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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 pendular regime is a saturation regime where a porous medium has the lowest possible saturation in the form of pendular rings at grain contacts [16].?

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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 dye-tracing (Keyword) returned 13 results for the whole karstbase:
Hydrogologie de la rgion entre Araches et Flaine (Haute-Savoie), 1985, Sesiano, J.
NEW HYDROGEOLOGICAL INVESTIGATIoNS IN THE Massif de Plat BETWEEN ARACHES AND Flaine (HAUTE-SAVOIE, FRANCE) - During 1983 and 1984 several dye-tracing experiments have been performed in the French Prealps (Haute-Savoie). The studied area covered about 30 km2, with altitudes ranging between 500m and 2500m. An underground drainage model has been set up, taking into account the fact that there is a common water outlet. The model is based upon the regional tectonic setting, the drainage pattern following thrust and fault planes

L'accident de Tchernobyl : une retombe positive en hydrogologie, 1986, Sesiano J. , Bueche M.
THE TCHERNOBYL ACCIDENT: A POSITIVE HYDROGEOLOGICAL ASPECT - As a continuation of dye-tracing studies of underground waters in Haute-Savoie, France, over the last few years, we have used the radioactive elements released by the Chernobyl nuclear accident as artificial tracers. The event happened simultaneously with the onset of the spring high waters. The response of the system was thus delayed by more than two weeks, the time for the water to percolate and for the aquifer to recharge. On the third week, a very faint signal was detected by gammametry and by liquid scintillation counters at the two surveyed springs.

Les importantes mergences de Magland, dans la valle de l'Arve (Haute-Savoie) : physico-chimie et origine des eaux, 1989, Sesiano, J.
Dye tracing and physico-chemical analysis of two important springs in the Arve valley (Haute-Savoie, France) - Several dye-tracing experiments and physico-chemical analysis of water samples taken during 18 months were performed at two important springs in the Arve valley (Haute-Savoie, France). The water origin and the type of flow, very different from one to the other, are thus explained. The first spring collects water from both a bare high-altitude karst and a forested karst at a lower elevation. It gathers also waters from the lakes Flaine and Vernant. The drainage is superficial, with strong but short water outbursts; water storage is nevertheless important, the spring being perennial. The physico-chemistry of its water is similar to that of springs located in the Northern Prealps. The second spring is very different. The physico-chemistry variations being much smoother. It comes from a basin filled with fluvio-glacial deposits and located under the Gers Lake. Its physico-chemical properties are rather similar to those of typical springs located in Provence and Southern Provence.

Nouvelles observations sur lhydrogologie du vallon du Cruet, Haute-Savoie (France), 1998, Sesiano, Jean
Following a recent dye-tracing experiment the hydrogeological model for the Cruet valley, in the northern French Prealps has had to be modified. Faults, parallel and transverse to the valley, allow a mixing of waters from different origins. There is thus possible contamina_tion of several Cruet valley springs used for human consumption by surface pollutions.

Contribution la connaissance de lhydrogologie karstique du plateau de Calern (Alpes-Maritimes, France).Traage laven du Moustique, 2002, Martin Marie, Audra Philippe
Contribution to Calern karst hydrogeology knowledge (Alpes-Maritimes, France). Dye tracing in Moustique aven - Within the framework of a hydrogeological study of the plateau of Calern, an artificial tracer has been put into the underground river of the Moustique aven. The dye has reappeared at a single outlet: the Bramafan spring. This emergence locates at the east of the Calern plateau, in the Loups valley, at the contact between Jurassic limestones and Triassic impervious formations. It appears as being the main outlet of this vast karst area.

