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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 conglomerate is rock consisting of large well rounded waterworn particles [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 peaks (Keyword) returned 54 results for the whole karstbase:
Showing 1 to 15 of 54
The Geology of the Cayman Islands (British West Indies), and their Relation to the Bartlett Trough, 1926, Matley Charles Alfred,
The Cayman Islands, a small dependency of the British Empire, with a local government controlled by the Government of Jamaica, occupy an isolated position of exceptional interest, both geographical and geological, in the Caribbean Sea. Situated between Jamaica and Cuba, and flanked on the south by the great depression of the Bartlett Trough, which descends over 20,000 feet within 18 miles of the shores of Grand Cayman, they are the only projecting peaks in the submarine ridge that extends from the Sierra Maestra of Cuba to the Misteriosa Bank in the direction of British Honduras. This ridge, though a recognized submarine feature, is irregular, and a depression of 7000 feet lies in it between Grand Cayman and the Lesser Caymans. The dependency consists of three islands, of which the two smaller, Cayman Brac and Little Cayman, are separated by only 4 miles of sea, while the third, Grand Cayman, is about 60 miles away. Cayman Brac is situated about 125 miles north-west of Montego Bay (Jamaica), and Grand Cayman lies 178 miles west-north-west of Negril Point, the nearest point of Jamaica, and about 150 miles from the Isle of Pines (Cuba). The combined area of the three islands is about 100 square miles. Columbus discovered the Lesser Caymans in 1503, and named them Las Tortugas', as the shores were swarming with turtle. Grand Cayman was discovered at some later unknown date, and is first recorded in history as being in the occupation of Spanish buccaneers. Europeans appear to have been ... This 250-word extract was created in the absence of an abstract

A Survey of the Mineshafts at Peakshill Farm, Castleton, 1967, Mee B. L.

Caves of Vakuta, Trobriand Islands, Papua, 1969, Ollier C. D. , Holdsworth D. K

In a previous paper (1968a) we described caves of Kiriwina, the largest of the Trobriand Islands, a group of coral islands situated 100 miles off the north-east coast of Papua. This paper records caves of Vakuta, a smaller island south of Kiriwina. Vakuta is shaped like a boomerang (Figure 1) and is separated from the southern tip of Kiriwina by Kasilamaka Passage, about half a mile wide. The area of Vakuta Island is approximately 11 square miles. The island contains three villages, the most important being Vakuta Village which has a Methodist (now United Church) Mission. A track links Vakuta Village to Kasilamaka Passage which can be crossed by native canoe; the track continues on Kiriwina to Losuia, 40 miles north. Vakuta Island has a population of about 500. The Vakutans are of the same mixed Melanesian-Polynesian stock as the people of Kiriwina. Woodcarving is not practised to the same extent as in Kiriwina and the quality is generally low. However, some canoes have particularly well decorated prows. The influence of the Mission is very evident in the dress of the Vakutans and in the village, old cast-off clothing, often quite dirty, is the rule. In the fields the women wear grass and fibre skirts though the men were not seen to wear a pubic leaf as usual in Kiriwina, but shorts. Papuan Airlines operate a weekly flight between Port Moresby and Losuia, the Administration Centre, using Skyvan aircraft. Weekend tourist charter flights in DC-3 aircraft arrive frequently, but irregularly, from Port Moresby and occasionally from Lae and Rabual. The authors visited Vakuta Island in December, 1968. Guides were recruited locally and we were fortunate to be assisted by Mr. Gilbert Heers, the only European resident of the island, who speaks fluent Kiriwini which made communication with our guides relatively easy. With his help, we were able to obtain accounts of the legends and traditions associated with the caves on the island. We have also had valuable discussions about Vakuta and the customs and legends of the Trobriand Islands with Mr. Lepani Watson, M.H.A., who was born on Vakuta, and Mr. John Kasaipwalova, a Trobriand Islander now studying at the University of Queensland. We are most grateful for the assistance of these people. Although the most accurate map of the Trobriands is an Admiralty chart, the authors used an old U.S. Army map which was based on a pre-war Government survey. The caves were roughly surveyed using 100 ft tape, prismatic compass and abney level. The village rest-house became the social centre of the village during our stay. We had no difficulty in finding food. A surprising variety of foods such as yams, sweet potato, eggs, pineapples, soursop, tomatoes and fresh coconut appeared and payment was accepted eagerly in stick tobacco and newspaper. Payment in cash was rarely appreciated, though it will become more useful now that a trade store has been established by the Village Co-operative. To avoid repetitive explanations of features in the accounts of individual caves, various general topics will be discussed first.


