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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 graded is an engineering term pertaining to a soil or an unconsolidated sediment consisting of particles of several or many sizes or having a uniform or equable distribution of particles from coarse to fine [6].?

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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 removal (Keyword) returned 84 results for the whole karstbase:
Showing 1 to 15 of 84
Underground solution canyons in the Central Kentucky karst, U.S.A., 1967, Watson Richard A.
Solution canyons are underground voids 1 to 15 + meters wide, 3 to 45 + meters high, and 30 to 300 + meters long. Floors are stepped, ceilings level. Size increases downstream. Their course is sinuous, with some angularity. They occur parallel to and directly under or slightly offset from the thalwegs of re-entrant valleys tributary to major karst valleys. A section across a re-entrant and underlying solution canyon shows a rough hour-glass shape. Solution canyons are related genetically to solutional vertical shafts, forming where removal of the impermeable sandstone caprock permits the vertical descent of water through jointed limestone. Surface runoff concentrates along re-entrant thalwegs where a largo quantity of water goes underground. This water, plus subsurface water flowing over the caprock breached by the valleys, follows the easiest route to baselevel down major vertical joints oriented parallel to the thalwegs. Solution by water seeping down these joint planes forms solution canyons.

Cooleman and Right Cooleman Caves, Kosciusko National Park, and the Shift of Risings, 1971, Jennings, J. N.

The Cooleman-Right Cooleman system is an abandoned, nearly horizontal outflow cave of shallow phreatic nature, modified by breakdown. It lies just inside and parallel to a gorge wall of Cave Creek. This relationship, and others like it here, are attributed to a greater water input into the limestone along the lines of dissection of Cooleman Plain rather than to the mechanical effects of slope retreat such as Renault has favoured. This outflow cave has been replaced as the major rising of this karst by the Blue Waterholes a short distance down valley; shallow incision of the valley has accompanied the shift of the rising. This down valley movement does not seem to be explicable by removal of overlying impervious beds in this direction to expose more limestone but by a displacement of the main artery feeding the risings in the course of the deepening of underground karst development as a result of incision. However, this displacement is not more favourable to the emergence of the underground drainage of the Plain as a whole. The downstream shift of the rising therefore remains problematic. Discussion favours interpretation of Cooleman Cave entrance as a secondary breach into the outflow cave previously emerging at Right Cooleman entrance, aided by lateral erosion of the surface stream, but it is recognised that the evidence is far from conclusive.


Observations at the Blue Waterholes, March 1965 - April 1969, and Limestone Solution on Cooleman Plain, N.S.W., 1972, Jennings, J. N.

After brief descriptions of the geomorphology of the Cooleman Plain karst and in particular of the Blue Waterholes, the methods adopted to analyse the functioning of these major risings are detailed. The discharge regime of Cave Creek below them is oceanic pluvial in type perturbed by drought and snow. There is much annual variation both in seasonal incidence and total amount, with catchment efficiency correspondingly variable. Suspended sediment concentration is even more erratic and monthly determinations are inadequate for calculating corrasional denudation rates. Mean concentrations of suspended solids are about 1/18th of solute load. Total dissolved salts have a strong inverse relationship with discharge, and mean values are high compared with those for other catchments in eastern Australia but none of these determinations are from limestone catchments. Sodium, potassium, and chlorine contents are low compared with the same catchments but silica is relatively high. The ratio of alkaline earths to alkalis indicate that Cave Creek carries carbonate waters and there is an inverse regression of the ratio on discharge. There is inverse correlation of total hardness on discharge likewise due to concentration of surface waters by evaporation in dry periods, together with reduced underground solution rate at times of large, rapid flow. The spring waters remain aggressive. Close regressions of hardness on specific conductivity now permit the latter to be determined in the place of the former. Much evidence converges to indicate that all the springs at the Blue Waterholes are fed from the same conduit. The intermittent flow which comes down the North Branch on the surface to the Blue Waterholes differs significantly in many characters from the spring waters. Rates of Ca + M carbonate equivalent removal vary directly with discharge since hardness varies much less than does water volume. These gross rates have to be adjusted for (a) atmospheric salts entering the karst directly, (b) peripheral solute inputs from the non-karst two-thirds of the catchment and (c) subjacent karst solution before they can be taken as a measure of exposed karst denudation. The methods for achieving this are set out. The total corrections amount to about one third of the total hardness, though the correction for subjacent karst on its own lies within the experimental error of the investigation. The residual rate of limestone removal from the exposed karst also shows a winter/spring high rate and a summer/autumn low rate but the seasonal incidence and annual total varied very much from year to year. In comparison with results from karsts in broadly similar climate, the seasonal rhythm conforms and so does the high proportion (78%) of the solution taking place at or close to the surface. This reduces the importance of the impounded condition of this small karst but supports the use of karst denudation rate as a measure of surface lowering. Cave passage solution may however be more important in impounded karst than its absolute contribution might suggest, by promoting rapid development of underground circulation. The mean value of limestone removal is low for the climatic type and this is probably due to high evapotranspirational loss as well as to the process of eliminating atmospheric, peripheral non-karst and subjacent karst contributions. The difficulties of applying modern solution removal rate to the historical geomorphology of this karst are made evident; at the same time even crude extrapolations are shown to isolate problems valuably.


