Community news

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. ...

Did you know?

That calcite is 1. the commoner, more stable, mineral form of calcium carbonate, caco3. it is the dominant component of all limestones and, due to its dissolution and reprecipitation by natural waters at normal temperatures, it is also the dominant mineral of chemical cave deposits including stalactites and stalagmites. it is white or colorless when pure but may be stained, most commonly to yellows and browns, by included impurities such as iron oxides. its uninterrupted growth in a pool may allow development of good crystals, shaped as elongate scalenohedral pyramids of trigonal habit. growth in stalactites and stalagmites is either in masses of fine parallel or radiating needles, or in a mosaic of larger rhombic crystals, easily identified by their well developed cleavage surfaces. calcite is also the dominant vein mineral in limestones [9]. 2. a mineral composed of calcium carbonate (caco3) like aragonite but differing in crystal form; the principal constituent of limestone and other speleothems [10].?

Checkout all 2699 terms in the KarstBase Glossary of Karst and Cave Terms

What is Karstbase?

Search KARSTBASE:

keyword
author

Browse Speleogenesis Issues:

KarstBase a bibliography database in karst and cave science.

Featured articles from Cave & Karst Science Journals
Chemistry and Karst, White, William B.
See all featured articles
Featured articles from other Geoscience Journals
Karst environment, Culver D.C.
Mushroom Speleothems: Stromatolites That Formed in the Absence of Phototrophs, Bontognali, Tomaso R.R.; D’Angeli Ilenia M.; Tisato, Nicola; Vasconcelos, Crisogono; Bernasconi, Stefano M.; Gonzales, Esteban R. G.; De Waele, Jo
Calculating flux to predict future cave radon concentrations, Rowberry, Matt; Marti, Xavi; Frontera, Carlos; Van De Wiel, Marco; Briestensky, Milos
Microbial mediation of complex subterranean mineral structures, Tirato, Nicola; Torriano, Stefano F.F;, Monteux, Sylvain; Sauro, Francesco; De Waele, Jo; Lavagna, Maria Luisa; D’Angeli, Ilenia Maria; Chailloux, Daniel; Renda, Michel; Eglinton, Timothy I.; Bontognali, Tomaso Renzo Rezio
Evidence of a plate-wide tectonic pressure pulse provided by extensometric monitoring in the Balkan Mountains (Bulgaria), Briestensky, Milos; Rowberry, Matt; Stemberk, Josef; Stefanov, Petar; Vozar, Jozef; Sebela, Stanka; Petro, Lubomir; Bella, Pavel; Gaal, Ludovit; Ormukov, Cholponbek;
See all featured articles from other geoscience journals

Search in KarstBase

Your search for recharge area (Keyword) returned 54 results for the whole karstbase:
Showing 1 to 15 of 54
Diffuse flow and conduit flow in limestone terrain in the Mendip Hills, Somerset (Great Britain), 1977, Atkinson T. C.
The hydrogeology of the karstic Carboniferous Limestone is described. Water tracing has established recharge areas for fifteen major springs and water budgets confirm the size of the areas found. Groundwater flow occurs in two modes: turbulent conduit flow and diffuse Darcian flow in fine fractures. Recharge is 50% quickflow via caves and closed depressions and 50% slower percolation. Active storage in the diffuse component (S = 0.92%) is 30 times greater than in phreatic conduits. Diffuse hydraulic conductivity is 0.89 m day−1 and an average of 60?80% of groundwater is transmitted by conduits in this maturely karsted and steeply dipping aquifer.

Structures des aquifres carbonats d'aprs les donnes de captages d'eau, 1984, Pulidobosch A. , Castillo E.
STRUCTURE OF CARBONATE AQUIFERS IN EASTERN SPAIN FROM THE DATA DERIVED FROM WELLS - From a statistical analysis of the data from several wells, pumping the carbonate materials of Creu Formation (Cenomanian-Senonian), in an area in Eastern Spain, it can be deduced that the yield and specific capacity fits well to a log-normal theoretical distribution. The biggest capacity of the wells located in discharge areas respect to the wells situated in recharge areas is interpreted as a result of the "hierarchical" role of karstification processes.

COMPARISON OF THE C-14 ACTIVITY OF GROUNDWATER AND RECENT TUFA FROM KARST AREAS IN YUGOSLAVIA AND CZECHOSLOVAKIA, 1989, Horvatincic N. , Srdoc D. , Silar J. , Tvrdikova H. ,
C-14 activity of dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC) in water and in recent tufa samples in several karst areas of Yugoslavia and Czechoslovakia was measured. Groundwater from 11 karst springs were measured for their isotopic content (C-14, H-3, C-13), chemical composition (HCO3, Ca2, Mg2) and physico-chemical properties (temperature, pH). Seasonal variations of the C-14 activity of DIC in two karst springs in Plitvice Lakes area, Yugoslavia, were measured systematically from 1979-1987. C-14 activity of recent tufa samples from several locations downstream were also measured. The activity of DIC in karst spring water in both countries ranged from 63-87 pMC, which is attributed to differences in geologic structure of the recharge area, topsoil thickness and composition. Grouping of C-14 activities of DIC ca (824)% is evident. Tritium activity at all the springs indicated short mean residence time (1-10 yr). Concentration of HCO3, Ca2 and Mg2 in spring water varied with geomorphology. C-14 activity of streamwater and recent tufa increased downstream from karst springs due to the exchange between atmospheric CO2 and DIC