Some Caves of Kitava, Trobriand Islands, Papua, 1971, Ollier C. D. , Holdsworth D. K

The Trobriand group of coral islands is situated 100 miles off the north-east coast of Papua, north of the D'Entrecasteaux Islands. Kitava, the most easterly island of the group, is approximately 4~ miles by 2~ miles. It is 15 miles east of Wawela on the main island of Kiriwina, though 50 miles by sea from Losuia around the north coast of Kiriwina. The population is approximately 2,000 natives, the majority being subsistence farmers and fishermen. No Europeans live on the island. Yams, taro, sweet potatoes and bananas are the main garden products. Fish, chickens and eggs are eaten, and pigs are used in ceremonial feasts or "sing-sings" . Kitava is served by occasional boats, but cannot be reached by air. The Administration boat, "The Pearl", is based at Losuia and calls at irregular intervals of a few weeks, the journey from Losuia taking about five hours. Kitavans travel far in their canoes, and the ceremonial Kula trade involves journeys to other Trobriand islands, the Amphletts, Dobu and the Woodlark Islands. The authors spent four days on Kitava in May, 1969, and lived in a native house near the village of Bomapou in the north of the island. Trade tobacco was used as currency to pay for food, and to pay guides and carriers. A trade store has since been established near the beach, a mile from the main village of Kumwageya, and payment in cash may be more acceptable in future. Children appreciate being paid in chewing gum, known throughout the islands as "P.K.". Very little English is spoken on the island and we were fortunate in having the company of Mr. Gilbert Heers who speaks the Kiriwinan language fluently.


Quelques aspects du karst en Chine, 1985, Tricart, J.
Some characteristic features of karst in China Karst terrain is widespread in China: some 2,000,000km2, corresponding to 20-25% of the whole surface of the country. It occurs at very different altitudes and under quite different climates, from the region of Zhoukoudian, where has been found the skull of the Pekin Man, to the Tibet Plateau, where there is presently permafrost conditions, and up to southern tropical moist China, near Canton and Guilin. Recent chinese investigations have proved that most karst features are old. In Southern China a tropical karst (tower-karst or "mogotes" karst) is associated with lacustrine deposits containing the well-known Hipparion Fauna, of Miocene age. Its predates the intensive uplift of the Himalaya and of the Tibet, which has begun during the Pliocene and has continued during all the Pleistocene. The same fossils have been found in this tropical karst in present permafrost areas, above 5,000m. In the region of Guilin (Guangxi Province), this tropical karst has been described. There is evidence for the former existence of a covered karst, where limestones and dolomitic limestones were covered by a thick layer of reddish residual clays, with limonite. This mantle has been stripped during different periods of drier and probably cooler climate, has suggested by pollen spectra. In some places, these residual products have been trapped into pits, cracks, and caves. We have observed a small quantity of red clay painting limestone stalactites and sinters (Chuanshan and Leng Yin Yen Caves, in the surroundings of Guilin). They present sometimes a mining interest and some extractive industries are presently active (limonite, cassierite, etc.). Many caves have been surveyed by the Institute of Karst geology, in Guilin. Some have been equiped for tourism, around Guilin. All these caves are old. Some radiocarbon dating of speleothems yield ages of 33,000 year BP. The famous carving of the Leng Yen Cave have not been affected by calcite deposition from dripping since at least 500 years. The large caves that have been surveyed should correspond to a long evolution span. Along the Lijiang River, at least two terraces can be observed. They are built with gravels and pebbles, covered with thinner sand and loam, suggesting climatic changes, also attested by the changes of fauna and vegetation. These past cooler periods are characterised by an opened vegetation, with the striping of the old weathering cover of the former tropical karst. These karst terrains have been investigated in China for management purposes. Groundwater oscillations have frequently resulted in land subsidences damaging buildings, and in dramatic collapses destroying fields, roads. Sometimes, underground collapse plugged caves and dammed underground rivers, resulting in floodings. The caves are frequently used as reservoirs for irrigation and power plants.

