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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 peloid is a microscopic texture. a sedimentary grain composed of micrite carbonate irrespective of origin [20]. synonyms: (french.) peloide; (german.) mikroskopisches, sedimentares gefuge; (greek.) piloidis; (italian.) peloide; (spanish.) peloide; (turkish.) peloit. see micrite, pelsparite.?

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

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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 spatial-distribution (Keyword) returned 22 results for the whole karstbase:
Showing 1 to 15 of 22
Subsidence hazard prediction for limestone terrains, as applied to the English Cretaceous Chalk, 1987, Edmonds Cn, Green Cp, Higginbottom Ie,
Soluble carbonate rocks often pose a subsidence hazard to engineering and building works, due to the presence of either metastable natural solution features or artificial cavities. There is also an inherent danger to the public and lives have been lost because of unexpected ground collapses. Although site investigation techniques are becoming increasingly elaborate, the detection of hazardous ground conditions associated with limestones is frequently difficult and unreliable. Remedial measures to solve subsidence problems following foundation failure are expensive. It would be advantageous if areas liable to subsidence could be identified in a cost-effective manner in advance of planning and ground investigation. Hazard mapping could then be used by planners when checking the geotechnical suitability of a proposed development or by engineering geologists/geotechnical engineers to design the type of ground investigation best suited to the nature and scale of the potential hazard. Recent research focussed on the English Chalk outcrop has led to the development of two new models to predict the subsidence hazard for both natural solution features and artificial cavities. The predictive models can be used to map the hazard at any given chalkland locality, as a cost-effective precursor to ground investigation. The models, although created for the Chalk outcrop, have important implications for all types of limestone terrain. The basis of the predictive modelling procedure is an analysis of the spatial distribution of nearly 1600 natural solution features, and more than 850 artificial cavity locations, identified from a wide varietyy of sources, including a special appeal organized by CIRIA. A range of geological, hydrogeological and geomorphological factors are evaluated to identify significant relationships with subsidence. These factors are ranked, numerically weighted and incorporated into two quantitative subsidence hazard model formulae. The models can be applied to perform hazard mapping

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

Ground-water silicifications in the calcareous facies of the Tertiary piedmont deposits of the Atlas Mountain (Hamada du Guir, Morocco), 1997, Thiry M. , Benbrahim M. ,
The Tertiary piedmont deposits (Hamada Formations), on the southern edge of the Haut-Atlas mountains, form extensive tablelands in the Boudenib area. They consist of two main sedimentary sequences, the Hamada de Boudenib and the Hamada du Guir, of Eocene and Miocene age. Both sequences show elastic facies at their base (conglomerates, calcareous sandstones, silty clays) and end with thick lacustrine limestones and pedogenic calcretes are characterised by rather confined facies, palygorskite-rich, with some gypsum in the second sequence. The recent evolution of the region is marked by the dissection of the tableland that is lined with high cliffs. The water flaw is mainly through wide karst features as there is no major river on the tableland. Silicifications which affect the different facies, form pods of various shape and size, and show an erratic spatial distribution. In the calcareous sandstones, there are irregularly shaped tubules of about 5 cm in diameter, more planar bodies from 5 to 50 cm thick, which frequently display voids lined with translucent silica concretions. The conglomerates display relatively few silicifications, the more characteristic ones consist of a silica cortex on some Limestone pebble and silica plates fitting closely the base of the pebbles. The lacustrine limestones and the calcretes from the upper part of the formation show frequently well developed silicifications. These show very variable shapes; horizontally stretching layers, interconnected or isolated amoeba-like bodies, thin slabs, karst micro-breccia, with frequent concretionnary structures, and quartz crystallisations. Limestone nodules remain often included in these silicifications. The more argillaceous facies display either small tubules or thin plates formed of translucent concretionnary silica. As a rule, the importance of the voids and related structures (concretions, drusy crystals) has to be noticed in all these silicifications, sometimes they are also linked with fractures or karst pipes. Petrography of the silica minerals, their relation with the primary structures. their distribution and their succession, give invaluable information on the silicification processes. Microcrystalline and fibrous quartz are the most common silica minerals, including minor amounts of opal and euhedral quartz. But micrographic arrangements show clearly that primary opal deposits have been more extensive and have recrystallized into chalcedony, microcrystalline quartz, or even ''flame-like'' quartz. Silica deposits in voids make up an important part of the silica pods. The tubules and thin plates of translucent silica of the argillaceous facies are formed of laminar chalcedony deposited around voids. Silica deposits in voids are also particularly obvious in the sandstones. The pores between the quartz grains are then cemented by fibrous quartz and little opal. Some samples show very large cemented voids that cannot be related to the primary porosity of the sandstone. These large voids correspond to the dissolution of the primary calcareous cement, which even led to the collapse of the sandstone fabric. In the limestones, there are silicified micro-karst breccia with a very high primary porosity cemented by quartz crystals, and even in the large microcrystalline quartz zones there are numerous void fillings, the primary porosity often exceeding 50%. There is obviously the alternation of silica deposits and calcite dissolution. Beside the void filling, silicifications comprise also matrix epigenesis, that is replacement of the carbonate by silica with preservation of most of the limestone structures, without development of voids. Nevertheless, the epigenesis of the limestone matrix is restricted to the vicinity of the voids. The silicifications relate to diagenetic processes. The main part of the silica is formed of void deposits and matrix replacement (epigenesis) on the edge of the voids. These void deposits give evidence of the feeding solutions. The regularity of the deposits all around the voids point out to a hydrologic regime characterised by a ground-water our now. Silica originates most probably from alteration of the magnesian clay minerals along the ground-water path. Regarding the low solubility of silica in surficial waters, high flows are needed in order to renew continuously the silica precipitated from solution. This points to a relatively humid climate at time of silicification, and to relief and incised landscapes to bring about these high flows