The karst of Transvaal (South Africa)., 1976, Kavalieris I. , Martini Jacques E. J.
The Transvaal Karst is a world important example of a Karst developed on a very old dolomite. Its unique character is due to the composition of the rock and history of development. The dissolution of the dolomite is interesting and has an important effect on the character of the caves developed. The caves preserved in this area include the longest known in South Africa and are perhaps among the largest dolomite systems known in the world. They are very old and in some cases contain important palaeontological deposits (Australopithecine fauna). The caves to various degrees are in a state of de-generation, having been exposed for a very long period above the water-table. For the greater part of the Karst area, aggressive vadose waters, and long exposure has resulted in the accumulation of a thick covering of residual material. The plateau-like geomorphology and low rainfalls has prevented physical erosion and significant removal of this debris from the land surface. The caves themselves are often characterized by collapse and in general lack of formations. Massive calcite formation in the caves is usually partly or nearly completely redissolved and are relics of past colder climatic periods with winter rains. Formations active now are small, usually delicate and often due directly to evaporation. The heavy mantle of residual debris preserved under some of the more ancient of South African landsurface relics (the African Surface) poses a serious economic problem of stability, with mans' utilization of the environment. A greater understanding of the Karst, its evolution and properties is thus of considerable practical importance.

The effect of cave entrances on the distribution of cave-inhabiting terrestrial Arthropods., 1976, Peck Stewart B.
Populations of cave invertebrates are generally considered to be food-limited. The cave entrance is a major source of food input into the community in the form of decaying organic matter. Thus, the densities of scavenging terrestrial cave invertebrates should be related to the distance from the cave entrance because this represents a measure of food abundance. A test showed this expectation to be true in Crossings Cave, Alabama. A population density peak occurred 10 m inside the cave where the dark zone and detritus infall regions meet. The greatest population peak occurred at 100 m where densities of crickets and their guano are highest. The pattern should hold for most caves, but the actual distances will vary in each site depending on its circumstances. When the fauna was removed from the cave, the remnant had not regained community equilibrium a year later. Removal of the dominant scavenger, a milliped, allowed other species populations to expand because of decreased competitions.

Further Studies at the Blue Waterholes, Cooleman Plain, N.S.W., 1969-77, Part I, Climate and Hydrology, 1983, Jennings, J. N.

