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Speleology in Kazakhstan

Shakalov on 04 Jul, 2018
Hello everyone!   I pleased to invite you to the official site of Central Asian Karstic-Speleological commission ("Kaspeko")   There, we regularly publish reports about our expeditions, articles and reports on speleotopics, lecture course for instructors, photos etc. ...

New publications on hypogene speleogenesis

Klimchouk on 26 Mar, 2012
Dear Colleagues, This is to draw your attention to several recent publications added to KarstBase, relevant to hypogenic karst/speleogenesis: Corrosion of limestone tablets in sulfidic ground-water: measurements and speleogenetic implications Galdenzi,

The deepest terrestrial animal

Klimchouk on 23 Feb, 2012
A recent publication of Spanish researchers describes the biology of Krubera Cave, including the deepest terrestrial animal ever found: Jordana, Rafael; Baquero, Enrique; Reboleira, Sofía and Sendra, Alberto. ...

Caves - landscapes without light

akop on 05 Feb, 2012
Exhibition dedicated to caves is taking place in the Vienna Natural History Museum   The exhibition at the Natural History Museum presents the surprising variety of caves and cave formations such as stalactites and various crystals. ...

Did you know?

That cavings is rock fragments that fall from the walls of a borehole and contaminate the well cuttings or block the hole. these fragments must be removed by drilling or circulation of drilling fluids before the borehole can be deepened.?

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KarstBase a bibliography database in karst and cave science.

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 crystal morphology (Keyword) returned 7 results for the whole karstbase:
Calcite Moonmilk: Crystal Morphology and Environment of Formation in Caves in the Italian Alps, 2000, Borsato A, Frisia S, Jones B, Van Der Borg K,
Calcite moonmilk, which is a cave deposit formed of calcite crystals and water, is found in many caves in the Italian Alps. These modern and ancient deposits are formed of fiber calcite crystals, 50-500 nm wide and 1 to > 10 {micro}m long, and polycrystalline chains that have few crystal defects. Radiocarbon dating indicates that most moonmilk deposits in these caves are fossil and that for most precipitation ceased [~] 6400 cal years BP, at the end of the mid-Holocene Hypsithermal. In the caves of the Italian Alps, the optimal conditions for formation of calcite moonmilk are: (1) a temperature range of 3.5-5.5{degrees}C, (2) low discharge volumes of seepage waters that are slightly supersaturated (SICAL = 0.0 to [~] 0.2), and (3) relative humidity that is at or close to 100%. Microbial activity apparently did not play an active role in the formation of the calcite moonmilk. Conditions for moonmilk formation are typically found in caves that are located beneath land surfaces, which are soil covered and support a conifer forest. Precipitation of the fiber calcite crystals apparently involved very slow flow of slightly supersaturated fluids. The fact that moonmilk appears to form under a narrow range of environmental conditions means that this cave deposit has potential as a paleoclimatic indicator in high alpine karst areas

Morphoanalysis of bacterially precipitated subaqueous calcium carbonate from Weebubbie Cave, Australia, 2001, Contos Ak, James Jm, Heywood B, Pitt K, Rogers P,
In this article, we present a previously unreported morphology of bacterially precipitated calcite (determined using XRD, FTIR, and SAED) occurring subaqueously in Weebubbie Cave. Observations using FESEM and TEM revealed spindle-shaped crystals with curved [hk.0] faces lying parallel to the c-axis. Calcite precipitated under conditions designed to mimic the inorganic solution chemistry of the cave revealed a different morphology. These differences between the crystals suggest that the formation of the cave crystals is a consequence of biologically activity

Calcite moonmilk in the Humpleu Cave system (Romania): The relationship between crystal morphology and cave topoclimate, 2003, Chirienco Mirona

The 'Calamine' of Southwest Sardinia: Geology, Mineralogy, and Stable Isotope Geochemistry of Supergene Zn Mineralization, 2003, Boni M, Gilg Ha, Aversa G, Balassone G,
The mining district of southwest Sardinia, Italy, is one of the classic areas where primary carbonate-hosted Zn-Pb sulfide ores are associated with a relatively thick secondary oxidation zone containing Zn (hydroxy-)carbonates and silicates, the so-called 'calamine,' exploited until the 1970s. The extent of the capping oxidized ore zones, reaching deep below the surface, is generally independent of the present-day water table. The base of the oxidation profile containing nonsulfide Zn minerals in various uplifted blocks in the Iglesiente area can be both elevated above or submerged below the recent water table. The genesis of the ores is therefore considered to be related to fossil, locally reactivated, oxidation phenomena. The mineralogy of the nonsulfide mineralization is generally complex and consists of smithsonite, hydrozincite, and hemimorphite as the main economic minerals, accompanied by iron and manganese oxy-hydroxides and residual clays. This study places the secondary ores in the context of the tectonostratigraphic and climatic evolution of Sardinia and includes a petrographic and mineralogic study of the most abundant minerals, relating the mineralogy of secondary Zn and Pb carbonates to their stable C and O isotope geochemistry and constraining the origin of the oxidizing fluids and the temperature of mineralization. The{delta} 18OVSMOW values of smithsonite are homogeneous, regardless of crystal morphology, position, and mine location (avg. 27.4 {} 0.9{per thousand}). This homogeneity points to a relatively uniform isotopic composition of the oxidation fluid and corresponding formation temperatures of 20{degrees} to 35{degrees}C. Considering the karstic environment of smithsonite formation in southwest Sardinia, this high temperature could be due to heat release during sulfide oxidation. The carbon isotope compositions of secondary Zn carbonates display considerable variations of more than 9 per mil ({delta}13CVPDB from -0.6 to -10.4{per thousand}). This large range indicates participation of variable amounts of reduced organic and marine carbonate carbon during sulfide oxidation. The isotopic variation can be related to a variation in crystal morphologies of smithsonite, reflecting different environments of formation with respect to water table oscillations in karstic environments (upper to lower vadose to epiphreatic). The same range in{delta} 13C isotope values is displayed by the calcite associated with Zn carbonates and by recent speleothems. The most reliable time span for the deposition of bulk calamine ore in southwest Sardinia ranges from middle Eocene to Plio-Pleistocene, although further multiple reactivation of the weathering profiles, peaking within the warm interglacial periods of the Quaternary, cannot be excluded

