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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 stoping is the upward migration of the ceiling in a passage or room by the action of slabs falling [13].?

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Featured articles from Cave & Karst Science Journals
Chemistry and Karst, White, William B.
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Your search for tracing test (Keyword) returned 28 results for the whole karstbase:
Showing 16 to 28 of 28
Underground Water Flow from the Tržiščica Sinking Stream (SE Slovenia), 2002, Kogovš, Ek Janja, Petrič, Metka

A tracing test with injection of uranine in the sinking stream Tr¾i¹èica (SE Slovenia) was carried out at the hydrological conditions of recession from medium to low waters. Concentrated flow towards the springs Tominèev studenec, Javornikov izvir and Debeljakov izvir near the village Dvor in the Krka valley was proved. Apparent flow velocities between 2.4 and 4.6 cm/s were obtained, and the share of recovered tracer was estimated to 2/3 of the injected amount. In the Podpe¹ka jama cave the tracer in lower concentrations was detected only after heavy rain occurred after two months of low water. The apparent flow velocity of 0.1 cm/s was calculated. Obtained results, together with the outcomes of the previous tracing tests, indicate that hydrological conditions significantly influence the underground water flow from the Tr¾i¹èica sinking stream.


Hydrogeological overview of the Bure plateau, Ajoie, Switzerland, 2003, Kovacs A. , Jeannin P. Y. ,
This study presents a hydrogeological synthesis of the most recent data from the Bure plateau in Ajoie, canton Jura, NW Switzerland. Included is a complete reappraisal of aquifer geometry and aquifer boundaries, the delineation of catchment areas based on tracing experiments, and the evaluation of the hydraulic role of different hydrostratigraphic units. Furthermore, it presents GIS-based calculations on the mean piezometric surface, the thickness of the unsaturated zone and on the thickness of the minimum and mean saturated zones. The spatial extension of the shallow karst zone is also evaluated. A coherent conceptual model and the two-dimensional steady-state combined discrete channel and continuum type numerical model of the aquifer has been constructed. The research site is 83 km(2) in area and is underlain by slightly folded layers of Mesozoic limestones and marls. The Bure plateau is dissected by normal faults, which form a succession of elongated horst and graben structures. The main aquifer consists of Maim limestones, with thicknesses varying between zero (eastern border) and 320 m (south-eastern regions). The aquifer is bounded from below by the Oxfordian Marls. The underlying sediments of Middle Jurassic age are considered to be hydraulically independent. The surface topography of the Oxfordian Marls reveals the periclinal termination of a wide anticline over the plateau and a syncline in the southern parts. The aquifer contains three marly intercalations. Tracing experiments prove that marl layers do not act as regional aquicludes. These experiments also allow for the division of the aquifer surface into several water catchments. Based on tracing tests and piezometric data a NW-SE oriented groundwater divide seems to extend in the regions of Porrentruy-Bure-Croix. Calculations of the average (matrix flow) and minimum (conduit flow) water tables indicate an extended shallow karst zone in the region of Boncourt-Buix-St-Dizier. The thickness of the saturated zone increases towards the extremities of the research site, being thickest in the South. The thickness of the unsaturated zone shows a large variation, reaching its maximum in the central areas. Numerical model calculations roughly reproduce the observed hydraulic heads and mean spring discharges, they confirm current ideas about hydraulic parameters and suggest the existence of extended karst subsystems throughout the model domain

Test di tracciamento della Fessura del Vento (Val Rosandra, Carso):, 2005, Clarissa Brun& Rino Semeraro
The tracer test was carried out in the 2004, in the perennial stream called ?Rio del lago azzurro? (?Stream of blue lake?). It flows in the lower level of the cave called Fessura del Vento (?Wind?s Fissure?) in Rosandra Valley (Carso, Italy). The Fessura del Vento is one of the larger caves developed in the Stena Mt; this relief is the northern slope of Rosandra valley: the small basin that characterizes the southern border of the Carso (the region of the Carso, or Kras, is administrated by Italy and Slovenia). Two hypotheses before the Uranine injection: a) North-West drainage, toward the Trieste Karst aquifer; b) South drainage, toward the Rosandra Stream. The techniques used for detected the Uranine are: sampling, charcoals, fluorometer probe, fluorometric analysis in laboratory. Tracer test shows that the flow path is connected to Clinciza Spring (or ?Fonte Oppia?) in the rocky bed of Rosandra Stream (left hydrographic slope). The ?Rio del lago azzurro? flows inside the Tertiary ?Alveolinid-nummulitid limestone? of tectonic wedges Stena Mt. These wedges are characterized by overthrust system and the underground water beyond the impermeable layers (marls and marlyarenaceous flysch) probably extinguished in North for faults; for this reason, there is retroversion of drainage and the ?Rio del lago azzurro? outflows in Clinciza Spring (verified the 2nd hypothesis). This karstic spring is placed near the impervious level (?semi-dammed?) provoked by Flysch of ?Ridge fault? (overthrust system). The detected long time of Uranine (62-98 hours), the small path (900 m), the form of output tracer pulse, the very little flow (7-14 m/h), suggest a water circulation in the probably small recently reticular conduits, in saturated semi-saturated zone.

