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Speleology in Kazakhstan

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

New publications on hypogene speleogenesis

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

The deepest terrestrial animal

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

Caves - landscapes without light

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

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That infiltration capacity is the maximum rate at which a soil or rock is capable of absorbing water or limiting infiltration [22].?

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KarstBase a bibliography database in karst and cave science.

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 removal (Keyword) returned 84 results for the whole karstbase:
Showing 76 to 84 of 84
The hydrogeology and hydrochemistry of the thermal waters at Taffs Well, South Wales, UK, 2013, Farr G. , Bottrell S. H

Taffs Well is the only thermal spring in Wales, with an average temperature of 21.6°C ± 0.5°C. The River Taff is adjacent to the spring and removal of a weir and work on flood defences has reduced mixing with flood water from the river. This has enabled data to be gathered that more closely represent the thermal water end-member than previously possible. Limited interaction with modern waters is confirmed by tritium, nitrate, CFC and SF6concentrations below or close to lower detection limits, showing at most 6% mixing with modern waters. 14C dating suggests a conservative age estimate of at least 5000 years.
Values for dissolved noble gases suggest that the waters originate as rainfall at an altitude several hundred metres higher than the spring. The northern Carboniferous Limestone outcrop is proposed, which would then require recharged waters to flow to a depth of 400m and distance of 25km, following the synclinal structure of the South Wales Coalfield, to discharge at the spring. Sr isotope data suggest interaction with the Marros Group (formerly known as the Millstone Grit), the waters flowing within or close to the contact between the Carboniferous Limestone and Marros Group before rising via the Tongwynlais Fault.

MODELLING THE EVOLUTION OF KARST AQUIFERS IN THREE DIMENSIONS/Conceptual models and realistic scenarios Inaugural dissertation/ zur Erlangung des Doktorgrades Dr. rer. nat. am Fachbereich Geowissenschaften im Institut fur Geologische Wissenschaften der Fr, 2013, Hiller, Thomas

This work presents the development of three dimensional karst evolution models for various settings and conditions. As karst aquifers are very sensitive to changes of their hydraulic boundary conditions a comprehensive understanding of the governing processes inside a karst aquifer is indispensable. Especially if a karst aquifer is inuenced by anthropogenic utilization like e.g. the construction of a dam site, the resulting changes inside the aquifer need to be understood as good as possible to prevent any unpredictable incidents. The use of numerical models to simulate the development of a karst aquifer is therefore a suitable tool in the preliminary investigations. It will be shown that simple three dimensional damsite models can be used to evaluate the parameters that control the karst aquifer evolution. Based on these simple models an enhanced three dimensional model of a real damsite is developed. This model is used to simulate the evolution of the aquifer close to this damsite and to expose how the construction of the dam inuenced the nearby bedrock signicantly. It is shown that the karstied zone around the dam site is the reason for the subsidence of an adjacent highway. The presented numerical results can be veried by eld observations. Additionally to the damsite models a three dimensional model approach is presented that describes the formation of large collapse dolines. Collapse dolines are signicant surface features of karst landscapes and their evolution which is usually linked to a subsurface karst system is of high interest in the karst community. To simulate the evolution and interaction of such a doline system, a three dimensional model with several spatially distributed dolines is used. There, based on the concept of a mechanically weakened crushed zone, the evolution over time is presented. The applied collapsing mechanism used in this work also allows to estimate the bedrock removal and surface lowering over time. The determined rates are in good agreement with values reported in literature

Hypogenic origin of Provalata Cave, Republic of Macedonia: a distinct case of successive thermal carbonic and sulfuric acid speleogenesis, 2013, Temovski Marjan, Audra Philippe, Mihevc Andrej, Spangenberg Jorge E. , Polyak Victor, Mcintosh William, Bigot Jeanyves.

