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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 ceiling block is roughly cubical jointbounded large block, which has fallen from the ceiling of a cave [10]. see also cave breakdown; ceiling slab.?

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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 weight (Keyword) returned 72 results for the whole karstbase:
Showing 61 to 72 of 72
Isotopic composition of atmospheric precipitation and karstic springs of the north-west slope of the Crimean Mountains, 2011, Dublyansky Y. V. , Klimchouk . B. , Amelichev G. N. , Tokarev S. V. , Sptl C.

Atmospheric precipitation was sampled for isotopic analyses according to GNIP protocol at two stations in Crimea,  Ukraine: Simferopol (24 months) and Chatyrdag (15 months). In addition, several karstic springs and one well tapping deep karstic  aquifer were sampled. The δD vs. δ 18 O relationship is only slightly differs from global Meteoric Water Line. Variable degrees of  correlation with the air temperature and the precipitation amount suggest that the isotopic composition of precipitation is affected  by several processes (e.g., air temperature and supply of moisture from different sources). Interestingly, drastically different make-ups of precipitation were observed simultaneously at two stations located only 23 km apart.  Waters in seven karstic springs discharging at Dolgorukovsky massif (2), Chatirdag (1), Baidarsky basin (3), and Mangup-kale  (1) have isotopic compositions that follow local meteoric water line but are lighter than weighted annual mean values for their  respective catchment areas. Isotopic composition of the underground stream in Krasnaya (Red) cave is nearly constant and thus,  decoupled from changes in both the isotopic composition of atmospheric precipitation in the recharge area and the flow regime  (flood or base flow). This suggests a strong buffering and homogenizing role of the soil cover and the epikarst zone, as well as  the predominant role of winter recharge on these karst massifs. Still lighter isotopic composition of deep karstic water tapped by  a borehole is tentatively explained by old, pre-Holocene age of this water.


Comparative study of specific groundwater vulnerability of a karst aquifer in central Florida, 2012, Van Beynen P. E. , Niedzielski M. A. , Bialkowskajelinska E. , Alsharifa K. , Matusick J.

The Floridan aquifer system (FAS) is known to be one of the most productive aquifer systems in the USA. With the FAS being a karst aquifer, it presents unique challenges to land use planners because of inherent vulnerabilities to contamination through direct connections between the aquifer and the surface. In this study a new Geographic Information Systems (GIS) -based index, the Karst Aquifer Vulnerability Index (KAVI), incorporates geologic layers used in intrinsic groundwater vulnerability models (GVMs) plus an epikarst layer specific to karst, with land use coverages to create a specific groundwater vulnerability model. The KAVI model was compared to another specific vulnerability model, the Susceptibility Index (SI). Tabulation of the percentage areas of vulnerability classes reveals major differences between the two models with SI suggesting greater vulnerability for the study area than KAVI. Validation of these two models found that KAVI vulnerability levels best reproduced spatially varying concentrations of nitrate in the aquifer. Sensitivity analysis, the application of a variation index and measuring the effective weights for each parameter included in KAVI confirmed the importance of closed depressions but also aquifer hydraulic conductivity. The inclusion of land use was justified; however, effective weight analysis determined its assigned weight was too high as used in the initial calculation of KAVI.


Corrosion of limestone tablets in sulfidic ground-water: measurements and speleogenetic implications, 2012, Galdenzi, Sandro

The measurement of the weight loss in limestone tablets placed in the Grotta del Fiume (Frasassi, Italy) provided data on the rate of limestone dissolution due to the sulfidic water and on the influence of local environmental conditions.

A linear average corrosion rate of 24 mm ka-1 was measured in stagnant water, while the values were higher (68-119 mm ka-1) where the hydrologic conditions facilitate water movement and gas exchanges. In these zones the increase in water aggressivity is due to mixing with descending, O2-rich, seepage water and is also favored by easier gas exchange between ground-water and the cave atmosphere. Very intense corrosion was due to weakly turbulent flow, which caused evident changes in the tablets shape in few months.

A comparison between the measured corrosion rates and the cave features showed that the values measured in the pools with stagnant water are too low to account for the largest solutional cave development, while the average values measured in the zones with moving water are compatible with the dimension of the cave rooms in the main cave levels, that must have developed when the base level was stable and hydrologic conditions favored the increase of water aggressivity.