Karst groundwater protection: First application of a Pan-European Approach to vulnerability, hazard and risk mapping in the Sierra de Libar (Southern Spain), 2006, Andreo B, Goldscheider N, Vadillo I, Vias Jm, Neukum C, Sinreich M, Jimenez P, Brechenmacher J, Carrasco F, Hotzl H, Perles Mj, Zwahlen F,
The European COST action 620 proposed a comprehensive approach to karst groundwater protection, comprising methods of intrinsic and specific vulnerability mapping, validation of vulnerability maps, hazard and risk mapping. This paper presents the first application of all components of this Pan-European Approach to the Sierra de Libar, a karst hydrogeology system in Andalusia, Spain. The intrinsic vulnerability maps take into account the hydrogeological characteristics of the area but are independent from specific contaminant properties. Two specific vulnerability maps were prepared for faecal coliforrns and BTEX These maps take into account the specific properties of these two groups of contaminants and their interaction with the karst hydrogeological system. The vulnerability assessment was validated by means of tracing tests, hydrological, hydrochemical and isotope methods. The hazard map shows the localization of potential contamination sources resulting from human activities, and evaluates those according to their dangerousness. The risk of groundwater contamination depends on the hazards and the vulnerability of the aquifer system. The risk map for the Sierra de Libar was thus created by overlaying the hazard and vulnerability maps. (C) 2005 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved

Tracer Test in the Vadose Zone of the Trebiciano Abyss near an Uncontrolled Landfill, 2006, Rino Semeraro, Luciano Ballarin, Clarissa Brun, Sergio Dambrosi, Fulvio Forti
The present study concerns the results of a tracer test in the vadose zone of the Trebiciano Abyss in the Karst of Trieste, at the bottom of which the Timavo underground river flows. Two tracers were used: Uranine and Tinopal CBS-X, separately introduced in two dolines above the abyss, through artificial spills of water, simulating heavy rainy events. Inside the abyss, 350 m deep, four points were equipped in order to control and capture the percolation waters (S1, S2, S3, and S4), at different depths, where drainage is normally present. At each point daily sampling and flow measurements were carried out, at S2 at -250 m a fluorometer probe was also installed, to record the two tracers continuously. Refraction seismic survey characterized the epikarst, The Uranine was found at point S3 the same day as its injection, subsequently at point S2 (fluorometer probe recording). Tinopal CBS-X was found at point S2 the same day as its injection. The tracing test also proved, unmistakably, that in just a few hours, after a strong rainfall or an accidental spill the release of pollutants on the karst surface, infiltrating underground, is transferred further than 300 m of depth, flowing directly in the base flow with no chance of being stopped.