Use of hydrologic, hydrochemical and isotopic data in identification of groundwater flow patterns in Lower Zamantı Basin (Eastern Taurids-Turkey), 1993, Bayari Celal Serdar, Gurer Ibrahim
In karst basins where hydraulic structures ARE designed to utilize the existing water potential, determination of the distinct groundwater flow patterns and the inter-relations among them bears great importance from the view point of the geotechnical safety of the structure. The combined use of hydrologic, hydrochemical and isotopic data enables us to identify different groundwater flow patterns prevailing in karst basins. Once the inter-relation among the groundwater flow patterns is established, the decision regarding the implementation of projects will be easier. Hydrologic investigations including analyses of the "stream yield" and "groundwater balance", produce invaluable information that can be used to locate the important karstic effluents along the basin. The study of the hydrochemistry of major karstic effluents reveals reliable information on the "depth" of underground circulation and the "recharge conditions" dominating within the karst system. Evaluation of environmental isotopic data introduces important details pertaining to the "mean recharge area elevations" and "turn-over times" of the karst waters and inter-relation among each other. Sometimes very closely located karstic outflows may have quite different circulation/recharge characteristics. This paper attempts to demonstrate the combined use of hydrologic, hydrochemical and isotopic techniques for the determination of the "deep-regional" and "shallow" groundwater circulation patterns existing in the Lower Zamanti Basin.

Radiocarbon concentration and origin of thermal Karst waters in the region of the Bukk Mountains, northeastern Hungary, 1995, Hertelendi E. , Veres M. , Futo I. , Svingor E. , Miko L. , Lenart L. , Deak J. , Suveges M. ,
Karst springs are abundant in Hungary, and many are thermal (temperatures >30 degrees C). As thermal springs are a significant part of Hungary's water resources, it is important to quantify their travel times in the karst systems. Thus, we chose to measure T and delta(18)O in the water and delta(13)C and C-14 in dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC) in water from 50 thermal and nonthermal springs and wells in the Bukk Mountains, northeastern Hungary, Environmental isotope data confirm the karst waterflow pattern implied by earlier studies. We found the water in warm springs and boreholes to be mixtures of cold young and old thermal water. We also determined short mean-residence times for some large cold springs. The C-14 activities measured in these springs indicate that the recharge area of the karst aquifer is open to the atmosphere, and atmospheric CO2 contributes to the C-14 activity of these groundwaters. We observed good correlation between C-14 and H-3 activities and we determined negative correlations between C-14 concentration and delta(13)C values and temperature. From the delta(18)O values of the oldest thermal waters, we attribute their origin to precipitation during colder temperatures than at present

Geochemistry of Regional Groundwater Flow in the Aladag Karstic Aquifer, Eastern Taurids-Turkey: Effect of Flow Conditions, 1995, Bayari C. Serdar, Kurttas Turker
The geochemistry of regional groundwater flow along the Aladag karstic aquifer indicates a remarkable correlation between the hydraulic and geochemical conditions. The Aladag. karstic aquifer, in between the recharge area and the regional erosion base, comprises unconfined and confined sections. A transition zone along which semi-confined flow conditions dominate also occurs between these sections. The parts of the aquifer in which unconfined and confined flow conditions dominate seem to be analogous of geochemically open and closed systems of carbonate dissolution, respectively. The varition of physical and chemical properties of the karstic effluents implies that although the carbonate dissolution is perpetual along the flow system, dissolution rates decrease where confined flow conditions start to prevail. However, gypsum dissolution along the regional flow path seems to be independent of hydraulic conditions.

Combined use of environmental isotopic and hydrochemical data in differentiation of groundwater flow patterns through the Aladağ karstic aquifer-Turkey, Application of Tracers in Arid zone Hydro, 1995, Bayari C. S. , Gunay G.
Distinction between the different groundwater flow systems in karstic areas constitutes one of the major objetives of the basin-wide hydrogeologic research. Use of environmental isotopic and hydrochemical investigation techniques provide a great deal of information for the identification of regional groundwater flow systems. The Lower Zamantı Basin, located in the eastern Taurids, presents an accountable water resource potential that can be used for hydroelectric power production. The basin, with the elevation range between 400 m and 350 m, occupies a catchment area of 2000 km2. Humid and semi-arid climatic regimes prevail in the southern and northern parts of the basin. The carbonate rocks and the overlaying impervious ophiolite nappe constitute the major geologic units in the area. Systematic hydrochemical and environmental isotopic surveys have been carried out to discriminate between the different groundwater flow systems existing in the basin. Hydrochemical studies have been conducted by insitu measurements, sampling and analyses of water samples from about 80 points. Based on the results of hydrochemical evaluations, 23 sampling points, including streams and karstic springs, have been selected for environmental isotopic survey. The integrated evaluation of the available data indicates clearly that two different groundwater flow patterns exist in the basin; namely a shallow flow and a deep regional flow. The characteristic values of temperature, electrical conductivity, carbonate alkalinity and log PCO2 of the shallow-flow in the karstic effluents fed by shallow groundwater circulation springs are 8C, 80 S/cm, 1.5 meq/l and 10-2 atm, respectively. On the other hand, higher values, such as 15C, 455 S/cm, 5.0 meq/l and 10-1 atm are observed in the springs fed by deep-regional groundwater flow. The tritium data indicate that the springs fed by the deep-regional groundwater have longer residence times. Moreover, the recharge area elevations, as envisaged from the oxygen-18 data, also provide supporting evidence for the distinction of different groundwater flow patterns. Additionally, comparison of groundwater temperature with oxygen-18 content presents reliable information to understand the possible interaction among the different karstic effluents.