Study on the contamination of fracture-karst water in Boshan District, China, 1997, Zhu X. Y. , Xu S. H. , Zhu J. J. , Zhou N. Q. , Wu C. Y. ,
Boshan is an industrial city in the center of Shandong Province where ground water is the only source for the urban water supply. The major water resource is fracture-karst water in the middle Ordovician carbonate rocks. Based on the hydrogeological investigation and mapping in this area we studied the geologic and hydrogeologic settings, the major pollution sources and the pathways of contamination, the principal contaminants, and their spatial distribution in ground water. The ground-water quality has also been estimated by the fuzzy mathematic method. The geostatistical method, such as the kriging method, was taken to simulate spatial distribution of the contaminants. The grey system method was adopted to forecast future contamination. An attempt at the remediation of Cr6 contamination in fracture-karst water was also discussed. Finally, some proposals for the protection of the ground-water environment in Boshan District are offered

Post-Miocene subtropical karst evolution, lower Suwannee River basin, Florida, 2000, Denizman C, Randazzo Af,
Morphometric characteristics of [~]25 000 karstic depressions suggest that the last phase of the post-Miocene karstic evolution within the lower Suwannee River basin of Florida has been controlled by the lower sea-level stands of the Pleistocene and the formation of the Suwannee River. During the Pleistocene, as interglacial seas retreated, marine terraces formed by sequential sea-level lowstands and the time period of subaerial exposure diminished toward the sea. Consequently, geomorphologically younger karst landforms formed as the elevation of marine terraces decreased. The evolutionary geomorphological development of this heavily karstified region produced more frequent and/or larger and more complex depressions at higher elevations. A geographic information system analysis of morphometric and spatial distribution parameters of the karstic depressions within the lower Suwannee River basin reveals that the Florida karst is represented by broad, shallow depressions with an average density of 6.07/km2 and an average pitting index of 14.5. Morphometric and spatial distribution parameters of karstic depressions show a great variation within the lower Suwannee River area and thus preclude a simple morphoclimatic classification of karst landforms. The Tertiary carbonate rocks of the subtropical Florida karst have relatively less joint frequency and significant primary porosity, and do not produce the extreme karst landforms observed in the massive limestones of the tropics