Long-term tracing in karstic aquifer reservoir for drinking water:, 2006, Rino Semeraro, Massimiliano Baldassi, Luciano Ballarin, Clarissa Brun, Luca D?amelio, Fulvio Forti
The chain of the Musi Mt (1,869.4 m) is one of the most important karst massifs of the Western Julian Fore-Alps (Italy). It corresponds to an east-west unicline dipping north. The structural northern slope, having glaciokarst morphologies, is conditioned by karst in calcareous rocks (Raethian-Liassic); the southern dolomitic slope (Dolomia Principale, Norian-Raethian), is less karstified and is characterized by trenches. On the northern slope, the Barmàn spring is located; on the southern slope the Voidizza Springs and the Torre Springs are located. The Torre Springs, fed by both the alluvial aquifer of the upper valley of the Torre Stream and by the carbonate aquifer of the Musi, supply the waterworks of western Friuli region managed by ?CAFC Consorzio Acquedotti Friuli Orientale?. Almost the whole feeding basin of the above-mentioned springs is placed in a protected area, managed by ?Ente Parco Naturale delle Prealpi Giulie?. Therefore, the zone is an important example of an area having high vulnerability due to karst and it is strategic for the water supply for an important part of Friuli. Formerly, two tracing tests were carried out injecting Uranine into the Pahor Abyss on the northern slope. From these tests it results that the waters of the karst area drain in the Uragano Cave and in the underlying Barman Spring. Only during heavy low water, when the underground watershed of the massif lowers, is it possible to observe traces of Uranine in the Torre Springs, since the most northern underground regions of the massif are drained. In order to understand better the underground water flow, a long-term tracing was carried out injecting Uranine in the the Pahor Abyss on 11th October 2005. The tracer test was supported by a chemical-physical study of the underground waters of the massif, in the period from 28th September 2005 to 13th January 2006. In this study flow measurements (Q), physical-chemical measurements on the field (TC, pH, E.C.20C), chemical analysis (Tot. hardness, TDS180, Alk. CaHCO3-, K+, Na+, Ca2+, Mg2+, Cl-, SO42-, NO3-, NH4+, B, SiO2, Li+, Rb+, Sr2+, Cd, Co, tot. Cr, Ni, Pb, Mn, Fe, Cu, As, Zn) and the analysis of the stable isotopes (δ18O, δD) were carried out. As for the tracing test two fluorometer probes were positioned: one at the Barmàn Spring, the other in the mixer between the 21 drainages and the capture well of the Torre Springs. Moreover, the Voidizza Springs were checked and regularly sampled. Uranine was found at the Barmàn Spring after 12.26 hours with a distance of about 1,500 m. It probably flowed in large karst conduits, at a theoretical speed of 120 m/h (3.3 cm/s). The breakthrough curves are very quick: Uranine wave extinguished in only three days, thus confirming that it is a high mountain system that reacts to impulses immediately. The E.C.20C of the Barmàn Spring is almost constantly lower than that of the Torre and Voidizza Springs, whereas the temperature of the Voidizza Springs is always the highest of all the waters measured. δ18O of the Barmàn Spring (between -9.0 ? and -9.1?) is always inferior to that of the springs placed on the southern slope (between -8.0? and -8.7 ?) and δD of the Barmàn Spring ranges between -55? and -63?. E.C.20C of the Barmàn Spring (between μS/cm 128.7 and μS/cm 188.0) is almost always inferior to the E.C.20C of the springs of the southern slope (between μS/cm 139.9 and μS/cm 228.0). Ca2+ and Mg2+ are absolutely predominant in all the waters, where the Ca2+ values of the Barman Spring (around 30 mg/L) and of the springs of the southern slope (between 30 mg/L and 31.8 mg/L) are similar, whereas at the Barman Spring Mg2+ is always lower (about 4.9 mg/L) than that of the springs of the southern slope (between 9.0 mg/L and 16.2 mg/L). This confirms that the southern springs are fed by a predominantly dolomitic aquifer (in particular the Voidizza Springs) compared with that of the northern slope. Among the minor elements it is possible to observe Cu and Fe at the Torre and Voidizza Springs, whereas here Sr is remarkable (between 13.9 μg/L and 18.3 μg/L) and diffused in the whole aquifer. SO42- and NO3- are low in all the waters.

Hydrogeological uncertainties in delineation of leakage at karst dam sites, the Zagros Region, Iran, 2007, Mohammadi Z. And Raeisi E.
Leakage from dam reservoirs has been reported in different karst regions of the world. Water leakage occurs through the karst features directly or indirectly. The estimation of leakage locations, path(s), and quantity are subject to error due to uncertainties in the non-homogenous nature of a karst formation, method of study, and limited investigation due to time and cost factors. The conventional approaches for study on the karst development are local boring at the dam site and geological mapping. In this paper, uncertainties associated with conventional hydrogeological approaches are addressed from both qualitative and quantitative points of view. No major solution cavities were observed in boreholes and galleries of some dam sites in the Zagros Region, Iran, but huge karst conduits were discovered during the drilling of a diversion tunnel. This inconsistency is due to the point character of boreholes and the inherent nonhomogeneity of karst. The results of dye tracing tests in boreholes may be significantly affected by location of the injection and sampling points, as tests executed at the Saymareh and Tangab Dam sites in the Zagros Region, Iran show. The quantitative uncertainty of leakage is analyzed for diffuse and conduit flow systems for cases with and without any grout curtain, under the combined effect of input uncertainties at the Tangab Dam site, southern Iran. Assuming a diffuse flow system, the mean leakage at 95% confidence interval for both strategies is estimated at less than 5% of the mean annual discharge of the river. Accordingly, the dam can be constructed without the necessity of a grout curtain. However, assuming a conduit flow system, the results reveal a significant uncertainty. A small diameter conduit can convey significant amounts of water under high reservoir pressure heads. The leakage of a 4 m diameter conduit (cross section area of 12.5 m2) is 163 times more than the leakage of 0.5 m diameter conduit (cross sectional area of 0.2 m2) while the cross sectional area ratio is 60. The uncertainty may be decreased if a detailed study is carried out on the stratigraphic and tectonic settings, karst hydrogeology, geomorphology, speleogenesis, and by performing several dye tracing tests, especially outside the proposed grout curtain area.