Groundwater chemistry and cation budgets of tropical karst outcrops, Peninsular Malaysia, I. Calcium and magnesium, 1989, Crowther J,
The discharge and chemical properties of 217 autogenic groundwaters were monitored over a 1-yr period in the tower karsts of central Selangor and the Kinta Valley, and in the Setul Boundary Range. Because of differences in soil PCO2, calcium concentrations are significantly higher in the Boundary Range (mean, 82.5 mg l-1) than in the tower karst terrain (44.6 mg l-1). Local differences in both source area PCO2 and amounts of secondary deposition underground cause marked intersite variability, particularly in the tower karst. Dilution occurs during flood peaks in certain conduit and cave stream waters. Generally, however, calcium correlates positively with discharge, since the amount of secondary deposition per unit volume of water decreases at higher flows. Magnesium concentrations and Mg:Ca Mg ratios of groundwaters are strongly influenced by bedrock composition, though bedrock heterogeneity and the kinetics and equilibria of carbonate dissolution reactions preclude extremely low or high Mg:Ca Mg values. Net chemical denudation rates range from 56.6 to 70.9 m3km2yr-1.The results are considered in relation to cation fluxes in surface runoff, soil throughflow and nutrient cycling. Preliminary calcium and magnesium budgets show that (1) dissolutional activity is largely confined to the near-surface zone; and (2) the annual uptake of calcium and magnesium by tropical limestone forests is similar in magnitude to the net solute output in groundwaters

MATHEMATICAL-MODELING OF CATCHMENT MORPHOLOGY IN THE KARST OF GUIZHOU, CHINA, 1992, Ming T. ,
This paper establishes statistical relationships describing the morphology of three contrasting drainage areas in the karst plateau of Guizhou. A landscape model proposed takes as its basis a two-tiered morphology: an upper tier of peaks and cols which maintains a dynamic equilibrium; and a lower tier defined by depression or valley bases which can evolve differentially in time and space. Thus equilibrium and evolutionary processes coexist in this type of karst landscape within the same timespan. The evlution of subcatchments is shown to be not necessarily the same as that of the total catchment because of tectonic factors

The astronomical theory of climate and the age of the Brunhes-Matuyama magnetic reversal, 1994, Bassinot Fc, Labeyrie Ld, Vincent E, Quidelleur X, Shackleton Nj, Lancelot Y,
Below oxygen isotope stage 16, the orbitally derived time-scale developed by Shackleton et al. [1] from ODP site 677 in the equatorial Pacific differs significantly from previous ones [e.g., 2-5], yielding estimated ages for the last Earth magnetic reversals that are 5-7% older than the K/Ar values [6-8] but are in good agreement with recent Ar/Ar dating [9-11]. These results suggest that in the lower Brunhes and upper Matuyama chronozones most deep-sea climatic records retrieved so far apparently missed or misinterpreted several oscillations predicted by the astronomical theory of climate. To test this hypothesis, we studied a high-resolution oxygen isotope record from giant piston core MD900963 (Maldives area, tropical Indian Ocean) in which precession-related oscillations in [delta]18O are particularly well expressed, owing to the superimposition of a local salinity signal on the global ice volume signal [12]. Three additional precession-related cycles are observed in oxygen isotope stages 17 and 18 of core MD900963, compared to the composite curves [4,13], and stage 21 clearly presents three precession oscillations, as predicted by Shackleton et al. [1]. The precession peaks found in the [delta]18O record from core MD900963 are in excellent agreement with climatic oscillations predicted by the astronomical theory of climate. Our [delta]18O record therefore permits the development of an accurate astronomical time-scale. Based on our age model, the Brunhes-Matuyama reversal is dated at 775 10 ka, in good agreement with the age estimate of 780 ka obtained by Shackleton et al. [1] and recent radiochronological Ar/Ar datings on lavas [9-11]. We developed a new low-latitude, Upper Pleistocene [delta]18O reference record by stacking and tuning the [delta]18O records from core MD900963 and site 677 to orbital forcing functions