Previous study of the temporal and spatial distribution of limestone solution at Cooleman Plain rested on monthly discharges and water analyses of the Blue Waterholes over 4 years. For this study automatic recording of discharge (8 years), rainfall (8 years), evaporation (7 years) and temperature (4 years) was attended by variable success in the face of interference, rigorous climate and inaccessibility. The most important aspect of the climatic data was the support obtained for the earlier assumption of similar water balances in the forested igneous frame and the grassland limestone plain. Runoff was again shown to be highly variable from year to year and to have an oceanic pluvial regime, with a summer-autumn minimum owing much to evapo-transpiration. The flow duration curve from daily discharges puts this karst amongst those where neither extremely high nor low flows are important. The stream routing pattern offsets the effect of 71% of the catchment being on non-karst rocks, damping flood events. An inflection of 700 l/s in a flow duration plot based on discharge class means is interpreted as the threshold at which surface flow down North Branch reaches the Blue Waterholes. Storages calculated from a generalised recession hydrograph parallel Mendip data where baseflow (fissure) storage provides most of the storage and quickflow (vadose) storage only a secondary part. Water-filled conduit storage (the phreas) could not be determined but is considered small. The baseflow storage seems large, suggesting that it can develop independently of caves in some measure. A quickflow ratio for floods derived by Gunn's modification of the Hewlett and Hibbert separation line method appears relatively low for a mainly non-karst catchment and is again attributed to the routing pattern. For analysis of variation of the solute load over time, estimates of daily discharge during gaps in the record where made for the author by Dr. A.J. Jakeman and Mr. M.A. Greenaway (see Appendix). A small number of discharge measures of two contrasted allogenic catchments of the igneous frame shows a unit area yield close to that for the whole catchment. Together with the guaging of most of the allogenic inputs, this supports the idea that the water yield is much the same from the forested ranges and the grassland plain. This is important for the estimation of limestone removal rates.


Subsidence associated with the abstraction of fluids, 1988, Bell Fg,
Subsidence of the ground surface due to the withdrawal of groundwater, oil, gas or brine from sedimentary deposits has ccurred in many parts of the world. The abstraction of groundwater has been the principal cause of subsidence, primarily because more groundwater is abstracted than all the other liquids put together. Subsidences of several metres have been recorded, for example, in California due to the exploitation of oil, as well as groundwater. Such ground movements represent a notable problem in engineering geology. Generally these subsidences take place slowly but the occurrence at the surface of sinkholes as a result of water tables being lowered in limestone terrains is a rapid process. In the case of groundwater, gas or oil abstraction the reduction in pore pressure in the voids due to the decline in head leads to an increase in effective load on the sediments concerned, bringing about consolidation, which is reflected at the surface as subsidence. On the other hand when mineral deposits are worked by solution mining the rock material itself is removed which, if uncontrolled, resultsin subsidence. The removal of fluids from sediments frequently has resulted in the formation of fissures at the surface. Indeed there are cases on record where faults are alleged to have been formed. Such fissures often occur around the periphery of the subsidence trough

HIGH SULFATE CONCENTRATIONS IN LIMESTONE SPRINGS - AN IMPORTANT FACTOR IN CONDUIT INITIATION, 1995, Worthington S. R. H. , Ford D. C. ,
Major ion concentrations in 404 springs in carbonate strata were found to exhibit a wide range in sulfate values. Sulfate concentrations are often much larger than would be expected from the analysis of samples from surface outcrops. Springs in the Sierra Madre Oriental (Mexico), the Rocky Mountains Front Range (Canada), and the Peak District (England) show similarities in sulfate concentration and in spatial distribution. Springs with high sulfate concentrations are found close to base level and are thermal. Springs with low sulfate concentration are found at higher elevations above base level and are not thermal. There is a direct relationship between sulfate concentration and spring temperature, and an inverse relationship with discharge. The results from the three areas described support a model of local and regional flow patterns, with deep regional flow providing the warm sulfate-rich water. The initial fracture porosity development in these aquifers may owe as much to the removal of sulfur minerals as to the removal of carbonate minerals. High sulfate values are frequently found in carbonate aquifers, so this model may be of widespread applicability

The dissolution and conversion of Gypsum and Anhydrite., 1996, Klimchouk Alexander
The development of karst is a complex system driven by the dissolution of a host rock and the subsequent removal of dissolved matter by moving water. It is the process that, at various stages, initiates or triggers associated processes including erosion, collapse and subsidence. The dissolution of sulphate rocks proceeds by different mechanisms and at different rates to those associated with the dissolution of carbonate rocks. For each rock type different factors influence the process. This chapter is an attempt to summarise the present knowledge of the dissolution chemistry and kinetics of gypsum and anhydrite. These are important for the genetic interpretation of karst features in these rocks. The gypsum-anhydrite-gypsum transitions and recrystallization processes are also addressed, because of their importance to karst development.

