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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 closed traverse is a traverse which begins and ends at survey points with known co-ordinates and orientation or at the same point [25].?

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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 irrigation (Keyword) returned 28 results for the whole karstbase:
Showing 16 to 28 of 28
Tertiary-Quaternary faulting and uplift in the northern Oman Hajar Mountains, 2005, Kusky Timothy, Robinson Cordula, Elbaz Farouk,
Field mapping and remote sensing investigations reveal two new major fault sets cutting through Tertiary rocks, Quaternary terraces and a several-hundred-year-old irrigation canal system in the Hajar Mountains of northern Oman. They extend for tens of kilometres, forming fracture intensification zones several hundred metres wide. WNW- to NW-oriented faults run parallel to the mountain fronts in the plains adjoining the central Hajar range then obliquely crosscut the mountains in the north. Motion along these faults explains how Quaternary marine terraces became elevated 190 m above sea level. A second fault set strikes north to NNE. The associated juvenile topography suggests that they also accommodate recent uplift, subsidiary to the WNW-striking faults, with minor strike-slip and differential movement between various segments of the Hajar Mountains. Both fault systems, and the amount of Quaternary uplift (between 100 and 500 m), are similar to those in other active and ancient forebulge environments. Using the fracture patterns observed, it is proposed here that the Hajar range lies on the active forebulge of a collision zone between the NE margins of the Arabian plate, the Zagros fold belt and the Makran accretionary prism, which resulted in the recent uplift

Interaction between a dam site and karst springs: The case of Supramonte (Central-East Sardinia, Italy), 2008, De Waele Jo, Forti Paolo

Sardinia is one of the Italian regions with the greatest number of dams per inhabitants, almost 60 for a population of only 1.5 million people. Many of these dam sites are located on non-carbonate rocks along the main rivers of the Island and their waters are used for irrigation, industrial, energy supply, drinking and flood regulation purposes.  The Pedra 'e Othoni dam on the Cedrino river (Dorgali, Central-East Sardinia) is located along the threshold of the Palaeozoic basement on the Northern border of the Supramonte karst area, where water is forced to flow out of the system through several resurgences, the most famous of which is the Su Gologone vauclusian spring, used for drinking water supply. The other main outflows of the system, Su Tippari and San Pantaleo springs, are at present almost permanently submerged by the high water level of the Pedra 'e Othoni dam. In the near future water will be supplied also to other communities with a possible increase of water taken from the spring.

The dam, originally meant to regulate the flooding of Cedrino river but actually used for all sorts of purposes (electricity supply, drinking water, irrigation of farmlands, industrial uses), has a maximum regulation altitude of 103 m a.s.l., only slightly less than a meter below the Su Gologone spring level (103.7 m), and 4 and 9 m respectively above the submerged Su Tippari and San Pantaleo springs.

During floods of the Cedrino river, occurring on average twice a year, also the Su Gologone spring becomes submerged by the muddy waters of the lake for a time ranging between a couple of hours up to several days, making water supply impossible. 

The analysis of the available meteorological and hydrogeological data relative to the December 2004 flood, one of the severest of the past 100 years, suggests that the reservoir is filled in a few days time. Several flooding scenarios have been reconstructed using digital terrain models, showing that backflooding submerges most of the discharge area of the aquifer, having important repercussions also on the inland underground drainage system. The upstream flood prone areas prevalently comprise agricultural lands with some sparse houses, but also highly frequented tourist facilities. Fortunately flooding occurs outside the tourist season, thus limiting risk to a limited number of local inhabitants. Massive discharge at the dam site, instead, determines a more hazardous situation in the Cedrino coastal plain, where population density in low lying areas is much higher. To avoid flooding hazard upstream the water level in the lake should be regulated, keeping it low in the flood prone seasons, and having it filled from the end of the winter in order to have enough water stocked before the beginning of the summer. Discharge at the dam site, instead, should be done cautiously, preventing severe flooding of the coastal Cedrino plain.


Percolation and Particle Transport in the Unsaturated Zone of a Karst Aquifer, 2009, Pronk M. , Goldscheider N. , Zopfi J. , Zwahlen F.

