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Enviroscan Ukrainian Institute of Speleology and Karstology

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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 dispersivity is a geometric property of a porous medium which determines the dispersion characteristics of the medium by relating the components of pore velocity to the dispersion coefficient [22].?

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

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KarstBase a bibliography database in karst and cave science.

Featured articles from Cave & Karst Science Journals
Chemistry and Karst, White, William B.
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Featured articles from other Geoscience Journals
Karst environment, Culver D.C.
Mushroom Speleothems: Stromatolites That Formed in the Absence of Phototrophs, Bontognali, Tomaso R.R.; D’Angeli Ilenia M.; Tisato, Nicola; Vasconcelos, Crisogono; Bernasconi, Stefano M.; Gonzales, Esteban R. G.; De Waele, Jo
Calculating flux to predict future cave radon concentrations, Rowberry, Matt; Marti, Xavi; Frontera, Carlos; Van De Wiel, Marco; Briestensky, Milos
Microbial mediation of complex subterranean mineral structures, Tirato, Nicola; Torriano, Stefano F.F;, Monteux, Sylvain; Sauro, Francesco; De Waele, Jo; Lavagna, Maria Luisa; D’Angeli, Ilenia Maria; Chailloux, Daniel; Renda, Michel; Eglinton, Timothy I.; Bontognali, Tomaso Renzo Rezio
Evidence of a plate-wide tectonic pressure pulse provided by extensometric monitoring in the Balkan Mountains (Bulgaria), Briestensky, Milos; Rowberry, Matt; Stemberk, Josef; Stefanov, Petar; Vozar, Jozef; Sebela, Stanka; Petro, Lubomir; Bella, Pavel; Gaal, Ludovit; Ormukov, Cholponbek;
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Your search for input (Keyword) returned 185 results for the whole karstbase:
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Further Studies at the Blue Waterholes, Cooleman Plain, N.S.W., 1969-77, Part I, Climate and Hydrology, 1983,
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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.

Further Studies At The Blue Waterholes, Cooleman Plain, N.S.W., 1969-77, Part II, Water Chemistry And Discussion, 1983,
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Jennings, J. N.

The 1969-77 data confirm that groundwater temperature is significantly higher than air temperature at mean catchment altitude but provide only partial support for an explanation in terms of soil temperature and insulation of drainage from cold air ponding over the Plain. Higher pH of output than input streams is attributed mainly to percolation water chemistry. Water chemistry of two contrasted input streams suggests non-karst rock weathering has an important effect on allogenic input streams. An inverse relationship between carbonate hardness and output discharge is found again and attributed mainly to faster transit through the limestone at high flows. Summer has a steeper regression than winter due to precipitation and high flows depressing carbon dioxide and carbonate concentrations more in that season than in winter. Picknett graphs show how solutional capacity varies through the hydrologic system, with aggressive input streams, mainly saturated percolation water, and rarely saturated output springs because of the allogenic component in the last. The total carbonate load of Cave Creek is directly related to discharge, with little seasonal difference so the annual regression is chosen for later calculation. When the carbonate load duration curve and frequency classes for Cave Creek are compared with those for other karsts, it falls into an intermediate class in which neither very high nor low flows dominate the pattern. This is attributed to a combination of a large allogenic input with a complex routing pattern. Consideration of most input stream solute concentration on one occasion indicates such close dependence on catchment geology that doubt is cast on the smallness of the 1965-9 allocation of carbonate contribution from non-karst rock weathering to the allogenic input. This is explained by new CSIRO rainfall chemistry figures from the Yass R. catchment which are smaller than those used before and by elimination of a previous error in calculation. This time subtraction of atmospheric salts is done on a daily basis with a decaying hyperbolic function. Correction of Cave Creek output for allogenic stream input follows the method adopted in 1965-9 but on a firmer basis, with the assumption of approximately equal water yeild per unit area from the non-karst and karst parts of the catchment being more factually supported than before. It remains a substantial correction. The correction for subjacent karst input to Cave Creek is also improved by putting the calculation in part on a seasonal basis; it remains small. The exposed solute load output shows the same seasonal pattern as was determined earlier, with a winter/spring maximum, and it again evinced much variation from year to year. So did annual rates. The mean annual loss of 29 B was slightly greater than for 1965-9. If this difference is real and not an experimental error, the reduced allowance for atmospheric salts and greater annual rainfall in the second period could explain the increase. This erosion rate of 29 B from an annual runoff of about 400mm places this karst where it would be expected in the world pattern of similar determinations in terms of both runoff and its proximity to the soil covered/bare karst dichotomy of Atkinson and Smith (1976). Combined with the other work at Cooleman Plain on erosion at specific kinds of site, an estimate of the spatial distribution of the limestone solution is presented. It agrees well with the similar attempt for Mendip by Atkinson and Smith (1976), when allowance is made for certain differences in method and context. The main conclusions are the great role of solution in the superficial zone and the unimportance of the contribution from caves. Conflict between this process study and the geomorphic history of Cooleman Plain remains and once again an explanation is sought in long persistence of a Tertiary ironstone cover inhibiting surface solution.

