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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. ...

Did you know?

That surface detention is sheet flow of water in overland flow before a channel is reached [16].?

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Featured articles from Cave & Karst Science Journals
Chemistry and Karst, White, William B.
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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;
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Your search for underlies (Keyword) returned 11 results for the whole karstbase:
Geomorpholgy of the Dip Cave, Wee Jasper, New South Wales, 1963, Jennings, J. N.

The Dip Cave lies about three miles south of Wee Jasper on the western side of the Goodradigbee valley about 500 yards from the river. The cave underlies the nose of a spur running fairly steeply down from Wee Jasper range west of the valley. Only the terminal part of the spur is of limestone, the rest is of impervious rocks. In fact, shales outcrop along the road immediately above the cave. Below this spur there is a much more gently inclined bench in the limestone, trenched by steep-sided gullies coming down from the two flanks of the spur.


Genesis of paleokarst and strata-bound zinc-lead sulfide deposits in a Proterozoic dolostone, northern Baffin Island, Canada, 1984, Olson R. A. ,
Society Cliffs Formation; episodes of karstification since its deposition. During the first karst episode an evaporite solution-collapse breccia formed ubiquitously on the western Borden Peninsula. During the second karst episode a holokarst developed and an integrated cave system was formed. The caves subsequently were filled with sulfides and carbonate minerals; several interesting sedimentary structures exist in the zinc-lead sulfide deposits. The ore fluid and contained metals are postulated to have been derived during a late-stage dewatering of the black shale that underlies the Society Cliffs Formation. Sulfide deposition may have been caused by chemical reduction of sulfate that existed in the ore fluid when the fluid entered hydrocarbon-filled caves. During the third and fourth episodes of karstification, only merokarst developed in the Society Cliffs Formation. Karst effects which formed during these episodes include oxidized sulfide deposits and surface solution corridors.--Modified journal abstract

IMPLICATIONS OF A PALEOMAGNETIC STUDY OF THE SILICA NAPPE, SLOVAKIA, 1991, Marton P. , Rozloznik L. , Sasvari T. ,
The Silica nappe (s.l.) of the Inner West Carpathians consists of an essentially non-metamorphic, platform-type sedimentary complex of Mesozoic (chiefly Triassic) age. Palaeomagnetic samples were collected from 16 sites throughout the southern and northern Gemeric parts of this unit and from one site of the Mesozoic Meliata series which underlies the Silica nappe (s.s.) in south Gemer. The samples from each site were treated using thermal demagnetization and well-grouped magnetic directions of individual components were found for 13 (14) sites. Detailed analysis of the directional data showed (a) post-folding magnetization for four late Triassic-Jurassic sites in the eastern Slovak Karst, (b) synfolding magnetization for five sites in the western Slovak Karst with a direction corresponding to local palaeomagnetic data of African affinity for the late Cretaceous and (c) primary magnetizations in the northern Gemeric area for only two rock units with a declination difference which implies a relative rotation between these units. As all secondary remanences are of normal polarity it is very likely that their acquisition is related to the emplacement of the Silica nappe during the early late Cretaceous. The dominant remagnetization mechanism probably is CRM but occasional contributions of TVRM are also conceivable

Richard Lake, an evaporite-karst depression in the Holbrook basin, Arizona, 1997, Neal J. T. , Colpitts R. M. ,
Richard Lake is a circular depression 35 km SE of Winslow, Arizona, about 1.6 km wide and with topographic closure of 15-23 m. The depression is 5 km south of McCauley Sinks, another depressed area about 2 km wide which contains some 40 large sinkholes. Richard Lake formerly contained water after heavy rains prior to headwater drainage modification but is now dry most of the time. It is situated within the Moenkopi / Kaibab outcrop belt with Coconino Sandstone at shallow depth near the southwestern margin of the subsurface Permian evaporite deposit in the Holbrook Basin. Outcropping strata are predominantly limestone, but the salt-karst features result from collapse of these units into salt-dissolution cavities developed in the Corduroy Member of the Schnebly Hill Formation of the Sedona Group (formerly called the Supai Salt) that underlies the Coconino. Richard Lake is interpreted as a collapse depression containing concentric faults, pressure ridges, and a 200m wide sinkhole in the center. A second set of pressure ridges parallels the axis of the nearby western end of the Holbrook Anticline, trending generally N 30 degrees W. In the alluvium at the bottom of the central sinkhole, two secondary piping drain holes were observed in early 1996. Northwest-trending fissures also were observed on the depression flanks, essentially parallel to the regional structure. The presence of Richard Lake amidst the preponderance of salt-karst features along the Holbrook Anticline suggests a similar origin by salt dissolution, but with distinct manifestation resulting from variation in overburden thick?less and consolidation. Similarities of origin between Richard Lake and McCauley Sinks seem likely, because of their similar geological setting, size, appearance, and proximity. Two lesser developed depressions of smaller dimensions occur in tandem immediately west along a N 62 degrees W azimuth. Secondary sinkholes occur within each of these depressions, as at Richard Lake. Breccia pipes are apt to be found beneath all of these structures

