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Enviroscan Ukrainian Institute of Speleology and Karstology


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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 heat of vaporization is the heat necessary to change water from the liquid to the gaseous state [16].?

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


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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;
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Your search for transform (Keyword) returned 94 results for the whole karstbase:
Showing 16 to 30 of 94
The Indarri Falls travertine dam, Lawn Hill Creek, northwest Queensland, Australia, 1997,
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Drysdale Rn, Gale Sj,
Indarri Falls is a spectacular travertine dam which impounds Lawn Hill Creek, a perennial karst stream draining the Barkly Tableland in northwest Queensland, Australia. The dam is at least 13.5m high, making it the largest feature of its kind known in Australia. Carbonate precipitation at the Falls is favoured by downstream changes in the bulk chemistry of the karst spring waters which feed the Creek, although deposition at the microenvironmental level may be encouraged by biological factors. The dam has dramatically altered the hydrology and geomorphology of the area, transforming the middle reaches of Lawn Hill Creek from a fluvial to a lacustrine environment. (C) 1997 by John Wiley & Sons, Ltd

Thermodynamic equilibrium, kinetics, activation barriers, and reaction mechanisms for chemical reactions in Karst Terrains, 1997,
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White W. B. ,
Chemical reactions pertinent to karst systems divide broadly into (a) speciation reactions within aqueous solutions, (b) dissolution/precipitation and other acid/base reactions between aqueous solutions and solid minerals, and (c) redox reactions involving various carbon and sulfur-bearing species. As a backdrop against which other chemistry can be evaluated, selected phase diagrams and equilibrium speciation diagrams were calculated for the system Ca--Mg--O--H--C--S. The kinetics of reactions within this system span time scales from milliseconds for homogeneous reactions in solution through hundreds of hours for carbonate mineral dissolution reactions, to geologic time scales for reactions such as the aragonite/calcite inversion or the oxidation/reduction of native sulfur. In purely inorganic systems, kinetic barriers, typically on the order of tens of kJ/mole, are set by nucleation processes and by activated complex formation. Biological processes impact the purely inorganic chemistry by the following mechanisms: (a) Secretions and waste products from biological activity or consumption of CO2 by organisms changes the chemistry in the microenvironments of reaction surfaces. Oxidation potentials, pH, and ion activities may be modified, thus shifting equilibria. (b) Reaction rates may be increased due to modification of activated complexes and thus the activation barriers to reaction. (c) Organic compounds or microorganisms may act as substrates, thus lowering nucleation barriers. The preservation of microorganisms in cave deposits does not necessarily prove a cause and effect relationship

Les glaciers de marbre de Patagonie, Chili : un karst subpolaire ocanique de la zone australe, 1999,
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Maire Richard, Ultima_esperanza_team
The karst areas of Chilean Patagonia have remained virtually unknown until now because of their remoteness and very inhospitable climate. They are mainly located in two islands, Diego de Almagro and Madre de Dios, between latitude 52 and 50 South, with a subpolar and stormy climate "tempered" by heavy oceanic precipitations (7 m/ year). In Diego de Almagro the Permian and Carboniferous limestones and dolomites have been transformed into marbles with lamprophyre dikes through contact metamorphism. Situated in the outer part of the archipelagoes, these long and narrow outcrops (0.5-2km wide) are located between volcano-sedimentary formations of Upper Paleozoic (West) and the Mesozoic Patagonian batholit (East). The corallian paleoreefs are part of an accretionary prism of the Gondwana paleo-continent. The surficial and underground karstification is one of the most spectacular ones in the world. The Karren (lapies) caused by the heavy rains can be 1-4 meter(s) wide and several hundred meters long for the solution runnels. Moreover, we can often observe solution karrens both due to rain and wind direction: flat karren (horizontal laminar flow), cascading ripples (sloping laminar flow) and profiled solution forms. The surficial solution velocity is about 3 mm/50 years (from old painting traces near the quarry of Guarello, Madre de Dios); and the lamprophyres dikes (Diego de Almagro) put in relief through corrosion indicate a 40-60 cm surficial solution since the melting of pleistocene glaciers.

Land use and human impact in the Dinaric karst, 1999,
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Gabrovec Matej, Gams Ivan.
The artice presents Dinaric karst, human impacts in the area, and its long history of deforestation, transformation into stony semi-desert, and a century long reforestation, where plans to restore the primary thick soil were just hoping against hope.

Impacts of agricultural transformation on the principal karstic regions of France, 1999,
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Nicod Jean, Salomon Jeannoel
The recent extension of intensive agriculture on the karst plateaus has caused different types of impact: soil management, generalised and/or localised pollution. Yet paradoxically rural depopulation can also have negative impacts, which largely depend on the characteristics and the hydrological function of the different karst environments. They are often negative, particularly as far as the water quality is concerned, which is why protection measures are undertaken, either in a defined area for a catchment, or in the framework of regional parks. But this is not always the case, so it is appropriate to analyse the problem of karst pollution as a whole, and to propose to experiment new solutions to mitigate the impacts.

