MWH Global

Enviroscan Ukrainian Institute of Speleology and Karstology

Community news

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 diphenyl brilliant flavine 7GFF, direct yellow 96 is a yellowish dye initially developed to color tennis balls and subsequently shown to be useful in environmental tracing studies. dye type: stilbene. see also fluorescent dyes.?

Checkout all 2699 terms in the KarstBase Glossary of Karst and Cave Terms

What is Karstbase?



Browse Speleogenesis Issues:

KarstBase a bibliography database in karst and cave science.

Featured articles from Cave & Karst Science Journals
Chemistry and Karst, White, William B.
See all featured articles
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;
See all featured articles from other geoscience journals

Search in KarstBase

Your search for hypogene cave (Keyword) returned 75 results for the whole karstbase:
Showing 16 to 30 of 75

In the Apennine Mountains many examples of hypogene caves are known, generally related to present or past rise of sulfidic water that, mixing with oxygenated water of shallow flow systems, causes the sulfuric acid dissolution of limestone. The hypogene caves are generally located in small limestone outcrops covered by rocks of low permeability that in?uence the groundwater flowpaths. Some caves, however, are known also in hydrogeological massifs, where epigenic caves prevail. The hypogene caves show different patterns, ranging from phreatic to pure water table caves. The former prevail when karst evolved below the water table in structures almost completely covered by low permeability units; the latter occur in zones where a fast recharge of freshwater can reach the sulfidic water from the karst surface. The progressive lowering, thinning and removal of the low-permeability covers by non-karstic erosion processes can cause the progressive evolution from phreatic to water table caves. Active speleogenetic processes due to H2 S oxidation can be directly observed in different hydrogeologic settings: in highly permeable aquifers with ready recharge of freshwater (Frasassi caves), in thermal caves, below low permeability cover (Acquasanta Terme), or in marine thermal caves with salt water intrusion (Capo Palinuro).


While there is a well-established general theory for the mechanism of excavation of hypogene caves in artesian basins, the same cannot be said for hypogene caves in deformed strata. A few active thermal caves, several dormant hypogene caves and many extinct hypogene caves and extinct hypogene sections of complex multiprocess caves are developed in impounded karsts along the whole length of the Tasman Fold Belt System in eastern Australia. The active caves are related to warm springs with temperatures (20°-28°C) only a few degrees above the annual average (17°C) and are often cooler than the external summer temperature. The origins of these waters have not been investigated, but most active, dormant, extinct and suspect ancient hypogene caves occur in close proximity to faults, frequently to large regional faults. If and how water from these faults is transmitted to the propagation planes in the caves is not known. While hypogene speleothems occur in the active and dormant caves, these are absent from the older suspect hypogene caves, some of which have probably been thermally dormant for hundreds of millions of years. The older caves are characterized by cave pattern, the presence of hypogene speleogens and poor relationship with surrounding hydrology. Two processes that are signi?cant in the development of the older complex caves are integration, which leads to formerly separate cavities joining to form larger caves and renovation, which smoothes cave walls, obliterating boxwork, etching and lithologically selective solution.

HYPOGENE CAVES IN AUSTRIA, 2009, Plan L. , Spotl C. , Pavuza R. , Dublyansky Y.

Among the ca. 14,000 registered caves of Austria few have been attributed to hypogene speleogenesis. This paper provides an overview of hypogene caves in Austria. A few dozen examples are known around the Vienna Basin. Some of these caves, such as Eisensteinhhle and Nasser Schacht, display a thermally anomalous microclimate and are associated with thermal springs. Other caves are inactive, but their morphology and deposits are suggestive of a hypogene origin. Preliminary morphologic observations suggest sulfuric speleogenesis for Stephanshhle near Bad Deutsch Altenburg. In the Northern Calcareous Alps, which host the majority of caves of Austria, only very few have previously been identi?ed as hypogene (e.g., Mrchenhhle, Wasserhhle), but the number of such caves is likely to increase in the near future. Also, “normal” (epigenetic) cave systems sometimes show morphological evidence suggestive of a hypogene origin, but conclusive proof is lacking. The only Austrian cave where a sulfuric acid speleogenesis is well documented is Kraushhle. In marbles of the Central Alps lukewarm and thermal springs are present and cavities of likely hypogene origin were encountered during tunnel construction near Lend. In a nearby cave, Entrische Kirche, isotopic evidence of marble alteration by warm paleowaters was recently identi?ed. Extensive calcite deposits are also known from nearby Stegbachgraben, and ongoing isotopic and fluid-inclusion studies strongly suggest hypogene water-rock interaction at lukewarm (<40°C) temperatures there. A few caves in the Southern Calcareous Alps also show morphological evidence of a hypogene origin (e.g. Kozakhhle), which is U/Th-dated to older than ca. 144,000 years. CO2 -rich springs discharge nearby.


