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Enviroscan Ukrainian Institute of Speleology and Karstology


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Community news

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 skylight is a hole in the roof of a cave passage through to the ground surface. it may be an inlet shaft, a section of collapse or a breach due to surface lowering [9].?

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.
See all featured articles
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 fractal (Keyword) returned 25 results for the whole karstbase:
Showing 16 to 25 of 25
Sinkholes and the Engineering and Environmental Impacts of Karst, 2005,
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Beck B. F.

Conference Proceedings

Sinkholes and the Engineering and Environmental Impacts of Karst Contains over 70 papers addressing karst topography which impacts water resources, waste disposal, foundation stability, and a multitude of other geotechnical and environmental issues. These papers were presented at the 10th Multidisciplinary Conference held September 24-28, 2005 in San Antonio, Texas and Sponsored by the Geo-Institute of ASCE, P. E. LaMoreaux & Associates, Inc. and Edwards Aquifer Authority. The goal of this conference was to share knowledge and experience among disciplines by emphasizing practical applications and case studies. This proceedings will benefit environmental and geotechnical engineers, and others involved in water resources, water disposal, and foundation stability issues.

Contents:

Application of Geophysical Logging Techniques for Multi-Channel Well Design and Installation in a Karst Aquifer (by Frank Bogle, ...)

Case Studies of Massive Flow Conduits in Karst Limestone (by Jim L. Lolcama)

A Case Study of the Samanalawewa Reservoir on the Walawe River in an Area of Karst in Sri Lanka (by K. Laksiri, ...)

Characterization and Water Balance of Internal Drainage Sinkholes (by Nico M. Hauwert, ...)

Characterization of Desert Karst Terrain in Kuwait and the Eastern Coastline of the Arabian Penninsula (by Waleed Abdullah, ...)

Characterization of a Sinkhole Prone Retention Pond Using Multiple Geophysical Surveys and Closely Spaced Borings (by Nick Hudyma, ...)

Combining Surface and Downhole Geophysical Methods to Identify Karst Conditions in North-Central Iowa (by J. E. Wedekind, ...)

Complexities of Flood Mapping in a Sinkhole Area (by C. Warren Campbell, P.E.)

Conceptualization and Simulation of the Edwards Aquifer, San Antonio Region, Texas (by R. J. Lindgren, ...)

Database Development and GIS Modeling to Develop a Karst Vulnerability Rating for I-66, Somerset to London, KY (by Michael A. Krokonko, ...)

Design and Construction of the Foundations for the Watauga Raw Water Intake Facility in Karstic Limestone near the City of Johnson City, TN (by Tony D. Canale, P.E., ...)

Detection of Three-Dimensional Voids in Karstic Ground (by Derek V. Morris, P.E., ...)

Development and Evolution of Epikarst in Mid-Continent US Carbonates (by Tony L. Cooley, P.E.)

Dye Tracing Sewage Lagoon Discharge in a Sandstone Karst, Askov, Minnesota (by Emmit Calvin Alexander, Jr., ...)

The Effectiveness of GPR in Sinkhole Investigations (by E. D. Zisman, P.E., ...)

Effects of Anthropogenic Modification of Karst Soil Texture on the Water Balance of ?Alta Murgia? (Apulia, Italy) (by F. Canora, ...)

Environmental Isotope Study on Recharge and Groundwater Residence Time in a covered Ordovician Carbonate Rock (by Zhiyuan Ma, ...)

Error and Technique in Fluorescent dye Tracing (by Chris Smart)

Essential Elements of Estimating Engineering Properties of Karst for Foundation Design (by Ramanuja Chari Kannan, P.E., Fellow, ASCE)

Estimating Grout Quantities for Residential Repairs in Central Florida Karst (by Larry D. Madrid, P.E., ...)

Evaluation of Groundwater Residence Time in a Karstic Aquifer Using Environmental Tracers: Roswell Artesian Basin, New Mexico (by Lewis Land)

Experience of Regional Karst Hazard and Risk Assessment in Russia (by A. L. Ragozin, ...)

Experimental Study of Physical Models for Sinkhole Collapses in Wuhan, China (by Mingtang Lei, ...)

Fractal Scaling of Secondary Porosity in Karstic Exposures of the Edwards Aquifer (by Robert E. Mace, ...)

The Geological Characteristics of Buried Karst and Its Impact on Foundations in Hong Kong, China (by Steve H. M. Chan, ...)

Geophysical Identification of Evaporite Dissolution Structures Beneath a Highway Alignment (by M. L. Rucker, ...)

Geotechnical Analysis in Karst: The Interaction between Engineers and Hydrogeologists (by R. C. Bachus, P.E.)

The Gray Fossil Site: A Spectacular Example in Tennessee of Ancient Regolith Occurrences in Carbonate Terranes, Valley and Ridge Subpovince, South Appalachians U.S.A. (by G. Michael Clark, ...)

Ground-Water Basin Catchment Delineation by Bye Tracing, Water Table Mapping, Cave Mapping, and Geophysical Techniques: Bowling Green Kentucky (by Nicholas C. Crawford)

Groundwater Flow in the Edwards Aquifer: Comparison of Groundwater Modeling and Dye Trace Results (by Brian A. Smith, ...)

Grouting Program to Stop Water Flow through Karstic Limestone: A Major Case History (by D. M. Maciolek)

Highway Widening in Karst (by M. Zia Islam, P.E., ...)

How Karst Features Affect Recharge? Implication for Estimating Recharge to the Edwards Aquifer (by Yun Huang, ...)

Hydrogeologic Investigation of Leakage through Sinkholes in the Bed of Lake Seminole to Springs Located Downstream from Jim Woodruff Dam (by Nicholas C. Crawford, ...)