Tectonic network as the initial factor of karstification of the chalk limestones in the Perche hills (Orne, Normandy, France), 1999,
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Rodet J. ,
Tectonics has been known to be the initial factor of karstification for a long time, but this has never been demonstrated because of the progressive nature of karstification, which destroys evidence of the preliminary phases. Because of its dual hydrological quality, chalk limestone has conserved a great variety of specific forms illustrating various steps in evolution, from the initial primokarst to the classic well-developed drain. In the Perche hills, very recent research has shown specific endokarstic galleries, filled up by sands and clays. Physical, chemical and X-ray analyses have shown that such infillings result not from a classical fluviatile deposit process, but on the contrary, from an alteration process, underlining the progress of a weathering front into the limestone mass down to the watertable. The infillings are not sedimentary deposits, but represent a kind of 'shadow rock', a chemical in situ transformation of limestone, without any transport of the solid fraction, The genesis results from the progression of weathering fronts located on the tectonic pattern into the input karst. When the weathering front crosses the watertable, the resulting water mixing produces a chemical reaction capable of opening the original joint. This results in infilled galleries, similar to classical karst drains, which have never known fluviatile drainage. This illustrates the first step in normal karstic evolution, just before a water flux drains the gallery, resulting in a new karstification step: the drained passage. The specificity of the region of the Perche hills is this karat evolution stopped in the first step, illustrating the 'primorkarst' modelling by the researcher, which has never been described before. The conditions for this genesis are a well-developed tectonic pattern, an absence of thick superficial layers, a high soil permeability, and an absence of superficial drainage (lack of sinkholes). (C) Elsevier, Paris

Landscape evolution and the preservation of tectonic landforms along the northern Yammouneh Fault, Lebanon, 1999,
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Butler Rwh, Spencer S,
The Yammouneh Fault is commonly considered to be the principal active strand of the Dead Sea Transform in Lebanon -- an inference reached primarily from interpretations of the geomorphological expression of the fault on satellite images. However, new geological field observations show the Yammouneh Fault to be sealed stratigraphically by the Homs Basalt, dated using new K-Ar ages at 5.2-6.5 Ma. Drainage systems which link to the pre-Homs Basalt palaeosurface show evidence of fault disruption. Those valleys incised into the basalt show no evidence for transcurrent offsets. The inferred left-lateral displacement of c. 45 km on the Dead Sea Transform that post-dates the Homs Basalt is presumed to have bypassed to the west of Mount Lebanon. These linked geological and geomorphological studies indicate that landscape evolution can be exceptionally slow in northern Lebanon. Faceted spurs, poljes and offset drainage along the Yammouneh Fault across Mount Lebanon, evident on satellite images, are interpreted as being of Miocene age and are not indicative of Plio-Quaternary displacements on the fault. Much of the Lebanese tectonic landscape has thus remained stable for many millions of years, although locally incised during large-scale uplift of the Mount Lebanon range. Presumably landscape insensitivity reflects the arid climatic conditions together with inhibited run-off due to the regional karst system

Linear systems analysis in a karst aquifer, 1999,
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Long A. J. , Derickson R. G. ,
A linear systems analysis applied to ground-water flow is presented as an alternative modeling technique to traditional discretized ground-water models (i.e. finite-difference and finite-element), which require elaborate parameters and boundary conditions. Linear systems analysis has been used extensively for surface-water modeling and to 3 lesser extent for groundwater applications. We present a method for the analysis of an aquifer's response in hydraulic head to recharge that comprises two major components. The first component is to predict the drop in hydraulic head over time if recharge is eliminated. By fitting logarithmic curves to selected short-term hydraulic head recession periods, a long-term recession or 'base head' can be established. The estimation of base head is necessary for the second component of the method, which is the derivation of an impulse response function or transfer function. The transfer function H-as derived by deconvolution of two time series data sets - estimated recharge and the measured response in hydraulic head. An aquifer's response to recharge can be characterized and modeled by using the transfer function. which also establishes the time to peak response. the response time distribution, and the total memory length of the system. The method requires fitting smooth curves to the oscillatory transfer function derived by deconvolution in the Fourier transform domain. The smooth curve is considered to be the physically valid transfer function. In this analysis, curve fitting was more effective than other smoothing techniques commonly used. We applied the method to the karstic Madison aquifer and found that thr time to peak response is less than one month, the system's total memory is about six years, and a logarithmic curve best fits the system response. This method has potential to be useful as 3 predictive tool in aquifer management. (C) 1999 Elsevier Science B.V. All rights reserved