Initial Geologic Observations in Caves Bordering the Sibari Plain (Southern Italy), 1997, Galdenzi, S.
Geologic investigation of caves in the northern Calabria region of Italy has clarified their origin and irregular distribution. Caves and surface karst landforms are not widespread, despite the fact that the local limestones are widely exposed and surface drainage is poorly developed. The caves are located in small limestone hills and mountains around the Sibari Plain and are surrounded by low-permeability rocks. Among them is a significant shaft cave fed by a sinking stream that drains a non-karst recharge area. However, most of the caves are predominantly horizontal and have entrances at low altitudes at several levels. Their origin is due to the rising of thermal waters, which are mineralized after passing through the Neogene formations of the Sibari Plain. The caves can be considered relict hypogenic outflow caves. The main cave-forming process was probably the oxidation of H2S, favored by the mixing of thermal water and infiltrating fresh water. Oxidation of H2S has resulted in gypsum deposits within the caves.

Role of public awareness in groundwater protection, 1997, Ekmekci M, Gunay G,
Scarcity of water, particularly in towns situated along the Mediterranean coast where the main aquifers are in karstic carbonate rocks, necessitates more thoroughness in exploiting and protecting the groundwater resources. Geomorphological and hydrogeological studies have revealed large quantities of the input and throughput features, such as sinkholes, dolines, uvalas and poljes in the recharge areas of many karst aquifers in Turkey. Naturally, recharge areas are generally located at higher elevations and regions remote from the urbanized areas. These features lead the local authorities and persons to utilize the karst features for their own purposes. Dolines and ponors are commonly utilized as injection points for wastewater, while uvalas and poljes are used as solid waste disposal sites. When doing this, the people are unconscious of the connection of such sites with the wells or springs that provide water for their supply. A number of occurrences in Turkey have demonstrated that, no matter how perfect the efficiency of the technical work, protection of the water resources-is primarily related to the consciousness of the local authorities. They must either take proper measures to protect the resources or to educate the public in this issue. To achieve this aim, it is very important to involve the public administrative sector and the technical sector in preparing guidelines for integrated environmental evaluation of karst water resources. The main phase of a study should include locating appropriate sites for disposal of wastewater and various liquid and solid wastes that will satisfy requirements by the administrators as well as providing a water supply of good quality for the public. This paper discusses the issue of how to overcome the public awareness problem. Some examples demonstrate how the technical, achievements failed to be effective and applicable due to the lack of contribution on the part of the local authorities and the public. Some suggestions are made concerning a revision of the currently insufficient regulations

Physical response of a karst drainage basin to flood pulses: Example of the Devil's Icebox cave system (Missouri, USA), 1998, Halihan T. , Wicks C. M. , Engeln J. F. ,
In karst aquifers, water moves from the recharge area (sinkhole plains and swallets) to the discharge area (springs), traveling kilometers through the groundwater system in a period of hems to days. Transit rimes through karst aquifers are a function of the conduit geometry and connectedness, intensity and duration of the recharge event, and antecedent soil moisture. Often many of these factors are unknown or difficult to quantify. Therefore, predicting the response of a karst basin to recharge is difficult. Numerous researchers have attempted to understand the response of a karst basin, but a good understanding of whether the response is dependent on local features or regional effects is currently lacking. From April 1994 to May 1995, flood pulse hydrographs from a karst aquifer with well-developed and well-documented conduits (Devil's Icebox cave system) were obtained from a gaging station near the spring of the karst basin. Data were also collected from within the conduit system in an attempt to determine whether flow was locally controlled by constrictions in the conduits. Based on an application of Bernoulli's equation, analyses of the changes in kinetic head and potential head over time indicated local control during storm events. The observed sediment patterns and water level variations also support localized flow control during storm events. A numerical model of the constrictions was rested and reproduced the responses observed at the spring during initial periods of storm events. The model illustrated that the constricted flow was very sensitive to recharge. It also illustrated the transition from local control due to constriction to regional controls due to the aquifer matrix. (C) 1998 Elsevier Science B.V

Seasonal Effects on the Geochemical Evolution of the Logsdon River, Mammoth Cave, Kentucky., 1998, Anthony, Darlene M. , Ms

The following research describes the collection and evaluation of geochemical data from the Logsdon River, an open-flow conduit that drains a portion of the Turnhole Spring drainage basin within the Mammoth Cave karst aquifer of south-central Kentucky. This spatial survey of nearly 10 km of continuous base-level conduit included seasonal sampling of carbon dioxide partial pressures (PCO2), dissolved ions, and saturation indices for calcite (SIcal). The highest PCO2 are found at the upstream site closest to the Sinkhole Plain recharge area, which creates undersaturated conditions. Rapid outgassing of CO2 into the cave atmosphere creates oversaturated conditions for several thousand meters. This change in chemistry results in the accumulation of travertine in these areas. A boost in PCO2 roughly half-way through the flow path returns the water to slightly undersaturated conditions. The most likely source for additional CO2 is in-cave organic decay, as the boost also occurs during winter months when microbial activity in the soil is at a minimum. A general decline in Ca2+, Mg2+, and HCO3- concentrations occurred over the distance through the Logsdon River conduit. This decline may reflect a diluting of water by localized inputs from the Mammoth Cave Plateau and precipitation of travertine along the flow path. Although values for all parameters are greater in summer than winter, the trend in evolution is similar for both seasonal extremes.
The nature of the transition from summer to winter conditions in the aquifer was investigated by way of an intensive study of the geochemistry at the Logsdon River monitoring well. The relationship between conductivity (spC) and pH was evaluated during both seasons in an attempt to predict the activity of hydrogen for any given water sample, based on continuous spC measurements at the well. Data collected during the 1997-98 seasonal transitions supported a single, nonlinear regression equation that may represent two distinct seasonal regimes.