Recharge and contamination of karst aquifers often occur via the unsaturated zone, but the functioning of this zone has not yet been fully understood. Therefore, irrigation and tracer experiments, along with monitoring of rainfall events, were used to examine water percolation and the transport of solutes, particles, and fecal bacteria between the land surface and a water outlet into a shallow cave. Monitored parameters included discharge, electrical conductivity, temperature, organic carbon, turbidity, particle-size distribution (PSD), fecal indicator bacteria, chloride, bromide, and uranine. Percolation following rainfall or irrigation can be subdivided into a lag phase (no response at the outlet), a piston-flow phase (release of epikarst storage water by pressure transfer), and a mixed-flow phase (increasing contribution of freshly infiltrated water), starting between 20 min and a few hours after the start of recharge event. Concerning particle and bacteria transport, results demonstrate that (1) a first turbidity signal occurs during increasing discharge due to remobilization of particles from fractures (pulse-through turbidity); (2) a second turbidity signal is caused by direct particle transfer from the soil (flow-through turbidity), often accompanied by high levels of fecal indicator bacteria, up to 17,000 Escherichia coli/100 mL; and (3) PSD allows differentiation between the two types of turbidity. A relative increase of fine particles (0.9 to 1.5 lm) coincides with microbial contamination. These findings help quantify water storage and percolation in the epikarst and better understand contaminant transport and attenuation. The use of PSD as ‘‘early-warning parameter’’ for microbial contamination in karst water is confirmed.


GEOMETRY AND DRAINAGE OF A RETREATING GLACIER OVERLYING AND RECHARGING A KARST AQUIFER, TSANFLEURON-SANETSCH, SWISS ALPS, 2010, Gremaud V. , Goldscheider N.
Alpine glaciers store large amounts of freshwater contributing to groundwater recharge during warmer periods, but the interactions between glaciers and aquifers have rarely been investigated in detail. The Tsanfleuron-Sanetsch area, Switzerland, is an ideal test site to study glacier-aquifer interactions. It consists of a rapidly retreating glacier (2.8 km2) overlying a karst aquifer drained by a spring (mean discharge 600700 L/s) used for drinking water supply and irrigation. The geometry and structure of the glacier were assessed by means of geophysical surveys, using radiomagnetotellurics (RMT). The estimated ice volume is 1.0 x 10^8 m3 (0.92 x 10^8 m3 water equivalent), but the glacier currently loses 1.5 m ice thickness per year. Field observations, flow measurements and tracer tests allowed characterisation of glacier drainage and aquifer recharge. Three recharge pathways have been identified: 1) The main glacial stream sinks into the aquifer via swallow holes 3 km downstream of the glacier mouth; 2) Numerous small meltwater streams sink underground shortly below the glacier front; 3) Subglacial meltwaters and supraglacial streams sink into the glacier via moulins and contribute to aquifer recharge through fractures and swallow holes underneath the glacier. Recharge and spring discharge display strong diurnal and seasonal variability, with a general highflow period during snow and glacier melt from spring to autumn. Preliminary predictions of the future availability of spring water after disappearance of the glacier suggest that the discharge may decrease by 2030%. Nearly all of this loss will occur in summer and autumn, presumably resulting in temporary water shortage.

Urban speleology applied to groundwater and geo-engineering studies: underground topographic surveying of the ancient Arca Dgua galleries catchworks (Porto, NW Portugal), 2010, Chamin H. I. , Afonso M. J. , Robalo P. M. , Rodrigues P. , Cortez C. , Monteiro Santos F. A. , Plancha J. P. , Fonseca P. E. , Gomes A. , Devyvareta N. F. , Marques J. M. , Lopes M. E. , Fontes G. , Pires A. , Rocha F.
The Porto settlement (Northwest Portugal, Iberian Peninsula) was originally built in the twelfth century and has been developed on granitic hill slopes of the Douro riverside, being one of the oldest cities in Europe. In the urban area of Porto, the second most important city of the Portuguese mainland, there is a population of about 216,000 inhabitants. This study highlights the importance of urban speleological mapping applied to groundwater and geo-engineering studies. All the water that flows from the so-called Paranhos or Arca Dgua springs is captured by catchwork galleries and their utilization date back around 1120 AD. Paranhos spring galleries catchworks (c. 3,3 km extension and a -21m below ground level) was one of the main water supplies to Porto City for more than six centuries and, nowadays, these waters are still appropriate for irrigation uses. Topographical, geological, geophysical and hydrogeological data were collected and interpreted, allowing the definition of a hydrogeotechnical zoning. All these features were mapped and overlaid using GIS mapping techniques. This multidisciplinary approach offers a good potential for reliable urban speleological and geo-engineering studies of Arca Dgua site.