Polygenetic and multiphase karst within Upper Jurassic limestone of the Krakw-Czestochowa Upland (South Poland) is characterized by a distinct stage of speleogenesis taking place in conditions of phreatic ascending circulation. This stage (or stages) is evidenced by both cave morphology and surface relief. Morphostratigraphic studies show that the hypogenic ascending features were early forms in the caves and later became integrated into cave systems. Conditions favorable for hypogenic caves development existed during a late Cretaceous-Paleogene phase of speleogenesis when the carbonate massif was covered by low permeability Cretaceous sediments and was subject to intense tectonic Laramian movements. In spite of the significant transformation of caves and their morphology by later vadose, epigenetic speleogenesis and denudation - especially under Pleistocene glacial and periglacial conditions - features of hypogenic ascending circulation are widely observed in the region. Relics of hypogene caves are common in the walls of rock monadnocks in the highest part of the Krakw-Czestochowa Upland.


The Neogene gypsum of the Ponidzie area (SE part of the Niecka Nidzialska region) is in the same evaporite series as the giant hypogenic caves of the Western Ukraine. In spite of this, most of the Ponidzie gypsum caves were formed in later stages of speleogenesis and are epigenic. They differ from the Ukrainian caves in many features, e.g.: size, patterns and karst microforms. The epigenic caves of the Ponidzie are relatively short, horizontal and poorly branched conduits or flat, low chambers, situated close to the water table and related to the surface karst landforms. But a few caves characterized by the occurrence of karst features suggesting deep, hypogenic karsti?cation have been also recognized in this region. The most specific features of these caves are dome-like chambers with oval and lenticular concavities in the ceiling. Thus, although the dominance of epigene karst in Ponidzie is determined by factors such as hydrological properties of rock overlying and underlying the gypsum strata, structural patterns and joint systems in the gypsum itself (which differ from those of the Ukrainian karst region), local specific tectonic-hydrological conditions could also have generated karst during the deep circulation of artesian water in the early phases of the hydrological evolution. The hypogenic caves of Ponidzie occur in the axial part of a narrow syncline and on the downthrow side of a fault, so that the hypogenic karst is most likely connected with water circulation in marls underlying the gypsum and is limited to the deepest tectonic structures, with tectonic discontinuities being the routes for ground water circulation. This hypothesis should be verified by evaluation of larger numbers of hypogenic karst forms, if they can be found.

Contributions of geophysical techniques to the exploration of the Molnár János Cave (Budapest, Hungary), 2010, Surá, Nyi Gergely, Dombrá, Di Endre, Leé, LŐ, Ssy Szabolcs

Located in the centre of the Pannonian, one of the hottest basins in Europe with high average heat flow values, Hungary has long been famous for hot water springs and frequent cave occurrences. The Molnár János Cave, an active thermokarstic cave, belonging to the Buda Hills karst system, lies beneath a highly populated district of Budapest. Its large passages are almost completely filled by lukewarm water. Only the upper part of its largest known chamber rises above the water level, which offers an excellent site to examine recent cave generation processes. However, hitherto, no dry subsurface gateway existed towards this chamber; it was only accessible underwater. In this paper, we present the results of various geophysical investigations including GPR, magnetic and seismic methods, carried out in a close cooperation between geophysicists and speleologists. The aim of the measurements was to determine the precise position of the hall relative to a nearby drift. Based upon the successful seismic survey and first break analysis, a precise and efficient boring could be designed to realise the connection. Finally, a passage between the two cavities has been established and, thus, the chamber of the cave is now accessible to the whole scientific community.

Speleothems and speleogenesis of the hypogenic Santa Barbara Cave System (South-West Sardinia, Italy), 2010, Pagliara Antonio, De Waele Jo, Forti Paolo, Galli Ermanno, Rossi Antonio

This paper presents the results of a study on the peleogenesis and the speleothems and secondary mineralisations of the Santa Barbara Cave System in the Iglesiente Mining District (South-West Sardinia, Cagliari). This cave system, hosted in Cambrian carbonate rocks, has a very long geological history and its main voids have formed in hypogenic conditions. Nine speleogenetic phases can be recognised ranging in age between Cambrian and Holocene. Optical microscope and diffractometric analysis of active flowstone deposits have shown them being composed of alternating calcite and aragonite layers. The textural and chemical characteristics of these layers, obtained by SEM and EDAX analysis, suggest them to be related to variations in the depositional environment inside the cave, which in turn are probably correlated to external climatic oscillations.

Karst hydrology of Grand Canyon, Arizona, USA, 2010, Hill C. A. , Polyak V. J.