Microbiological Activities in Moonmilk Monitored Using Isothermal Microcalorimetry (Cave of Vers Chez Le Brandt, Neuchatel, Switzerland), 2012, Braissant O. , Binderschedler S. , Daniels A. U. , Verrecchia E. P. , Cailleau G.

 

Studies of the influence of microbial communities on calcium carbonate deposits mostly rely on classical or molecular microbiology, isotopic analyses, and microscopy. Using these techniques, it is difficult to infer microbial activities in such deposits. In this context, we used isothermal microcalorimetry, a sensitive and nondestructive tool, to measure microbial activities associated with moonmilk ex-situ. Upon the addition of diluted LB medium and other carbon sources to fresh moonmilk samples, we estimated the number of colony forming units per gram of moonmilk to be 4.8 3 105 6 0.2 3 105. This number was close to the classical plate counts, but one cannot assume that all active cells producing metabolic heat were culturable. Using a similar approach, we estimated the overall growth rate and generation time of the microbial community associated with the moonmilk upon addition of various carbon sources. The range of apparent growth rates of the chemoheterotrophic microbial community observed was between 0.025 and 0.067 h21 and generation times were between 10 and 27 hours. The highest growth rates were observed for citrate and diluted LB medium, while the highest carbon-source consumption rates were observed for low molecular weight organic acids (oxalate and acetate) and glycerol. Considering the rapid degradation of organic acids, glucose, and other carbon sources observed in the moonmilk, it is obvious that upon addition of nutrients during snow melting or rainfall these communities can have high overall activities comparable to those observed in some soils. Such communities can influence the physico-chemical conditions and participate directly or indirectly to the formation of moonmilk.


Ostracoda (Crustacea) from freshwater caves in the western Black Sea region of Turkey, 2012, Yavuzatmaca Mehmet Okan Klkyloglu, Sari Necmettin, Basak Elif, Mengi Hamdi

To understand cave Ostracoda assemblage composition and diversity in the western Black Sea region of Turkey, eleven caves were sampled between September and October, 2010. Seven ostracod taxa were recorded (Ilyocypris inermis, I. bradyi, Ilyocypris sp., Candona neglecta, Candona sp., Pseudocandona sp., and Heterocypris sp.) inhabiting six of eleven caves examined. Two additional taxa (Psychrodromus olivaceus and Psychrodromus sp.) were also collected outside of Çayirköyü Cave and the entrance of Aksu and Sarikaya caves, respectively. The records of adult individuals of I. inermis and I. bradyi represent the first records from cave environments, while the record of C. neglecta is only the second record from cave environments. Almost all of the caves studied were characterized by low diversity and abundance. Unweighted Pair Group Mean Averages with about 85% similarity indicated the presence of three groups comprised of three, seven and three sites respectively. Similarities based on ecological variables were higher between caves in close geographical proximity to each other compared to those farther apart. The results indicate that the occurrence of ostracods within caves is dependent on environmental conditions within the aquatic habitats present at the sites.


Isotopic composition of atmospheric precipitation and karstic springs of the north-west slope of the Crimean Mountains, 2012, Dublyansky Y. V. , Klimchouk . B. , Amelichev G. N. , Tokarev S. V. , Sptl C

 

Atmospheric precipitation was sampled for isotopic analyses according to GNIP protocol at two stations in Crimea,
Ukraine: Simferopol (24 months) and Chatyrdag (15 months). In addition, several karstic springs and one well tapping deep karstic aquifer were sampled. The δD vs. δ18O relationship is only slightly differs from global Meteoric Water Line. Variable degrees of correlation with the air temperature and the precipitation amount suggest that the isotopic composition of precipitation is affected by several processes (e.g., air temperature and supply of moisture from different sources). Interestingly, drastically different makeups of precipitation were observed simultaneously at two stations located only 23 km apart. Waters in seven karstic springs discharging at Dolgorukovsky massif (2), Chatirdag (1), Baidarsky basin (3), and Mangup-kale (1) have isotopic compositions that follow local meteoric water line but are lighter than weighted annual mean values for their respective catchment areas. Isotopic composition of the underground stream in Krasnaya (Red) cave is nearly constant and thus, decoupled from changes in both the isotopic composition of atmospheric precipitation in the recharge area and the flow regime (flood or base flow). This suggests a strong buffering and homogenizing role of the soil cover and the epikarst zone, as well as the predominant role of winter recharge on these karst massifs. Still lighter isotopic composition of deep karstic water tapped by a borehole is tentatively explained by old, pre-Holocene age of this water.