Karst aquifer evolution in fractured rocks, 1999,
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Kaufmann G. , Braun J. ,
We study the large-scale evolution and flow in a fractured karst aquifer by means of a newly developed numerical method. A karst aquifer is discretized into a set of irregularly spaced nodal points, which are connected to their set of natural neighbors to simulate a network of interconnected conduits in two dimensions. The conduits are allowed to enlarge by solutional widening. The geometric flexibility of this method, along with a simplified model for the dissolution kinetics within the system water-carbon dioxide-calcite, enables us to study both laminar and turbulent flow in a karst aquifer during its early phase of evolution. A sensitivity analysis is conducted for parameters such as conduit diameter, hydraulic pressure differences, and recharge conditions along the surface of the aquifer and shows that passage evolution depends strongly on the recharge condition and the amount of water available. Under fixed hydraulic head boundary conditions an early single-passage system develops under laminar conditions and is transformed into a maze-like passage system after the onset of turbulence. Fixed recharge boundary conditions are more likely to result in a branchwork-like passage system, although the addition of distributed recharge may lead to a maze-like system of secondary passages

Caves of High Mountains in Poland, 1999,
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Klarenbach, Tomasz

Mountains of alpine origin - Tatra Mts. cover only small part of Poland. Karstified rocks occur in Western Tatra Mts. and cover ca. 50 km2. Within this small area 600 caves are known, the longest and deepest in Poland among them. Three caves are over 10 km long and 15 over 1 km long. There are three caves with denivelation over 500 m and 14 over 100 m. Recent intensive exploration has resulted in the discovery of many new cave galleries. Most important cave in Tatra Mts. is Wielka Ânie›na - Litworowa Cave System (814 m of denivelation and over 20 km long), the deepest and longest cave in Poland. Caves are grouped mostly in the upper part of the Polish Western Tatra Mts., and are of different genetical type and age. Parts of them are of preglacial origin or were transformed by glacial water in Pleistocene.


The "unroofed cave" near the bunker (Laški Ravnik), 1999,
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Gerš, L Milan, Stepiš, Nik Uroš, , Š, Uš, Terš, Ič, Simona

Situated in the Laški Ravnik, about 4 km east of Planinsko polje (Slovenia), this unroofed cave is the longest of many found in the area. More than 200m of denuded passage has been traced at the surface. The cave's general trend is north - south. Three main "passages" making up the unroofed cave have been recognised, and each has been transformed in its own way. Disintegration of parts of the former cave roof is apparent, forming "false solution dolines", between which the ceiling is partly preserved, either in-situ or as isolated blocks lying on cave sediment. In the down-dip direction, passage sides have disintegrated almost completely, and detached blocks have slid down into washed-out portions of the former cave passages. All three passages developed along bedding planes, but in different directions, such that two of them now "emerge" above the surface whereas the third plunges down and is completely choked by loam. The unroofed cave passes southwards into a "normal" underground route, where a barely accessible, low and wide passage is accompanied by two "vertical" shafts, which are presumed to be former phreatic jumps. This part of the system is not considered in this paper.


Vertical zonation of the speleogenetic space, 1999,
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Š, Uš, Terš, Ič, France

The point of this paper is to demonstrate that not only the spatial domain where underground karst phenomena are being systematically transformed exist but also that this knowledge makes the role of caves within the geospeleological space/time more consistent. A true cave is any underground karst feature resulting from mass removal, regardless of its dimensions provided that the trajectory of the formative water passes through the cave and that the mass is removed in liquid phase (solution). Speleogenetic space is defined as that portion of the Earth's crust within which karst caverns may be formed. Thus, a karstified rock mass is defined as activated speleogenetic space. Due to the effects of denudation and watertable lowering, as the time passes a single cave seems to move upwards through speleogentic space, until it reaches the surface. The denudational logic of the karst surface is vertical, and the rock suffers disintegration throughout the thickness of its outermost layers. The same argument applies also to in-rock features. Consequently, the idea of the speleothanatic zone is introduced. Within it all of the rock is attacked, on any possible surface, and the final result is its complete annihilation. It may be expected that all structures, of any origin, that expose the rock surface to contact with aggressive water, will evolve via some "speleothanatic" progression. It is demonstrated that three vertical zones of specific formative/de-formative processes exist within speleogenetic space.


