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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 cave breathing is a resonance phenomenon in which air currents throb back and forth through constricted passages in a cave with periodicity of a few seconds to a few minutes. synonyms: (french.) passage respirant; (german.) grotte mit resonanz; (greek.) anapneousa ope; (italian.) grotta a soffio alterno; (spanish.) gruta resonante; (turkish.) magara esintisi. see also blowing cave.?

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

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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 proxy record (Keyword) returned 18 results for the whole karstbase:
Showing 1 to 15 of 18
A high-resolution proxy record of rainfall and ENSO since AD 1550 from layering in stalagmites from Anjohibe Cave, Madagascar, 1999, Brook Ga, Rafter Ma, Railsback Lb, Sheen Sw, Lundberg J,
Two stalagmites from Anjohibe Cave have annual layers made up of inclusion-rich calcite over inclusion-free calcite or of darker aragonite over clear aragonite. Geochemical evidence indicates that the basal units are deposited slowly in the wet season and the upper units more rapidly in the dry season. For the period with rainfall and temperature data (ad 1951-1992), layer thickness correlates well with the Southern Oscillation Index (SOI), as well as rainfall, water surplus, and actual evapotranspiration (AET) at nearby Majunga. Com parison of the layer record for one stalagmite with 1866-1994 SOI data indicates that layer thickness correlates best with the frequency and intensity of warm, low-phase SO (El Nino) events, not with average SOI conditions. In addition, the 415-year layer thickness time-series from that speleothem agrees remarkably well with historical records of El Nino frequency, with Galapagos (Ecuador) coral records of sea-surface temperature in the eastern Pacific, and with accumulation rates on the Quelccaya Ice Cap of Peru, which are lower at times of high El Nino frequency

Symposium Abstract: Annual resolution speleothem proxy records of North Atlantic climate for the last 3,000 years from Uamh an Tartair, Scotland, 2000, Procter C. , Baker A. , Barnes W. L.

Verification of the causes of glaciations and sea level changes using the records of calcite speleothems, 2000, Forti Paolo, Georgiev Leonid, Georgieva Desislava, Lundberg Joyce, Sanabria Michael, Shopov Yavor, Stoykova Diana, Tsankov Ludmil
The luminescence of calcite speleothems displays an exponential dependence on soil temperature unless there is a dense cover of forest over the cave to dampen it. This relationship is determined primarily by the strength of solar visible and infrared radiation. It is suggested that, as a consequence, the microzonal variations of luminescence often found in speleothems can be used as a proxy index of Solar Insolation. The luminescence solar insolation proxy record of a speleothem from Jewel Cave, South Dakota, USA, was found to display millenial and centennial cycles in the record. It exhibits a rapid increase in solar insolation at 139 5.5 kyrs. This increase precedes that suggested by the Orbital theory by about 10,000 years and is due to superimposition of the most powerful cycle in solar luminosity of 11.5 kyrs, upon the curve of orbital variations. The record from a speleothem in Duhlata Cave, Bulgaria matches that of South Dakota within the limits of dating error, indicating that both of these records (which are 10,000 km apart) measure global solar insolation controls rather than local paleotemperature variations.