Recherches sur le karst de lAlpe du Lauzet. Massif des Cerces, Hautes-Alpes. Le traage du gouffre du Clt des Vaches, 2004, Flandin Jeanlouis, Martin Mariepierre, Mettetal Jeanpierre
Hydrogeologic studies of the Alpe du Lauzet range (Hautes-Alpes, France): Dye-tracing in the Clt des Vaches cave - The discovery, in 2002, of the Clt des Vaches Cave and its sinkhole gave us the idea to look for possible emergences and to use tracers in order to identify part of the underground circulation of the Alpe du Lauzet Range. This successful endeavour confirmed the hypothesis of a hydrological communication with the springs of Alpe du Lauzet. Hence we warned the owners of chalets and cabins about the possibility of contaminated spring water. A link with the springs of Plan Chevalier remains possible, but a lot less direct and fast.

THE USE OF MULTIPLE TECHNIQUES FOR CONCEPTUALISATION OF LOWLAND KARST, A CASE STUDY FROM COUNTY ROSCOMMON, IRELAND, 2010, Hickey C.
This paper summarises research carried out in county Roscommon, Ireland to characterise the workings of low-lying karst, of which little is known. The research employed a combination of five main investigative techniques, in conjunction: geomorphological mapping, spring chemistry and discharge analyses, dye-tracing, microgravity geophysical investigations and bedrock core drilling. The results enabled the production of a detailed conceptual model for the area. Surface and subsurface karst landform mapping revealed a high level of karstification. Clustering and alignment of recharge landforms is found to be a significant aspect of the karst. Analyses of spring chemistry and discharge data revealed characteristics of the aquifer systems in operation. It was found that a significant percentage of flow is via enlarged conduits but that the smaller fractures are important for providing base flow. Water tracing experiments proved that water moved from highly karstified, elevated recharge zones to springs at the periphery. Microgravity geophysical investigations, detected and located solutionally enlarged voids in the bedrock and demonstrated the importance of the shallow epikarst system as well as a deeper conduit network. Bedrock core drilling detailed the nature of the bedrock underneath karst landforms and showed the successes and failings of the geophysical investigations. Spring catchment boundaries were then delineated using water balance equations and a combination of the information retrieved from the other methods. Using these results in combination large amounts of information were gathered leading to the production of the first conceptual model for the karst of Roscommon, which can be adapted and applied to Irish Lowlands in general. The use of multiple, complimentary, investigative techniques in conjunction greatly enhanced the accuracy and success of this project. The aim of this paper, therefore is to highlight the benefits of using many analytical techniques together.

Genesis and functioning of the Aix-les-Bains hydrothermal karst (Savoie, France): past research and recent advances, 2010, Hoblea F. , Gallinojosnin S. , Audra Ph.