Particle size distributions in waters from a karstic aquifer: from particles to colloids, 1997, Atteia O, Kozel R,
Waters from the surface hydrologic network and the spring of a karstic aquifer in Switzerland were sampled to analyse their colloidal content. The measurements were done weekly with a single particle counter and were verified by other techniques. The particle size distribution (PSD) was modelled in two portions, below and above 5 mu m, using two types of equation: a power law (Pareto distribution) and an exponential law. The model results matched well with the entire PSD data set by varying the parameter values. The parameters obtained from fitting the measured PSD curves were then interpreted in relation to environmental factors. It appears that the two parts of the curves vary independently. The first part of the PSD curve, relating to the smallest particles, is dependent on the pH value of the spring or the temperature of the surface brook. In contrast, the second part of the curve depends mostly on the spring discharge volume. During high flow events, the major effect of the discharge on particle size occurs during the rising limb of the hydrograph, interpreted as clays deposited in the aquifer and resuspended due to high water velocity. The contrasted behaviour of the two parts of the PSD curves suggested that the break point in the curves represents the limit between colloidal and particulate behaviour. Knowing these dependencies, and the characteristics of the particulate matter, allowed the estimation of the role of the colloids in contaminant transport. Large fluxes of suspended matter, specific to karstic aquifers, demonstrate the critical role of colloids in contaminant transport, which is markedly different from what typically occurs in porous media.

Endokarst processes in the Alburni massif (Campania, southern Italy): evolution of ponors and hydrogeological implications, 1997, Santangelo N. , Santo A. ,
The Alburni carbonatic massif located within the southern Apennines chain, represents one of the most important Italian karstic areas. Within an area of about 280 square kilometres more than 200 caves are known and many important basal springs are present. This paper concerns ponor systems which are among the best developed endokarst morphologies in the area. In particular it deals with their morphological evolution and with their role in the underground hydrological circulation of the massif. The ponors can be defined as ''contact ponors'' since their entrances are always located at the contact between permeable carbonatic rocks and impermeable flysch formations. Two categories of ponors are present, active and inactive ones, latter due to erosion and lowering of the boundary between impermeable and permeable deposits. The ponors are located on the Alburni highland at a mean altitude of 1100 metres and they transfer water collected by catchment basin laying on flysch deposits down to the main basal springs, the altitudes of which range from 250 to 70 metres a.s.l. The structural setting of the massif strongly influences both the main directions along which the caves develop and the underground hydric circulation flows. Surface and underground morphostructural data have been compared, showing a general agreement, with frequency peaks at the N50 degrees and N140 degrees directions, though the underground data also outline the existence of a more ancient N90 degrees trend. As shown by speleological survey and tracing tests, the underground drainage is strongly influenced by the presence of karstic channels, and its preferential flow direction points towards the southern sector of the massif, according to the general dipping of the strata

Kras (The Classical Karst) and the development of karst science , 1998, Kranjc, Andrej

The author presents the main characteristics of the country Kras, from where the term karst is derived, the origin and the meaning of the name itself and the reasons why just this country is the "locus typicus" of the term. In more detail he speaks about the authors who spread the word karst for limestone countries in general (in the middle of the 19th century) and also the authors who founded the karstology as science at the end of the 19th and the beginning of the 20th century.


Hydrochemical approach to the alterations of the recharge of a karst aquifer consecutive to a long pumping period: Example taken from Pinchinade graben (Mouans-Sartoux, French Riviera), 1999, Reynaud A. , Guglielmi Y. , Mudry J. , Mangan C. ,
The carbonate aquifer of the Pinchinade graben, which has a well-delimited geometry, involves water,vith well-defined chemical types from calcium sulfate to magnesium bicarbonate. Each ground water type corresponds to a well-delimited area of the aquifer: the magnesium bicarbonate for the Liassic and Rhetian limestone water (with 10 to 30 mg L-1 of sulfate) and calcium sulfate for the water of the relatively impermeable layer of the underlying Keuper (with 300 to 1500 mg L-1 of sulfate). A four-year pumping test,vith a bimonthly to daily monitoring of water chemistry has allowed evaluation of the renewal of the exploitable water reserve. During the four-year period, the survey shows that the average discharge is balanced by natural recharge (2.8 to 105 m(3) y(-1)). A change in the chemical character of the water was observed from Rhetian to Keuper type (from 35 to 167 mg L-1 of sulfate), Such a change indicates a progressive exhaustion of the Rhetian reserves, which are the greater part of the exploitable reserve in the area. The same phenomenon is observed daily depending on the pumped discharge and the season. For pumping rates below 26 m(3) h(-1), the borehole drains the Rehetian inflows to a degree depending on high or low water levels. For pumping rates above 26 m(3) h(-1), whatever the period, the permeable Keuper layers are pumped and sulfate peaks ensue