The sedimentary records in Mediterranean rockshelters and caves: Archives of environmental change, 2001, Woodward J. C. , Goldberg P. ,
It is important to develop rigorous methods and robust conceptual models for the interpretation of rockshelter and cave sediment records so that the cultural sequences they contain can be considered in their proper environmental context. Much of what we know about the prehistory of the Mediterranean region and adjacent areas has largely been pieced together from materials excavated from sedimentary sequences in these environments. The rockshelters and caves of the region form important environmental and sedimentary archives. Recent work has begun to consider if the remarkable climatic variability evident in the high resolution lacustrine and ice core records is manifest in the rockshelter and cave sediment records of the area, In this context, the two main characteristics of a rockshelter or cave site which control its usefulness as an archive of environmental change are the temporal resolution of the sedimentary record and the environmental sensitivity of the site. Many rockshelters and caves can be described as either Active Karst Settings (AKS) or Passive Karst Settings (PKS) and site type is an important influence on climatic sensitivity with a direct influence upon the usefulness of the sedimentary sequence as a proxy record of climate change. It is now clear that some sites may preserve detailed paleoclimatic records and the climatic signal may be represented by distinctive suites of micromorphological features, by variations in the input of allogenic sediment, or by fluctuations in the mineral magnetic properties of the fine sediment fraction. It can be argued that data derived from the analysis of bulk coarse-grained samples often lacks the stratigraphic resolution and environmental sensitivity that can be obtained from other approaches. The most favorable sites for detailed paleoclimatic reconstruction appear to be in active karst settings such as Theopetra Cave (Greece) and Pigeon Cave (Morocco) where micromorphological analyses offer insights into the stratigraphic record that are not otherwise obtainable. The temporal resolution of a site can only be established through a rigorous stratigraphic analysis and a comprehensive dating program. These are fundamental considerations in the study of rockshelter sediment records, especially when attempting to correlate between sites and draw comparisons with other proxy records of environmental change derived from sedimentary environments with rather different characteristics. Rockshelters and caves are part of a wider sediment system, and their investigation must be accompanied by detailed geomorphological, sedimentological, paleoecological, and geochronological studies of the off-site Quaternary record.

Stable isotope stratigraphy of Holocene speleothems: examples from a cave system in Rana, northern Norway, 2001, Linge H. , Lauritzen S. E. , Lundberg J. , Berstad I. M. ,
High-precision TIMS U-series dates and continuous stable oxygen and carbon isotope profiles of a 4000 year stalagmite record from Rana, northern Norway, are presented and compared with data from two other speleothems from the same cave. The dating results yield ages from 387534 to 2963 years before AD2000, with 2[sigma] errors from 0.5 to 1%. The overall growth rate is 35 mm/ka, corresponding to a temporal resolution of 29 years/mm. The stalagmite is tested for isotopic equilibrium conditions, where all `Hendy' tests, except one, indicate isotopic equilibrium or quasi equilibrium deposition. Both the stable oxygen and carbon isotope records reveal a strong and abrupt enrichment in the near-top measurements. This corresponds in time to the opening of a second cave entrance in the late 1960s, which caused changes in the cave air circulation. The stable oxygen isotope signal is enriched compared to the modern value over the last 300 years, indicating a negative response to temperature changes. Likewise, the stable carbon isotope record is enriched in this period. However, both of the stable isotope records are shown to be significantly enriched compared to the isotope ranges displayed by other stalagmites in the same cave, and this questions the reliability of the proxy records derived from the presented stalagmite. Still, a general good correspondence of large scale fluctuations is found between the three stable oxygen isotope records from this cave. The stable carbon isotope records show large variations within the cave and are believed to be governed by soil-zone conditions, percolation pathways and possibly driprates

Influence of solar luminosity over geomagnetic and climatic cycles as derived from speleothems, 2004, Ford Derek Clifford, Georgiev Leonid, Georgieva Desislava, Sanabria Michael, Shopov Yavor, Stoykova Diana, Tsankov Ludmil
We observed cycles presented in a luminescent solar insolation proxy record from a speleothem from Jewel Cave, South Dakota, US. We found cycles of orbital precession with periods of 23 and 19 ka and of obliquity of 41 ka and many others from non- orbital origin in this sample. We determined the Solar origin of the cycles with durations of 11500, 4400, 3950, 2770, 2500, 2090, 1960, 1670, 1460, 1280, 1195, 1145, 1034, 935, 835, 750 and 610 years. It was done by their detection both in proxy records of speleothem luminescence, D14C and the intensity of the geomagnetic dipole. It is well known that the main variations in the last two records are produced by the solar wind. The most intensive cycle discovered in this record has duration of 11.5 ka. It is not of orbital origin. It was found previously to be the most intensive cycle in the D14C calibration record and has been interpreted to be of terrestrial origin because "it is too strong to be of solar origin". Our studies suggest that it should be a solar cycle modulating the geomagnetic field and 14C reversed production as the other solar cycles do.