Spatial and temporal patterns of bacterial density and metabolic activity in a karst aquifer, 2001, Simon K. S. , Gibert J. , Petitot P. , Laurent R. ,
Karst aquifers are heterotrophic ecosystems fueled by organic matter imported from the surface. The temporal pattern of floods influences organic matter import and the spatial distribution of organic matter and biofilms in aquifer structural zones. We investigated spatial and temporal patterns of bacterial density and activity as indicators of energy availability and microbial dynamics in a karst aquifer. During baseflow, bacterial density and microbial hydrolytic activity were similar in the upper and lower zones of the aquifer. Floods apparently scoured aquifer biofilms and trans ported soil bacteria into the aquifer, increasing inactive bacterial density in the water column. Respiring bacterial density did not respond to floods and changed little over time. The overall proportion of total bacteria that were respiring was very high on some dates, resulting from a reduction of inactive cell density during flood recession. Floods appear to be key events in scouring senescent microbial assemblages in karst aquifers and stimulating microbial recolonization of the aquifer matrix. We conclude that a conceptual model of karst aquifer structure and function should incorporate changes caused by alternation between flooding and drying in the aquifer

Geostatistical and geochemical analysis of surface water leakage into groundwater on a regional scale: a case study in the Liulin karst system, northwestern China, 2001, Wang Y. , Ma T. , Luo Z. ,
The Liulin karst system is typical of hydrogeological systems in northern China, with a group of springs as the dominant way of regional groundwater discharge. Surface water leakage into groundwater has been observed in six sections of the rivers in the study area. To extract hydrogeological information from hydrochemical data, 29 water samples were collected from the system. On a trilinear diagram, most of the groundwater samples are clustered around the surface waters, indicating the effect of leakage on their chemistry. R-mode factor analysis was made on seven variables (Na, Ca, Mg, SO4, Cl, HCO3, and NO3) of the samples and three principal factors were obtained: the F-1 factor is composed of Ca, Mg and SO4, the F-2 of HCO3 and NO3, and the F-3 of Na and Cl. These factors are then used as regionalized variables in ordinary Kriging for unbiased estimates of the spatial variations of their scores. Considering regional hydrogeological conditions, the hydrogeological implications of the spatial distribution of the factor scores as related to the effects of the surface leakage are discussed. To evaluate the geochemical processes, the geochemical modeling code NETPATH was employed. The modeling results: show that mixing commonly occurs in the system and dolomite dissolution is more important than calcite dissolution. Dedolomitization (calcite precipitation and dolomite dissolution driven by anhydrite dissolution) is locally important, in the western flank of the system where the surface water leakage has the least effect.

Integrated high-resolution geophysical investigations as potential tools for water resource investigations in karst terrain, 2002, Mcgrath R. J. , Styles P. , Thomas E. , Neale S. ,
Karstic aquifers can be particularly vulnerable to both pollution from surface activities and large-scale dewatering from mineral winning operations. This is because of the enhanced vertical and lateral flow paths, resulting from the dissolution of carbonate species by rainfall. Often this process results in the development of voids that can range in size from several centimetres to several tens of metres. To date, groundwater vulnerability maps for England and Wales, including karst areas, have been produced using a methodology that does not consider the presence of karst features. The uncertainties that are presented by the potential for pollution by the presence of water-carrying conduits in karst areas, where there are proposed or existing limestone quarries, require new techniques for detecting and delineating underground cave systems. In order for any mapping technique to provide an acceptable assessment of vulnerability, the location and spatial distribution of high permeability flow paths need to be established. Of the available geophysics techniques that may allow for the identification of such features, microgravity and resistivity imaging are likely to be the most successful. Microgravity surveying has the potential to identify the presence and location of such voids, and with the integration of electrical tomographic work, can provide 'targets' for the location of monitoring boreholes. Whilst these techniques are intensive and may not be cost effective on a regional scale, they do have the potential to provide high-resolution data over smaller areas, which would be invaluable to any site or area-specific assessment of vulnerability

