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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. ...

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. ...

Speleology in Kazakhstan

Shakalov on 11 Jul, 2012
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 Chezy equation is an equation used to compute the velocity of uniform flow in an open channel: mean velocity of flow (v) equals the chezy coefficient (c) times the square root of the product of hydraulic radius in feet (r) times the slope of the channel [1]. see also froude number; manning equation; reynolds number.?

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

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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.
Engineering challenges in Karst, Stevanović, Zoran; Milanović, Petar
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Featured articles from other Geoscience Journals
Geochemical and mineralogical fingerprints to distinguish the exploited ferruginous mineralisations of Grotta della Monaca (Calabria, Italy), Dimuccio, L.A.; Rodrigues, N.; Larocca, F.; Pratas, J.; Amado, A.M.; Batista de Carvalho, L.A.
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
See all featured articles from other geoscience journals

Search in KarstBase

Your search for 14c dating (Keyword) returned 15 results for the whole karstbase:
Showing 1 to 15 of 15
Palaeoseismicity from karst sediments: the “Grotta del Cervo” cave case study (Central Italy), 1991, Postpischl D. , Agostini S. , Forti P. , Quinif Y. ,
Karst speleothems can be used for tectonic and palaeoseismic analyses; in particular, stalagmites can be treated as the records of a natural pendulum.Samples of stalagmites from the “Grotta del Cervo” and the “Grotta a Male” caves (Central Italy) have been dated using 14C and U/Th radiometric methods. The present paper shows the limits and validity of such methods for dating strong earthquakes of the past.In particular, radiometric 14C dating shows that the youngest general stalagmitic collapse observed inside the “Grotta del Cervo” cave must be related to the December 1456 earthquake of Central Italy

230Th234U and 14C dating of a late Pleistocene stalagmite in Lobatse II Cave, Botswana, 1994, Holmgren Karin, Lauritzen Stein Erik, Possnert Goran,
A late Pleistocene stalagmite from a karst cave in southeastern Botswana has been used to compare the 14C dating method on speleothem carbonates with the 230Th234U method. An age discrepancy between the two methods indicates that at least one of the dating series does not reflect the true growth ages. The deviation is smallest in the youngest part of the stalagmite, where 21,600 U-series years correspond to 17,800 14C BP. This is in accordance with the 14C and 230Th234U-dating results on Barbados corals (Bard et al., 1990). Subsequently, the deviation increases rapidly with age, resulting in a discrepancy of 20,000 years at the 230Th234U age of 50,000 years. Whilst the 14C results exhibit a reversed order in the middle of the sequence, the 230Th234U age estimates are stratigraphically ordered. We consider the U-series data reliable and conclude that these results do indeed reflect true calender years. The 14C age estimates are probably a result of the postdepositional introduction of 14C, but may also reflect, to some extent, variations in the atmospheric 14C content. This study indicates that 14C dating of speleothem carbonate is problematic

Salt cave cross sections and their paleoenvironmental implications, 1998, Frumkin, A.
Salt caves respond rapidly to environmental changes. Direct measurement and 14C dating show that complex cross sections may develop in a few hundred years. Two basic forms are discussed: (1) ingrowing vadose canyons where changing width may correspond to changing discharge; (2) wide low passages with flat ceiling, developed by upward dissolution, which may indicate rising base level. Some cross sections are deformed by Holocene tectonics.

Datations d'un depot de guano holocene dans les Carpates meridionales (Roumanie). Implications tectoniques, 1999, Carbonnel Jp, Olive P, Decu Vg, Klein D,
Two 14C datings in a 2.5 m thick bat guano deposit indicate the Boreal period for the beginning of the deposit. The bat colony of the cave of Adam (Pestera lui Adam, Baile Herculane, south Carpathian Mountains) is one of the oldest permanent bat colonies in Europe, probably established just after the last Ice Age. Evidence of palaeo-seismic activity inside the guano deposit allow a chronology of regional seismic events during the Holocene Period to be drawn up.ResumeDeux datations par le radiocarbone d'un depot de guano de 2,5 m d'epaisseur permet d'en fixer le debut pendant la phase boreale. La grotte d'Adam (Pestera lui Adam, Baile Herculane, Carpates meridionales) heberge une des plus anciennes colonies permanentes de chiropteres d'Europe, qui s'y serait peut-etre etablie des la fin du dernier episode glaciaire. Des temoins de paleo-tremblements de terre au sein du guano permettent de fournir une premiere chronologie des evenements sismiques regionaux au cours de l'Holocene