Water and Land-Use Problems in Areas of Conduit Aquifers, 2000, Aley T.
Water and land-use problems occur in areas of conduit aquifers because of the intimate interactions which exist between the surface and the subsurface. Water is the agent which most directly links the surface and subsurface. Karst areas have unique natural resource problems which have major economic consequences. Soils are often of poor agricultural quality. Surface water supplies are limited. Groundwater supplies are often limited, expensive to exploit, and highly subject to contamination because of ineffective natural cleansing processes. The quality of water in a karst spring or well is largely determined by land-use conditions in the recharge area which contributes the water to that well or spring. The range of land-use activities which can adversely impact groundwater quality in karst aquifers is extensive. Municipal and on-site sewage systems, petroleum storage and distribution facilities, and highways and pipelines have all created wide-spread problems. Sinkhole collapses have occurred beneath sewage lagoons, highways, and other features. Recommended resource protection strategies for karst areas are identified. Preventing problems is crucial. Recharge area delineation provides fundamental and essential data, and should be accompanied by hazard area mapping. Land use in karst areas must be tailored to site conditions.

Speleogenesis of the Botovskaya Cave, Eastern Siberia, Russia, 2000, Filippov A. G.
Botovskaya Cave is located in the Angaro-Lensky artesian basin in the southern Siberian craton, Russia. It developed under confined conditions in the 6-12 m thick Ordovician limestone strata. The cave is a subhorizontal, two-dimensional maze 32 km long. The limestone beds are confined above and below by massive marine sandstones which contain thick silty and argilaceous layers. Cave passages are guided by an orthogonal fissure system. Embryonic passages are tube-shaped with oval and round cross sections. The mature passages are corridor-like with wide low notches at their bases between sandstone beds. The cave system probably originated due to mixing corrosion involving meteoric artesian waters flowing from a major recharge area, and ascending waters migrating toward surface valleys from underlying artesian aquifers.

Speleogenesis in gypsum, 2000, Klimchouk A.
The main differences between the solutional properties of gypsum and those of calcite lie in the much higher solubility of gypsum, and in dissolution kinetics of gypsum which is solely diffusion controlled. Unlike calcite, no change of kinetic order occurs with an increase in concentration. Initiation of long lateral flow paths through gypsum is virtually impossible due to the rapid rate of dissolution; no kinetic mechanisms allow slow but uniform dissolutional enlargement throughout the flow paths. Near the surface, fissures are already wide enough for cave development to occur, which is extremely competitive due to rapid dissolution kinetics and the strong dependence of enlargement rates on flow velocity and discharge. Thus caves in gypsum in exposed settings are mainly linear or crudely branching, rapidly adjusting to the contemporary geomorphic setting and available recharge. Vertical pipes or pits form in the vadose zone. No deep phreatic development and no artesian development by lateral flow from distant recharge areas can occur. However, cave origin and development does occur in deep-seated confined settings where gypsum beds in stratified sequences are underlain by, or sandwiched between poorly soluble aquifers. Two situations support cave origin in gypsum in deep-seated settings: (1) transverse flow through gypsum between overlying and underlying aquifers, and (2) lateral flow in an insoluble but permeable aquifer underlying a gypsum bed. The former situation generates either maze caves where uniformly distributed fissure networks exist in the gypsum, or discrete voids where the otherwise low-fissured gypsum is disrupted by prominent tectonic fractures. If considerable conduit porosity has been created in a deep-seated setting, it provides ready paths for more intense groundwater circulation and further cave development when the gypsum is uplifted into the shallow subsurface. Thick and low-fissured sulfate strata can survive burial with no speleogenesis at all where surrounded by poorly permeable beds. When exposed to the surface, such gypsum deposits undergo speleogenetic development with no inherited features, presenting the pure line of open karst.