20 years of speleothem paleoluminescence records of environmental changes: an overview, 2004, Shopov Yavor
This paper discusses advance of the research on Speleothem Paleoluminescence Records of Environmental Changes after it have been first introduced by the author 20 years ago. It is demonstrated that most of the progress in this field was made in result of the operation of the International Program "Luminescence of Cave Minerals" of the commission on Physical Chemistry and Hydrogeology of Karst of UIS of UNESCO. Potential, resolution and limitations of high resolution luminescence speleothem proxy records of Paleotemperature, Solar Insolation, Solar Luminosity, Glaciations, Sea Level advances, Past Precipitation, Plants Populations, Paleosoils, Past Karst Denudation, Chemical Pollution, Geomagnetic field and Cosmic Rays Flux variations, Cosmogenic Isotopes production and Supernova Eruptions in the Past, Advances of Hydrothermal Waters, and Tectonic Uplift are discussed. It is demonstrated that speleothems allow extremely high resolution (higher than in any other paleoclimatic terrestrial archives) and long duration of records. Some speleothems can be used as natural climatic stations for obtaining of quantitative proxy records of Quaternary climates with annual resolution.

Palaeoclimatic implications of the growth history and stable isotope ([delta]18O and [delta]13C) geochemistry of a Middle to Late Pleistocene stalagmite from central-western Italy, 2004, Drysdale Rn, Zanchetta G, Hellstrom Jc, Fallick Ae, Zhao Jx, Isola I, Bruschi G,
The age structure and stable isotope composition of a stalagmite (CC1) from an upland cave in central-western Italy were studied to investigate regional response to global climatic changes. Four growth phases are constrained by 28 thermal ionization and multi-collector inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry Th-U ages and reveal intermittent deposition through the period between Marine Isotope Stage (MIS) 11 and 3 (~380 and ~43 kyr). Most of the growth took place between ~380 and ~280 kyr, a period punctuated briefly by a hiatus in deposition through the glacial maximum of MIS 10. Growth was terminated abruptly at 280 kyr just prior to the MIS 8 glacial maximum. With a present-day chamber temperature of 7.5 [deg]C, the timing of hiatuses close to these glacial maxima point to freezing conditions at the time. No deposition was recorded through the entirety of MIS 7 and most of MIS 6, whilst two minor growth phases occurred at ~141-125 and ~43 kyr. Growth at 141 kyr indicates temperatures >0 [deg]C at a time when MIS 6 ice volumes were close to their maximum. High stable carbon isotope ([delta]13C) values (-2.8[per mille sign] to .1[per mille sign]) throughout the stalagmite's growth reflect a persistently low input of biogenic CO2, indicating that the steep, barren and alpine-like recharge area of today has been in existence for at least the last ~380 kyr. During MIS 9, the lowest [delta]13C values occur well after maximum interglacial conditions, suggesting a lag in the development of post-glacial soils in this high-altitude karst. The stable oxygen isotope ([delta]18O) trends match the main structural features of the major climate proxy records (SPECMAP, Vostok and Devils Hole), suggesting that the [delta]18O of CC1 has responded to global-scale climate changes, whilst remarkable similarity exists between CC1 [delta]18O and regional sea-surface temperature reconstructions from North Atlantic core ODP980 and southwest Pacific marine core MD97-2120 through the most detailed part of the CC1 record, MIS 9-8. The results suggest that CC1 and other stalagmites from the cave have the potential to capture a long record of regional temperature trends, particularly in regards to the relative severity of Pleistocene glacial stages

Tropical response to the 8200 yr B.P. cold event? Speleothem isotopes indicate a weakened early Holocene monsoon in Costa Rica, 2004, Lachniet Matthew S. , Asmerom Yemane, Burns Stephen J. , Patterson William P. , Polyak Victor J. , Seltzer Geoffrey O. ,
A {delta}18O monsoon rainfall proxy record from a U-Th-dated Costa Rican stalagmite (8840-4920 yr B.P.) documents an early Holocene dry period correlative with the high-latitude 8200 yr B.P. cold event. High {delta}18O values between ca. 8300 and 8000 yr B.P. demonstrate reduced rainfall and a weaker monsoon in Central America. A relatively wetter and more stable monsoon was established ca. 7600 yr B.P. The early Holocene dry event suggests a tropical-extratropical teleconnection to the 8200 yr B.P. cold event and a possible association of isthmian rainfall anomalies with high-latitude climate changes. The likely source of such a tropical anomaly is a decrease in Atlantic thermohaline circulation and atmospheric perturbations associated with drainage of proglacial lakes and freshwater discharge into the North Atlantic. A weaker monsoon at 8200 yr B.P. may be linked to wetland contraction and a decrease in methane observed in Greenland ice cores