Lower Miocene gypsum palaeokarst in the Madrid Basin (central Spain): dissolution diagenesis, morphological relics and karst end-products, 2002, Rodriguezaranda J. P. , Calvo J. P. , Sanzmontero M. E. ,
The Miocene sedimentary record of the Madrid Basin displays several examples of palaeokarstic surfaces sculpted within evaporite formations. One of these palaeokarstic surfaces represents the boundary between two main lithostratigraphic units, the Miocene Lower and Intermediate units of the Madrid Basin. The palaeokarst formed in lacustrine gypsum deposits of Aragonian age and corresponds to a surface palaeokarst (epikarst), further buried by terrigenous deposits of the overlying unit. Karst features are recognized up to 5.5 m beneath the gypsum surface. Exokarst and endokarst zones are distinguished by the spatial distribution of solution features, i.e. karren, dolines, pits, conduits and caves, and collapse breccias, sedimentary fills and alteration of the original gypsum across the karst profiles. The development of the gypsum palaeokarst began after drying out of a saline lake basin, as supported by recognition of root tubes, later converted to cylindrical and funnel-shaped pits, at the top of the karstic profiles. The existence of a shallow water table along with low hydraulic gradients was the main factor controlling the karst evolution, and explains the limited depth reached by both exokarst and endokarst features. Synsedimentary fill of the karst system by roughly laminated to massive clay mudstone with subordinate carbonate and clastic gypsum reflects a punctuated sedimentation regime probably related to episodic heavy rainfalls typical of arid to semi-arid climates. Duration of karstification is of the order of several thousands of years, which is consistent with previous statements that gypsum karstification can develop rapidly over geologically short time periods

Phosphorus mobility in a karst landscape under pasture grazing system, 2003, Allousha Ga, Boyer Dg, Belesky Dp, Halvorson Jj,
The spatial distribution and partitioning of water dissolved phosphorus fractions in the soil profile of a grazed karst sinkhole landscape were investigated. We also measured P fractions in surface runoff entering a sinkhole drain and in karst spring flow draining the study area. Grazing increased total N, C, and all forms of P of soil. Dissolved inorganic orthophosphate (DPi) was the highest in the surface soil layer and diminished significantly with depth. The proportion of dissolved unreactive phosphorus (DPu) increased with soil depth. Changes in DPu with landscape position and depth were closely correlated with changes in dissolved organic carbon (DOC) suggesting that the mobility and transport of DPu was mediated by DOC. Landscape position sampling showed molybdate reactive phosphorus (MRP) and DPu increased toward the bottom and center of sinkholes. The distribution of DPi and DPu in surface runoff and that occurring in underground watercourses confirms the significance of DPu transported into karst groundwater

Application of matrix analysis in delineating sinkhole risk areas along highway (I-70 near Frederick, Maryland), 2003, Zhou W. F. , Beck B. F. , Adams A. L. ,
Sinkhole collapse in the area of Maryland Interstate 70 (I-70) and nearby roadways south of Frederick, Maryland, has been posing a threat to the safety of the highway operation as well as other structures. The occurrence of sinkholes is associated with intensive land development. However, the geological conditions that have been developing over the past 200 million years in the Frederick Valley control the locations of the sinkholes. Within an area of approximately 8 km(2), 138 sinkholes are recorded and their spatial distribution is irregular, but clustered. The clustering indicates the existence of an interaction between the sinkholes. The point pattern of sinkholes is considered to be a sample of a Gibbsian point process from which the hard-core Strauss Model is developed. The radius of influence is calculated for the recorded sinkholes which are most likely to occur within 30 m of an existing sinkhole. The stochastic analysis of the existing sinkholes is biased toward the areas with intensive land use. This bias is adjusted by considering (1) topography, (2) proximity to topographic depressions, (3) interpreted rock formation, (4) soil type, (5) geophysical anomalies, (6) proximity to geologic structures, and (7) thickness of overburden. Based on the properties of each factor, a scoring system is developed and the average relative risk score for individual 30-m segments of the study area is calculated. The areas designated by higher risk levels would have greater risk of a sinkhole collapse than the areas designated by lower risk levels. This risk assessment approach can be updated as more information becomes available