Chemistry of percolation and base-flow water in the Carso/Kras, 2007, Enrico Merlak, Clarissa Brun, Fabio Gemiti, Rino Semeraro

The percolation water in the Karst of Trieste have been studied for 20 months in the Trebiciano abyss, in two points at 100 and 250 m depth, in order to detect the main physical-chemical parameters, according to the rainfalls, the outside temperature, the seasons and the hydrodynamic. Parallel to the physical-chemical research, a tracing test has been carried out, which has given the average of percolation rate. The tracing has shown that major flows of the percolating waters of the abyss are connected with the overlying dolines. The percolation has been studied by the relations between the physical-chemical characteristic of base-flow phreatic water of karst aquifer. It results that the percolating waters of the Trieste Karst are, on the average, different form the base-flow phreatic waters since: a) the percolating waters show high concentrations of Ca2+ and Ca(HCO3) 2 and low concentrations of characteristic parameters: K+, Na+, Cl- and NO3- ; b) base-flow phreatic waters show low concentrations of Ca2+ and Ca(HCO3) 2, and high concentrations of characteristic parameters: K+, Na+, Cl- and NO3-.


UNDERGROUND WATER FLOW BETWEEN BLOKE PLATEAU AND CERKNICA POLJE AND HyDROLOGIC FUNCTION OFKRINA JAMA, SLOVENIA, 2008, Kogovek Janja & Prelovek Mitja & Petri? Metka
Krina jama and Krina jama 2 are of important natural value. They have been known for more than hundred years from speleobiological, paleontological, geomorphological and touristic points of view. In 2007 the establishment of a water treatment plant on Bloke plateau raised important question: can partly cleaned water from the water treatment plant contaminate both caves and decrease their value? To answer this question a tracer test was carried out at the Bloke plateau. It showed general underground water flow from Farov?ica ponor at Bloke plateau toward the teber?ica spring at Cerknica polje. Minority of recovered tracer appeared at erovni?ica and Izvir v Podlou springs. The tracer was not detected at Studenec v Lou and Zlatovec springs. Between ponor and springs three karst caves were observed. The highest concentration of tracer was detected in the cave Mrzla jama pri Blo?icah and a much smaller concentration in the Krina jama and Krina jama 2. This shows that at middle water level the underground Farov?ica stream does not flow directly through Krina jama and Krina jama 2 but near or below them. Since the tracer appeared in both caves only after the precipitation, underground water course can be significantly different at high water level. Tracing test also showed some characteristics of underground water flow through dolomite and characteristics of a composed aquifer with alogenic-autogenic recharge.

Tracer tests in karst hydrogeology and speleology, 2008, Goldscheider N. , Meiman J. , Pronk M. , Smart C.

This article presents an introduction to the fundamentals of tracing techniques and their application in cave and karst environments, illustrated by case studies from the Mammoth Cave, USA, and a small experimental site in Switzerland. The properties and limitations of the most important artificial tracers are discussed, and the available methods of tracer injection, sampling, online monitoring and laboratory analysis are presented. Fully quantitative tracer experiments result in continuous or discrete concentration-time data series, i.e. breakthrough curves, and concomitant discharge data, which make it possible to obtain detailed information about groundwater flow and contaminant transport. Within the frame of speleological investigations, tracer tests can help to resolve the active and often inaccessible part of cave and conduit networks and to obtain indications about the geometry and volume of the conduits. For hydrogeological studies, caves can in turn be used as natural experimental and monitoring sites inside the unsaturated or saturated zone of karst aquifer systems.


