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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 alluvial plain is a plain formed by the deposition of water borne sediments [16].?

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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 underground river (Keyword) returned 50 results for the whole karstbase:
Showing 1 to 15 of 50
Exploring an Underground River, 1950, Parker, John Dyas

Geomorphology of Punchbowl and Signature Caves, Wee Jasper, New South Wales, 1964, Jennings, J. N.

Because of the ease of its exploration, the Punchbowl-Signature system (Map reference 677587, Army 1/50,000 Sheet 8627-IV, Goodradigbee) is the most frequently visited of the Wee Jasper caves though it contains even less calcite decoration than does Dip Cave. On the other hand, the system is of considerable scientific interest, both biological and geomorphological. Biologically the interest centres on the long-term investigations of the colony of Bentwing Bats (Miniopterus schreibersii blepotis), initiated by G. Dunnet, sustained and enlarged by D. Purchase. On the geomorphological side, though it is now a dry inactive system like Dip Cave, it possesses a morphology which reveals much of the history of its excavation by a former underground river and so contrasts with its neighbour in the same geological formation only a mile away where there are many difficulties in the way of interpretation of its evolution (Jennings, 1963a).


A Chemical Investigation of some Groundwater of the Northern Limestone at Jenolan Caves, 1977, James Julia M. , Handel M. L.

A brief description of the geology and drainage of the Northern limestone at Jenolan Caves is introduced. Approaches to karst geochemistry are given. The reasons are given for the choice of complete chemical analyses followed by calculations of the thermochemical parameters (saturation indices with respect to calcite and dolomite, SIc and SId, and the partial pressure of carbon dioxide PCO2) for the Jenolan groundwaters. The methods of chemical analysis and thermochemical calculations are reported. The results of the groundwater survey are presented both as the raw chemical data and the derived thermochemical data. The raw data give more useful information than the calculated parameters. The results obtained by this survey are consistent with observations and the previous knowledge of the underground drainage of the Northern limestone. The water chemistry reflected the rock type and the residence time of the water in bedrock and gravels. It is concluded that the Jenolan underground River and Central River have different types of source and that Central River is not a braid of the Jenolan Underground River.


Spider Cave, Jenolan - A Fault Controlled System, 1984, Cox Guy, Welch Bruce

Spider Cave is an influent cave, representing one stage in the progressive capture of the surface flow of the Jenolan River by a cave system. It consists principally of a rarely-active inlet passage, largely of phreatic form, which descends to join the large passage carrying the Jenolan Underground River. Both the position and the form of the inlet passage have been strongly influenced by the presence of a fault, which has also influenced the course of the surface river, and given rise to a large cliff - Frenchmans Bluff. The fault-line has also affected the development of the main underground riverway.


Techniques gophysiques de type lectromagntiques appliques l'tude du karst nivernais, 1985, Couturaud A. , Benderitter Y.
STUDY OF KARSTIC DRAINS ENVIRONMENT BY GEOPHYSICAL TECHNIQUES (ELECTRIC AND ELECTROMAGNETIC) - Geophysical techniques (electric and electromagnetic) are tested on two underground rivers of the Nivernais karst (Bourgogne, France). The first site is an important dry valley and the second locates at the border of a plateau. No sharp image of the known galleries were obtained on both sites, but the first one shows a higher density of anomalies corresponding to the cave. In the axis of the valley is a weak resistivity anomaly, without any relation with the karstic drainage and which has not superficial origin. This anomaly would be the consequence of a fracturing of bottom valley. Others zones of fractures are evidenced, cross-cutting the conduits. The second one has also weak resistivity zones, independent of the cave, which are interpreted as annex system (hydrological sense). Some reflections on theoretical and methodological aspect of this type of research are proposed.