Mount Etna Caves: The Fight to Save Mount Etna Caves from Limestone Mining, 1987,
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Vavryn, Josef M. C.

This treatise is a record of the dates and events, heavily condensed, of the history of Mount Etna since The Caves area was first settled. I hope to show that since the fight to save Mount Etna was first joined, seriously, in 1964 or there about, that the Central Queensland Company and the Queensland Government has had no intention to voluntarily release Mount Etna from limestone mining. Even in the event that conservationists took the Queensland Government to court, the Government had plans prepared to counter such. That was clearly shown when the government rescinded the Recreation Reserve, R444, on Mount Etna and refused to give a fiat to prosecute the Government. The next event, the passing of a law stating that any mining lease inadvertently granted illegally will now stand and be legal, was aimed at the mining lease granted illegally including Mount Etna. At this point in time there is very little that is being done to save Mount Etna. I hope that this paper will create new interest and revive the flagging "Fight to Save Mount Etna", with input from ASF member societies and individuals. If the treatise does not have the desired effect of renewing interest in the fight, and if the Central Queensland Cement Co. Pty. Ltd. Starts mining the main cavernous northern face of Mount Etna, the next ASF conference, or possibly the following, will have a "Letter of Requiem" read to them. If the Australian Public can save the "Gordon-below-Franklin" area and the "Lindeman Island National Park", surely something can be done for Mount Etna.

Data Handling Techniques for Cave Survey Processing, 1989,
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Vaughantaylor, Keir

Survey processing programs require time consuming manual organisation of data, to ensure that processing takes place in a particular order. With appropriate data input techniques, data structures internal to a program and the use of recursive languages the need to order and pre-process data can be eliminated.

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Maloszewski P. , Rauert W. , Trimborn P. , Herrmann A. , Rau R. ,
Measurements of tritium and O-18 concentrations in precipitation and runoff were used to provide further insight into the groundwater storage properties of the Wimbachtal Valley, a catchment area of 33.4 km2, extending between 636 and 2713 m a.s.l. in the Berchtesgaden Alps. The catchment includes three aquifer types: a dominant porous aquifer; a fractured dolomite; a karstic limestone aquifer. Employing a simple hydrological model, information about mean transit times of environmental tracers is derived for the groundwater runoff component and several karst springs from the application of the exponential and dispersion flow models to the isotopic input and output data. The mean transit times calculated from a dispersion model with transit times of 4.1 years for O-18 and 4.2 years for tritium, which agree well, allow calculation of total (mobile stagnant) groundwater storage volume, which is equivalent to 6.6 m of water depth. Direct runoff appears negligible as in many other cases