Nickpoint recession in karst terrains: An example from the Buchan karst, southeastern Australia, 1996, Fabel D, Henricksen D, Finlayson Bl, Webb Ja,
Nickpoint recession in the Buchan karst, southeastern Australia, has resulted in the formation of an underground meander cut-off system in the Murrindal River valley. Three nickpoints have been stranded in the surface channel abandoned by the subterranean piracy, and these can be correlated with river terraces and epiphreatic cave passages in the nearby Buchan River valley. The presence of palaeomagnetically reversed sediments in the youngest cave passage in the Buchan valley implies that the topographically lowest nickpoint in the Murrindal valley is more than 730 ka old, and the other nickpoints are probably several million years old. The nickpoints are occasionally active during floods, but the diversion of most surface flow underground has slowed down their retreat to the extent that they have been effectively stationary for several million years Underground nickpoint migration has been by both incision within major phreatic conduits and their abandonment for lower-level passages. The nickpoints are all present in the upstream part of the cave system, but have not migrated past the sink in the river channel, despite the long period of time available for this to happen. The sink is characterized by collapsed limestone blocks; these filter out the coarse bedload from the river channel. As a result, erosion within the cave passages is dominantly solutional and therefore slower than in the surface channel, where it is mostly mechanical. In addition, to transmit a drop in base level the cave system requires the removal of a larger volume of rock than for the surface migration of a nickpoint, because any roof collapse material in the subsurface system must be removed. These factors have slowed the migration of the base-level changes through the subsurface system, and may be a general feature in caves that have diffuse sinks as their main inputs

Vadose weathering of sulfides and limestone cave development-Evidence from eastern Australia., 1996, Osborne R. A. L.

Many significant limestone caves in eastern Australia (particularly New South Wales, Tasmania) are associated with sulfide deposits and other ore bodies. These deposits have a variety of origins (hydrothermal, paleokarst, volcaniclastic). The sulfides weather on exposure to oxygen - rich vadose seepage water, lowering the water pH and releasing sulfate and magnesium which can lead to the deposition of gypsum and aragonite speleothems. Removal of weathered ores and ore - bearing paleokarst sediments in the vadose zone is, in places, an important mechanism for the formation of large caverns.


Palaeosecular variation observed in speleothems from western China and northern Spain, PhD thesis, 1996, Openshaw, S. J.

This study has produced records of the palaeosecular variation (PSV) of the earth's magnetic field from Speleothems from China and Spain. The ultimate aim of this project was to produce contemporaneous PSV records which would show that Speleothems accurately record ambient geomagnetic field behaviour. From Sichuan Province, China, five Speleothems were collected of which four were studied for their records of PSV. Eight Spanish Speleothems from the Cantabrian coast were collected but their weak magnetisation allowed only one record of PSV to be produced.
All speleothem sub-samples were weakly magnetised and had, on average, initial intensities of <100 x 10-8 Am2kg-1. Despite this, the majority of sub-samples were stable during stepwise alternating-field and thermal demagnetisation and each displayed a single component of magnetisation after removal of any secondary overprints. Rock magnetic experiments were hampered by low mineral concentrations but suggested that the remanences of each speleothem were carried by a mixture of multi and single-domain (titano-) magnetite and also by haematite present in significant quantities. The primary method of remanence acquisition appeared to be a depositional remanence sourced from flooding. This was corroborated by a linear relationship between sub-sample intensities and weight % acid insoluble detritus.
A selection of sub-samples from each speleothem were dated using uranium-thorium disequilibrium and alpha spectrometry. For the majority of sub-samples the low concentrations of uranium, high levels of detrital contamination and initially low chemical yields raised the associated dating inaccuracies above the quoted level for alpha spectrometry of 5-10%. Two Spanish Speleothems had high uranium concentrations and little, or no, detrital contamination. Percent age errors of these Speleothems ranged from 1 to 6%. Comprehensive experiments on the efficiencies of three electrodeposition methods were also undertaken. The most efficient method was found to be a modified version of the Hallstadius method (Hallstadius, 1984), which consistently achieved chemical yields between 40 and 90% for uranium and thorium.
In order to correct more analytically for the presence of detrital contamination, the leachate/leachate method of Schwarcz and Latham (1989) was tested. The maximum likelihood estimation data treatment technique (Ludwig and Titterington, 1994) was used to calculate dates from these analyses. Tests on Mexican speleothem SSJ2 gave excellent results allowing a revised dating scheme to be adopted. Tests on some sub-samples from Chinese Speleothems were generally unsuccessful due to analytical errors.
The isotope 210Pb was used to date the top surface of one speleothem. A constant growth rate was inferred which was significantly less than that calculated from the 230Th - 234U dating method. This was thought to be due to the former techniques inability to resolve growth rates of periods of less than 200 years.
Despite the dating errors associated with each speleothem the records of PSV compare well with each other and with contemporaneous records from China, Japan and also the UK (for the Spanish record). In addition. agreement with PSV data modelled from observatory records suggested that westward drift of the non-dipole geomagnetic field was predominant during the past 10ka.