Speleogenesis: Evolution of Karst Aquifers., 2000,
The aim of this book is to present advances made in recent decades in our understanding of the formation of dissolutional caves, and to illustrate the role of cave genetic ( speleogenetic ) processes in the development of karst aquifers. From the perspective of hydrogeology, karst ground water flow is a distinct kind of fluid circulation system, one that is capable of self-organization and self-development due to its capacity to dissolve significant amounts of the host rock and transport them out of the system. Fluid circulation in soluble rocks becomes more efficiently organized by creating, enlarging and modifying patterns of cave conduits, the process of speleogenesis. We can assert that karst ground water flow is a function of speleogenesis and vice versa . The advances in cave science are poorly appreciated in what may be termed ?mainstream hydrogeology?, which retains a child-like faith in flow models developed in the sand box. Many karst students also will not be aware of all emerging concepts of cave origin because discussions of them are scattered through journals and books in different disciplines and languages, including publications with small circulation. An understanding of principles of speleogenesis and its most important controls is indispensable for proper comprehension of the evolution of the karst system in general and of karst aquifers in particular. We hope this book will be useful for both karst and cave scientists, and for general hydrogeologists dealing with karst terranes. This book is a pioneer attempt by an international group of cave scientists to summarize modern knowledge about cave origin in various settings, and to examine the variety of approaches that have been adopted. Selected contributions from 44 authors in 15 nations are combined in an integrated volume, prepared between 1994 and 1998 as an initiative of the Commission of Karst Hydrogeology and Speleogenesis, International Speleological Union. Despite a desire to produce an integrated book, rather than a mere collection of papers, the editors' policy has not been directed toward unifying all views. Along with some well-established theories and approaches, the book contains new concepts and ideas emerging in recent years. We hope that this approach will stimulate further development and exchange of ideas in cave studies and karst hydrogeology. Following this Introduction, (Part 1), the book is organized in seven different parts, each with sub-chapters. Part 2 gives a history of speleogenetic studies, tracing the development of the most important ideas from previous centuries (Shaw, Chapter 2.1) through the early modern period in the first half of this century (Lowe, Chapter 2.2) to the threshold of modern times (W.White, Chapter 2.3). The present state of the art is best illustrated by the entire content of this book. Part 3 overviews the principal geologic and hydrogeologic variables that either control or significantly influence the differing styles of cave development that are found. In Chapter 3.1 Klimchouk and Ford introduce an evolutionary approach to the typology of karst settings, which is a taken as a base line for the book. Extrinsic factors and intrinsic mechanisms of cave development change regularly and substantially during the general cycle of geological evolution of a soluble rock and , more specifically, within the hydrogeologic cycle. The evolutionary typology of karst presented in this chapter considers the entire life cycle of a soluble formation, from deposition (syngenetic karst) through deep burial, to exposure and denudation. It helps to differentiate between karst types which may concurrently represent different stages of karst development, and is also a means of adequately classifying speleogenetic settings. The different types of karst are marked by characteristic associations of the structural prerequisites for groundwater flow and speleogenesis, flow regime, recharge mode and recharge/discharge configurations, groundwater chemistry and degree of inheritance from earlier conditions. Consequently, these associations make a convenient basis to view both the factors that control cave genesis and the particular types of caves. Lithological and structural controls of speleogenesis are reviewed in general terms in Chapters 3.2 (Klimchouk and Ford). Lowe in Chapter 3.3 discusses the role of stratigraphic elements and the speleo-inception concept. Palmer in Chapter 3.4 overviews the hydrogeologic controls of cave patterns and demonstrates that hydrogeologic factors, the recharge mode and type of flow in particular, impose the most powerful controls on the formation of the gross geometry of cave systems. Hence, analysis of cave patterns is especially useful in the reconstruction of environments from paleokarst and in the prediction and interpretation of groundwater flow patterns and contaminant migration. Any opportunity to relate cave patterns to the nature of their host aquifers will assist in these applied studies as well. Osborne (Chapter 3.7) examines the significance of paleokarst in speleogenesis. More specific issues are treated by Klimchouk (The nature of epikarst and its role in vadose speleogenesis, Chapter 3.5) and by V.Dublyansky and Y.Dublyansky (The role of condensation processes, Chapter 3.6). Part 4 outlines the fundamental physics and chemistry of the speleogenetic processes (Chapter 4.1) and presents a variety of different approaches to modeling cave conduit development (Chapter 4.2). In Chapter 4.1, the chemical reactions during the dissolution of the common soluble minerals, calcite, gypsum, salt and quartz, are discussed with the basic physical and chemical mechanisms that determine their dissolution rates. As limestone is the most common karst rock and its dissolution is the most complex in many respects, it receives the greatest attention. Dreybrodt (Section 4.1.1) and Dreybrodt and Eisenlohr (Section 4.1.2) provide advanced discussion and report the most recent experimental data, which are used to obtain realistic dissolution rates for a variety of hydrogeologic conditions and as input for modeling the evolution of conduits. Although direct comparisons between theoretical or analytical dissolution rates and those derived from field measurements is difficult, a very useful comparison is provided by W.White (Section 4.1.3). The bulk removal of carbonate rock from karst drainage basins can be evaluated either by direct measurement of rock surface retreat or by mass balance within known drainage basins. All of these approaches make sense and give roughly accurate results that are consistent with theoretical expectations. It is well recognized today that the earliest, incipient, phases of speleogenesis are crucial in building up the pattern of conduits that evolve into explorable cave systems. It is difficult to establish the major controls on these initial stages by purely analytical or intuitive methods, so that modeling becomes particularly important. Various approaches are presented in Chapter 4.2. Ford, Ewers and Lauritzen present the results of systematic study of the propagation of conduits between input and output points in an anisotropic fissure, using a variety of hardware and software models, in series representing the "single input", "multiple inputs in one rank", and "multiple inputs