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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 helictite is 1. generally small variety of stalactitic calcite growth that is twisted and contorted with no apparent regard for gravity. helictites form on cave walls, ceilings, and on stalactites. the growth develops as seepage water loses carbon dioxide from near its tip, having been supplied to that point by capillary action through a fine central canal. the helictite shape is created by crystal lattice distortion and crystal form changes within the calcite, but what causes these is uncertain. impurities may plan a role, and rare groups of parallel growing helictites may be wind-guided [9]. 2. irregular, twiglike, crystalline growths with varying orientations but often in crystal continuity, formed in caves by precipitation from bicarbonate solutions [20]. 3. a curved or angular twiglike lateral projection of calcium carbonate having a tiny central canal, found in caves [10]. also known as eccentric anemolite [20]; eccentric stalactite. synonyms: (french.) excentrique; (german.) exzentrisch gekrummter, tropfstein, excentriques; (greek.) stalaktits akanonistos; (italian.) stalattiti anomale, eccentiche; (spanish.) estalactita excentrica; (turkish.) duzensiz sarkit; (yugoslavian.) heliktit. related to curtain, dripstone, speleothem.?

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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 karstic morphology (Keyword) returned 8 results for the whole karstbase:
GHOST-ROCK KARSTIFICATION IN ENTRE-DEUX-MERS (GIRONDE, FRANCE), IMPLICATIONS FOR KARSTOGENESIS AND KARSTIC MORPHOLOGY, , Dubois Caroline, Lans Benjamin, Kaufmann Olivier, Maire Richard, Quinif Yves

The formation of the Oligocene « calcaires à Astéries » in the region of « Entre-deux-Mers » is affected by a karstification with subhorizontal caves that drained rivers from swallow-holes to resurgences. Observations in quarries show that ghost-rock alterites are present. This paper describes the ghost-rocks in the quarry of Piquepoche exploiting the Frontenac stone. We have studied horizontally developed ghost-rocks with vertical extensions still containing the residual alterite. They can be badly consolidated calcarenites up to soft material which has been sampled. Speleogenesis is reviewed in the frame of the mechanical erosion of the alterite of a horizontal ghost-rock followed by an incision by free-flowing waters which form a passage with promontories and potholes. Finally, we show that ceiling anastomoses can form by ghost-rock karstification.


Une morphologie karstique typique en zone intertropicale : les karsts du Bas Zare, 1985, Quinif, Y.
A TYPICAL MORPHOLOGY OF TROPICAL KARSTS: THE KWILU BASIN IN THE LOWER-ZAIRE - The Kwilu basin, in the region of Bas-Zaire, shows typical landscapes of tropical karsts: cone and tower karsts shaped in precambrian limestones of the "Groupe schisto-calcaire". These precambrian series are little tectonised. They are covered with cenozoic formations which are important in the evolution of the karst. Different types of cavities are studied and replaced in the morphostructural context: old caves, originating in phreatic zone and now cut by the erosion, river streams in tunnel-caves, network under the water table. The superficial forms are interpreted as successive evolutive steps: dissection of a surface (morphological or structural) by a dendritic hydrographic network, birth of a cone-karst being transformed in tower-karst overlooking a new surface. We insist on the morphogenetic importance of the paleoclimatic changes and on the existence of an intertropical karstic morphology in stable craton.

Le karst du massif des Calanques (Marseille Cassis), 1988, Blanc J. J. , Monjeau R.
THE KARST OF THE CALANQUES massif - Description of karstic morphology in relation to lithology and tectonic framework; actual hydrography. Sedimentary analysis applied to speleothems (calcitic deposits, hardened silts with rubefaction, upper stalagmitic layers, eolianites). Relations with some recent tectonic mechanisms. Hydrogeology: marine resurgences, subterranean rivers (Port-Miou and Le Bestouan).

Le karst alpin des Mts. Retezat (Carpathes mridionales, Roumanie), 1991, Badescu, D.
THE ALPINE KARST 0F RETEZAT M0UNTAINS (ROMANIA) - The limestone area of the Retezat Mountains (2079 m), in the Carpathian range (Transylvania), is the principal alpine karst of Romania. It is formed by a syncline structure of jurassic limestone covering a crystalline precambrian basement. The mountain climate is wet (1400 mm/year) and continental. The glacio-karstic morphology (glacial cirque, dry valleys) is developed on a tertiary polygenic surface folded and uplifted since the Oligocene and Neogene. The catchment basin (85 km2) feeds the Izvorul Cernei karst spring (0,5-10 m3/s), the most important of Romania. Water tracings (s = 55 m/h) and statistical studies on caves suggest the development of a complex karst system. 50% of underground waters come from the running off on the precambrian basement and explain the rate of sodium. The majority of the potholes and glacires are situated above 1700m; the deepest is Stna Tomii cave (-136m) with a 115m direct pit.

Observations sur le karst de Bardas Blancas-Malarge (Andes de Mendoza, Argentine), 1995, Mikkan, R. A.
The karst of Bardas Blancas, situated south of Mendoza province, deve-lops in Jurassic and Cretaceous limes-tones. The continental and semi-arid climate (300 mm/year) is characterized by temperate summers and cold winters. The periglacial processes are actives. The relief presents a semi-karstic morphology: structural landforms ("Schichttreppenkarst" with cuestas) and afew dolines, swallow-holes and pavements. The Los Brujas cave, about 1 000 m long, shows a labyrinthic network (3 siaged levels) with phreatic passages. The impor-tant gypsum speleothems (crusts, flowers) in the lower level and the calcite-opale speleothems indicate an hydrothermal speleogenesis (dissolution by sulfuric acid and gypsum deposit). The actual and active tectogenesis of this region (uphft, hydrothermalism, volcanism) plays an important part in the geomorphological evolution.