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Jabro J. D. , Lotse E. G. , Fritton D. D. , Baker D. E. ,
Leaching of agricultural chemicals from the root and vadose zones into groundwater is an important environmental concern. To procure a better understanding of the movement and transport of agricultural chemicals through the soil profile, a field research study was conducted to estimate bromide leaching losses under saturated conditions where preferential flow is occurring. The field data were then used to evaluate the LEACHM model. Eighteen double-ring infiltrometers were used to apply a pulse (100 mm depth) of bromide tracer on two previously saturated soils located in a karst region of southeastern Pennsylvania. Internal drainage over the next seven days resulted in nearly 51 % of the applied Br- being leached to a depth below 0.80 m. The LEACHM model was used to simulate the amount of bromide leached in each infiltrometer. The model predicted, accurately, an average of 46% of the applied Br- leached below the 0.80 m depth. Mcan values of bromide concentration in the soil profile were predicted within two standard deviations of the measured mean for all depths except for the 0.20-0.40 m depth increment where the model overpredicted the bromide concentration. The model predictions of Br- leached were tested against field measurements using several statistical tests. The LEACHM model performed adequately under preferential flow conditions, perhaps because the infiltration rate at each site was used as a model input. This, actually, is some measure of the macropore flow process and suggests that simple models such as LEACHM can be used in the field, as long as a distribution of infiltration rates is used as an input

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Cunningham Ki, Northup De, Pollastro Rm, Wright Wg, Larock Ej,
Lechuguilla Cave is a deep, extensive, gypsum- and sulfur-bearing hypogenic cave in Carlsbad Caverns National Park, New Mexico, most of which (> 90%) lies more than 300 m beneath the entrance. Located in the arid Guadalupe Mountains, Lechuguilla's remarkable state of preservation is partially due to the locally continuous Yates Formation siltstone that has effectively diverted most vadose water away from the cave. Allocthonous organic input to the cave is therefore very limited, but bacterial and fungal colonization is relatively extensive: (1) Aspergillus sp. fungi and unidentified bacteria are associated with iron-, manganese-, and sulfur-rich encrustations on calcitic folia near the suspected water table 466 m below the entrance; (2) 92 species of fungi in 19 genera have been identified throughout the cave in oligotrophic (nutrient-poor) ''soils'' and pools; (3) cave-air condensate contains unidentified microbes; (4) indigenous chemoheterotrophic Seliberius and Caulobacter bacteria are known from remote pool sites; and (5) at least four genera of heterotrophic bacteria with population densities near 5 x 10(5) colony-forming units (CFU) per gram are present in ceiling-bound deposits of supposedly abiogenic condensation-corrosion residues. Various lines of evidence suggest that autotrophic bacteria are present in the ceiling-bound residues and could act as primary producers in a unique subterranean microbial food chain. The suspected autotrophic bacteria are probably chemolithoautotrophic (CLA), utilizing trace iron, manganese, or sulfur in the limestone and dolomitic bedrock to mechanically (and possibly biochemically) erode the substrate to produce residual floor deposits. Because other major sources of organic matter have not been detected, we suggest that these CLA bacteria are providing requisite organic matter to the known heterotrophic bacteria and fungi in the residues. The cavewide bacterial and fungal distribution, the large volumes of corrosion residues, and the presence of ancient bacterial filaments in unusual calcite speleothems (biothems) attest to the apparent longevity of microbial occupation in this cave

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Galdenzi S, Menichetti M,
The caves of the Umbria and Marche regions in central Italy are made up of three-dimensional maze systems that display different general morphologies due to the various geological and structural contexts. At the same time, the internal morphologies of the passages, galleries, and shafts present some similarity, with solutional galleries characterized by cupolas and blind pits, anastamotic passages, roof pendants, and phreatic passages situated at different levels. Some of these caves are still active, as is the case for Frassassi Gorge, Parrano Gorge, and Acquasanta Terme, with galleries that reach the phreatic zone, where there is a rising of highly mineralized water, rich in hydrosulfydric acid, and with erosion of limestone walls and the formation of gypsum. Elsewhere there are fossil caves, such as Monte Cucco and Pozzi della Piana, where large speleothems of gypsum are present 500 m or more above the regional water table. In all of these important karst systems it is possible to recognize basal input points through fracture and intergranular porosity networks at the base of the oxidizing zone in the core of the anticline, where mineralized water rises up from the Triassic evaporitic layers in small hydrogeological circuits. Different underground morphologies can derive from the presence of a water table related to an external stream or from the confined setting of the carbonate rocks, underlying low permeable sedimentary cover, where artesian conditions can occur

