports about our expeditions, articles and reports on speleotopics, lecture course for instructors, photos etc. ...

New publications on hypogene speleogenesis

Klimchouk on 26 Mar, 2012
Dear Colleagues, This is to draw your attention to several recent publications added to KarstBase, relevant to hypogenic karst/speleogenesis: Corrosion of limestone tablets in sulfidic ground-water: measurements and speleogenetic implications Galdenzi,

The deepest terrestrial animal

Klimchouk on 23 Feb, 2012
A recent publication of Spanish researchers describes the biology of Krubera Cave, including the deepest terrestrial animal ever found: Jordana, Rafael; Baquero, Enrique; Reboleira, Sofía and Sendra, Alberto. ...

Caves - landscapes without light

akop on 05 Feb, 2012
Exhibition dedicated to caves is taking place in the Vienna Natural History Museum   The exhibition at the Natural History Museum presents the surprising variety of caves and cave formations such as stalactites and various crystals. ...

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That permeability tensor is permeability in an anisotropic medium [16].?

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Featured articles from Cave & Karst Science Journals
Chemistry and Karst, White, William B.
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Calculating flux to predict future cave radon concentrations, Rowberry, Matt; Marti, Xavi; Frontera, Carlos; Van De Wiel, Marco; Briestensky, Milos
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Your search for peak cluster (Keyword) returned 6 results for the whole karstbase:
Field survey and analysis of hillslopes on tower karst in Guilin, southern China, 2000, Tang T. , Day M. J. ,
Limestone dissolution in tropical and subtropical humid southern China created residual hills with steep slopes, a landform that is referred to as tower karst. Two types of tower karst landform feature, fenglin or peak forest (isolated towers) and fengcong or peak cluster (linked-base towers), were identified in Guilin. Previous studies proposed two hypotheses regarding their origin and evolution. One is the sequential evolution model from peak cluster to peak forest. The other is a parallel development model, which postulates that both peak cluster and peak forest have developed simultaneously. Through detailed field survey and analysis of slope forms on tower karst in Guilin, it was found that the mean slope angle of the towers is very high (62.4 degrees) and ranges from 60 degrees to 75 degrees. There is no significant difference in mean slope angle and slope angle distribution between towers in the peak cluster basin and peak forest floodplain areas. Mean slope angle increases with intensified fluvial dissection. Three levels of caves in the towers of the peak forest in Guilin were identified in previous research. The isolated towers of the peak forest as well as scattered residuals of peak cluster are generally distributed in the centre of the Guilin syncline. Favourable circumstances of allogenic water concentration indicate that development of the peak forest resulted from the combined effects of subcutaneous and subterranean dissolution as well as subsequent collapse and recession by fluvial erosion after uplifting. By contrast, peak clusters generally occur on the limbs of the syncline or at the periphery of the Guilin basin with relatively higher elevations. The thick vadose zone and predominantly vertical flow suggests that peak clusters are mainly formed by the combination of intensive uplifting and the enhancement of original dolines. The evidence of slope survey and slope analysis suggests that both isolated towers and linked-base towers developed simultaneously but by different mechanisms of formation and different combinations of development processes. Copyright (C) 2000 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd

Characteristics of karst ecosystems of Vietnam and their vulnerability to human impact, 2001, Tuyet D. ,
Karst in Vietnam covers an area of about 60,000 km(2), i.e. 18 % of the surface of the country. The country has an annual average temperature of 24 degreesC, an annual average rainfall of 2300 nun and a relative humidity of about 90%. Karst in Vietnam is typified by peak cluster-depression landscapes ranging in elevation from 200 to over 2000 m. Tower and coastal karst landscapes also exit. Because of naturally favourable conditions, karst ecosystems are diverse and very rich. Higher plants(cormophytes) are abundant. They are represented by approximately 2000 species, 908 genera, 224 families, 86 orders and 7 phyla. They form a thick vegetation cover of evergreen tropical rainforest. Knowledge about lower plants is limited. The fauna is rich and diverse. Phyla such as Protozoa, Vermes, Mollusca and Arthropoda are yet ill known. Preliminary results show that the phylum Chordata is represented by 541 species from 80 families, 40 orders and 5 classes. There exist many precious and rare mammals, in particular some endemic species such as Trachypithecus poliocephalus, T. delacouri, Rhinopithecus avanculus, Rhinolophus rouxi, Seotoma dineties and Silurus cuephuongensis. The class Insecta has about 2000 species. The fast population growth, particularly in the mountainous areas of the country, triggers an increasing demand for land and therefore threatens the ecosystem. To obtain land for farming, people have cut, burned and destroyed natural forest cover; resulting in occurrence of hazards such as soil-loss, water-loss, flash floods, mud-rock flows, rock-falls, severe drought, water logging and changes of karstic aquifers etc. Poaching precious animals and illegal logging are increasing. In contrast to other natural systems, karst ecosystems cannot be reestablished once damaged. Living karst landscapes will become rocky desert ones without life. Conservation of karstic environmental systems in general and karstic ecosystems in particular should not be the sole vocation of scientists but also a duty and responsibility of authorities and people from all levels. A good example of a multidisciplinary approach to karst-related problems is the implementation of the Vietnamese-Belgian Karst Project (VBEKAP): 'Rural development in the mountain karst area of NW Vietnam by sustainable water and land management and social learning: its conditions and facilitation'. The aim of this project is to improve living conditions of local people and sustained protection and management of the karst environment and ecosystem

South China karst aquifer storm-scale hydrochemistry, 2004, Liu Z. H. , Groves C. , Yuan D. X. , Meiman J. ,
The peak cluster and peak forest karst regions of Southeast Asia form one of the earth's most extensive karst regions. Although there exists a rich, descriptive tradition of geomorphic work performed there, little quantitative study has been made of carbonate hydrochemistry and related aquifer/landscape behavior and evolution. In this paper, high-resolution measurements of ground water carbonate chemistry and flow were made and analyzed at two adjacent locations within the subtropical peak cluster karst of the Guilin Karst Experimental Site in Guangxi Province, China. While waters from a large, perennial spring represent the exit for the 2 km(2) catchment's conduit flow, a nearby well (within 5 m) measures water in the conduit-adjacent, fractured media. Results indicate that within peak cluster karst aquifer flow systems, spatially heterogeneous flow conditions can exist with respect to timing, magnitude, and, in some cases, direction of responses, as different controls can operate in the different flow system components. Stormscale chemical responses are controlled by dilution from rapid infiltration of rain water, CO2 gas sources and sinks, and water-carbonate rock interactions. At this particular location, there is also an influence from high pH recharge, apparently buffered by atmospheric limestone dust. An example of the varying controls on storm-scale responses within the flow system is that within the fractured medium, variations in the ground water calcite saturation index, a key parameter influencing rates of aquifer/landscape evolution, are small and controlled by CO 2 gas, while in the conduit they are more significant and dominated instead by dilution with rain water

Hydrochemical variations during flood pulses in the south-west China peak cluster karst: impacts of CaCO3-H2O-CO2 interactions, 2004, Liu Z. H. , Groves C. , Yuan D. X. , Meiman J. , Jiang G. H. , He S. Y. , Li Q. A. ,
High-resolution measurements of rainfall, water level, pH, conductivity, temperature and carbonate chemistry parameters of groundwater at two adjacent locations within the peak cluster karst of the Guilin Karst Experimental Site in Guangxi Province, China, were made with different types of multiparameter sonde. The data were stored using data loggers recording with 2 min or 15 min resolution. Waters from a large, perennial spring represent the exit for the aquifer's conduit flow, and a nearby well measures water in the conduit-adjacent, fractured media. During flood pulses, the pH of the conduit flow water rises as the conductivity falls. In contrast, and at the same time, the pH of groundwater in the fractures drops, as conductivity rises. As Ca2 and HCO3- were the dominant (>90%) ions, we developed linear relationships (both r(2) > 0.91) between conductivity and those ions, respectively, and in turn calculated variations in the calcite saturation index (SIc) and CO2 partial pressure (PCO2) of water during flood pulses. Results indicate that the PCO2 of fracture water during flood periods is higher than that at lower flows, and its SIc is lower. Simultaneously, PCO2 of conduit water during the flood period is lower than that at lower flows, and its SIc also is lower. From these results we conclude that at least two key processes are controlling hydrochemical variations during flood periods: (i) dilution by precipitation and (ii) water-rock-gas interactions. To explain hydrochemical variations in the fracture water, the water-rock-gas interactions may be more important. For example, during flood periods, soil gas with high CO2 concentrations dissolves in water and enters the fracture system, the water, which in turn has become more highly undersaturated, dissolves more limestone, and the conductivity increases. Dilution of rainfall is more important in controlling hydrochemical variations of conduit water, because rainfall with higher pH (in this area apparently owing to interaction with limestone dust in the lower atmosphere) and low conductivity travels through the conduit system rapidly. These results illustrate that to understand the hydrochemical variations in karst systems, considering only water-rock interactions is not sufficient, and the variable effects of CO2 on the system should be evaluated. Consideration of water-rock-gas interactions is thus a must in understanding variations in karst hydrochemistry. Copyright (C) 2004 John Wiley Sons, Ltd