La grotte dAlisadr, un tmoin exceptionnel de lvolution morphologique du Zagros (Iran), 2004, Dumas, Dominique
Cave of Alisadr: a geomorphologic site of outstanding interest in the Zagros Mountains of Iran - The tourist cave of Alisadr, located on the eastern boundaries of the Zagros Mountains, is biggest subsurface cave visited in Iran. Most part of the karstic underground galleries is permanently filled with water: on the sides of the galleries former water table levels are indicated by numerous calcareous sinters. The sub-surface karst has preserved numerous relics and paleoenvironmental residual deposits, which show the geomorphologic karstic development. Dating of the three conspicuous calcareous levels in the cave and that of the surface basaltic mesa, to be established a few kilometres from the cave enable a chronology the stages of karstic evolution. The place of pre-quaternary vestiges in the landscapes of this country is also determined. For example, no typical landform of glacial erosion has been identified. The current karstic denudation rate is about 3 mm/Ky. The geomorphologic evolution of surface and sub-surface landforms during the quaternary era is shown and deduced from the processes, which have led to breccia formations in calcareous rocks.

Formes et formations superficielles de la partie ouest du Causse de Sauveterre (Grands Causses, Aveyron et Lozre), 2007, Bruxelles Laurent , Simoncoinon Rgine, Guendon Jeanlouis, Ambert Paul
MORPHOLOGY AND SUPERFICIAL FORMATIONS OF THE WESTERN PART OF THE CAUSSE DE SAUVETERRE (GRANDS CAUSSES, AVEYRON AND LOZ?RE, FRANCE). In 2002, the Natural Regional Park of Grands Causses has coordinated a hydrogeological study of the western part of the Causse de Sauveterre, the northernmost of the Grands Causses. A multidisciplinary approach (geology, geomorphology, geochemistry and hydrology) was used to delineate the catchment area of the main springs and to estimate the vulnerability of karstic aquifers. The Grands Causses are situated in the southern part of the French Massif Central. The landscape is characterised by huge limestone plateaus cut by deep canyons. The morphologic study of the western part of the Causse de Sauveterre (Causse de Massegros and Causse de S?v?rac), combined with analysis of superficial formations, allows us to identify the main steps of landscape evolution. The discovery of bauxite and of many outcrops of Upper Cretaceous sandstone confirm that the Coniacian ingression invaded some paleo-landscapes developed within a long period of continental evolution which was initiated at the end of the Jurassic. During the Tertiary, many residual formations form covers of the limestone plateaus. We can distinguish alterites developed from different formations of the stratigraphic series (clay with cherts from Bajocian, dolomitic sand from Bathonian and Callovian, sandy clays from Cretaceous deposits) from some allochtonous deposits which can be found in some parts of the Causse de Massegros. These formations are found in association with morphological features (shelves, polj?s, fluvio-karstic valleys, sinkholes) and are more or less responsible of their development. Furthermore, some volcanic rocks cut through or even reused some of them. With the deepening of canyons and the base level drop, horizontal morphologies are preserved only where superficial formations are abundant and thick enough to maintain crypto-corrosion. Elsewhere, karst unplugging removes most of the superficial formations, and the karstic evolution tends to show a vertical development of morphologies and caves. Some springs, which benefit from a favourable lithologic, structural and hydrologic context, are more competitive and expand their catchment area at the expense of the other springs. Many superficial features express this dynamism on the plateau and allow us to determine the most sensible areas for water pollution and the most fragile ones for human activities.

Laltration de type "fantme de roche" : processus, volution et implications pour la karstification, 2011, Quinif Yves, Bruxelles Laurent

Depuis plusieurs années, de nombreux exemples de fantômes de roche ont été reconnus dans les karsts en Belgique, en France et en Italie. Ils correspondent à des poches ou à des couloirs de décalcification emplis d’altérite in situ. Leur genèse relève d’un cas spécial de karstification où, à l’inverse des phénomènes de karstification par enlèvement total, le résidu insoluble ou moins soluble reste en place et forme un squelette qui mime la structure initiale de la roche (fossiles, joints, lits de chailles, etc.). Cette altérite, qui peut également se développer sous une voûte calcaire, forme un vaste réseau interconnecté et calé sur la fracturation. De fait, elle constitue une discontinuité importante au sein des massifs karstiques. Lorsque le niveau de base s’abaisse, l’altérite s’effondre sur elle-même puis elle est érodée par des circulations souterraines qui se mettent en place à son toit. Des réseaux de galeries mais aussi des formes de surface se forment alors rapidement, essentiellement par évidement de l’altérite. Ce phénomène est maintenant reconnu dans le monde entier, affectant tous les types de roches, carbonatées ou non.

For several years, numerous examples of ghost rocks have been recognised in karst areas in Belgium, in France and in Italy. They correspond to decalcified pockets but also to decalcified corridors filled with in-situ alterite. It is a special case of karstification where a non-soluble skeleton remains and preserves the structures of the initial rock (fossils, joints, levels of cherts, etc.). This alterite, which can also be formed under a safe roof, draws a large maze following the tectonic patterns. It constitutes an important discontinuity inside the karstic areas. When the base level drops, the structure of the alterite collapses and a void is formed on his top. Then runoff can use this void and erode the soft alterite. Cave network but also surface features can develop quickly, mainly by the cleaning of the alterite. Now, some examples of this phenomenon have been recognised all around the world and occur in different sorts of rocks, carbonated or not.


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