Urban speleology applied to groundwater and geo-engineering studies: underground topographic surveying of the ancient Arca Dgua galleries catchworks (Porto, NW Portugal), 2010, Chamin H. I. , Afonso M. J. , Robalo P. M. , Rodrigues P. , Cortez C. , Monteiro Santos F. A. , Plancha J. P. , Fonseca P. E. , Gomes A. , Devyvareta N. F. , Marques J. M. , Lopes M. E. , Fontes G. , Pires A. , Rocha F.

The Porto settlement (Northwest Portugal, Iberian Peninsula) was originally built in the twelfth century and has been developed on granitic hill slopes of the Douro riverside, being one of the oldest cities in Europe. In the urban area of Porto, the second most important city of the Portuguese mainland, there is a population of about 216,000 inhabitants. This study highlights the importance of urban speleological mapping applied to groundwater and geo-engineering studies. All the water that flows from the so-called Paranhos or Arca D’Água springs is captured by catchwork galleries and their utilization date back around 1120 AD. Paranhos spring galleries catchworks (c. 3,3 km extension and a -21m below ground level) was one of the main water supplies to Porto City for more than six centuries and, nowadays, these waters are still appropriate for irrigation uses. Topographical, geological, geophysical and hydrogeological data were collected and interpreted, allowing the definition of a hydrogeotechnical zoning. All these features were mapped and overlaid using GIS mapping techniques. This multidisciplinary approach offers a good potential for reliable urban speleological and geo-engineering studies of Arca D’Água site.


Improving sinkhole hazard models incorporating magnitudefrequency relationships and nearest neighbor analysis, 2011, Galve Jorge P. , Remondo Juan, Gutié, Rrez Francisco

This work presents a methodology for elaborating sinkhole hazard models that incorporate the magnitude and frequency relationships of the subsidence process. The proposed approach has been tested in a sector of the Ebro valley mantled evaporite karst, where sinkholes, largely induced by irrigation practices, have a very high occurrence rate (>50 sinkholes/km2/yr). In this area, covering 10 km2, a total of 943 new cover collapse sinkholes were inventoried in 2005 and 2006. Multiple susceptibility models have been generated analyzing the statistical relationships between the 2005 sinkholes and different sets of variables, including the nearest sinkhole distance. The quantitative evaluation of the prediction capability of these models using the 2006 sinkhole population has allowed the identification of the method and variables that produce the most reliable predictions. The incorporation of the indirect variable nearest sinkhole distance has contributed significantly to increase the quality of the models, despite simplifying the modeling process by using categorical rather than continuous variables. The best susceptibility model, generated with the total sinkhole population and the selected method and variables, has been transformed into a hazard model that provides minimum estimates of the spatial–temporal probability of each pixel to be affected by sinkholes of different diameter ranges. This transformation has been carried out combining two equations derived from the more complete 2006 sinkhole population; one of them expressing the expected spatial–temporal probability of sinkhole occurrence and the other the empirical magnitude and frequency relationships generated for two different types of land surfaces, which control the strength of the surface layer and the size of the sinkholes. The presented method could be applied to predict the spatial–temporal probability of events with different magnitudes related to other geomorphic processes (e.g. landslides).


Karstification in the Cuddapah Sedimentary Basin, Southern India: Implications for Groundwater Resources, 2011, Dar Farooq Ahmad , Perrin Jerome, Riotte Jean , Gebauer Herbert Daniel, Narayana Allu Chinna, Ahmed Shakeel

The Cuddapah sedimentary basin extends over a significant part of the southern part of Andhra Pradesh State, Southern India. Proterozoic carbonate rocks in the basin are constituted by as three main units- the Vempalle dolomite, the Narji and Koilkuntla limestones. These carbonate rocks are of strategic im­portance for local communities as they provide the main water source for irrigation and domestic use and they are also inten­sively quarried for cement production and building stones. It is therefore, of primary importance to assess to which extent these carbonate units are karstified so as to provide recommendations for appropriate land and water resource management. The field investigations carried out indicate that these carbonate units are significantly karstified and karstification has been an ongo­ing process with several phases under variable climatic condi­tions. As a result, a significant part of aquifer recharge occurs as point-recharge through swallow-holes and groundwater flow is channelized by conduit networks which emerge at karst springs. Karst development was possibly more active during past humid conditions; however karstification is still an ongoing process under the present semi-arid climate especially in the favorable case where karst drains the runoff issued from upstream quartz­itic hills. The karstic nature of these carbonate units need to be integrated in future research and development programmes to avoid practices that may lead to unexpected collapses, reservoir leaks, inaccurate groundwater budgeting, etc.


Modelling hydrostratigraphy and groundwater flow of a fractured and karst aquifer in a Mediterranean basin (Salento peninsula, southeastern Italy), 2012, Giudici M. , Margiotta S. , Mazzone F. , Negri S. , Vassena C.