Quartz sandstone peak forest landforms of Zhangjiajie Geopark, northwest Hunan Province, China: pattern, constraints and comparison, 2012, Yang Guifang, Tian Mingzhong, Zhang Xujiao, Chen Zhenghong, Wray Robert A. L. , Ge Zhiliang, Ping Yamin, Ni Zhiyun, Yang Zhen

The Zhangjiajie Sandstone Peak Forest Geopark in northwest Hunan Province, China, is a comprehensive geopark containing many spectacular quartz sandstone landforms, limestone karst landscapes and various other important geoheritage resources. It is listed as a UNESCO World Geopark and is also part of the World Heritage Wulingyuan Scenic and Historic Interest Area for its important landscape features. Many of the sandstone landforms, particularly the vast number of thin pillars or spires, are very unusual and serve as the core landscapes of the geopark. But Zhangjiajie displays a diverse range of landform types, exhibiting spectacular patterns and regular distributions. In this paper, the geomorphic traits, distribution pattern and constraints of the sandstone landforms of the Zhangjiajie Geopark are examined. Our study indicates that in the outcropping areas, the sandstones display four distinctive levels from 300 to 1,000 m above sea level, and these extend clearly from the highest sandstone plateau platform to the center of the valleys. The high sandstone platforms developed close to a flat high-level erosional surface, and subsequent erosion into this plateau has resulted in successively lower levels of landforms that transition gradually from peak walls, peak clusters, peak forests and peak pillars to remnant peaks in the lower valley bottoms. The form and distribution of the Zhangjiajie sandstone landforms are primarily dominated by the geological setting, particularly the presence of brittle structures (fractures and joint sets) trending NNW, ENE and NE. Triggered by the episodic tectonic movements, major streams and escarpments frequently occur along these structural directions, while some of the peak walls, peak clusters and peak forests have their longer elongated axes corresponding to NE or NNW directions, with an increased density of peak forms at the intersection of these fractures and joints. The geometry of the diverse sandstone landforms is also influenced to a certain degree by the climatic, water system distribution, lithologic properties, biological process, meteorological features and denudation processes. The suite of quartz sandstone landforms in Zhangjiajie can be compared with other sandstone landscapes regionally, and our interpretation of the sandstone peak forest formation processes offers a significant contribution to the study of topographic features and the geomorphic evolution of sandstone landscapes


Tower karst and cone karst, 2013, Zhu X. , Zhu D. , Zhang Y. , Lynch E. M.

Cone karst and tower karst are spectacular types of tropical/subtropical karst formed under conditions of intense karstification, and occurring primarily in China, Vietnam, Cuba, Jamaica, Puerto Rico, and Java. The cone-tower karst system is classified into two basic types: fengcong-fenglin karst developed in hard, fissure-porosity rocks, and cockpit-mogotes karst in soft, high primary porosity carbonates. Key factors in the development of cone-tower karst include tropical or subtropical climate with abundant precipitation, tectonic uplift and base-level lowering, relatively pure and thick carbonate lithology, gentle anticline/syncline structures, allogenic input and through rivers. Differentiation into the cone (fengcong/cockpit) or tower (fenglin/mogotes) subtypes is strongly influenced by surface flow and the thickness of the vadose zone. Basic features of cone-tower karst, formation, and global distribution are discussed, with special emphasis on fengcongfenglin karst and the role of point infiltration, linear infiltration, and surface flow. The simultaneous (as opposed to sequential) evolution of fengcong karst and fenglin karst is explained by systematically analyzing the karst development, as well as the formation rate and age of fengcong-fenglin karst


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