Co-seismic ruptures and deformations recorded by speleothems in the epicentral zone of the Basel earthquake, 1999, Lemeille Francis, Cushing Marc, Carbon David, Grellet Bertrand, Bitterli Thomas, Flehoc Christine, Innocent Christophe,
The study of growth anomalies of speleothems in a karstic environment can provide potential evidence for palaeoearthquakes. These data are used to study the recurrence times of major earthquakes in areas where evidence for historic seismicity is lacking. A study has been carried out in the epicentral area of the 1356 Basel earthquake (epicentral intensity = VII-VIII, macroseismic magnitude = 6.2). The Battlerloch and Dieboldslochli caves, situated in the area of greatest damage, show growth anomalies of speleothems possibly related to a seismic event (several breaks of speleothems and offsets of the axis of the regrowths). The first U/Th disequilibrum measurements by alpha spectrometry show recent ages (less than several tens of thousands of years and probably historic). 14C dating by AMS of carbonate laminations taken on both sides of the anomalies confirm the evidence of a seismic event around 1300 AD. More accurate darings by U/Th TIMS are carried out in order to compare the information provided by the two different dating methods.ResumeL'etude des anomalies de developpement des speleothemes en milieu endokarstique peut permettre de retrouver la trace de paleoseismes. Ces donnees sont utilisees pour etudier les periodes de retour des seismes majeurs dans les regions ou la sismicite historique n'est pas suffisante. Une etude a ete menee dans la zone epicentrale du seisme de Bale de 1356 (intensite epicentrale = VII-VIII, magnitude macrosismique = 6,2). Dans l'aire de degats majeurs, les grottes du Battierloch et du Dieboldslochli ont montre l'existence d'anomalies de croissance des speleothemes pour lesquelles une origine sismique est possible (nombreuses ruptures de speleothemes et decalage de l'axe de croissance des repousses). Les premieres mesures de desequilibres U/Th par spectrometrie alpha indiquent des ages recents (inferieurs a quelques dizaines de milliers d'annees et probablement historiques). Les datations 14C par AMS de carbonates des lamines preleves de part et d'autre de ces anomalies confirment l'empreinte d'un evenement destructif brutal vers 1300 AD. Des datations plus precises par U/Th TIMS sont en cours de realisation afin de confronter les informations apportees par ces deux chronometres

Comparison of 14C and 230Th/234U dating of speleothems from submarine caves in the Adriatic Sea (Croatia), 2004, Surić, Maš, A, Jurač, Ić, Mladen, Horvatinč, Ić, Nada

Among the 16 speleothems that were collected from 7 submarine caves and pits for the purpose of 14C and U-Th dating and reconstructing sea-level changes, two speleothems were dated by both methods. Different environmental conditions during the speleothem deposition and after the submergence resulted with different appropriateness for speleothem dating by these techniques. Well preserved speleothems gave reliable results by both methods, while U-Th method showed disadvantage in the case of carbonates contaminated with detrital material, as well as in the case of carbonate from marine overgrowth that covers the speleothems. However, U-Th method using MC ICPMS technique which requires only 100-300 mg of sample per analysis (instead of ca. 30 g for 14C conventional method), offers better age resolution that is essential for speleothem dating.

Isotope records in submarine speleothems from the Adriatic coast, Croatia, 2005, Suric Masa, Horvatincic Nada, Suckow Axel, Juracic Mladen, Baresic Jadranka,
Isotope studies, using 14C dating, {delta}13C and {delta}18O measurements, were performed at eight speleothems taken from three submerged caves situated along the eastern Adriatic coast, Croatia. The speleothems were taken from 17 m to 38.5 m depth below mean sea level. The samples consist of four stalagmites and four stalactites in position of growth, covered with marine biogenic overgrowth, and the length of speleothems ranges from ~80 mm to ~190 mm. The youngest (surface) and the oldest (base) layers of speleothems were radiocarbon dated and the 14C ages range from 21,600 cal B.P. to 37,000 yr B.P. During that period the global sea level was more than 40 m below the recent one, so presently submerged objects were under the subaerial conditions necessary for speleothem deposition. 14C ages of the youngest layer range from 21,600 to 32,200 cal B.P. for different submerged speleothems. This indicates the time when the speleothem growth ceased, most probably due to flooding of the cave with either fresh or brackish water. Speleothem growth during the Last Glacial Maximum (30-19 kyr ago) and different time of growth cessation for the different speleothem samples suggest that climate change was not the reason for cessation of deposition. Samples for {delta}13C and {delta}18O measurements were taken from six submerged speleothems with sampling distances of ca. 5-10 mm from the surface to the base of speleothems. Most of the {delta}13C values are in the range from -10.5{per thousand} to -8.5{per thousand}, with few exceptions to -6{per thousand}. These values are typical for Dinaric karst, and very different values for marine biogenic overgrowth indicate that no isotopic exchange took place during the submerged period. {delta}18O values range from -6.7{per thousand} to -4.1{per thousand}. A weak correlation between {delta}13C and {delta}18O values indicates possible kinetic isotope fractionation during the calcite precipitation. If the {delta}18O record is interpreted as climatic signal, it suggests similar climatic conditions for the late Pleistocene and the Holocene, especially no significant differences in temperature and/or moisture transport