Speleothem master chronologies: combined Holocene 18O and 13C records from the North Island of New Zealand and their palaeoenvironmental interpretation, 2004, Williams P. W. , King D. N. T. , Zhao J. X. , Collerson K. D. ,
The stable isotope records of four stalagmites dated by 19 TIMS uranium series ages are combined to produce master chronologies for {delta} 18O and {delta} 13C. The {delta} 18O records display good overall coherence, but considerable variation in detail. Variability in the {delta} 13C records is greater, but general trends can still be dis cerned. This implies that too fine an interpretation of the structure of individual isotopic records can be unreliable. Speleothem {delta} 18O values are demonstrated to show a positive relationship with temperature by comparing trends with other proxy records, but also to respond negatively to rainfall amount. Speleothem {delta} 13C is con sidered to be most influenced by rainfall. The postglacial thermal optimum occurred around 10.8 ka BP, which is similar in timing to Antarctica but up to 2000 years earlier than most Northern Hemisphere sites. Increasingly negative {delta} 18O values after 7.5 ka BP indicate that temperatures declined to a late mid-Holocene minimum centred around 3 ka BP, but more positive values followed to mark a warm peak about 750 years ago which coincided with the Mediaeval Warm Period' of Europe. Low {delta} 18O values at 325 years BP suggest cooling coincident with the Little Ice Age'. A marked feature of the {delta}13C record is an asymmetric periodicity averaging c. 2250 years and amplitude of c. 1.9{per thousand}. It is concluded that this is mainly driven by waterbalance variations with negative swings representing particularly wet intervals. The {delta}18O record shows a higher-frequency cyclicity with a period of c. 500 years and an amplitude of c. 0.25{per thousand}. This is most likely to be temperature-driven, but some swings may have been amplified by precipitation

Palaeo-climate reconstruction from stable isotope variations in speleothems: a review, 2004, Mcdermott, F.

Speleothems are now regarded as valuable archives of climatic conditions on the continents, offering a number of advantages relative to other continental climate proxy recorders such as lake sediments and peat cores. They are ideal materials for precise U-series dating, yielding ages in calendar years, thereby circumventing the radiocarbon calibration problems associated with most other continental records. Stable isotope studies in speleothems have shifted away from attempting to provide palaeo-temperature reconstructions to the attainable goal of providing precise estimates for the timing and duration of major O isotope-defined climatic events characterised by high signal to noise ratios (e.g. glacial/interglacial transitions, Dansgaard–Oeschger oscillations, the ‘8200- year’ event). Unlike the marine records, speleothem data sets are not ‘tuned’, and their independent chronology offers opportunities to critically assess leads and lags in the climate system, that in turn can provide important insights into forcing and feedback mechanisms. Improved procedures for the extraction and measurement of stable isotope ratios in fluid inclusions trapped in speleothems are likely to provide, in the near future, a much enhanced basis for the quantitative interpretation of O isotope ratios in speleothem calcite. The latter developments open up once again the tantalising prospect of palaeo-temperature estimates, but more importantly perhaps, provide a direct test for a new generation of general circulation models whose hydrological cycles will incorporate the ‘water isotopes’. The literature is reviewed briefly to provide for the reader a sense of the current state-of-the-art, and to provide some pointers for future research directions