Isotopic composition of atmospheric precipitation and karstic springs of the north-west slope of the Crimean Mountains, 2012, Dublyansky Y. V. , Klimchouk . B. , Amelichev G. N. , Tokarev S. V. , Spotl, C.

Atmospheric precipitation was sampled for isotopic analyses according to GNIP protocol at two stations in Crimea, Ukraine: Simferopol (24 months) and Chatyrdag (15 months). In addition, several karstic springs and one well tapping deep karstic aquifer were sampled. The δD vs. δ18O relationship is only slightly differs from global Meteoric Water Line. Variable degrees of correlation with the air temperature and the precipitation amount suggest that the isotopic composition of precipitation is affected by several processes (e.g., air temperature and supply of moisture from different sources). Interestingly, drastically different makeups of precipitation were observed simultaneously at two stations located only 23 km apart. Waters in seven karstic springs discharging at Dolgorukovsky massif (2), Chatirdag (1), Baidarsky basin (3), and Mangup-kale (1) have isotopic compositions that follow local meteoric water line but are lighter than weighted annual mean values for their respective catchment areas. Isotopic composition of the underground stream in Krasnaya (Red) cave is nearly constant and thus, decoupled from changes in both the isotopic composition of atmospheric precipitation in the recharge area and the flow regime (flood or base flow). This suggests a strong buffering and homogenizing role of the soil cover and the epikarst zone, as well as the predominant role of winter recharge on these karst massifs. Still lighter isotopic composition of deep karstic water tapped by a borehole is tentatively explained by old, pre-Holocene age of this water


Detritus processing in lentic cave habitats in the neotropics, 2013, Marconi Souza Silva, Rafaelly Karina Sales Rezende, Rodrigo Lopes Ferreira

Lentic cave habitatsare almost always heterotrophic habitats where there are food and oxygen input from the surface. This hydrological exchange seems to be the key factor shaping most groundwater communities. Litter processing in cave water environments has not been experimentally studied as much as it has in lotic subterranean systems, although detritus is likely a critical resource for organisms inhabiting shallow groundwater habitats. The present study sought to evaluate the processing rates and the nitrogen and phosphorous dynamics in plant debris deposited in lentic habitats of two Neotropical limestone caves during 99 days. 84–10×10 cm2 litterbags with mesh sizes of 0.04 mm2 and 9 mm2 were used. In each weighed litter bag, 50 green, intact plant leaf disks (± 2.0 gr/bag) were conditioned. At the end of the experiment, the average weight loss was only 17.4%. No macroinvertebrates were found associated to the debris, but significant differences in the processing rate in relation to the cave and mesh size were observed. The weight loss rate of the plant debris was considered slow (average 0.003 K-day). The amount of nitrogen and remaining phosphorous in the plant debris in the two caves showed variations over time with a tendency to increase probably due to the development of microorganisms which assimilate nitrogen and phosphorus. The slow processing rate of the plant debris can be due mainly to the fact that these lentic cave habitats are restrictive to colonization by shredder invertebrates. Furthermore, the abrasive force of the water, which plays an important role in the processing and availability of fragmented debris for colonization by microorganisms, is absent.


Influence of meteorological variables to water quality in five lakes over the Aggtelek (Hungary) and Slovak karst regions – a case study, 2013, Samu Andrea, Csépe Zoltán, Báránykevei Ilona

The main objective of this study is to analyse the effect of tendencies in the meteorological variables on the water quality on the example of five lakes in the Aggtelek and Slovak karst. The data set used eleven water quality parameters (oxygen saturation, chemical oxygen demand, nitrate, nitrite, orthophosphate, total phosphorus, ammonium, pH, conductivity, iron, manganese), as well as daily data of six climatic parameters from the period 2008­2010. A cluster analysis is performed in order to determine the climate impact on the water quality parameters. Furthermore, factor analysis with special transformation, as a novelty in the study, is implemented to find out the weight of the climate parameters as explanatory variables and hence their rank of importance in forming the given water quality parameter as an influencing variable. The study introduces a methodology for analysing the climate impact on the water quality parameters. In order to reduce the number of the water quality parameters, a so called two­stage factor analysis was performed, which is a novel procedure. Application of the two­stage factor analysis involves both benefits and disadvantages. Its benefit is that it substantially reduces the number of resultant variables. In this way, information loss of the retained factors is around 20%. As a result, we received that both positive and negative extreme values of water quality parameters can be associated with weak or breaking­up warm fronts passing through over the region. On the contrary, the role of anticyclones or anticyclone ridge weather situations is supposed to be irrelevant. Unstable and extreme weather conditions act in the direction of breaking up the balance that would support the good water quality. This process does not benefit the water use nor the sensitive karst hydrogeological system