Caves in Grand Canyon, Arizona, USA fall into two main categories: those formed under unconfined conditions and those formed under confined conditions. This study focuses on the hydrology and paleohydrology of the confined caves in the Redwall–Muav aquifer, where the aquifer is overlain by rocks of the Supai Group and underlain by the Bright Angel Shale. Unconfined caves are discussed only in their relation to confined caves. Discharge for confined groundwater was, as it is today, primarily from the Redwall Limestone where it has been incised by the main canyon or its tributaries and where it has converged along a structural low or fault. Descent of the potentiometric surface (or water table) over time is recorded by one ore episode and six cave episodes: (1) emplacement of Cu–U ore, (2) precipitation of iron oxide in cavities, (3) dissolution of cave passages, (4) precipitation of calcite-spar linings over cave passage walls, (5) precipitation of cave mammillary coatings, (6) minor replacement of cave wall and ceiling limestone by gypsum, and (7) deposition of subaerial speleothems. The mammillary episode records the approximate position of the water table when the incision of the canyon was at that level. Discharge toward spring points has reorganized and adjusted with respect to ongoing canyon and side-canyon incision. The dissolution of Grand Canyon confined caves was the result of the mixing of epigene waters with hypogene waters so that undersaturation with respect to calcite was achieved. The karst hydrology of Grand Canyon may be unique compared to other hypogene cave areas of the world.

Rethinking eastern Australian caves, 2010, Osborne, R. A. L.

There are some 300 bodies of cavernous limestone in eastern Australia, extending from Precipitous Bluff in southeastern Tasmania to the Mitchell Palmer region in north Queensland. These impounded karsts, developed in Palaeozoic limestones of the Tasman Fold Belt System, contain many caves. The caves have a suite of features in common that allows them to be thought of as a major group: the Tasmanic Caves. The Tasmanic Caves include multiphase hypogene caves such as Cathedral Cave at Wellington and multiphase, multiprocess caves such as Jenolan with Carboniferous hypogene and younger paragenetic and fluvial elements. Active hypogene caves occur at Wee Jasper and possibly at five other localities. The Tasmanic Caves are one of the most complex suites of caves in folded Palaeozoic limestones in the world. Field techniques developed to study these caves are now being applied to complex caves in central Europe: in the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, Slovakia and Slovenia.

Community Structure of Subsurface Biofilms in the Thermal Sulfidic Caves of Acquasanta Terme, Italy, 2010, Jones D. S. , Tobler D. J. , Schaperdoth I. , Mainiero M. , Macalady J. L.

We performed a microbial community analysis of biofilms inhabiting thermal (35 to 50°C) waters more than 60m below the ground surface near Acquasanta Terme, Italy. The groundwater hosting the biofilms has 400 to 830 mkM sulfide, <10 mkM O2, pH of 6.3 to 6.7, and specific conductivity of 8,500 to 10,500 mkS/cm. Based on the results of 16S rRNA gene cloning and fluorescent in situ hybridization (FISH), the biofilms have low species richness, and lithoautotrophic (or possibly mixotrophic) Gamma- and Epsilonproteobacteria are the principle biofilm architects. Deltaproteobacteria sequences retrieved from the biofilms have <90% 16S rRNA similarity to their closest relatives in public databases and may represent novel sulfate-reducing bacteria. The Acquasanta biofilms share few species in common with Frasassi cave biofilms (13°C, 80 km distant) but have a similar community structure, with representatives in the same major clades. The ecological success of Sulfurovumales-group Epsilonproteobacteria in the Acquasanta biofilms is consistent with previous observations of their dominance in sulfidic cave waters with turbulent water flow and high dissolved sulfide/oxygen ratios.

A comparative integrated geophysical study of Horseshoe Chimney Cave, Colorado Bend State Park, Texas, 2011, Brown W. A. , Stafford K. , Shawfaulkner M. , Grubbs A.

An integrated geophysical study was performed over a known cave in Colorado Bend State Park (CBSP), Texas, where shallow karst features are common within the Ellenberger Limestone. Geophysical survey such as microgravity, ground penetrating radar (GPR), direct current (DC) resistivity, capacitively coupled (CC) resistivity, induced polarization (IP) and ground conductivity (GC) measurements were performed in an effort to distinguish which geophysical method worked most effectively and efficiently in detecting the presence of subsurface voids, caves and collapsed features. Horseshoe Chimney Cave (HCC), which is part of a larger network of cave systems, provides a good control environment for this research. A 50 x 50 meter grid, with 5 m spaced traverses was positioned around the entrance to HCC. Geophysical techniques listed above were used to collect geophysical data which were processed with the aid of commercial software packages. A traditional cave survey was conducted after geophysical data collection, to avoid any bias in initial data collection. The survey of the cave also provided ground truthing. Results indicate the microgravity followed by CC resistivity techniques worked most efficiently and were most cost effective, while the other methods showed varying levels of effectiveness.