Quelques aspects du karst en Chine, 1985, Tricart, J.
Some characteristic features of karst in China Karst terrain is widespread in China: some 2,000,000km2, corresponding to 20-25% of the whole surface of the country. It occurs at very different altitudes and under quite different climates, from the region of Zhoukoudian, where has been found the skull of the Pekin Man, to the Tibet Plateau, where there is presently permafrost conditions, and up to southern tropical moist China, near Canton and Guilin. Recent chinese investigations have proved that most karst features are old. In Southern China a tropical karst (tower-karst or "mogotes" karst) is associated with lacustrine deposits containing the well-known Hipparion Fauna, of Miocene age. Its predates the intensive uplift of the Himalaya and of the Tibet, which has begun during the Pliocene and has continued during all the Pleistocene. The same fossils have been found in this tropical karst in present permafrost areas, above 5,000m. In the region of Guilin (Guangxi Province), this tropical karst has been described. There is evidence for the former existence of a covered karst, where limestones and dolomitic limestones were covered by a thick layer of reddish residual clays, with limonite. This mantle has been stripped during different periods of drier and probably cooler climate, has suggested by pollen spectra. In some places, these residual products have been trapped into pits, cracks, and caves. We have observed a small quantity of red clay painting limestone stalactites and sinters (Chuanshan and Leng Yin Yen Caves, in the surroundings of Guilin). They present sometimes a mining interest and some extractive industries are presently active (limonite, cassierite, etc.). Many caves have been surveyed by the Institute of Karst geology, in Guilin. Some have been equiped for tourism, around Guilin. All these caves are old. Some radiocarbon dating of speleothems yield ages of 33,000 year BP. The famous carving of the Leng Yen Cave have not been affected by calcite deposition from dripping since at least 500 years. The large caves that have been surveyed should correspond to a long evolution span. Along the Lijiang River, at least two terraces can be observed. They are built with gravels and pebbles, covered with thinner sand and loam, suggesting climatic changes, also attested by the changes of fauna and vegetation. These past cooler periods are characterised by an opened vegetation, with the striping of the old weathering cover of the former tropical karst. These karst terrains have been investigated in China for management purposes. Groundwater oscillations have frequently resulted in land subsidences damaging buildings, and in dramatic collapses destroying fields, roads. Sometimes, underground collapse plugged caves and dammed underground rivers, resulting in floodings. The caves are frequently used as reservoirs for irrigation and power plants.

Le gographe chinois Xu Xiake, un prcurseur de la karstologie et de la splologie, 1993, Cai Z. , Yang W. , Maire R.
Xu Xiake (1587-1641), the Chinese explorer and geographer, began in 1637 an astonishing four-year long journey in southwest China. Xu Xiake travels, written as a diary, is made up of 600 000 chinese letters: it is a geographical encyclopaedia belonging to the ancient masterpieces of China. Descriptions of the karstic geomorphology amount to more than 100 000 letters, that is to say the equivalent of 250 pages. He visited 288 karstic caves and described 22 types of karstic landforms. Xu Xiakes contribution to the study of the subterranean world is extremely valuable: deposits, underground rivers and lakes, climate, source of water, exploitation of the caves by humans and exploration techniques.

Nouveaux traages sur le massif de la Pierre Saint-Martin (Pyrnes-Atlantiques), 1994, Douat M. , Salomon J. N.
In 1982 and 1992 cavers observed the contamination of the B3 and Couey-Lotge underground rivers emerging at the Issaux springs This contamination was thought to be caused by the PSM water purificatlon station which discharges effluents into a fracture. The ARSIP and the LGPA laboratories were asked by the DDA (Pyrenees-Atlantiques administration) to carry out an hydrogeological study to prove the origin of this contamination and determine the limit of the Issaux catchment in the Guillers area in order to find a new site for a modern water purification station. Three uranine tracings were made (Water purification station - B3 underground river - BG. 106 shaft). The first two tracings emerged at the Issaux springs and the third tracing came out at the Bentia spring (Sainte-Engrace). These tracings confirm the hypothesis on the surficial basin limits between Issaux and Saint Vincent.

RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN FRACTURES AND KARSTIFICATION - THE OIL-BEARING PALEOKARST OF ROSPO MARE (ITALY), 1994, Soudet H. J. , Sorriaux P. , Rolando J. P. ,
The Rospo Mare oil field is located in the Adriatic Sea, 20 km off the Italian coast. The reservoir lies at a depth of 1300 m and consists of a paleokarst oi Oligocene to Miocene age which developed within Cretaceous limestones, now covered by 1200 m of Mio-Pliocene sequences. The oil column is about 140 m 8 high. The karstic nature of the reservoir was identified through vertical, cored drill holes which allowed us to analyse the various solution features and the sedimentary infilling (speleothems, terra rossa, marine clays), as well as their vertical distribution. Erosion morphology at the top of the karst is highly irregular, including in particular paleovalleys as well as many pit-shaped sink holes. Detailed geophysical knowledge of that morphology helped to optimize the development of the field through horizontal drilling. Observations concerning the upper part of the reservoir were compared to a palaeokarst of the same age, outcropping widely onshore, in quarries located nearby. The Rospo Mare paleokarst is an integral part of the ante Miocene paleokarst assemblages of the periphery of the Mediterranean which were formed in tropical conditions. Only the fractures enhanced by meteoric water during the formation of the karat are important for reservoir connectivity. During the formation of the karst there were several phases of dissolution and infilling which modified the geometry of the open fissures and only these fractures play an important role in the reservoir drainage. Vertically we can distinguish three very different zones from top to bottom: at the top the epikarst (0-35 m) in a zone of extension. All the fractures have been enlarged by dissolution but the amount of infilling by clay is substantial. The clays are derived either from alteration of the karat fabric or by deposition during the Miocene transgression; the percolation zone (15-45 m) is characterized by its network of large fractures vertically enlarged by dissolution which corresponds to the relict absorption zones in the paleokarst. These fractures, which usually have a pluridecametric spacing, connect the epi-karst with the former sub-horizontal river system. This zone has been intersected by the horizontal wells during the field development. In this zone there are local, horizontal barriers oi impermeable clay which can block vertical transmissibility. In these low permeability zones the vertical fractures have not been enlarged due to dissolution hence the horizontal barrier; the zone of underground rivers (35-70 m) is characterized by numerous horizontal galleries which housed the subterranean ground water circulation. When these fissures are plurimetric in extent this can lead to gallery collapse with the associated fill by rock fall breccia. This can partly block the river system but always leaves a higher zone of free circulation with high permeabilities of several hundreds of Darcys. These galleries form along the natural fracture system relative to the paleohydraulic gradient which in some cases has been preserved. The zone below permanent ground water level with no circulation of fluids is characterized by dissolution limited to non-connected vugs. Very locally these fissures can be enlarged by tectonic fractures which are non-connected and unimportant for reservoir drainage. Laterally, only the uppermost zone can be resolved by seismic imaging linked with horizontal well data (the wells are located at the top of the percolation zone). The Rospo Mare reservoir shows three distinct horizontal zones: a relict paleokarst plateau with a high index of open connected fractures, (area around the A and B platforms); a zone bordering the plateau (to the north-east of the plateau zone) very karstified but intensely infilled by cap rock shales (Miocene - Oligocene age); a zone of intensely disturbed and irregular karst paleotopography which has been totally infilled by shales. The performance of the production wells is dependent on their position with respect to the three zones noted above and their distance from local irregularities in the karst paleotopography (dolines, paleovalleys)

Interprtation morphomtrique et splo_gense : exemple de rseaux karstiques de Basse-Provence (directions de galeries, modle et maillage structural), 1997, Blanc Jeanjoseph, Monteau Raymond
Successive tectonic phases on limestone massifs are at the origin of a fracturation grid with several pattern dimensions, and linear or organized drain directions. Mechanical reactivations are observed from Oligocene until Plio-Quaternary on a former "pyreneo-provenale" structure (Eocene). Statistical analysis of gallery and fracture directions, cave levels and descent stages (overdeepening) show several erosional stages occurring after the formation of the Antevindobonian erosional surface. The active speleogenesis during Oligocene and Miocene was controlled by tectonics in connection with European rifting and mediterranean opening. In Messinian a short and significant lowering of mediterranean base level (and water table) made drastic erosion and created vertical pits. The horizontal cave level dug during the stabilization phase of Pliocene, now perched over underground rivers, shows a new overdeepening because of glacio-eustatic Quaternary oscillations. Compressive or distensive mechanical reactivations (Upper Miocene, Pliocene, Quaternary) modified the drainage and consequently the cave organization: self-piracy, confluence and diffluence. In the endokarst, the drainage inversion can be detected in late Upper continental Miocene and early Messinian (6,5 Ma), in correlation with the tilting and extension of the continental margin. Five caves in Provence are studied: Sabre, Petit Saint-Cassien, Rampins, Planesselve river, and Tete du Cade networks.