in multiple ranks" cases (Section 4.2.1). The results indicate important details of the competitive development of proto-conduits and help to explain branching cave patterns. In the competition between inputs, some principal tubes in near ranks first link ("breakthrough") to an output boundary. This re-orients the flowfields of failed nearby competitors, which then extend to join the principal via their closest secondaries. The process extends outwards and to the rear, linking up all inputs in a "cascading system". The exploding growth of computer capability during the last two decades has greatly enhanced possibilities for digital modeling of early conduit development. Investigating the growth of a single conduit is a logical first step in understanding the evolution of caves, realized here by Dreybrodt and Gabrov?ek in the form of a simple mathematical model (Section 4.2.2) and by Palmer by numerical finite-difference modeling (Section 4.2.3). The models show that positive feedback loops operate; widening a fracture causes increasing flow through it, therefore dissolution rates increase along it and so on, until finally a dramatic increase of flow rates permits a dramatic enhancement of the widening. This breakthrough event terminates the initial stage of conduit evolution. From then on the water is able to pass through the entire conduit while maintaining sufficient undersaturation to preserve low-order kinetics, so the growth rate is very rapid, at least from a geological standpoint -- usually about 0.001-0.1 cm/yr. The initiation ("breakthrough") time depends critically on the length and the initial width of the fracture and, for the majority of realistic cases, it covers a time range from a few thousand years to ten million years in limestones. The modeling results give a clear explanation of the operation of selectivity in cave genesis. In a typical unconfined karst aquifer there is a great range of enlargement rates along the competing flow routes, and only a few conduits will grow to enterable size. The modeling also provides one starting point (others are discussed in Chapter 5.2) to explain uniform maze patterns, which will be favored by enlargement of all openings at comparable rates where the discharge/length ratio is great enough. Single-conduit modeling has the virtue of revealing how the cave-forming variables relate to each other in the simplest possible way. Although it is more difficult to extend this approach to two dimensions, many have done so (e.g. Groves & Howard, 1994; Howard & Groves, 1995; in this volume ? Ford, Ewers and Lauritzen, Section 4.2.1; Dreybrodt and Siemers, Section 4.2.4, and Sauter and Liedl, Section 4.2.5). The modeling performed by Dreybrodt and Siemers shows that the main principles of breakthrough derived from one-dimensional models remain valid. The evolution of karst aquifers has been modeled for a variety of different geological settings, including also variation in lithology with respect to the dissolution kinetics. Sauter and Liedl simulate the development of conduits at a catchment scale for fissured carbonate rocks with rather large initial openings (about 1 mm). The approach is based upon hydraulic coupling of a pipe network to matrix continuum in order to represent the well-known duality of karst aquifer flow systems. It is also shown how understanding of the genesis of karst aquifers and modeling of their development can assist in characterization of the conduit system, which dominates flow and transport in karst aquifers. An important point that has emerged from cave studies of the last three decades is that no single speleogenetic model applies to all geologic and hydrologic settings. Given that settings may also change systematically during the evolutionary geological cycles outlined above (Chapter 3.1), an evolutionary approach is called for. This is attempted in Part 5, which is organized to give extended accounts of speleogenesis in the three most important settings that we recognize: coastal and oceanic (Chapter 5.1), deep-seated and confined (Chapter 5.2) and unconfined (Chapter 5.3). Each Chapter begins with a review of modern ideas on cave development in the setting, followed by representative case studies. The latter include new accounts of some "classic" caves as well as descriptions of other, little-known cave systems and areas. Readers may determine for themselves how well the real field examples fit the general models presented in the introductory sections. Mylroie and Carew in Chapter 5.1 summarize specific features of cave and karst development in young rocks in coastal and island settings that result from the chemical interactions between fresh and salt waters, and the effects of fluctuating sea level during the Quaternary. The case studies include a review of syngenetic karst in coastal dune limestones, Australia (S.White, 5.1.1) and an example of speleogenesis on tectonically active carbonate islands (Gunn and Lowe, 5.1.2). Klimchouk in Chapter 5.2 reviews conditions and mechanisms of speleogenesis in deep-seated and confined settings, one of the most controversial but exciting topics in modern cave research. Conventional karst/speleogenetic theories are concerned chiefly with shallow, unconfined geologic settings, supposing that the karstification found there is intimately related to surface conditions of input and output, with the dissolution being driven by downward meteoric water recharge. The possibility of hypogenic karstification in deeper environments has been neglected for a long time, and the quite numerous instances of karst features found at significant depths have usually been interpreted as buried paleokarst. However, the last decade has seen a growing recognition of the variety and importance of hypogene dissolution processes and of speleogenesis under confined settings which often precedes unconfined development (Hill, 1987, 1995; Klimchouk, 1994, 1996, 1997; Lowe, 1992; Lowe & Gunn, 1995; Mazzullo & Harris, 1991, 1992; Palmer, 1991, 1995; Smart & Whitaker, 1991; Worthington, 1991, 1994; Worthington & Ford, 1995). Confined (artesian) settings were commonly ignored as sites for cave origin because the classic concept of artesian flow implies long lateral travel distances for groundwater within a soluble unit, resulting in a low capacity to generate caves in the confined area. However, the recognition of non-classical features in artesian flow, namely the occurrence of cross-formation hydraulic communication within artesian basins, the concepts of transverse speleogenesis and of the inversion of hydrogeologic function of beds in a sequence, allows for a revision of the theory of artesian speleogenesis and of views on the origin of many caves. It is proposed that artesian speleogenesis is immensely important to speleo-inception and also accounts for the development of some of the largest known caves in the world. Typical conditions of recharge, the flow pattern through the soluble rocks, and groundwater aggressiveness favor uniform, rather than competing, development of conduits, resulting in maze caves where the structural prerequisites exist. Cross-formational flow favors a variety of dissolution mechanisms that commonly involve mixing. Hydrogeochemical mechanisms of speleogenesis are particularly diverse and potent where carbonate and sulfate beds alternate and within or adjacent