Periodic breakthrough curve of tracer dye in the Gelodareh Spring, Zagros, Iran, 2009, Karimi, Haji And Javad Ashjari.
The Patagh Dam is under construction in the Kermanshah province in the west of Iran. The right abutment of the dam is located on Ilam-Sarvak limestone, which has the potential of karstification. This limestone is drained by several springs including Gelodareh Spring. In order to study possible leakage through the dam, a dye tracing test was organized in borehole PC208 near the dam. The recession coefficients and hydrochemical data of the Gelodareh Spring show that the flow regime of the area is of diffuse type. The dye appeared in the water samples from borehole PC206 and Gelodareh Spring, which are located downstream of the dam. This demonstrates a hydraulic connection between the injection well and these points. Therefore, there is the potential for seepage through the right abutment of the dam. The measured mean flow velocity to borehole PC206 (0.86 m/h) indicates a diffuse flow regime. The breakthrough curve of the Gelodareh Spring shows multiple peaks without significant tail except the last one. Additionally, the high flow velocity (11.8 m/h) is at odds with a diffuse flow regime. The ambiguous behaviour of the dye breakthrough curve of the Gelodareh Spring is explained by a combination of siphon and diffuse flow systems. Existence of a siphon flow system explains the multiple periodic peaks of the breakthrough curve and the lack of tails. The tail on the last peak is the result of diffuse flow system. A neck, close to the spring or the main conduit, which conveys water to the spring, might be causing the pseudo-steady state behaviour of spring discharge and diminishes the periodic discharge fluctuation, which is created by a siphon. It is probable that the siphon level is situated in the zone of water level fluctuation.

Genesis and functioning of the Aix-les-Bains hydrothermal karst (Savoie, France): past research and recent advances, 2010, Hoblea F. , Gallinojosnin S. , Audra Ph.

Aix-les-Bains (Savoie, France) owes its name and reputation to the thermal springs that occur along the eastern shore of Lake Bourget, France largest natural lake. Although the city waters have been exploited since Antiquity, scientific investigations into the nature and characteristics of the hydrothermal karst from which they emerge did not begin until the early 19th century. The present article traces the history of these investigations and summarizes the results of more than two centuries of scientific research. Today, the only visible signs of karstification related to hydrothermal flows are to be found in the discharge zone in the Urgonian limestone anticline that rises above the city centre. These features are: – the Grotte des Serpents, which houses the Alun Spring, the system main natural discharge, – the Chevalley Aven, a blind chimney that was accidentally uncovered in 1996, – other hydrothermal springs that are too small to enter, including the Soufre Spring. Although scientific investigation of the thermal springs at Aix-les-Bains began in the early 19th century, it was not until the 1920s that scientists started examining the relationship between karstification and the state of the aquifer. E.A.Martel was the first researcher to describe the Aix-les-Bains site as an active hydrothermal karst, in a pioneering study published in 1935. Sixty years later, the discovery of the Chevalley Aven during building work on a new hydrotherapy center gave fresh impetus to research into the karstification of the Aix-les-Bains thermo-mineral aquifer. Recent studies have also investigated the deep aquifer below the karst, using data provided by boreholes. The Urgonian limestone karst at Aix-les-Bains is the site of mixing between thermal waters rising through the anticline and meteoric waters percolating from the surface. Meteoric infiltration is sufficiently high for the hydrological behavior of the thermal springs to be identical to that of exsurgences in gravity-fed, cold-water transmissive karsts. The Chevalley Aven is a shaft that descends 30 meters below the surface, thereby providing access to the ground-water at depth. Monitoring of the water quality in the aven has shown that the Legionella contamination of the springs was due to high concentrations of the bacteria in upstream passages in the karst. In 2006, dye-tracing tests confirmed the existence of a hydraulic connection between the Chevalley Aven and the Alun and Soufre Springs, the fact there is a single ascending hydrothermal conduit, which lies between the Chevalley Aven and the Alun Spring. In addition to providing a valuable source of information about the functioning of the thermo-mineral aquifer, the cavities at Aix-les-Bains are of great karstological interest, especially for the study of hypogene speleogenetic processes. The circulation of warm (40oC), sulfur-rich waters and vapours through the system has led to the development of conduits with specific morphologies and the precipitation of characteristic deposits. These features include: – “beaded” chimneys and galleries formed by the linking of spheres produced by condensation-corrosion. Diffuse karstification along bedding planes around the main conduit; – deposition of non-carbonate minerals (gypsum, native sulfur); – formation of biothems and biofilms on walls subject to condensation. The Grotte des Serpents is a horizontal cavity that formed at the upper limit of the water table. The Chevalley Aven is a hypogene chimney that was sculpted under vadose conditions by the release of sulfuric acid-rich vapours above the thermal water table. As well as a surface coating of microbial mats and the presence of bacterial flakes in the thermal water, the vadose parts of the Aix-les-Bains hydrothermal karst contain a characteristic microfauna and flora. These microorganisms are thought to play an active role in hypogene karstification processes.


Using Tracer Testing Data for Resource Management Planning, 2011, Schindel Geary, Johnson Steve

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