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Dzikowski M,
An instantaneous point injection of an artificial tracer makes it possible to identify the studied system directly. Whether or not convolutions can be carried out depends on the linearity and stationarity of the tracer-test system. Convolutions from the relations between the impulse responses and the hydrodynamic conditions in time-dependent systems are only allowed under special conditions. The framework in which such convolutions are possible is established and a convolution integral proposed which makes it possible to obtain the result of any input in time at one of the outlets of a vectorial system when an artificial tracer test has been carried out between the injection point and this outlet. A few theoretical examples of convolution results with variable flow rates are presented; these results were obtained with a computer code based on the proposed convolution integral

Convolution a debit variable a partir des reponses de tracages artificiels; application a un systeme karstique (Causse de Gramat, Lot, France): Convolution in time-dependent system from artificial tra, 1995,
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Dzikowski M, Delay F, Sauty Jp, Crampon N, De Marsily G,
ResumeLa realisation de tracages artificiels dans des conditions hydrodynamiques differentes sur le systeme karstique de I'Ouysse (Causse de Gamat, France) ainsi que de mesures physicochimiques portant entre autres sur les chlorures, nitrates et matieres en suspension ont permis d'exploiter les possibilites de l'analyse des systemes-tracages dependant du temps. Pour des tracages artificiels realises a des periodes hydrologiques differentes (basses-eaux et hauteseaux), les relations entre les reponses impulsionnelles a l'injection instantanee de traceur et les debits d'ecoulement variables associes sont mises en evidence sur un systeme a deux entrees (pertes de Themines et Theminettes) et une sortie (gouffre de Besaces). Ces relations etablissent une independance entre l'espace occupe par le traceur au cours de son transfert et les conditions hydrodynamiques dans la gamme de debits interessant chaque tracage. Des operations de convolutions d'entrees en chlorures, nitrates et matieres en suspension, basses sur l'hypothese d'un systeme a volume constant dependant du temps ont donc pu etre realisees. Les resultats sont compares au mesures experimentales au point de sortie (Besaces).AbstractArtificial tracer tests conducted under different hydrodynamic conditions on the karst system of Ouysse (Causse de Gramat, France) and chemical measurements have permitted the use of the time-dependent tracer test analysis. For artificial tracer experiments in different hydrologic periods (water rise and high flow), the relationships between the responses to an instantaneous injection are improved in a system defined by two inputs (losses of Themines and Theminettes). They show that the space occupied by the mass of tracer during its transfer can be considered as independent of the discharge according to the range of flow rate in which the tracer experiments have been conducted. Therefore, convolutions on chlorides, nitrates and suspended sediments are simulated under the hypothesis of a constant-volume and time-dependent system. The computed results are compared with the experimental data at the output (cave of Besaces)

Speleogenesis in Gypsum., 1996,
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Klimchouk Alexander
Satisfactory explanation of the origin and development of caves (speleogenesis) is a core problem of karst studies. Karst evolves as a circulation system, organised and interconnected through a conduit structure. Such a system may include superficial inputs and outputs, expressed as or related to karst landforms. However, there may be no such components if the system is represented entirely by conduits as in the case with deep-seated intrastratal karst. The main differences between speleogenesis in gypsum and in carbonate rocks lie in the chemistry and kinetics of their dissolution, in some of the lithological or structural peculiarities of the respective rocks and formations, and in their hydrogeological characteristics. The present chapter considers how these factors influence cave origin and development.

Nickpoint recession in karst terrains: An example from the Buchan karst, southeastern Australia, 1996,
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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