Late Pleistocene-Holocene sea-level rise and the pattern of coastal karst inundation: records from submerged speleothems along the Eastern Adriatic Coast (Croatia), 2005, Suric Masa, Juracic Mladen, Horvatincic Nada, Krajcar Bronic Ines,
In order to reconstruct the late Pleistocene-Holocene sea-level rise along the Eastern Adriatic Coast, eight speleothems were collected from three submerged caves along the Croatian coast from depths of -38.5 to -17 m. The marine biogenic overgrowth layer and the youngest and the oldest parts of the speleothems were dated by the 14C method. Their stable isotope (13C/12C and 18O/16O) contents were also measured. From the measured 14C activity of the marine overgrowth and using the model of Alessio et al. (1992, Risultati preliminari relativi alla datazione di speleotemi sommersi nelle fasce costiere del Tirreno centrale. Giornale di Geologia ser. 3 54/2, 165-193), the start of overgrowth (i.e., the time of flooding by seawater) was determined to be 10,185 cal BP at -36 m, 9160 cal BP at -34 m, and 7920 cal BP at -23 m.Our results partially match the sea-level curves reconstructed for adjacent areas (Tyrrhenian Coast and French Mediterranean Coast). However, the start of the marine overgrowth on speleothems in pit caves indicates strong dependence on the steepness of the terrain. On steep, extensively karstified coasts, marine overgrowths on speleothems coincided with the submersion of the speleothems due to the relatively short distance between the pit and the open sea and fast penetration of seawater into the pit. In contrast, marine overgrowths on speleothems in pits in the flat terrains occurred later because speleothem growth ceased due to flooding with fresh groundwater. Later, the fresh water was replaced by seawater due to the greater distance of the inland pits to the former coast

Tunnel engineering in the Iron Age: geoarchaeology of the Siloam Tunnel, 2006, Frumkin, A. , And Shimron, A.

The Siloam Tunnel (ST) is the best-identified biblical structure that can be entered today. We use geological, structural, and chemical features of ST and its internal deposits to show that it is an authentic engineering project, without any pre-existing natural conduit that could have guided its excavators. Radiometrically and historically dated to w700 BCE, ST pinpoints the technological advance in leveling techniques that was essential for the construction of such a long tunnel without intermediate shafts. A combination of geological and archaeological evidence demonstrates that the circuitous route of ST and the final meeting of the two excavating teams are associated with continuous modifications of the plan to allow acoustic communication between hewers and the surface teams. Hydraulic plaster was applied throughout the tunnel in order to seal voids of dissolution and tectonic origin. Organic material accidentally entrapped in the plaster was carbon 14 dated, and speleothems were dated by U-Th, both corroborating the historic and epigraphic evidence ascribing the engineering advance in tunneling techniques to the Judahite King Hezekiah.


With the intention of reconstructing Late Pleistocene – Holocene sea-level changes along the Eastern Adriatic coast, a series of speleothems were collected from several submerged caves and pits, in order to constrain periods of their deposition and ceased growth related to sea-level fluctuations. For that purpose, stalagmites provide more reliable records than stalactites, due to their successive layers deposited perpendicularly to the growth direction. Therefore, stalagmites have been collected preferably. But, two of 17 speleothems displayed unexpected interior morphology – speleothem L-1 collected at the depth of 1.5 m in Medvjeđa spilja Cave on Lošinj Island, and speleothem M-25 from Pit near Iški Mrtovnjak Islet collected at the depth of 25 m. Both of the samples were taken from the cave floor, in the growth position of the stalagmite. But the insight into the perpendicular cut with evident central tube revealed their true (stalactitic) origin and additional confirmations were obtained by longitudinal cut and U-Th and 14C dating. Just as the causes of their breakdowns were probably different, so were their falls; speleothem M 25 (together with several other speleothems around it) stuck in the marine sediment in its primary position, while L-1 turned upside-down and even continued crystallizing during the lower sea level. These events are possible in the continental caves, as well. Evidently, it is much easier to recognize and avoid these problems in air-filled caves than in the submarine ones where the speleothems are almost always covered with marine overgrowth, which disguises their outer morphology. Additionally, the bases of the stalagmites are also sometimes covered with marine sediment, which makes correct estimation rather difficult.