Provalata Cave (Republic of Macedonia) is a small but remarkable hypogenic cave, developed in Cambrian marbles by successive thermal carbonic and sulfuric acid speleogenesis. The cave has a thick partly corroded calcite crust, abundant gypsum deposits, with cupolas, ceiling and wall channels, feeders and replacement pockets as some of the most characteristic morphological features. Distribution of morphology and deposits suggest a hypogenic origin in two distinct speleogenetic phases: the first by thermal CO2 rich waters, the second by sulfuric acid dissolution, which were separated by complete infilling of cave passages with pyroclastic-derived clays. In the first phase of speleogenesis, cave passages were formed by dissolution along fractures due to cooling of rising carbonated thermal waters. These phreatic morphologies were later covered with a thick calcite crust deposited in a shallow phreatic environment. In Early Pleistocene the cave was completely filled with clays due to deposition of pyroclastic rocks in a lacustrine environment in the nearby Mariovo Basin. Mariovo Lake sediments were later incised by the Buturica River, which cut down into Cambrian marbles, creating its superimposed valley. Incision lowered the water table and allowed removal of the clay deposits in Provalata Cave. The second phase of speleogenesis started after introduction of H2S associated with rising thermal waters. Oxidation produced sulfuric acid, which rapidly dissolved first calcite crust, then marble host rock. Condensation-corrosion by sulfuric vapors replaced carbonate rock with gypsum producing replacement pockets as well as second generation of pockets and cupolas. The contact of sulfuric acid with the clay deposits formed alunite, jarosite, and natroalunite. 40Ar/39Ar dating gave maximum ages of 1.6 Ma (alunite) and 1.46 Ma (jarosite) for this last stage of speleogenesis, thus making it the second 40Ar/39Ar dating of a sulfuric cave in Europe (after Kraushöhle in Austria), and the first dated cave in the Republic of Macedonia.

Role of soil cover and epikarst on karst groundwater recharge: an experimental approach conducted on the Milandre underground laboratory (Jura Mountains, Switzerland), 2013, Jeannin Pierreyves, Huselmann Philipp, Ltscher Marc

The Milandre underground river is recognized as a site of high patrimonial value and is monitored for many parameters since 1990. The recent construction of a highway in-cluding a tunnel portal 50 meters above the cave galleries induced a series of dedicated observations. Among them, was the monitoring of flow conditions at a series of inlets at cave roof in the part of the cave located directly below the road. Water discharge and CO2 concentrations have been monitored for 5 years before the highway construction, 5 years during the road construction and 3 years after. The effects of the removal of the soil and epikarst, as well as the sealing of the surface could be observed in the cave, implying significant changes in the regime of the water inlets in the cave. As this effect was predicted and confirmed by observations, it was decided to build an injection sys-tem below the road in order to artificially feed this part of the cave which is highly dec-orated with active speleothems. The injection system is operating since October 2011 and several tests are being conducted in order to adjust discharge and CO2 concentra-tions of the injected water. Cave inlets clearly react to injections, but the control of CO2 concentrations is still difficult to fix. A modeling of recharge before, during and after the road construction has been attempted. Changes in the recharge parameters accord-ing to the three situation of the construction could be assessed. The model should be improved in order to take CO2 and possibly temperature transfer into account.
Investigations related to the dimensioning and construction of the injection system, as well as experiments, which can be conducted using this system are very valuable for better characterizing diffuse recharge of karst systems.


The Giant geode of Pulpí (Almería, SE Spain) hosts some of the most outstanding selenite crystals of the world and the largest ones discovered in Europe. Pinacoidal high-purity selenite crystals up to 2 metres long cover totally its walls, floor and ceiling. The cave void where the geode was formed is in an abandoned mine 3 km far from the coastline and 50 m deep from the surface. The peculiar genesis could be related to the mixing processes between hydrothermal fluids and salt water in the aquifer. The discovery (December 2000) was considered an important highlight in the geological heritage of Spain but not many things have been done since 10 years. Projects developed for their conservation were paralysed and no legal figure of protection is active nowadays. Only the interest of touristic valorisation is still alive but in reality the initial tourist projects are stopped. Only one previous project of “waste mining removal” is active. Nevertheless this project is partially provoking a controversial effect: the destruction and/or decontextualization of some surface mining remains. No doubt the Geode has a tourist interest, which must be tempered by environmental restrictions limiting the public visits. First results demonstrated that a continuous visit of two or three people for more than 10 min- utes provokes the appearance of condensation and risks of corrosion of the gypsum crystals. Although any tourist adaptation must not permit direct visits to the geode indoor and levels/contents like Hg and Rn must be controlled. Regrettably, communication to the authorities of this special situation decreased their interest for the protection and touristization. The present proposal is to highlight not only the geode but the mining environment showing that valorization of this geological-natural heritage is still feasible.

CAVES AND KARST-LIKE FEATURES IN PROTEROZOIC GNEISS AND CAMBRIAN GRANITE, SOUTHERN AND CENTRAL SRI LANKA: AN INTRODUCTION, 2013, Osborne R. A. L. , Weliange W. S. , Jayasingha Pathmakumara, Dandeniya A. S. , Algiriya A. K. Prageeth P. & Pogson Ross E.