Simulation of the development of karst aquifers using a coupled continuum pipe flow model - art. no. 1057, 2003, Liedl R. , Sauter M. , Huckinghaus D. , Clemens T. , Teutsch G. ,
[1] This paper is intended to provide insight into the controlling mechanisms of karst genesis based on an advanced modeling approach covering the characteristic hydraulics in karst systems, the dissolution kinetics, and the associated temporal decrease in flow resistance. Karst water hydraulics is strongly governed by the interaction between a highly conductive low storage conduit network and a low-conductive high-storage rock matrix under variable boundary conditions. Only if this coupling of flow mechanisms is considered can an appropriate representation of other relevant processes be achieved, e.g., carbonate dissolution, transport of dissolved solids, and limited groundwater recharge. Here a parameter study performed with the numerical model Carbonate Aquifer Void Evolution (CAVE) is presented, which allows the simulation of the genesis of karst aquifers during geologic time periods. CAVE integrates several important features relevant for different scenarios of karst evolution: (1) the complex hydraulic interplay between flow in the karst conduits and in the small fissures of the rock matrix, (2) laminar as well as turbulent flow conditions, (3) time-dependent and nonuniform recharge to both flow systems, (4) the widening of the conduits accounting for appropriate physicochemical relationships governing calcite dissolution kinetics. This is achieved by predefining an initial network of karst conduits ('protoconduits'') which are allowed to grow according to the amount of aggressive water available due to hydraulic boundary conditions. The increase in conduit transmissivity is associated with an increase in conduit diameters while the conductivity of the fissured system is assumed to be constant in time. The importance of various parameters controlling karst genesis is demonstrated in a parameter study covering the recharge distribution, the upgradient boundary conditions for the conduit system, and the hydraulic coupling between the conduit network and the rock matrix. In particular, it is shown that conduit diameters increase in downgradient or upgradient direction depending on the spatial distribution (local versus uniform) of the recharge component which directly enters the conduit system

Paleosubsidence and active subsidence due to evaporite dissolution in the Zaragoza area (Huerva River valley, NE Spain): processes, spatial distribution and protection measures for transport routes, 2004, Guerrero J. , Gutierrez F. , Lucha P. ,
The lowest 17-km long reach of the Huerva River valley, down to its confluence with the Ebro River in Zaragoza city, flows across salt-bearing evaporites of the Ebro Tertiary Basin (NE Spain). Upstream, the horizontally lying Miocene evaporites are interfingered with non-soluble distal alluvial fan facies (shales and sandstones). The proportion of soluble facies in the Huerva River valley increases in a downstream direction towards the basin depocenter. On the basis of the type and magnitude of the paleosubsidence features, the valley has been divided into four reaches. Along reach I, undeformed terrace deposits less than 4 m thick rest on insoluble detrital bedrock. In reaches II and III, dissolution at the alluvium-bedrock boundary has generated local thickening, deformation and paleocollapse structures, which only affect the alluvial mantle. In reach IV, terrace deposits thicken to over 60 m resulting from a large-scale synsedimentary subsidence. In this sector, subsidence locally affects to both the alluvium and the underlying bedrock. This indicates that dissolution acts at the rockhead beneath the alluvial cover (alluvial karst) and within the evaporitic substratum (interstratal karst). The development of an intraevaporitic karst in reach IV is attributed to gypsum and salt dissolution. Irregular terrace gravel bodies (gravel pockets) embedded in a fine-grained matrix associated with paleocollapse structures have been interpreted as liquefaction-fluidization structures resulting from ground acceleration and suction induced by catastrophic collapses. Subsidence is currently active in the region affecting areas with a thin alluvial cover in reaches III and IV. The low subsidence activity in most of Zaragoza city is explained by the presence of thickened (around 50 m) and indurated alluvial deposits. In the surrounding area, numerous buildings in Cadrete and Santa Fe villages have been severely damaged by subsidence. Natural and human-induced subsidence favours the development of slope movements in the gypsum scarp overlooking Cadrete village. Several transport routes including the Imperial Canal (irrigation canal) and the recently completed Madrid-Barcelona high-speed railway are affected by human-induced sinkholes. The paleocollapse structures exposed in the trenches of this railway and a ring road under construction point to hazardous locations underlain by cavities and collapse structures where special protection measures should be applied. Rigid structures are recommended beneath the high-speed railway with sufficient strength to span the larger sinkholes with no deformation. Electronic monitoring devices linked to a warning system can detect subtle subsidence-induced deformations in carriageways or railways. This research demonstrates that the study of the paleokarst helps to understand the processes involved in the present-day subsidence phenomena and their general spatial distribution. (C) 2003 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved

How types of carbonate rock assemblages constrain the distribution of karst rocky desertified land in Guizhou Province, PR China: Phenomena and mechanisms, 2004, Wang S. J. , Li R. L. , Sun C. X. , Zhang D. F. , Li F. Q. , Zhou D. Q. , Xiong K. N. , Zhou Z. F. ,
In Southwestern China karst rocky desertification (a process of land degradation involving serious soil erosion, extensive exposure of basement rocks, drastic decrease of soil productivity and the appearance of a desert-like landscape) results from irrational land use on the fragile, thin karst soil. Soil particles in the Guizhou karst plateau were accumulated predominantly from residues left behind after the dissolution of carbonate rocks, and the thickness of the soil layer is related to the amount of argillaceous substances in the lost carbonate rock. This paper examines the spatial distribution of karst rocky desertified (KRD) land in Guizhou Province, and relates it to the different assemblages of basement carbonate rocks. Types of carbonate rock assemblages are discussed using a 1 : 500000 scale digital-distribution map. Their distribution and sensitivity to erosion are analysed, demonstrating that the occurrence of KRD land is positively correlated to homogeneous carbonate rocks. Differences in physical and chemical properties of limestone and dolomite rocks lead to differences in dissolution, accumulation rate of soil particles and relief on the surface, and these factors influence land-use potential.

Stable isotope (H-2, O-18 and Sr-87/Sr-86) and hydrochemistry monitoring for groundwater hydrodynamics analysis in a karst aquifer (Gran Sasso, Central Italy), 2005, Barbieri M, Boschetti T, Petitta M, Tallini M,
This paper deals with chemical and isotope analyses of 21 springs, which were monitored 3 times in the course of 2001; the monitoring program was focused on the groundwater of the Gran Sasso carbonate karst aquifer (Central Italy), typical of the mountainous Mediterranean area. Based on the hydrogeological setting of the study area, 6 groups of springs with different groundwater circulation patterns were distinguished. The hydrogeochemistry of their main components provided additional information about groundwater flowpaths, confirming the proposed classification. The spatial distribution of their ion concentrations validated the assumptions underlying the hydrogeological conceptual model, showing diverging groundwater flowpaths from the core to the boundaries of the aquifer. Geochemical modelling and saturation index computation elucidated water-carbonate rock interaction, contribution by alluvial aquifers at the karst aquifer boundaries, as well as impacts of human activities. The analysis of O-18/O-16 and H-2/H values and their spatial distribution in the aquifer substantiated the hydrogeology-based classification of 6 groups of springs, making it possible to trace back groundwater recharge areas based on mean isotope elevations; the latter were calculated by using two rain monitoring stations. Sr-87/Sr-86 analyses showed seasonal changes in many springs: in winter-spring, the changes are due to inflow of new recharge water, infiltrating into younger rocks and thus increasing (87)sr/Sr-86 values; in summer-autumn, when there is no recharge and spring discharge declines, changes are due to base flow groundwater circulating in more ancient rocks, with a subsequent drop in Sr-87/Sr-86 values. The results of this study stress the contribution that spatio-temporal isotope monitoring can give to the definition of groundwater flowpaths and hydrodynamics in fissured and karst aquifers, taking into account their hydrogeological and hydrogeochemical setting. (c) 2005 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved

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