An examination of short-term variations in water quality at a karst spring in Kentucky, 1996,
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Ryan M. , Meiman J. ,
Water quality at many karst springs undergoes very high amplitude but relatively brief degradation following influxes of runoff. Accurately recording transient variations requires more rigorous sampling strategies than traditional methods, A pilot study to determine the usefulness of high-frequency, flow-dependent sampling strategies, combined with coincidental quantitative dye tracer tests, was implemented in the Big Spring Ground-Water Basin in Mammoth Cave National Park, Kentucky. Data recorded following two separate runoff events showed that the concentrations of two nonpoint source pollutants, fecal coliform bacteria and suspended sediment, greatly exceeded prerunoff event values for very short periods of time, A phreatic conduit segment, calculated at 17 million liters in volume, instantaneously propagated head changes, caused by direct runoff entering the aquifer, from the ground-water inputs to Big Spring, A significant delay between the initial increases in discharge and the arrival of direct runoff, as indicated by a steady decrease in specific conductance, represented the time required to displace this volume of phreatic water, The delay showed that sampling a karst spring only during peak discharge would be an unreliable sampling method. Runoff from two different subcatchments was tagged with tracer dye and the timing of the passage of the resultant dye clouds through Big Spring were compared to water quality variations, Distinct lag times between the arrival of direct runoff at Big Spring and the bacteria and suspended sediment waveforms were shown through the concurrent quantitative tracer tests to be related to the areal distribution of land-cover type within the basin

Role of public awareness in groundwater protection, 1997,
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Ekmekci M, Gunay G,
Scarcity of water, particularly in towns situated along the Mediterranean coast where the main aquifers are in karstic carbonate rocks, necessitates more thoroughness in exploiting and protecting the groundwater resources. Geomorphological and hydrogeological studies have revealed large quantities of the input and throughput features, such as sinkholes, dolines, uvalas and poljes in the recharge areas of many karst aquifers in Turkey. Naturally, recharge areas are generally located at higher elevations and regions remote from the urbanized areas. These features lead the local authorities and persons to utilize the karst features for their own purposes. Dolines and ponors are commonly utilized as injection points for wastewater, while uvalas and poljes are used as solid waste disposal sites. When doing this, the people are unconscious of the connection of such sites with the wells or springs that provide water for their supply. A number of occurrences in Turkey have demonstrated that, no matter how perfect the efficiency of the technical work, protection of the water resources-is primarily related to the consciousness of the local authorities. They must either take proper measures to protect the resources or to educate the public in this issue. To achieve this aim, it is very important to involve the public administrative sector and the technical sector in preparing guidelines for integrated environmental evaluation of karst water resources. The main phase of a study should include locating appropriate sites for disposal of wastewater and various liquid and solid wastes that will satisfy requirements by the administrators as well as providing a water supply of good quality for the public. This paper discusses the issue of how to overcome the public awareness problem. Some examples demonstrate how the technical, achievements failed to be effective and applicable due to the lack of contribution on the part of the local authorities and the public. Some suggestions are made concerning a revision of the currently insufficient regulations

Numerical simulation as a tool for checking the interpretation of karst spring hydrographs, 1997,
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Eisenlohr L, Kiraly L, Bouzelboudjen M, Rossier Y,
A schematic representation of karst aquifers may be that of a high hydraulic conductivity channel network with kilometre-wide intervals, surrounded by a low hydraulic conductivity fractured limestone volume and connected to a local discharge area, the karst spring, The behaviour of the karst spring (hydrographs, chemical or isotopic composition, etc.) represents the global response of the karst aquifer to input events. The available data an karst aquifer hydraulic parameters are limited, Global response is therefore more easily obtained and is commonly used to make inferences on the recharge and groundwater How processes, as well as on the hydraulic parameter fields. Direct verification of these interpretations is, obviously, very difficult. We have used an indirect method of verification, consisting of introducing well-defined theoretical karst structures into a finite element model and then analysing the simulated global response according to presently accepted interpretation schemes. As we know what we put into the numerical model, the validity of any interpretation may be checked. The first results indicate that some of the generally accepted interpretations are not necessarily true. In particular: (i) separation of simulated recession hydrographs into several components shows that different exponential components do not necessarily correspond to aquifer volumes with different hydraulic conductivities: (ii) non-exponential parts of recession hydrographs do not always give information about the infiltration process: and (iii) the recession coefficient of the baseflow (i.e. the last, nearly exponential part of the recession hydrograph) depends on the global configuration of the whole karst aquifer, not just on the hydraulic properties of the low hydraulic conductivity volumes. (C) 1997 Elsevier Science B.V

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