There has been little study of the geology and geomorphology of the caves and karst­like features developed in the Proterozoic gneiss and Cambrian granite of Sri Lanka. This lack of study is surprising given that caves and rockshelters in these rocks contain significant archaeological and cultural sites. Caves and karren, both mimicking those developed in carbonate rocks, have formed both in gneiss, which is the dominant rock type of the Proterozoic crust of the island and in granite. In addition to overhangs, boulder caves, soil pipes and tectonic caves, tunnel caves, arch caves and block breakdown caves of significant size are developed in siliceous rocks in Sri Lanka. while metamorphosed dolomites are interfoliated within the gneissic suite, simple removal of carbonate by solution from within the surrounding rock cannot account for all or most of the speleogenesis observed. while spalling and breakdown are responsible for cave enlargement, cave initiation is probably due to either phreatic solution of silicates and/or phantom rock processes. Speleothems and cave minerals including silicates, phosphates, gypsum, carbonates and niter are found in the caves. Active silicate speleothems are not restricted to joints and fissures and suggest that solution of silicates is currently occurring within the body of the rock in the vadose zone. while guano is the likely source of the phosphate, sulfate and nitrate, the source of the calcium in the carbonates remains unclear. Caves in the intrusive and metamorphic rocks of Sri Lanka are enigmatic. They are unexpectedly similar in appearance to their carbonate karst counterparts. Continuing research will allow them to hold a mirror to our understanding of speleogenesis, mineralization and sedimentation in carbonate karst caves.

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.


Hypogene or per-ascensum, whatever you prefer to call them, caves that form from the bottom up have a great range of patterns in plan, large cavity morphology and an expanding, but specific suite of speleogens that distinguish them from fluvial caves formed by descending surface water. Once thought to be rare and unusual, caves or sections of caves with plans, large cavities and suites of “hypogene” speleogens are turning up in situations traditionally thought to have fluvial or even glacial origin. The role of condensation corrosion in the formation of cavities and speleogens remains controversial, but surprisingly some insights may come for processes in salt mines. Phantom rock formation and removal and similar processes involving removal of dolomitized bedrock, de-dolomitized bedrock, and almost trace-free removal of palaeokarst raise problems of both temporal relationships and of how to distinguish between the outcomes of recent and ancient processes. The presence of “hypogene” speleogens in both gneiss and marble caves in Sri Lankan of unclear origin adds to the complexity. Back in the early 1990s, before hypogene caves were de-rigour, workers such as David Lowe were puzzling about speleo-inception, how caves begin. Perhaps the rare occurrences of solution pockets in joints in obvious fluvial caves, such as Postojna Jama, are indicating that many more caves than we imagine are actually multi-process and multiphase and that “hypogene” processes of various types are significant agents of speleo-inception.

The process of ghost-rock karstification and its role in the formation of caves, 2014, Dubois C. , Quinif Y. , Baele J. M. , Barriquand L. , Bini A. , Bruxelles L. , Dandurand G. , Havron C. , Kaufmann O. , Lans B. , Maire R. , Martin J. , Rodet J. , Rowberry M. D. , Tognini P. , Vergari A. ,

This paper presents an extensive review of the process of ghost-rock karstification and highlights its role in the formation of cave systems. The process integrates chemical weathering and mechanical erosion and extends a number of existing theories pertaining to continental landscape development. It is a two stage process that differs in many respects from the traditional single-stage process of karstification by total removal. The first stage is characterised by chemical dissolution and removal of the soluble species. It requires low hydrodynamic energy and creates a ghost-rock feature filled with residual alterite. The second stage is characterised by mechanical erosion of the undissolved particles. It requires high hydrodynamic energy and it is only then that open galleries are created. The transition from the first stage to the second is driven by the amount of energy within the thermodynamic system. The process is illustrated by detailed field observations and the results of the laboratory analyses of samples taken from the karstotype area around Soignies in southern Belgium. Thereafter, a series of case studies provide a synthesis of field observations and laboratory analyses from across western Europe. These studies come from geologically distinct parts of Belgium, France, Italy, and United Kingdom. The process of ghost-rock karstification challenges a number of axioms associated the process of karstification by total removal. On the basis of the evidence presented it is argued that it is no longer acceptable to use karst morphologies as a basis with which to infer specific karstogenetic processes and it is no longer necessary for a karst system to relate to base level as ghost-rock karstification proceeds along transmissive pathways in the rock. There is also some evidence to suggest that ghost-rock karstification may be superseded by karstification by total removal, and vice versa, according to the amount of energy within the thermodynamic system. The proposed chemical weathering and subsequent mechanical erosion of limestone suggests that the development of karst terrain is related far more closely to the geomorphological development of aluminosilicate and siliceous terrains than is generally supposed. It is now necessary to reconsider the origin of many karst systems in light of the outlined process of ghost-rock karstification.

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