Causes of land subsidence in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, 1997, Amin A, Bankher K,
The occurrence of land subsidence in the Kingdom Saudi Arabia is either natural or manmade. Natural land subsidence occurs due to the development of subterranean voids by a solution of host rocks in carbonate and evaporite terrains, over many areas of Saudi Arabia. Man-induced land subsidence is either due to the removal of groundwater in the agricultural areas or to wetting of unstable soils. Therefore, earth fissures and a lowering of the ground surface in unconsolidated sediments took place in alluvial plains and volcanic vent terrains. Unstable soils include Sabkha soils and loess sediments. These types of soils occur in coastal plains, desert areas and volcanic terrains. When this soil is wetted either during agricultural activities, waste disposal or even during a rain storm, subsidence takes place due to either the removal of salts from the Sabkha soil or the rearrangement of soil particles in loess sediments

ALGAE: AN IMPORTANT AGENT IN DEPOSITION OF KARSTIC TRAVERTINES: OBSERVATIONS ON NATURAL-BRIDGE YERKOPRU TRAVERTINES, ALADAĞLAR, EASTERN TAURIDS-TURKEY, 1997, Bayari C. Serdar, Kurttas Turker
Travertines are terrestrial, fresh water carbonate deposits formed by karstic springs and associated streams which are saturated with respect to calcite. Field observations form recently travertine depositing arstic springs in Aladağlar, Eastern Taurids ? Turkey indicate that the deposition process is accelerated considerably by the physical and biochemical contribution of algae which are mostly belong to classes of Cyanophyceae (blue-green algae) Chlorophyceae (diatoms), Eugleno-phyceae and Xhantophyceae. Algae conributes physically to the deposition of travertine by means of trapping of inorganically formed calcite micro-crystals by algal filaments and mucilagenous secretions and by providing proper nucleation sites for calcite precipitation. Biochemical activity of algae also forces the aquatic system to deposit travertine due to the photosynthetic removal of free carbondioxide from the solution. Field observations indicate that the rate of physical and chemical contribution to the deposition depends strongly on the hydraullic conditions. Physical and biochemical roles becomes important in high and low /velocity/energy streams, respectively. The effect of algal association over the travertine deposition can be observed apparently especially in streams where the ratio of algal mass to the rate of stream flow is substantially high. Since the climatic conditions (air temperature and insolation) have strong influence upon the abundance of algae, the rate of travertine deposited by algal contribution decreasing during winter months when algal population decreases. Similarly , the biochemical contribution shows a diurnal pattern with a maximum during a mid day because of the higher uptake of carbondioxide via photosynthesis.

A Radiocarbon Date of 380 60 bp for a Taino site, Cueva Negra,Isla de Mona, Puerto Rico, 1998, Frank, E. F.
Charcoal fragments were collected from a mixed charcoal and bone deposit from a chamber in Cueva Negra, Isla de Mona Puerto Rico. Radiocarbon dating yielded a conventional 14C age of 380 60 Radiocarbon Years before present. Considering the standard deviation in the 14C data, the range in possible calendar dates is from 1480 to 1655 AD. This time period encompasses the first contact between Taino population and Europeans, and the subsequent removal of the last of the Taino from the island to Puerto Rico in 1578.

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