River water intrusion to the unconfined Floridan Aquifer, 1998, Kincaid Todd R. ,
Rapid infiltration of river water into unconfined parts of the Floridan aquifer represents a significant component of subsequent ground-water discharge in regions where the aquifer is dissected by surface streams. A two-year investigation of the Devil's Ear cave system, an extensive saturated conduit network in the Floridan aquifer which underlies a 1.5-km reach of the Santa Fe River in north-central Florida, revealed that there is an appreciable and rapid exchange of water between the river and the underlying Floridan aquifer. Natural tracers Radon-222 ( 222 Rn) and delta 18 O were used to quantify these exchanges. Cave diving was employed to collect 50 water samples which were analyzed for tracer content and to observe water clarity conditions within the saturated karst conduits as far as 1.2 km from the cave entrance. 222 Rn concentrations measured in the cave system revealed three distinct zones where river water is rapidly intruded into the Floridan aquifer. A two-component mixing model was used to quantify the intruded river water that was found to account for as much as 62 percent of the discharge at Devil's Ear spring. Observations of diminished water clarity in the cave system following large precipitation events in the highland provinces of the Santa Fe River basin indicate that river water intrusion to the aquifer can occur in as little as one or two days. The results of this investigation imply that, in regions such as the western Santa Fe River basin, there can be no clear distinction between ground and surface waters and intruded river water provides a significant vehicle for contamination of the unconfined Floridan aquifer

Groundwater resources and vulnerability in the Cretaceous Chalk of Northern Ireland, 2000, Barnes S,
A confined Cretaceous Chalk aquifer underlies approximately one quarter of Northern Ireland, yet little is known about its groundwater resource potential. This issue has been addressed on the catchment scale by analysing spring discharge and hydrochemical fluctuations. The Chalk springs are recharged by allogenic leakage and surface runoff from overlying Tertiary basalts. Sources connected to river-sinks show greater variation in flow and quality reflecting a much shorter residence time than those predominantly derived from the diffuse recharge. Discharge from the confined region becomes proportionally significant during prolonged dry spells, but is typically a minor component compared with groundwater circulation volumes in the unconfined region. Spring flood recessions are rapid (recession coefficients up to 0.125 per day) and suggest that the Chalk has a high hydraulic conductivity and a low storage capacity. These characteristics together, with the essentially impermeable matrix, are consistent with an aquifer dominated by a dispersed fracture network. Conceptual aquifer classification suggests that the outcrop region is a highly sensitive karst aquifer. The subcrop areas can only be exploited via boreholes and are likely to be less productive, although the water quality has been shown to be more stable and less vulnerable to contamination

Gypsum Karst in the Western Ukraine: Hydrochemistry and Solution Rates, 2001, Klimchouk A. B. , Aksem S. D.
Gypsum karst in the Western Ukraine underlies a large territory of more than 20,000 km2 and is represented by a range of stages (evolutionary types), from deep-seated through subjacent to entrenched. Correspondingly, hydrogeological settings of karst development, circulation patterns, and chemical characteristics of groundwaters differ substantially between the respective areas. Based on 1,800 analyses, the paper summarises hydrochemistry of the gypsum-hosting Miocene aquifer. Most of the sampling has been performed in conjunction with a regime study of gypsum-solution rates by means of standard tablets. This study included 53 tablet stations representing varying conditions of water-rock interaction, where 644 weight-loss measurements have been made during 1984-1992. The highest rates are characteristic of entrenched karst, although active dissolution there is localised along well-defined sinking streams with short underground courses, rare vertical-percolation paths, and the water table. Lower, but still quite substantial, rates are characteristic for subjacent and deep-seated (confined) karst. However, the overall dissolution removal is higher there, due to higher rates of flow through the gypsum and the larger area of rock/solvent contact. The results are generalised in order to derive the approximate solution rates that characterise major situations and that are suitable for modelling purposes.