Cryogenic cave calcite from several Central European caves: age, carbon and oxygen isotopes and a genetic model, 2004, Zak Karel, Urban Jan, Cilek Vaclav, Hercman Helena,
Cryogenic cave calcite (CCC), formed by segregation of solutes during water freezing, was found in three Central European caves. This calcite type forms accumulations of loose calcite grains on cave floor. The calcite grains are of highly variable crystal morphology, and of sizes ranging from less than 1 mm to over 1 cm. The most typical feature is their accumulation as loose (uncemented) crystals. U-series dating indicates the formation of CCC in the studied caves during several climatic oscillations of the Weichselian (between 61 and 36 ka BP in the Chelsiowa Jama-Jaskinia Jaworznicka cave system in Poland, between 34 and 26 ka BP in the BUML Cave in the Czech Republic, and between 26 and 21 ka BP in the Stratenska Jaskyna cave system, Slovakia). At the time of CCC formation, the studied caves were lying in a periglacial zone.Detailed C and O stable isotope study of CCC samples revealed that slow water freezing under isotope equilibrium was the dominant formational process in the studied Polish and Czech caves. Significantly higher [delta]13C values of CCC in the Stratenska Jaskyna Cave indicate either water freezing in a more opened system with continuous CO2 escape (Rayleigh fractional separation), or participation of another CO2 source. The model of slow water freezing under isotope equilibrium is supported by isolated character of the caves having limited ventilation.In contrast, modern cryogenic cave calcite powders sampled directly on the ice surface of two recently iced caves in Slovakia with high ventilation showed much higher [delta]18O and [delta]13C data, similar to cryogenic calcites obtained in experimental rapid water freezing

Cavity-based secondary mineralization in volcanic tuffs of Yucca Mountain, Nevada: a new type of the polymineral vadose speleothem, or a hydrothermal deposit?, 2005, Dublyansky Y. V. , Smirnov S. Z.
Secondary minerals (calcite, chalcedony, quartz, opal, fl uorite, heulandite, strontianite) residing in open cavities in the Miocene rhyolite tuffs of Yucca Mountain, Nevada have been interpreted by some researchers as "speleothemic" formations, deposited as a result of downward infiltration of meteoric waters (DOE, 2001, Whelan et al., 2002). The major mineral of the paragenesis, calcite, shows spectacular trend of the textural and crystal morphology change: from anhedral granular occurrences, through (optional) platelet, bladed and scepter varieties, to euhedral blocky morphologies. The trend is consistent with the overall decrease in the supersaturation of the mineral forming solution. Stable isotope properties of calcite evolve from 13C-enriched (?13C = +4 to +9 PDB) at early stages of growth to 13C-depleted (-5 to -10 ) at late stages. The non-cyclic character of the isotope record and extreme variations of isotopic values argue against the meteoric origin of mineral forming fluids. The ?13C >4 PDB require isotope partitioning between dissolved CO2 and CH4, which is only possible in reducing anoxic environment, but not in aerated vadose zone. Fluid inclusions studied in calcite, quartz and fluorite revealed that the minerals were deposited from thermal solutions. The temperatures were higher at early stages of mineral growth (60 to 85oC) and declined with time. Most late-stage calcites contain only all-liquid inclusions, suggesting temperatures less than ca. 35-50oC. Minerals collected close to the major fault show the highest temperatures. Gases trapped in fluid inclusions are dominated by CO2 and CH4; Raman spectrometry results suggest the presence of aromatic/cyclic hydrocarbon gases. The gas chemistry, thus, also indicates reduced (anoxic) character of the mineral forming fluids. Secondary minerals at Yucca Mountain have likely formed during the short-term invasion(s) of the deep-seated aqueous fluids into the vadose zone. Following the invasion, fluids, initially equilibrated with the deep (reduced, anoxic) environment, evolved toward equilibrium with the new environment (cooling, degassing, mixing with shallow oxidizing waters, etc.). While some features of mineralization are compatible with the "speleothemic" or "meteoric infiltration" model, most of the evidence does not lend itself to rational explanation within this model.

On the origin of fiber calcite crystals in moonmilk deposits, 2006, Canaveras Jc, Cuezva S, Sanchezmoral S, Lario J, Laiz L, Gonzalez Jm, Saizjimenez C,
In this study, we show that moonmilk subaerial speleothems in Altamira Cave (Spain) consist of a network of fiber calcite crystals and active microbial structures. In Altamira moonmilks, the study of the typology and distribution of fiber crystals, extracellular polymeric substances, and microorganisms allowed us to define the initial stages of fiber crystal formation in recent samples as well as the variations in the microstructural arrangement in more evolved stages. Thus, we have been able to show the existence of a relationship among the different types of fiber crystals and their origins. This allowed us to outline a model that illustrates the different stages of formation of the moonmilk, developed on different substrata, concluding that microbes influence physicochemical precipitation, resulting in a variety of fiber crystal morphologies and sizes

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