Aix-les-Bains (Savoie, France) owes its name and reputation to the thermal springs that occur along the eastern shore of Lake Bourget, France largest natural lake. Although the city waters have been exploited since Antiquity, scientific investigations into the nature and characteristics of the hydrothermal karst from which they emerge did not begin until the early 19th century. The present article traces the history of these investigations and summarizes the results of more than two centuries of scientific research. Today, the only visible signs of karstification related to hydrothermal flows are to be found in the discharge zone in the Urgonian limestone anticline that rises above the city centre. These features are: – the Grotte des Serpents, which houses the Alun Spring, the system main natural discharge, – the Chevalley Aven, a blind chimney that was accidentally uncovered in 1996, – other hydrothermal springs that are too small to enter, including the Soufre Spring. Although scientific investigation of the thermal springs at Aix-les-Bains began in the early 19th century, it was not until the 1920s that scientists started examining the relationship between karstification and the state of the aquifer. E.A.Martel was the first researcher to describe the Aix-les-Bains site as an active hydrothermal karst, in a pioneering study published in 1935. Sixty years later, the discovery of the Chevalley Aven during building work on a new hydrotherapy center gave fresh impetus to research into the karstification of the Aix-les-Bains thermo-mineral aquifer. Recent studies have also investigated the deep aquifer below the karst, using data provided by boreholes. The Urgonian limestone karst at Aix-les-Bains is the site of mixing between thermal waters rising through the anticline and meteoric waters percolating from the surface. Meteoric infiltration is sufficiently high for the hydrological behavior of the thermal springs to be identical to that of exsurgences in gravity-fed, cold-water transmissive karsts. The Chevalley Aven is a shaft that descends 30 meters below the surface, thereby providing access to the ground-water at depth. Monitoring of the water quality in the aven has shown that the Legionella contamination of the springs was due to high concentrations of the bacteria in upstream passages in the karst. In 2006, dye-tracing tests confirmed the existence of a hydraulic connection between the Chevalley Aven and the Alun and Soufre Springs, the fact there is a single ascending hydrothermal conduit, which lies between the Chevalley Aven and the Alun Spring. In addition to providing a valuable source of information about the functioning of the thermo-mineral aquifer, the cavities at Aix-les-Bains are of great karstological interest, especially for the study of hypogene speleogenetic processes. The circulation of warm (40oC), sulfur-rich waters and vapours through the system has led to the development of conduits with specific morphologies and the precipitation of characteristic deposits. These features include: – “beaded” chimneys and galleries formed by the linking of spheres produced by condensation-corrosion. Diffuse karstification along bedding planes around the main conduit; – deposition of non-carbonate minerals (gypsum, native sulfur); – formation of biothems and biofilms on walls subject to condensation. The Grotte des Serpents is a horizontal cavity that formed at the upper limit of the water table. The Chevalley Aven is a hypogene chimney that was sculpted under vadose conditions by the release of sulfuric acid-rich vapours above the thermal water table. As well as a surface coating of microbial mats and the presence of bacterial flakes in the thermal water, the vadose parts of the Aix-les-Bains hydrothermal karst contain a characteristic microfauna and flora. These microorganisms are thought to play an active role in hypogene karstification processes.


A dye-tracing investigation in the Poshte-Naz Karstic aquifer, Alburz Mountain, northern Iran, 2011, Kalantari N. , Mohammadi R.

The tracing technique has been recently used in karstified Zagros structural belt in northern Iran. A tracer study (uranine injection) was conducted in Jurassic limestone of the Poshte-Naz area in the Alborz belt to evaluate aquifer parameters and hydraulic relations between a large (about 100 m in diameter) sinkhole and springs. A main goal of the project was to find out the source of turbidity of the Emarate drinking water supply spring (SP4) in rainy seasons. Eight springs, three wells and the Neka River were selected for monitoring and totally 989 samples in 107 days were collected. In order to select reliable sampling stations, hydrochemical analysis of major ions was carried out and for better interpretation of concentration-time curve, spring discharge was also measured. The results of the tracing by sampling water indicated only a hydraulic connection between the injection point and the Sange-Nou spring (SP8) and, whereas the charcoal bags analysis revealed tracer exits also from spring SP1, SP3, SP4, SP5, SP8, in wells W1 and W2, and in the Neka River. This paper discuses concentration/time curves from charcoal bags for qualitative analysis and tracer exit curves for quantitative analysis.


Inversion for the Input History of a Dye Tracing Experiment, 2011, Field M. S. , Li G.

The advection-dispersion model (ADM) is a good tool for simulating transport of dye or solutes in a solution conduit. Because the general problem of transport can be decomposed into two problems, a boundary-value problem and an initial-value problem, the complete solution is a superposition of the solutions for these two problems. In this paper, the solution for the general problem is explained. A direct application of the solution for the boundary-value problem is dye-tracing experiments. The purpose is inclusion of the input history of a solute dye into the ADM. The measured breakthrough curve of a dye-tracing experiment is used to invert for the release history of the dye at the input point through the ADM. It is mathematically shown that the breakthrough curve can not be directly used to invert for the boundary condition at a tracer release point. Therefore, a conductance-fitting method is employed to obtain the input history. The inverted history for a simple example is then shown to be a step function with amplitude of 420 mg/L and a duration of 10 minutes. Simulations illustrate that the breakthrough curves at downstream springs provide a means for understanding the migration of dye. A discussion of the implication of the solution for an initial-value problem (e.g., simulating transport of preexisting solutes such as dissolved calcium carbonate in solution conduits) is also included.