to hydrocarbon-bearing sedimentary basins. Hypogene speleogenesis occurs in rocks of varied lithology and can involve a variety of dissolution mechanisms that operate under different physical constraints but create similar cave features. Case studies include the great gypsum mazes of the Western Ukraine (Klimchouk, Section 5.2.1), great maze caves in limestones in Black Hills, South Dakota (Palmer, Section 5.2.2) and Siberia (Filippov, Section 5.2.3), karstification in the Redwall aquifer, Arizona (Huntoon, Section 5.2.4), hydrothermal caves in Hungary (Y.Dublyansky, Section 5.2.6), and sulfuric acid speleogenesis (Lowe, Bottrell and Gunn, Section 5.2.7, and Hill, Section 5.2.8). Y.Dublyansky summarizes the peculiar features of hydrothermal speleogenesis (Section 5.2.5), and V.Dublyansky describes an outstanding example of a hydrothermal cavity, in fact the largest ever recorded by volume, in the Rhodope Mountains (Section 5.2.9). Recognition of the scale and importance of deep-seated speleogenesis and of the hydraulic continuity and cross-formational communications between aquifers in artesian basins is indispensable for the correct interpretation of evolution of karst aquifers, speleogenetic processes and associated phenomena, regional karst water-resource evaluations, and the genesis of certain karst-related mineral deposits. These and other theoretical and practical implications still have to be developed and evaluated, which offers a wide field for further research efforts. Ford in Chapter 5.3 reviews theory of speleogenesis that occurs where normal meteoric waters sink underground through the epikarst or dolines and stream sinks, etc. and circulate in the limestone or other soluble rocks without any major artesian confinement. These are termed common caves (Ford & Williams, 1989) because they probably account for 90% or more of the explored and mapped dissolutional caves that are longer than a few hundred meters. This estimate reflects the bias in exploration; caves formed in unconfined settings and genetically related to surface recharge are the most readily accessible and hence form the bulk of documented caves. Common caves display chiefly the branchwork forms where the dissolutional conduits occupy only a tiny proportion of the total length or area of penetrable fissures that is available to the groundwaters. The rules that govern the selection of the successful linkages that will be enlarged into the branchwork pattern are supported in the models presented in Chapter 4.2. In the long section caves may be divided into deep phreatic, multi-loop, mixed loop and water table, and ideal water table types, with drawdown vadose caves or invasion vadose caves above them. Many large systems display a mixture of the types. The concepts of plan pattern construction, phreatic, water table or vadose state, and multi-phase development of common caves are illustrated in the case studies that follow the introduction. They are organized broadly to begin with examples of comparatively simple deep phreatic and multi-loop systems (El Abra, Mexico, Ford, Section 5.3.1 and Castleguard Cave, Canada, Ford, Lauritzen and Worthington, Section 5.3.2), proceeding to large and complex multi-phase systems such as the North of Thun System, Switzerland (Jeannin, Bitterly and Hauselmann, Section 5.3.3) and Mammoth Cave, Kentucky (Palmer, Section 5.3.8), to representatives of mixed vadose and phreatic development in mountainous regions (the Alps, Audra, Section 5.3.4; the Pyrenees, Fernandez, Calaforra and Rossi, Section 5.3.5; Mexico, Hose, Section 5.3.6) and where there is strong lithologic or structural control (Folded Appalachians, W.White, Section 5.3.7; gypsum caves in the South of Spain, Calaforra and Pulido-Bosch, Section 5.3.10). Two special topics are considered by W.White in Section 5.3.9 (Speleogenesis of vertical shafts in the eastern US) and Palmer (Maze origin by diffuse recharge through overlying formation). The set concludes with two instances of nearly ideal water table cave development (in Belize and Hungary, Ford, Section 5.3.12), and a review of the latest models of speleogenesis from the region where modern karst studies in the West began, the Classical Karst of Slovenia and Trieste (?u?ter?ic, Section 5.3.13). In Parts 2-5 attention is directed primarily on how the gross geometry of a cave system is established. Part 6 switches focus to the forms at meso- and micro- scales, which can be created during enlargement of the cave. Lauritzen and Lundberg in Chapter 6.1 summarize the great variety of erosional forms ( speleogenetic facies ) that can be created by a wide range of speleogenetic agents operating in the phreatic or vadose zones. Some forms of cave passages have been subject to intensive research and may be interpreted by means of simple physical and chemical principles, but many others are polygenetic and hence difficult to decipher with certainty. However, in addition to the analysis of cave patterns (see Chapter 3.4), each morphological element is a potential tool that can aid our inferences on the origin of caves and on major characteristics of respective past hydrogeological settings. In Chapter 6.2 E.White and W.White review breakdown morphology in caves, generalizing that the processes are most active during the enlargement and decay phases of cave development. Early in the process breakdown occurs when the flow regime shifts from pipe-full conditions to open channel conditions (i.e. when the roof first loses buoyant support) and later in the process breakdown becomes part of the overall degradation of the karst system. The chapter addresses the mechanism of breakdown formation, the geological triggers that initiate breakdown, and the role that breakdown plays in the development of caves. As the great majority of both theoretical considerations and case studies in this book deal with speleogenesis in carbonate rocks, it is useful to provide a special forum to examine dissolution cave genesis in other rocks. This is the goal of Part 7. Klimchouk (7.1) provides a review of speleogenesis in gypsum. This appears to be a useful playground for testing the validity and limitations of certain general speleogenetic concepts. Differences in solution kinetics between gypsum and calcite impose some limitations and peculiar features on the early evolution of conduits in gypsum. These peculiarities appear to be an extreme and more obvious illustration of some rules of speleogenetic development devised from conceptual and digital modeling of early conduit growth in limestones. For instance, it is shown (e.g. Palmer, 1984, 1991; Dreybrodt, 1996; see also Chapter 3.4 and Section 4.2.2) that initiation of early, narrow and long pathways does not seem feasible under linear dissolution rate laws (n=1) due to exponential decrease of the dissolution rates. Although the dissolution kinetics of gypsum are not well known close to equilibrium it is generally assumed that they are controlled entirely by diffusion and therefore linear. If dissolution of gypsum is solely diffusion-controlled, with no change in the kinetic order, conduit initiation could not occur in phreatic settings or by lateral flow through gypsum from distant recharge areas in artesian settings. Hence, the fact that maze caves are common in gypsum in artesian conditions (see Section 5.2.1) gives strong support to a