Subglacial Maze Origin in Low-Dip Marble Stripe Karst: Examples from Norway, 2011, Skoglund R. O. , Lauritzen S. E.

Maze caves or network caves are enigmatic in their evolution, as they form flow nets rather than more efficient, direct point-to-point flow routes. Network caves are often characterized by uniform passage dimensions in several directions, which indicates simultaneous dissolution of most available fractures. Nonshauggrotta in Gildeska° l, northern Norway, is formed in low-dip marble strata and situated as a relict in a topographical and hydrological hanging position, thus lacking a modern drainage area. The cave displays a reticulate network geometry dictated by two orthogonal fracture sets. Passage morphology and paleocurrent marks in the cave walls (scallops) demonstrate that the cave evolved under water-filled conditions (phreatic) and that the relatively slow flow was directed uphill towards the confining aquiclude and the cliff face. In that sense, it has some resemblance to hypogene caves. However, we propose that the cave is a result of ice-contact speleogenesis, as it developed in the lee side of the Nonshaugen ridge under topographically directed glacier flow and seems independent of the otherwise variable flow regimes characteristic of the glacial environment.

Deep confined karst detection, analysis and paleohydrology reconstruction at a basin-wide scale using new geophysical interpretation of borehole logs, 2011, Laskow M. , Gendler M. , Goldberg I. , Gvirtzman H. , Frumkin A.

Deep karst voids can be identified by a new geophysical interpretation method of commonly used borehole logs at deeply confined carbonate aquifers. We show that deep, buried karst voids can be characterized by combining this geophysical interpretation together with geological and hydrological data, and known speleological constraints. We demonstrate how this characterization can reveal past hydrological regimes and allow mapping of karst distribution on a basin-wide scale.

A combined analysis of geophysical, geological, hydrological and speleological data in the confined Yarkon-Taninim aquifer, Israel, led us to reconstruct past groundwater levels at different sea levels and reliefs, with the karst voids as a marker for long-term flow close to the water table. Paleo-canyons along the Mediterranean Sea shoreline strongly affected the region’s paleohydrology, by serving as major outlets of the aquifer during most of the Cenozoic. We conclude that intensive karstification was promoted by flow periods of longer duration and/or higher flux and flow velocities close to the aquifer’s past and present outlets. In addition, we suggest that karst voids found under shallow confinement was developed by renewed aggressivity achieved by hypogene water rising in cross-formational flow, mixed with fresh lateral water flow from the east.

Kijik-Koba Cave: geological and geomorphological conditions and genesis, 2011, Amelichev G. N.

The paper presents preliminary results of geological/geomorphological and speleogenetic study of Kijik-Koba Cave located in the Dolgorukovsky massif of the Mountain Crimea. The hypogene origin is demonstrated of karst features in the block of the Orlinaya Mount on the north of the massif. Litho-stratigraphic and hydrogeological characteristics are given of the rock sequence that hosted a pressure water system. Morphology of the Kijik-Koba Cave and surrounding clusters of hypogene features is described.Mechanisms of confined circulation in the block of the Orlinaya Mount and its speleogenetic consequences are revealed. It is noted that the situations of rising flow from deeper aquifers into shallower ones, expressed in the morphology of hypogene caves,are common along the course of Zuya River valley from the mountainous part to the piedmont part of the region. Criteria for prediction of hypogene karst are also outlined.

The first cave occurrence of orpiment (As₂S₃) from the sulfuric acid caves of Aghia Paraskevi (Kassandra Peninsula, N. Greece), 2011, Lazaridis Georgios, Melfos Vasilios, Papadopoulou Lambrini

Orpiment, tamarugite and pickeringite occur in close association above the surface of thermal water cave pools in the active sulfuric acid caves of Aghia Paraskevi on the Kassandra peninsula, northern Greece. Gypsum also occurs as small interstitial crystals or encrustations. Orpiment is of high significance since it has not previously been reported as a cave mineral. In addition, tamarugite and pickeringite rarely occur in karst caves. Water from a borehole and a spring is of Na-Cl type and contains traces of CO2 and H2S. The B/Cl ratios indicate seawater participation with a possible mixing with geothermal water of meteoric origin. Oxidation of fumarolic H2S and incorporation of seawater is a possible cause for the deposition of tamarugite. Orpiment accumulated from vapors under sub-aerial conditions at low temperatures in acidic conditions through an evaporation-condensation process. Fluid cooling and/or acidification of the solution resulting from H2S oxidation were responsible for orpiment precipitation. Oxidation of H2S to sulfuric acid dissolved the limestone bedrock and deposited gypsum.

Results 16 to 30 of 75
You probably didn't submit anything to search for