Comparison of a karst groundwater model with and without discrete conduit flow, 2013, Saller S. P. , Ronayne M. J. , Long A. J.

Karst aquifers exhibit a dual flow system characterized by interacting conduit and matrix domains. This study evaluated the coupled continuum pipe-flow framework for modeling karst groundwater flow in the Madison aquifer of western South Dakota (USA). Coupled conduit and matrix flow was simulated within a regional finite-difference model over a 10-year transient period. An existing equivalent porous medium (EPM) model was modified to include major conduit networks whose locations were constrained by dye-tracing data and environmental tracer analysis. Model calibration data included measured hydraulic heads at observation wells and estimates of discharge at four karst springs. Relative to the EPM model, the match to observation well hydraulic heads was substantially improved with the addition of conduits. The inclusion of conduit flow allowed for a simpler hydraulic conductivity distribution in the matrix continuum. Two of the high-conductivity zones in the EPM model, which were required to indirectly simulate the effects of conduits, were eliminated from the new model. This work demonstrates the utility of the coupled continuum pipe-flow method and illustrates how karst aquifer model parameterization is dependent on the physical processes that are simulated


Comparison of a karst groundwater model with and without discrete conduit flow, 2013, Saller S. P. , Ronayne M. J. , Long A. J.

Karst aquifers exhibit a dual flow system characterized by interacting conduit and matrix domains. This study evaluated the coupled continuum pipe-flow framework for modeling karst groundwater flow in the Madison aquifer of western South Dakota (USA). Coupled conduit and matrix flow was simulated within a regional finite-difference model over a 10-year transient period. An existing equivalent porous medium (EPM) model was modified to include major conduit networks whose locations were constrained by dye-tracing data and environmental tracer analysis. Model calibration data included measured hydraulic heads at observation wells and estimates of discharge at four karst springs. Relative to the EPM model, the match to observation well hydraulic heads was substantially improved with the addition of conduits. The inclusion of conduit flow allowed for a simpler hydraulic conductivity distribution in the matrix continuum. Two of the high-conductivity zones in the EPM model, which were required to indirectly simulate the effects of conduits, were eliminated from the new model. This work demonstrates the utility of the coupled continuum pipe-flow method and illustrates how karst aquifer model parameterization is dependent on the physical processes that are simulated.


A multi-method approach for speleogenetic research on alpine karst caves. Torca La Texa shaft, Picos de Europa (Spain), 2014,

Speleogenetic research on alpine caves has advanced significantly during the last decades. These investigations require techniques from different geoscience disciplines that must be adapted to the methodological constraints of working in deep caves. The Picos de Europa mountains are one of the most important alpine karsts, including 14% of the World’s Deepest Caves (caves with more than 1 km depth). A speleogenetic research is currently being developed in selected caves in these mountains; one of them, named Torca La Texa shaft, is the main goal of this article. For this purpose, we have proposed both an optimized multi-method approach for speleogenetic research in alpine caves, and a speleogenetic model of the Torca La Texa shaft. The methodology includes: cave surveying, dye-tracing, cave geometry analyses, cave geomorphological mapping, Uranium series dating (234U/230Th) and geomorphological, structural and stratigraphical studies of the cave surroundings. The SpeleoDisc method was employed to establish the structural control of the cavity. Torca La Texa (2,653 m length, 215 m depth) is an alpine cave formed by two cave levels, vadose canyons and shafts, soutirage conduits, and gravity-modified passages. The cave was formed prior to the Middle Pleistocene and its development was controlled by the drop of the base level, producing the development of the two cave levels. Coevally to the cave levels formation, soutirage conduits originated connecting phreatic and epiphreatic conduits and vadose canyons and shafts were formed. Most of the shafts were created before the local glacial maximum, (43-45 ka) and only two cave passages are related to dolines developed in recent times. The cave development is strongly related to the structure, locating the cave in the core of a gentle fold with the conduits’ geometry and orientation controlled by the bedding and five families of joints.


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