general model of "transverse" artesian speleogenesis where gypsum beds are underlain by, or sandwiched between, insoluble or low-solubility aquifers (Chapter 5.2), and suggests that it may be applicable to cave development in carbonates. In unconfined settings, speleogenesis in gypsum occurs along fissures wide enough to support undersaturated flow throughout their length. Linear or crudely branching caves overwhelmingly predominate, which rapidly adjust to the contemporary geomorphic setting and to the maximum available recharge. Also, if considerable conduit porosity has been created in deep-seated settings, it provides ready paths for more intense groundwater circulation and further cave development when uplift brings the gypsum into the shallow subsurface. Speleogenesis in salt, reviewed in general and exemplified by the Monte Sedom case in Israel (Frumkin, Chapter 7.2), has been documented only in open, unconfined settings, where it provides a model for simple vadose cave development. Chapter 7.3 deals with speleogenesis in quartzites, illustrated by case studies from southeastern Minas Gerais, Brasil (Correa Neto, 7.3.1) and South Africa (Martini, 7.3.2). The process involves initial chemical weathering of the quartzite to create zones of friable rocks (sanding, or arenisation) which then are removed by piping, with further conduit enlargement due to mechanical erosion by flowing water. Part 8 combines the theoretical with some applied aspects of speleogenetic studies. Worthington, Ford and Beddows (8.1) show the important implications of what might be termed "speleogenetic wisdom" when studying ground water behaviour in karst. They examine some standard hydrogeological concepts in the light of knowledge of caves and their patterns, considering a range of case studies to identify the characteristic enhancement of porosity and permeability due to speleogenesis that occurs in carbonate rocks. The chapter focuses on unconfined carbonate aquifers as these are the most studied from the speleological perspective and most important for water supplies. Four aquifers, differing in rock type, recharge type (allogenic and autogenic), and age (Paleozoic, Mesozoic and Cenozoic), are described in detail to demonstrate the extent of dissolutional enhancement of porosity and permeability. It is shown that all four cases are similar in hydraulic function, despite the fact that some of them were previously characterized as different end members of a "karst ? non-karst" spectrum. Enhancement of porosity by dissolution is relatively minor: enhancement of permeability is considerable because dissolution has created dendritic networks of channels able to convey 94% or more of all flow in the aquifer, with fractures providing a small proportion and the matrix a negligible amount. These conclusions may be viewed as a warning to hydrogeologists working in carbonate terranes: probably the majority of unconfined aquifers function in a similar manner. Sampling is a major problem in their analysis because boreholes (the conventional exploration tool in hydrogeology) are unlikely to intersect the major channels that are conveying most of the flow and any contaminants in it. It is estimated, using examples of comprehensively mapped caves, that the probability of a borehole intersecting a conduit ranges from 1 in 50 to 1 in 1000 or more. Boreholes simply cannot be relied upon to detect the presence of caves or to ?characterise? the hydrologic functioning of cavernous aquifers. Wherever comprehensive evidence has been collected in unconfined carbonate aquifers (cave mapping plus boreholes plus lab analysis of core samples) it suggests that dissolution inexorably results in a similar structure, with channel networks providing most of the permeability of the aquifer, yet occupying a very minor fraction of its volume (Worthington, Ford and Beddows). Lowe (Chapter 8.2) focuses on developments in understanding the vital role played by karstic porosity, (broadly viewed as being the product of speleogenesis), in the migration of mineralizing fluids (or hydrocarbons) and in their deposition (or storage), and comments on the potential role of new speleogenetic concepts in developing greater understanding in the future. Although some early workers were clearly aware of actual evidence for some kind of relationship, and others noted its theoretical likelihood, it has been ignored by many until relatively recent times. This shortfall has gradually been redressed; new understanding of the extent and variety of karst processes is ensuring that new relationships are being recognized and new interpretations and models are being derived. The chapter does not pretend to give a comprehensive account of the topic but clearly demonstrates the wide applicability of speleogenetic knowledge to issues in economic geology. In Chapter 8.3 Aley provides an overview of the water and land-use problems that occur in areas with conduit aquifers. He stresses that sound land management must be premised on an understanding that karst is a three-dimensional landscape where the surface and subsurface are intimately and integrally connected. Failure to recognize that activity at the surface affects the subsurface, and the converse, has long been the root cause of many of the problems of water and land use in karst regions. Karst areas have unique natural resource problems, whose management can have major economic consequences. Although there is an extensive literature on the nature of particular problems, resource protection and hazard minimization strategies in karst, it rarely displays an advanced understanding of the processes of the conduit formation and their characteristics yet these will always be involved. This book does not pretend to be a definitive text on speleogenesis. However, it is hoped that readers will find it to be a valuable reference source, that it will stimulate new ideas and approaches to develop and resolve some of the remaining problems, and that it will promote an appreciation of the importance of speleogenetic studies in karst hydrogeology and applied environmental sciences. Acknowledgements: We sincerely thank all contributors for their willing cooperation in the long and difficult process of preparing this book, for their participation in developing its logic and methodology and their cheerful response to numerous requests. We thank all colleagues who discussed the work with us and encouraged it in many ways, even though not contributing to its content as authors. We are particularly grateful to Margaret Palmer for invaluable help in editing the English in many contributions, to Nataly Yablokova for her help in performing many technical tasks and to Elizabeth White who prepared comprehensive index. Our thanks are due to Dr. David Drew, Dr. Philip LaMoreaux, Dr. George Moore and Prof. Marian Pulina for reviewing the manuscript and producing constructive notes and comments on improvement of the final product. The organizational costs and correspondence related to the preparation of the book were partially sponsored by the National Speleological Society, the publisher. We thank David McClurg, the Chair of the NSS Special Publication Committee, for his extensive technical and organizational support in the preparation and publishing processes.

Results 1 to 15 of 54
You probably didn't submit anything to search for