Did the Argonauts of Greek myth go underground in the Slovene karst?, 1998, Shaw Trevor R. , Macqueen James G.

Lazius's maps of Carniola, the first of which was printed in 1545, have a note at Vrhnika, where the Ljubljanica rises from its subterranean course, saying that the Argonauts of the Greek golden fleece myth went underground there on their way from the Black Sea to the Adriatic. The original Greek sources describe only a surface route, either following a branch of the Sava running west to the sea, or requiring their ship to be carried overland for this part of the journey. Elsewhere, though, it was said that fish pass from one sea to the other by underground channels. The subterranean variant of the Argonaut story has not been traced before Lazius, though he may have got the idea from another mapmaker, Hirschvogel, who had lived in Ljubljana. Münster's map of 1550 implies the existence of an underground river between Vrhnika and the Mirna river in Istria, but it does not associate it with the Argonaut story. The idea seems to have arisen just when maps were showing that hills formed a barrier between the east-flowing Sava and the rivers of the Adriatic basin, and when the existence of caves and underground rivers was becoming more widely known.


Reconstruction of the development history of karstic water networks on the southern part of the Gšmšr-Torna karst on the basis of ruined caves and landforms, 1999, Já, Nos Mó, Ga

The author demonstrates the surface development of the Gomor-Torna karst situated on the Hungarian-Slovakian border from the Tertiary until the present day. He follows the process of transition from the covered karst conditions to the open karst on the karst plateau, and its effect upon the landforms and the karstic water network. He studied the evolution of surface and sub-surface water networks, and the regularity of the movements of underground rivers based on water tracing. He reconstructed the ancient surface outflow directions of the covered karst from the scarce remains of the epigenetic valleys inherited from cover deposits onto the limestone surface, from ruined swallow hole lines in valleys, as well as from decaying water conducting tubes generated in earlier phases.


Le karst des plateaux jurassiques de la moyenne valee de l'Ardeche; datation par paleomagnetisme des phases d'evolution plio-quaternaires (aven de la Combe Rajeau), 2001, Audra P, Camus H, Rochette P,
Thanks to its immunity, karst is an excellent recorder of environmental change, which also offers the possibility for dating. Karst records position of old base levels, in particular to which were linked horizontal underground drains located near the piezometric surface. After a base level lowering, a new drain appears at a lower level, the old perched drain being abandoned. If base level lowering is slow, the initial drain is progressively entrenched, forming a canyon. The 'Combe Rajeau' cave system corresponds to this last type: a 100 m high underground canyon, continuously entrenched during the Ardeche valley downcutting. The underground river left several terraces during the entrenchment. Knowing that speleothem U/Th radiometric dating method covers only the most recent part of karst systems history, which spans over several million years, paleomagnetism has been applied to date the Combe Rajeau sediments. A more precise knowledge of the evolution phases of this system provides a better understanding of the middle Ardeche valley evolution upon which it depends

Modes de positionnement topographique et lectromagntique dun siphon. Exemple du Qattine Azar (Liban), 2002, Courbon, Paul
Topographical and electromagnetic positioning of a deep sump: Qattine Azar (Lebanon) - Wasting, pollution, climatic modifications, urbanisation and demographic explosion will generate a serious water scarcity in many countries, among them, the Middle East. In Lebanon, after the discovery of an important underground river, is established a water impounding project, needing a 280 meters drilling through limestone. The author describes the topographic method used to survey the cave and to set up the future drilling. The survey has been confirmed by an electromagnetic positioning ARCAS (radiolocation) perfected by Joan Erra. The accuracy of the two determinations is estimated.

Contribution la connaissance de lhydrogologie karstique du plateau de Calern (Alpes-Maritimes, France).Traage laven du Moustique, 2002, Martin Marie, Audra Philippe
Contribution to Calern karst hydrogeology knowledge (Alpes-Maritimes, France). Dye tracing in Moustique aven - Within the framework of a hydrogeological study of the plateau of Calern, an artificial tracer has been put into the underground river of the Moustique aven. The dye has reappeared at a single outlet: the Bramafan spring. This emergence locates at the east of the Calern plateau, in the Loups valley, at the contact between Jurassic limestones and Triassic impervious formations. It appears as being the main outlet of this vast karst area.

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