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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. ...

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. ...

Speleology in Kazakhstan

Shakalov on 11 Jul, 2012
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 antecedent-soil moisture is the degree of water saturation in the soil prior to a precipitation event [16].?

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Your search for salt caves (Keyword) returned 9 results for the whole karstbase:
Morphology and Development of Salt Caves, 1994, Frumkin, Amos

Middle Holocene environmental change determined from the salt caves of Mount Sedom, Israel, 1994, Frumkin, A. , Carmi, I. , Zak, I. And Magaritz, M. , 1994
Paleoclimatic sequence for the Middle Holocene was constructed, based on Mount Sedom salt caves, and other evidence. Mount Sedom is a salt diapir, on the southwestern shore of the Dead Sea, which has been rising above the local base level throughout the Holocene. Allogenic karst development has kept pace with the rising, forming vadose caves. Wood fragments found embedded in flood sediments that were deposited in sub-horizontal cave passages yielded 14C ages from 7090 to 200 YBP. The paleoclimatic sequence is based on parameters that include: relative abundance of plant types or floral communities, the elevations of the corresponding relict cave passages and the ratio of their width to present passage width. Moister climatic stages are indicated by relatively abundant wood remains, by wide cave passages and by higher-level outlets, indicating high Dead Sea levels. Arid periods are marked by a scarcity of wood remains, by narrow cave passages and by low-level outlets. The results were correlated to other middle-Holocene evidence and temporal settlement changes. The Early Bronze period in Israel was the moistest period during the last 6000 years and as such it encouraged cultural development. It was followed by a considerable desiccation that caused a cultural deterioration.

Rapid entrenchment of stream profiles in the salt caves of Mount Sedom, Israel., 1995, Frumkin A. , Ford D. C.

RAPID ENTRENCHMENT OF STREAM PROFILES IN THE SALT CAVES OF MOUNT SEDOM, ISRAEL, 1995, Frumkin A, Ford Dc,
Rock salt is approximately 1000 times more soluble than limestone and thus displays high rates of geomorphic evolution. Cave stream channel profiles and downcutting rates were studied in the Mount Sedom salt diapir, Dead Sea rift valley, Israel. Although the area is very arid (mean annual rainfall approximate to 50 mm), the diapir contains extensive karst systems of Holocene age. In the standard cave profile a vertical shaft at the upstream end diverts water from a surface channel in anhydrite or elastic cap rocks into the subsurface route in the salt. Mass balance calculations in a sample cave passage yielded downcutting rates of 0.2 mm s(-1) during peak flood conditions, or about eight orders of magnitude higher than reported rates in any limestone cave streams. However, in the arid climate of Mount Sedom floods have a low recurrence interval with the consequence that long-term mean downcutting rates are lower: an average rate of 8.8 mm a(-1) was measured for the period 1986-1991 in the same sample passage. Quite independently, long-term mean rates of 6.2 mm a(-1) are deduced from C-14 ages of driftwood found in upper levels of 12 cave passages. These are at least three orders of magnitude higher than rates established for limestone caves. Salt cave passages develop in two main stages: (1) an early stage characterized by high downcutting rates into the rock salt bed, and steep passage gradients; (2) a mature stage characterized by lower downcutting rates, with establishment of a subhorizontal stream bed armoured with alluvial detritus. In this mature stage downcutting rates are controlled by the uplift rate of the Mount Sedom diapir and changes of the level of the Dead Sea. Passages may also aggrade. These fast-developing salt stream channels may serve as full-scale models for slower developing systems such as limestone canyons

Salt cave cross sections and their paleoenvironmental implications, 1998, Frumkin, A.
Salt caves respond rapidly to environmental changes. Direct measurement and 14C dating show that complex cross sections may develop in a few hundred years. Two basic forms are discussed: (1) ingrowing vadose canyons where changing width may correspond to changing discharge; (2) wide low passages with flat ceiling, developed by upward dissolution, which may indicate rising base level. Some cross sections are deformed by Holocene tectonics.