The control exerted by the hydrostratigraphic structure on aquifer recharge, groundwater flow and discharge along the coastal areas of a Mediterranean basin (Salento peninsula, about 5,000 km2 wide, southern Italy) is assessed through the development and application of a groundwater flow model based on the reconstruction of the hydrostratigraphic architecture at the regional scale. The hydrostratigraphic model, obtained by processing surface and subsurface data, is applied to map the top of the main aquifer, which is hosted in the deep hydrostratigraphic unit corresponding to Cretaceous and Oligocene limestones with complex geometrical relationships with the sea. It is also used to estimate the aquifer recharge, which occurs by percolation through overlying younger sediments with low permeability. These data are completed with information about the soil use to estimate water abstraction for irrigation and with literature data to estimate the water abstraction for drinking and industrial purposes. The above-sketched conceptual model is the basis for a finite difference groundwater 2D pseudo-stationary flow model, which assumes the following fundamental approximations: the fractured and karst limestone hydrostratigraphic unit can be approximated, at the model scale, as a continuous medium for which the discrete Darcy’s law is valid; the transition zone between salt and fresh water is so small with respect to the grid spacing that the Ghyben–Herzberg’s approximation for a sharp interface can be applied. Along the coastline different boundary conditions are assigned if the top of the limestone hydrostratigraphic unit lies either above the sea level (the aquifer has a free surface and fresh water is drained), or below the sea level (the aquifer is under pressure and the contact with sea occurs off-shore). The groundwater flow model correctly predicts the areas where the aquifer is fully saturated with salt water.


Quaternary alluvial sinkholes: Record of environmental conditions of karst development, examples from the Ebro Basin, Spain , 2012, Soriano M. A. , Luzon A. , Yuste A. , Pocovı, A. , Perez A. , Simon J. L. , Gil H.

The central Ebro Basin is an exceptional region for studying karstification through time and under different environmental conditions, as sinkholes have been developing since the Early Pleistocene. Knowledge of active sinkholes is complemented with research on paleosinkholes and contemporary deposits. Sedimentological, mineralogical, geomorphological and structural approaches permit interpretation of the natural environmental conditions that favored karst in the past and the main genetic mechanisms involved. The sedimentary features of Pleistocene terraces indicate that they were deposited by a gravel braided fluvial system characterized by higher water and sediment availability than today, probably related to meltwater flows coming from glaciated source areas, mainly in the Pyrenees. Genesis of paleosinkholes was mainly linked to this high water supply. Some of them acted as small lakes where fine sediments are exceptionally well conserved to give clues about environmental conditions. The neoformation of palygorskite and sepiolite suggests arid to semiarid climatic conditions, in agreement with the idea of cold glacial episodes. During Pleistocene times, development of sinkholes was influenced by tectonics. Currently, the genesis and evolution of numerous sinkholes are also influenced by water supplies from human activities such as irrigation or urbanization, sharply changing the nearly steady state exhibited in the past


CAVES AND KARST HYDROGEOLOGY OF JERUSALEM, ISRAEL, 2013, Frumkin Amos

 

The city of Jerusalem, Israel, is growing for ~4,000 years on karst terrain. Lacking closed depressions, surface topography seems fluvial, but karst is well demonstrated by speleology and subsurface hydrology. Several caves in the city were truncated by construction works, including an 800 m long river cave (longest limestone river cave in Israel), and a 200 × 140 × 90 m isolated chamber cave (largest chamber cave in Israel). Caves are being discovered at a growing rate, as construction works dig deeper into the subsurface in the crowded city. Some of them are eventually destroyed by the construction works; only presently accessible caves are discussed here. The hydrogeology and hydrochemistry of the Gihon, Jerusalem’s main karst spring, was studied in order to understand its behavior, as well as urbanization effects on karst groundwater resources. High-resolution monitoring of the spring discharge, temperature and electrical conductivity, as well as chemical and bacterial analysis demonstrate a rapid response of the spring to rainfall events and human impact. A complex karst system is inferred, including conduit flow, fissure flow and diffuse flow. Electrical conductivity is high compared to nearby springs located at the town margins, indicating considerable urban pollution in the Gihon area. The previously cited pulsating nature of the spring does not exist today. This phenomenon may have ceased due to additional water sources from urban leakage and irrigation feeding the spring. The urbanization of the recharge area thus affects the spring water dramatically, both chemically and hydrologically.