Sedimentary evidence for a rapid, kilometer-scale crustal doming prior to the eruption of the Emeishan flood basalts, 2003, He B. , Xu Y. G. , Chung S. L. , Xiao L. , Wang Y. ,
Biostratigraphic and sedimentologic investigations in 67 sections have been carried out for the Middle Permian Maokou Formation that immediately underlies the Emeishan flood basalts in southwest China. The results suggest a domal crustal thinning before the emplacement of the Emeishan large igneous province. Variably thinned carbonates in the Maokou Formation are capped by a subaerial unconformity, which is generally manifested by karst paleotopography, paleoweathering zone, or locally by relict gravels and basal conglomerates. Provenance analysis indicates that these gravels and conglomerates were mainly derived from the uppermost Maokou Formation. Therefore, the stratigraphic thinning likely resulted from differential erosion due to regional uplift. Iso-thickness contours of the Maokou Formation delineate a subcircular uplifted area, in accordance with the crustal doming caused by a starting mantle plume as predicted by experimental and numerical modeling. The duration of this uplift is estimated to be less than 3 Myr and the magnitude of uplift is greater than 1000 m. The sedimentary records therefore provide independent supporting evidence for the mantle plume initiation model for the generation of the Emeishan flood basalts. (C) 2003 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved

THE FIRST DATING OF CAVE ICE FROM THE TATRA MOUNTAINS, POLAND AND ITS IMPLICATION TO PALAEOCLIMATE RECONSTRUCTIONS, 2010, Hercman H. , Gą, Siorowski M. , Gradziń, Ski M. Kiciń, Ska D.

Lodowa Cave in Ciemniak, which belongs to the dynamic ice cave type, contains the biggest perennial block of cave-ice in the Tatra Mountains. The ice represents congelation type, since it originates from freezing of water which infiltrates the cave. Two generations of ice have been recognized in this cave. They are divided by the distinct unconformity. The ice building both generations is layered. Two moths which were found in the younger generations were sampled and dated by 14C method yielding 195 ± 30 and 125 ± 30 years. Bearing in mind the position in the section and the fact that the cave ice has waned since the 20s of the last century, the age is 1720-1820 AD and 1660-1790 AD respectively. It proves that the ice was formed during the Little Ice Age. Hence, the erosion boundary which underlies this generation records the degradation of ice before the Little Ice Age most probably during the Medieval Warm Period. The ice volume in the cave was substantially smaller before the Little Ice Age than it is today, despite the clear tendency to melting, which has been recognized since 20s of the last century. The older generation of ice is supposed to have its origins in a cold stage between the Atlantic period and the Medieval Warm Period.


The nature and origin of the ghost-rocks at Bullslaughter Bay, South Wales, 2012, Rowberry Matt D. , Battiauqueney Yvonne, Blazejowski Blazej, Walsh Peter