Stable isotope study of cave percolation waters in subtropical Brazil: Implications for paleoclimate inferences from speleothems, 2005, Cruz Fw, Karmann I, Viana O, Burns Sj, Ferrari Ja, Vuille M, Sial An, Moreira Mz,
We analyze the interannual monthly variability of oxygen isotope ratios in data from IAEA stations along the Atlantic coast of South America between 23 degrees and 34 degrees S to evaluate the influence of parameters such as temperature, rainfall amount and moisture source contribution on meteoric water recharging two karst systems in subtropical Brazil. In addition, a 2 year monitoring program performed on soil and cave drip and rimstone pool waters from sampling sites with contrasting discharge values and located at 100 and 300 m below the surface in the Santana Cave System (24 degrees 31' S; 48 degrees 43' W), is used to test the influence of hydrologic and geologic features on the temporal variations of seepage water delta(18)O. Interannual monthly variations in delta(18)O of rainfall reflect primarily regional changes in moisture source contribution related to seasonal shifts in atmospheric circulation from a more monsoonal regime in summer (negative values of delta(18)O) to a more extratropical regime in winter (positive values of delta(18)O). Variations in groundwater delta(18)O indicate that the climatic signal of recent rainfall events is rapidly transmitted through the relatively deep karst aquifer to the cave drip waters, regardless of location of collection in the cave. In addition, the data also suggest that water replenishment in the system is triggered by the increase in hydraulic head during periods when recharge exceeds the storage capacity of the soil and epikarst reservoirs. Significant perturbations in the groundwater composition, characterized by more positive values of delta(18)O, are probably connected to an increased Atlantic moisture contribution associated with extratropical precipitation. This implies that the delta(18)O of speleothems from caves in this region may be a suitable proxy for studying tropical-extratropical interactions over South America, a feature that is intrinsically related to the global atmospheric circulation. (c) 2005 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved

Ice caves as an indicator of winter climate evolution: a case study from the Jura Mountains, 2005, Luetscher Marc, Jeannin Pierre Yves, Haeberli Wilfried,
Subsurface ice fillings were first described in the Jura Mountains at the end of the sixteenth century. In order to assess the impact of climate change on low-altitude cave ice a detailed inventory has been drawn up and more than 50 objects have been identified. Comparisons between older cave maps, photographic documents and present-day observations outline a negative trend in ice mass balances, a trend that increased at the end of the 1980s. As most of these ice caves act as cold air traps, this negative mass balance is mainly attributed to higher winter temperatures and to reduced snow precipitation at low altitudes. The equilibrium line altitude of ice caves is believed to have increased several hundred metres between AD 1978 and 2004. Photographic comparisons and proxy records in some of the caves studied provide evidence of a rapid mass turnover. Ice ages range between less than a few decades and a millennium. Climatic records in these ice fillings will therefore present only short time series compared with other cave sediments. However, indications of former ice fillings have been found in different caves of the Jura Mountains and outline their potential role as palaeoclimatic markers

Effects of high-frequency cave atmosphere PCO2 variability on stalagmite climate proxy records, 2006, Baldini Jul, Mcdermott F, Clipson N,

UPb geochronology of speleothems by MC-ICPMS, 2006, Woodheada Jon, Hellstroma John, Maasa Roland, Drysdaleb Russell, Zanchettac Giovanni, Devined Paul, Taylor Eve

Building upon the work of Richards et al. [1998. U–Pb dating of a speleothem of Quaternary age. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta 62, 3683–3688], we have developed a method for precise dating of speleothems beyond the range of the U–Th technique using the U–Pb decay scheme. By coupling low-blank sample preparation procedures and multi-collector inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (MC-ICPMS) analytical methodologies developed for low-level Pb-isotope analysis, we find that, under ideal circumstances (radiogenic speleothems with very low common Pb), U–Pb dating of speleothems is not only possible, but also produces excellent age resolution— often comparable to or better than U–Th studies. Corrections for initial isotopic disequilibrium are necessary and exert a strong control on the achievable age uncertainty. The technique will be of immediate benefit in extending speleothem-based climate proxy records beyond _500 ka and will also find other uses, such as the dating of associated sub-fossil remains, and providing constraints on rates of landscape evolution and neo-tectonic processes. Here we present initial results for speleothems from the Nullarbor Plain, Western Australia, and the Alpi Apuane, Italy. The Nullarbor samples provide important new constraints on the development of aridity in Australia during the late Tertiary/early Quaternary, while the Apuane samples offer insights into the landscape history and uplift of that region.


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