EVAPORITE KARST IN THE PERMIAN BASIN REGION OF WEST TEXAS AND SOUTHEASTERN NEW MEXICO: THE HUMAN IMPACT , 2013, Land, Lewis

A significant minority of sinkholes in the greater Permian Basin region of west Texas and southeastern New Mexico are of human origin. These anthropogenic sinkholes are often associated with historic oil field activity, or with solution mining of Permian salt beds in the shallow subsurface. The well-known Wink Sinks in Winkler Co., Texas formed in 1980 and 2002 within the giant Hendrick oil field. The Wink Sinks were probably the result of subsurface dissolution of salt caused by fresh water leakage in improperly cased abandoned oil wells. In 2008 two catastrophic sinkhole events occurred a few months apart in northern Eddy Co., New Mexico, and a third formed a few months later in 2009 near Denver City, Texas. All three sinkholes were the result of solution mining operations for brine production from Upper Permian salt beds. The Eddy Co. sinkholes formed within the giant Empire oil and gas field, several kilometers from populated areas. In the aftermath of these events, another brine well operation was identified within the city limits of Carlsbad, New Mexico as having a similar geologic setting and pumping history. That well has been abandoned and geotechnical monitoring of the site has been continuous since 2008. Although there is no indication of imminent collapse, geophysical surveys have identified a substantial void in Permian salt beds beneath the brine well extending north and south beneath residential areas, a major highway intersection, a railroad, and an irrigation canal


Hydrogeological Characteristics of Carbonate Formations of the Cuddapah Basin, India, 2014, Farooq Ahmad Dar

Karst hydrogeology is an important field of earth sciences as the aquifers in carbonate formations represent vital resource of groundwater that feeds a large part of the world population particularly in semi-arid climates. These unique aquifers posses peculiar characteristics developed by dissolutional activities of water. Karst aquifers possess a typical hydrogeological setup from surface to subsurface. The aquifers are governed by slow groundwater flow in matrix porosity, a medium to fast flow in fractures and rapid flow in conduits and channels. This large variability in their properties makes the prediction and modeling of flow and transport very cumbersome and data demanding. The aquifers are vulnerable to contamination as the pollutants reach the aquifer very fast with little or no attenuation. The geomorphological and hydrogeological properties in these aquifers demand specific techniques for their study. The carbonate aquifers of the semi-arid Cuddapah basin were characterized based on geomorphological, hydrogeological and hydrochemical investigations. All the formations are highly karstified possessing one of the longest and deepest caves of India and few springs along with unique surface features. Karstification is still in progress but at deeper levels indicated by growing speleothems of different architectural size. Model of karstification indicates that lowering of base level of erosion resulted in the dissolution of deeper parts of the limestone as represented by paleo-phreatic conduits in the region. Moist conditions of the past were responsible for the karst development which has been minimized due to the onset of monsoon conditions. Karst has developed at various elevations representing the past base levels in the region.

The recharge processes in these aquifers are complex due to climatic and karst specificities. Point recharge is the major contributor which enters the aquifer as allogenic water. It replenishes the groundwater very rapidly. Diffuse recharge travels through soil and epikarst zone. Average annual recharge of semi-arid Narji limestone aquifer is 29% of the rainfall which occurs during 5-7 rain events in the year.

The hydrogeochemical characteristic of karst aquifers is quite varaible. A significant difference is observed in hydrochemistry. High concentrations of SO42-, Cl-, NO3- suggests the anthropogenic source particularly from agriculture. Local Meteoric Water Line of δ2H and δ18O isotopes of rain and groundwater shows a slope of 7.02. Groundwater isotope data shows more depletion in heavy isotopes -a result of high evaporation of the area. Groundwater samples show a trend with a slope of 4 and 3.1 for δ2H and δ18O respectively. Groundwater during dry months gets more fractionated due to higher temperature and little rainfall. The irrigated water becomes more enriched and then recharges the aquifer as depleted irrigation return flow. The isotopes show large variation in spring water. Few springs are diffuse or mixed type and not purely of conduit type in the area. Tracer results indicate that the tracer output at the sampling location depends on the hydrogeological setup and the nature of karstification.

The study has significantly dealt with in disclosing the typical characteristics of such aquifer systems and bringing out a reliable as well as detailed assessment of various recharges to the system. The groundwater chemistry has been elaborated to establish the nature of possible hydrochemical processes responsible for water chemistry variation in semi-arid karst aquifer. Such study has thrown light on the aquifers that are on one hand very important from social and strategic point of view and on the hand were left unattended from the detailed scientific studies.


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