Effects of nearshore recharge on groundwater interactions with a lake in mantled karst terrain, 2000, Lee T. M. ,
The recharge and discharge of groundwater were investigated for a lake basin in the mantled karst terrain of central Florida to determine the relative importance of transient groundwater inflow to the lake water budget. Variably saturated groundwater flow modeling simulated water table responses observed beneath two hillsides radiating outward from the groundwater flow-through lake. Modeling results indicated that transient water table mounding and groundwater flow reversals in the nearshore region following large daily rainfall events generated most of the net groundwater inflow to the lake. Simulated daily groundwater inflow was greatest following water table mounding near the lake, not following subsequent peaks in the water level of upper basin wells. Transient mounding generated net groundwater inflow to the lake, that is, groundwater inflow in excess of the outflow occurring through the deeper lake bottom. The timing of the modeled net groundwater inflow agreed with an independent lake water budget; however, the quantity was considerably less than the budget-derived value

Controls on the geochemistry of speleothem-forming karstic drip waters, PhD thesis, 2000, Tooth, A.

Research was performed at Crag Cave, Castleisland, southwest Ireland, and P8 Cave, Castleton, Derbyshire, in order to determine the main factors responsible for modifying rainwater geochemistry during flow through soil and karstic aquifer zones. Monitoring was performed on a daily basis in summer and winter at Crag Cave, and on a monthly basis over one year at P8 Cave. At both sites, biannual peaks in karst system Ca2+ concentrations occurred due to: (i) promotion of microbial CO2 production by increased summer temperatures, and (ii) retardation of gaseous exchange by ponding of elevated winter rainfall input leading to an unseasonable build up in soil zone CO2. Therefore, speleothems at both sites may form biannual bands in hydrological years subject to elevated winter rainfall input.

In addition to variations in carbonate weathering due to fluctuations in CO2 levels, cation yields in Crag Cave matrix soil water were controlled by dolomite dissolution (Mg2+), plant uptake (K+), and evapotranspiration balanced by enhanced winter marine aerosol input (Na+). Strontium isotope analysis indicates that Sr2+ was derived from a 50:50 silicate/carbonate mixture, whereas the relatively light ?13C signal was related to direct evolution of CO2 into the aqueous phase in water-logged pores.

Within the Crag Cave aquifer variations in karst water geochemistry were controlled by dilution, flow switching, prior precipitation of calcite, and dolomite dissolution along the flow path. Strontium isotope analysis indicates that dissolution in the aquifer dominated, with Sr2+ being sourced from a 25:75 silicate/carbonate mixture. Light karst water 13C values were constrained by the supply of light soil gas to the aquifer.

Elevation in the Mg/Ca and Sr/Ca ratios in the Crag Cave speleothem record compared to present day analogues indicates that the former Holocene climate was drier, whereas heavier 87Sr/86Sr ratios and 13C values suggest variation in soil hydrology over time.


Climatic conditions during marine oxygen isotope stage 6 in the eastern Mediterranean region from the isotopic composition of speleothems of Soreq Cave, Israel, 2002, Ayalon A, Barmatthews M, Kaufman A,
At several times during marine oxygen isotope stage 6, the eastern Mediterranean region was influenced by two extreme climatic systems: the large ice sheet over northern Europe and the wet tropics associated with African monsoons. During this interval, two major climatic events occurred in the region; the sapropel S6 layer formed ca. 176 ka in the eastern Mediterranean basin owing to the increase in the African monsoon, and another event, although not large enough to form sapropel, occurred ca. 151 ka. The isotopic composition of Soreq Cave speleothems seems to record these events as very low {delta}18O-{delta}13C values dated as ca. 178 and 152 ka. The very low {delta}18O-{delta}13C values of -6{per thousand} and -11{per thousand} to -12{per thousand}, respectively, are typical of interglacial intervals, but here they were recorded during a glacial interval. Such low peaks indicate that in this part of the eastern Mediterranean region, i.e., Israel, the rainfall amount increased dramatically. Moreover, the isotopic record of the speleothems also shows that during the entire stage 6, although the climate was as cold as much of the last glacial, the conditions were never as dry

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