Speleogenesis in salts, with particular reference to the Mount Sedom area, Israel, 2000, Frumkin A.
Salt dissolution often occurs in deeply buried beds, where caves are hardly known. Caves are normally formed by selective dissolution along flow routes, rather than complete dissolution of the bulk salt mass. Most salt caves are found in diapirs, where open fissures drain meteoric water, rapidly enlarging to form vadose caves. Salt caves develop faster than other cave types, allowing their use as a natural laboratory for speleogenesis. Salt karst terrains exist mainly in arid climates where rock salt outcrops may escape complete destruction by dissolution. Known salt caves are mostly of Holocene age, while older ones are gradually destroyed by dissolution and collapse. The Mount Sedom salt diapir, with some 20 km of salt caves, is the most studied area of salt karst. Its vadose caves are formed by captured ephemeral streams. Cave profiles are adjusted to base level, allowing reconstruction of the evolutionary history of the region. Some 57% of Mount Sedom surface area is drained by the underground karst system. Waters in cave conduits do not reach saturation during flood flow, unless the water is ponded for at least several hours. Common cave features are vertical shafts, close to the cave inlet, and sub-horizontal passages, leading to outlets at base level. Where there is no fissure connection to the edge of the mountain, an inlet cave is formed, capable of absorbing the flood discharge in a terminal pond. Water and solutes escape from the pond by slow seepage through narrow fissures to a regional aquifer.

Karst and caves of Israel, 2001, Frumkin, A.
Israel displays a gradient of karst features from the intensive karstification of Lebanon in the north to practically no karst in Elat region at the southern Negev desert (Gerson, 1976). This is attributed mainly to the climatological gradient from alpine-Mediterranean climate in the Lebanon - Hermon mountains in the north, with precipitation >1000 mm/year, to the extremely arid southern Negev, with <50 mm/year. Another factor is the southward decrease in carbonates/clastics ratio of the phanerozoic stratigraphic section, due to the increasing distance from the Tethys Sea which deposited the significant carbonates. Carbonate rocks outcrop in some 75% of the hilly regions of Israel. They are predominantly of Jurassic to Eocene age. However, much of the carbonates contain marls which inhibit extensive karst development, promoting the dominance of fluviokarst features. Another inhibiting factor is the abundance of faults in the Hermon, Galil and Shomeron regions. The faults are thought to constrain the temporal and spatial continuous underground flow, limiting the development of large caves in these regions. Most limestone caves are relict phreatic conduits and voids, which do not show any genetic relation to subaerial topography. Today these caves are either dry or experience vadose dripwater. These caves have possibly developed under moister conditions than predominate today. Some of them have been sealed from the surface until opened by recent construction activity. They may contain valuable paleoclimatic records (Frumkin, et al., 1994). Vadose caves are also common, and typically experience some water flow and active dissolution during the rainy season. These are mostly composed of vertical shafts with rare horizontal sections. The unique rock salt karst of Mount Sedom exhibits the largest salt caves known in the world. Some sea caves, attributed mainly to wave action with limited dissolution appear in the 'Kurkar' sandstone ridge along the Mediterranean coast. Paleokarst is common in the stratigraphic section, and is probably related to humid paleoclimates. Israel is especially rich in man made caves sustaining abundant fauna, but are beyond the scope of this review.

The Holocene climatic record of the salt caves of Mount Sedom, Israel: The Holocene, 2007, Frumkin, A. , Magaritz, M. , Carmi, I. And Zak, I.

Mount Sedom is a salt diapir, on the southwestern shore of the Dead Sea, which has been rising above the local base level throughout the Holocene. Karst development within the salt body has kept pace with the rising, forming sub-horizontal cave passages with vertical shafts. Wood fragments found embedded in flood sediments that were deposited in the cave passages yielded 14C ages ranging from ca. 7100 to 200 YBP. A paleoclimatic sequence was constructed, based on parameters that include: relative abundance of plant types or floral communities, the elevations of the corresponding cave passages and the ratio of their width to present passage width. The results were correlated to the Holocene sedimentary sequence of the Dead Sea Basin, and other features associated with shifting lake levels. Moister climatic stages are indicated by relatively abundant wood remains, by wide cave passages and by elevated outlets, indicating high Dead Sea level. Arid periods are marked by a scarcity of wood remains, by narrow cave passages and by low-level outlets. The Holocene sequence of Mount Sedom is subdivided into ten climatic stages: A moist stage in the early Holocene, older than 7000 YBP, and nine subsequent stages of drier climate, fluctuating between conditions that are somewhat drier, up to somewhat moister than those of today. The Dead Sea Level dropped from ca. -300 MSL during the early moist period to -400 MSL or lower during the subsequent arid periods.


Karst in deserts, 2013, Webb J. A. , White S.

Hot deserts are characterized by low mean annual rainfall (o250 mm, o1000) and very high evapotranspiration, so karst processes are inhibited. However, karst features are abundant and well developed in many deserts around the world. Salt caves occur predominantly in this environment and develop rapidly despite the arid climate, because they are formed mainly by rare, but intense, rain events. Deserts also preserve, relatively unaltered, gypsum and carbonate karst that formed in prior wetter climates or by hypogene processes. Carbonate karst, which is the most common karst in hot deserts, is modified very slowly by desert processes, including dissolution and salt crystallization, which fragments bedrock and speleothems


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