Uplift rates defined by U-series and 14C ages of serpulid-encrusted speleothems from submerged caves near Siracusa, Sicily (Italy), 2009, Dutton Andrea, Scicchitano Giovanni, Monaco Carmelo, Desmarchelier Jolyon M. , Antonioli Fabrizio, Lambeck Kurt, Esat Tezer M. , Fifield L. Keith, Mcculloch Malcolm T. , Mortimer Graham

We have established a plausible rate of uplift near Siracusa in southeastern Sicily (Italy) over the last glacial–interglacial cycle using U-series ages of submerged speleothem calcite and 14C ages of calcite serpulid layers that encrust the speleothems during cave submergence. The precisely determined ages of these sea level benchmarks were compared with expected relative sea level position based on glacio-hydro-isostatic modeling to assess the rate of uplift in this region. When combined with the age of various late Holocene archaeological sites that have been recently described and characterized in terms of their functional position relative to sea level these data collectively define a rate of uplift ≤0.4 mm a−1 along this portion of the Sicilian coastline. These results are consistent with an age assignment of marine isotope stage (MIS) 5.3 or 5.5 for the Akradina terrace, which in turn places temporal constraints on paleoshorelines above and below this level.


Lodowa Cave in Ciemniak, which belongs to the dynamic ice cave type, contains the biggest perennial block of cave-ice in the Tatra Mountains. The ice represents congelation type, since it originates from freezing of water which infiltrates the cave. Two generations of ice have been recognized in this cave. They are divided by the distinct unconformity. The ice building both generations is layered. Two moths which were found in the younger generations were sampled and dated by 14C method yielding 195 ± 30 and 125 ± 30 years. Bearing in mind the position in the section and the fact that the cave ice has waned since the 20s of the last century, the age is 1720-1820 AD and 1660-1790 AD respectively. It proves that the ice was formed during the Little Ice Age. Hence, the erosion boundary which underlies this generation records the degradation of ice before the Little Ice Age most probably during the Medieval Warm Period. The ice volume in the cave was substantially smaller before the Little Ice Age than it is today, despite the clear tendency to melting, which has been recognized since 20s of the last century. The older generation of ice is supposed to have its origins in a cold stage between the Atlantic period and the Medieval Warm Period.

Active tectonics and earthquake destructions in caves of northern and central Switzerland, 2012, Becker Arnfried, Huselmann Philipp, Eikenberg Jost, Gilli Eric

The present publication focuses on the study of caves in northern and central Switzerland in order to detect and date historical earthquakes and active tectonic displacements by investigations of broken and resealed or displaced speleothems datable by U/Th and 14C. While it can be shown that these methods are potentially suitable, the ages obtained are often beyond the range of historically recorded earthquakes, and it cannot be proved that the observed and dated events are related to a seismic event. Particularly this is true for the caves in central Switzerland, where most ages in the Melchsee-Frutt region were beyond the limits of the U/Th method, or of late Pleistocene age in the Siebenhengste-Hohgant region. A direct comparison with known historical (or prehistoric) earthquakes was not possible. In contrast to central Switzerland, the results in the Basle region of northern Switzerland indicates cave and speleothem damages in one cave within the epicentral area of the 1356 Basle earthquake. 14C datings allowed to directly relate the speleothem damages to this M 6.5 earthquake. Further dating results from caves in northern Switzerland on speleothems and organic material in cave deposits supplied ages which indicate older events not related to the historical Basle earthquake. The detection of active fault displacements and prehistoric strong earthquakes can only be achieved by a very careful deciphering of the palaeo-environmental records and many more age determinations which allow to separate active tectonic displacements and seismic events from other events not related to tectonics, i.e. glaciations, creep of sediments, catastrophic floods etc.

Emine-Bair-Khosar Cave in the Crimea, a huge bone accumulation of Late Pleistocene fauna, 2013, Ridush . , Stefaniak K. , Socha P. , Proskurnyak Y. , Marciszak A. , Vremir M. , Nadachowski A.

The Crimean Mountains are well known from the abundance of Middle and Late Palaeolithic sites and palaeontological remains recovered from cultural layers in caves and rockshelters. The fossil-bearing deposits of Emine-Bair-Khosar Cave, located at the elevation of 1000 m on the Chatyrdag Plateau, yielded a very diverse and numerous vertebrate remains that widen the knowledge of Late Pleistocene faunal diversity in the Crimea. The assemblage comprised in total almost 50 species of vertebrates. Studies included geomorphological, geological and stratigraphic analyses as well AMS 14C dating. Faunal remains were present in ten palaeontological sites. The main bone accumulation (section Ba2) was deposited during Middle Valdai or Vytachiv (MIS 3) interstadial, and including a long time gap, to the end of the Pleistocene and the Holocene. Comparison of the Emine-Bair-Khosar fauna with vertebrate faunas of other Crimean sites showed a remarkable stability in the faunal composition and frequency during the whole MIS 3 interstadial. Steppe and other open-country species dominated in the compared assemblages, while boreal-tundra species were far less numerous. Inhabitants of forests, including red deer and some rodents, were stable members of fossil assemblages.

The hydrogeology and hydrochemistry of the thermal waters at Taffs Well, South Wales, UK, 2013, Farr G. , Bottrell S. H

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

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