Forme et rugosit des surfaces karstiques. Consquences pour une thorie spatiale et fractale de linterface terrestre, 2000,
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Martin, Philippe
This text proposes a theoretical, hypothetical and speculative approach of the transformation of earth's surfaces. This reflection is based on the notion of otherness. Our approach uses two oppositions: levelled/ roughness and karstic/ non karstic. The dimension of the roughness surfaces is understood between 2 and 3. The dimension of the surfaces of levelling is close to 2. Quantifications showed that massifs are limited by surfaces more or less irregular. In certain cases, the erosion transforms so a surface of levelling into rough surface. In that case initial shape is not preserved. The levellings on the karstic massifs (outliers often) seem better preserved (karstic immunity) than on the other rocks. This conservation would explain a weak value of the fractal dimension of air surfaces of karsts tested always with the same protocol (relation S PD). They were compared with the surfaces of reliefs of basal complex. Three ideas summarise obtained results: [1] The average of fractal dimensions of karsts are smaller than those of the relief of basal complex. [2] The dispersal of the mean values of surface of karst is lower to the dispersal of the mean values of basal complex. [3] Distance between minimal and maximal values for karsts is much bigger than distance between minimal and maximal values for basal complex. To explain the weak roughness of karsts we made three hypotheses: [a] These fragments would correspond to zones still not affected by the erosion (time problem) [b] In such a system some changes on a plan would prevent changes on the another plan (spatial problem) [c] Initial shape is replaced by a similar shape (Platon's Parmnide). The endokarst is described empirically and by analogy with the fractal model of Sierpinski's sponge as a unique surface infinitely folded up in a limited volume. So the growth of the karstic spaces in the endokarst, increases almost until the infinity, the size of the internal surface of the karst. To find a theoretical base at the roughness and at the extreme size of these surfaces, we studied the report between the growth of a volume and the growth of the surface, which limits this volume. Three theoretical models show that if surfaces do not change, volume to be affected by unity of surface grows strongly. Eroded volume depends on the size of the exposed surface. If the eroded volume depends on the size of the exposed surface, then time to erase a mountain could be, in theory, infinite. This is not acceptable because a massif can be erased in about 200 Ma. According to analogies with different morphogenesis (physical, biologic), we make the hypothesis that fractal character, of surfaces of the massifs corresponds to the necessity of increasing, as much as possible, the size of the surface subjected to the erosion so as to decrease the time of destruction of the relief. This is coherent with the idea of a system far from the balance, which tends to join the state of balance as quickly as possible by developing specific morphologies. Distance between the relief and the lower limit of the potential of erosion is then introduced as a factor being able to explain the small roughness of high continental surfaces. The reduction of the volume by erosion is cause (and not consequence) of the decrease of the roughness. The surface can become less rough because volume decreases. The surface of levelling constitutes the final morphology, which is transformed only very slowly. In this perspective the dynamics allows only the fulfillment of spatial rules. In the case of the karst, because of the existence of the subterranean part of the karstic surface and its roughness, it is not useful that air part becomes very rough. Levellings would be preserved by geometrical uselessness to destroy them. They would not correspond to forms in respite as implies him the temporal analysis (hypothesis [a]), but to forms corresponding to a particular balance (hypothesis [b]) who would even be locally transformed (karstic levelling) into the same shape (hypothesis [c]). This theoretical plan supplies with more an explanation on the visible contradiction between the speed of the karstic erosion and the durability of levellings.

Transformations and hydraulic captures of petrochemical contaminants in a karst-fractured aquifer, 2000,
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Chen Y, Zhu X, Zhu X, Jiang Y, Xie Q,

Drainage-basin-scale geomorphic analysis to determine reference conditions for ecologic restoration--Kissimmee River, Florida, 2000,
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Warne Andrew G. , Toth Louis A. , White William A. ,
Major controls on the retention, distribution, and discharge of surface water in the historic (precanal) Kissimmee drainage basin and river were investigated to determine reference conditions for ecosystem restoration. Precanal Kissimmee drainage-basin hydrology was largely controlled by landforms derived from relict, coastal ridge, lagoon, and shallow-shelf features; widespread carbonate solution depressions; and a poorly developed fluvial drainage network. Prior to channelization for flood control, the Kissimmee River was a very low gradient, moderately meandering river that flowed from Lake Kissimmee to Lake Okeechobee through the lower drainage basin. We infer that during normal wet seasons, river discharge rapidly exceeded Lake Okeechobee outflow capacity, and excess surface water backed up into the low-gradient Kissimmee River. This backwater effect induced bankfull and peak discharge early in the flood cycle and transformed the flood plain into a shallow aquatic system with both lacustrine and riverine characteristics. The large volumes of surface water retained in the lakes and wetlands of the upper basin maintained overbank flow conditions for several months after peak discharge. Analysis indicates that most of the geomorphic work on the channel and flood plain occurred during the frequently recurring extended periods of overbank discharge and that discharge volume may have been significant in determining channel dimensions. Comparison of hydrogeomorphic relationships with other river systems identified links between geomorphology and hydrology of the precanal Kissimmee River. However, drainage-basin and hydraulic geometry models derived solely from general populations of river systems may produce spurious reference conditions for restoration design criteria

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