Analysis of "standard" (Lipica) lemestone tablets and their weathering by carbonate staining and SEM imaging, a case study on the Vis island, Croatia, 2013, Krklec Kristina, Marjanac Tihomir, Perica Dražen

This paper focuses on the evolution and patterns of microscale weathering forms and dissolution rates of “standard” (Lipica) limestone tablets. Analysis of carbonate weathering using combination of methods (quantitative analysis by the weight loss of "standard" tablets, and qualitative analysis of the weathered surfaces by stained acetate peels and SEM imaging) showed that dissolution takes place not only at the surface of limestone tablets, but also along voids and cavities in limestone tablets which makes total weathering surface larger than the area of the tablet surface. Dissolution is more pronounced on the micritic calcite surfaces (due to different dissolution kinetics of carbonate minerals), resulting in lowering of the surface (calcite matrix) which causes gradual unburial and removal of authigenic dolomite grains.


Deep conduit flow in karst aquifers revisited, 2014, Kaufmann Georg, Gabrovšek Franci, Romanov Douchko

Caves formed in soluble rocks such as limestone, anhydrite, or gypsum are efficient drainage paths for water moving through the aquifer from the surface of the host rock towards a resurgence. The formation of caves is controlled by the physical solution through dissociation of the host rock by water or by the chemical solution through reactions of the host rock with water enriched with carbon dioxide. Caves as large underground voids are simply the end member of secondary porosity and conductivity characterizing the aquifer.

Caves and their relation to a present or past base level are found both close to a past or present water table (water-table caves) and extending far below a past or present water table (bathy-phreatic caves). One explanation for this different speleogenetic evolution is the structural control: Fractures and bedding partings are preferentially enlarged around more prominent faults, thus the fracture density in the host rock controls the speleogenetic evolution. This widely accepted explanation [e.g. Ford and Ewers, 1978] can be extended by adding other controls, e.g. a hydraulic control: As temperature generally increases with depth, density and viscosity of water change, and particularly the reduction of viscosity due to the increase in temperature enhances flow. This hypothesis was proposed by Worthington [2001, 2004] as a major controlling factor for the evolution of deep-bathyphreatic caves.

We compare the efficiency of structural and hydraulic control on the evolution of a cave passage by numerical means, adding a third control, the chemical control to address the change in solubility of the circulating water with depth. Our results show that the increase in flow through deep bathy-phreatic passages due to the decrease in viscosity is by far outweighted by effects such as the decrease in fracture width with depth due to lithostatic stress and the decrease in solubility with depth. Hence, the existence of deep bathy-phreatic cave passages is more likely to be controlled by the structural effect of prominent faults.


Assessment of forward osmosis as a possible mitigation strategy for urine management during extended cave exploration, 2014, Borer C. H. , Stiles W. J. , Stevenson J. C. , . Cabanillas K. E

Extended expeditions into caves for the purpose of survey, exploration, and scientific studies pose unique challenges to cavers, but also create the potential for environmental degradation as a result of human activities. Human waste disposal can present particular challenges during extended trips underground. Urine may cause rapid microbe proliferation and substantial odor when deposited in areas that do not receive frequent flooding, but weight and bulk make it impractical to carry many days worth of urine to the surface. In this study, we evaluated the feasibility of a forward osmosis system to concentrate nitrogen-containing and carbon-containing compounds, which would allow for cleaner treated liquid to be deposited in the cave. The concentrated waste solution, with lower weight and volume than the raw urine, could then be removed from the cave. In our analysis of volume and chemical changes of a urine solution treated over the course of a week-long trial, we determined that the system, as tested, does reduce the weight and concentrate the chemical constituents in urine, allowing some chemical separation from the treated liquid. Unfortunately, the drawbacks of this system (chemical breakthrough, added weight of the system, and unknown ecological effects associated with substantial sodium chloride additions to the cave) outweigh the benefits. We do not recommend this forward osmosis system, as tested, as an effective mitigation strategy, although other treatment strategies may hold promise.


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