The ‘ghost-rocks’ of the British Isles have attracted very little research interest over the years despite being widely distributed. In South Wales, the ghost-rocks of the Pembroke Peninsula are usually associated with the mudrock formations immediately above and below the Carboniferous Limestone. This study focuses on their nature and origin through a detailed investigation of the cliff sections at Bullslaughter Bay. The investigated ghost-rocks are associated with a suite of breccias, collectively termed the Gash Breccias. These are an enigmatic suite of around twenty-five large breccia masses located exclusively in the eastern part of the peninsula. They comprise huge masses of coarse, chaotic, clast-supported, monomictic breccia and represent highly disturbed features in the otherwise unbroken sequences of Carboniferous Limestone. Their origin may be karstic, tectonic, or a combination of the two. They could, theoretically, have formed at any point between the end of the Carboniferous and the Pliocene. If their origin is karstic, it cannot yet be determined if the processes were attributable to per descensum or per ascensum groundwater systems. If tectonic, it is not known whether they formed during periods of compression or extension. From our own geological and geophysical fieldwork, we believe that the breccias originated as a result of subterranean karstic processes whilst retaining an open mind with regard to the role played by tectonics. The breccia and ghost-rocks are both displayed in fine cliff exposures around Bullslaughter Bay. These sections, although not extensive, are extremely instructive. The processes that generate ghost-rock result in isovolumetric weathering of the host rock and an associated loss of density and strength. They may or may not involve the removal of certain chemical constituents in the regolith through solution and hydrolysis followed by the formation of secondary minerals, frequently clay. In reality, the precise weathering process differs according to the type of rock. The process is controlled by the permeability of each rock type in banded rocks such as mudstones or shale with banded chert whereas it is controlled by fissures and faults in homogenous rocks. This control is clearly seen in the Carboniferous Limestone around Bullslaughter Bay, where ghost-rocks are present, more commonly in case of impure or dolomitic limestone. At present, it is not clear whether the groundwater movements were caused by hydrothermal or meteoric processes and this forms the basis of ongoing research. Finally, the study considers the relationship that exists between the ghost-rock and the Gash Breccia. We examine whether there is a logical correlation between the processes that came to generate the ghost-rock and the processes responsible for the generation of the breccia. It may then be possible to accurately state whether the ghost-rock formed before, during, or after, the breccia. The reasons that the ghost-rocks of the British Isles have attracted very little research interest may stem from the fact that they have no current commercial value, have seldom presented engineering problems, and are normally difficult to date. It is clear that numerous karst related sag-subsidences in the British Isles result from the large-scale decalcification of the Carboniferous Limestone (e.g. the Tortonian Brassington Formation of the southern Pennines). There is, however, an increasingly large body of evidence to suggest that these subsidences result from the same processes that generate ghost-rock rather than those that create endokarstic voids. The subsidences may preserve stratigraphical sequences several decametres thick and reach depths and widths of many hectometres. Unfortunately, the masses of decalcified limestone below the Tortonian sediments are of no commercial interest and have hardly ever been penetrated by boreholes. Therefore, we do not know exactly what underlies the karstic fills. The possibility that most of these structures are best explained as the result of per ascensum groundwater flow is discussed.


Marine seismic-reflection data from the southeastern Florida Platform: a case for hypogenic karst, 2013, Cunningham, Kevin J.

Recent acquisition of twenty marine seismic-reflection profiles suggests a hypogenic karst origin for the Key Biscayne sinkhole located on the seafloor of Miami Terrace at the southeastern part of Florida Platform. Analysis of the seismic-reflection data strongly suggest the submarine sinkhole was produced by dissolution and collapse of Plio(?)-Pleistocene age carbonate strata. A complex fault system that includes compres-sional reverse faults underlies the sinkhole, providing a physical system for the possible exchange of groundwater with the sinkhole. One seismic profile is suggestive of a mas-ter feeder pipe beneath the sinkhole. The feeder pipe is characterized by seismic-reflection configurations that resemble megabreccia and stratal collapse. The sinkhole is located at a depth of about 365 m below sea level. The record of sea-level change dur-ing the Plio(?)-Pleistocene and amount of subsidence of the Florida Platform during this span of time indicates that the sinkhole has always been submerged at a water depth of about 235 m or more. Thus, the near-surface epigenic karst paradigm can be ruled out. Possible hypogenic models for sinkhole formation include ascending fluids along the fault system, such as, dissolution related to the freshwater/saltwater mixing at a regional groundwater discharge site, or processes related to gases derived from gener-ation of hydrocarbons within deep Mesozoic strata. Hydrocarbon-related karstification provides several possible scenarios: (1) oxidation of deep oil-field derived hydrogen sulfide at or near the seafloor to form sulfuric acid, (2) reduction of Cretaceous or Paleocene anhydrite or both by oil-field methane to form hydrogen sulfide and later oxidation to form sulfuric acid, and (3) carbon-dioxide charged groundwater reacting to form carbonic acid. Further, anerobic microbes could form methane outside of a hy-drocarbon reservoir that ascends through anhydrite to form hydrogen sulfide and later oxidized to sulfuric acid.


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