The Hydrologic Function of the soil and Bedrock System at Upland Sinkholes in the Edwards Aquifer Recharge Zone of South-Central Texas (by A. L. Lindley)

An Integrated Geophysical Approach for a Karst Characterization of the Marshall Space Flight Center (by Lynn Yuhr, ...)

Integrated Geophysical Surveys Applied to Karstic Studies Over Transmission Lines in San Antonio, Texas (by Mustafa Saribudak, ...)

Judge Dillon and Karst: Limitations on Local Regulation of Karst Hazards (by Jesse J. Richardson, Jr.)

Karst Groundwater Resource and Advantages of its Utilization in the Shaanbei Energy Base in Shaanxi Province, China (by Yaoguo Wu, ...)

Karst Hydrogeology and the Nature of Reality Revisited: Philosophical Musings of a Less Frustrated Curmudgeon (by Emmit Calvin Alexander, Jr.)

Karst in Appalachia ? A Tangled Zone: Projects with Cave-Sized Voids and Sinkholes (by Clay Griffin, ...)

Karstic Features of Gachsaran Evaporites in the Region of Ramhormoz, Khuzestan Province, in Southwest Iran (by Arash Barjasteh)

Large Perennial Springs of Kentucky: Their Identification, Base Flow, Catchment, and Classification (by Joseph A. Ray, ...)

Large Plot Tracing of Subsurface Flow in the Edwards Aquifer Epikarst (by P. I. Taucer, ...)
Lithology as a Predictive Tool of Conduit Morphology and Hydrology in Environmental Impact Assessments (by George Veni)

Metadata Development for a Multi-State Karst Feature Database (by Yongli Gao, ...)

Micropiling in Karstic Rock: New CMFF Foundation Solution Applied at the Sanita Factory (by Marc Ballouz)

Modeling Barton Springs Segment of the Edwards Aquifer Using MODFLOW-DCM (by Alexander Y. Sun, ...)

Multi-Level Monitoring Well Completion Technologies and Their Applicability in Karst Dolomite (by Todd Kafka, ...)

National-Scale Risk Assessment of sinkhole Hazard in China (by Xiaozhen Jiang, ...)

New Applications of Differential Electrical Resistivity Tomography and Time Domain Reflectometry to Modeling Infiltration and Soil Moisture in Agricultural Sinkholes (by B. F. Schwartz, ...)

Non-Regulatory Approaches to Development on Karst (by Jesse J. Richardson, Jr., ...)

PA State Route 33 Over Bushkill Creek: Structure Failure and Replacement in an Active Sinkhole Environment (by Kerry W. Petrasic, P.E.)

Quantifying Recharge via Fractures in an Ashe Juniper Dominated Karst Landscape (by Lucas Gregory, ...)

Quantitative Groundwater Tracing and Effective Numerical Modeling in Karst: An Example from the Woodville Karst Plain of North Florida (by Todd R. Kincaid, ...)

Radial Groundwater Flow at Landfills in Karst (by J. E. Smith)

Residual Potential Mapping of Contaminant Transport Pathways in Karst Formations of Southern Texas (by D. Glaser, ...)

Resolving Sinkhole Issues: A State Government Perspective (by Sharon A. Hill)

Shallow Groundwater and DNAPL Movement within Slightly Dipping Limestone, Southwestern Kentucky (by Ralph O. Ewers, ...)

Sinkhole Case Study ? Is it or Isn?t it a Sinkhole? (by E. D. Zisman, P.E.)

Sinkhole Occurrence and Changes in Stream Morphology: An Example from the Lehigh Valley Pennsylvania (by William E. Kochanov)

Site Characterization and Geotechnical Roadway Design over Karst: Interstate 70, Frederick County, Maryland (by Walter G. Kutschke, P.E., ...)

Soil Stabilization of the Valley Creek Trunk Sewer Relief Tunnel (by Jeffrey J. Bean, P.E., ...)

Some New Approaches to Assessment of Collapse Risks in Covered Karsts (by Vladimir Tolmachev, ...)

Spectral Deconvolution and Quantification of Natural Organic Material and Fluorescent Tracer Dyes (by Scott C. Alexander)

Springshed Mapping in Support of Watershed Management (by Jeffrey A. Green, ...)

Sustainable Utilization of Karst Groundwater in Feicheng Basin, Shandong Province, China (by Yunfeng Li, ...)

Transport of Colloidal and Solute Tracers in Three Different Types of Alpine Karst Aquifers ? Examples from Southern Germany and Slovenia (by N. Göppert, ...)

Use of the Cone Penetration Test for Geotechnical Site Characterization in Clay-Mantled Karst (by T. C. Siegel, ...)

The Utility of Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) Interferometry in Monitoring Sinkhole Subsidence: Subsidence of the Devil?s Throat Sinkhole Area (Nevada, USA) (by Rana A. Al-Fares)

Void Evolution in Soluble Rocks Beneath Dams Under Limited Flow Condition (by Emmanuel S. Pepprah, ...)


Cave inception and development in Caledonide metacarbonate rocks. PhD thesis, 2005,
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Faulkner, Trevor Laurence

This is the first comprehensive study of cave inception and development in metacarbonate rocks. The main study area is a 40000km2 region in central Scandinavia that contains over 1000 individual metacarbonate outcrops, and has nearly 1000 recorded karst caves (with passage lengths up to 5.6km). The area, which was repeatedly glaciated in the late Cenozoic, comprises a suite of nappes in the Cambro–Silurian Caledonides, a paleic range of mountains with terranes presently occurring on both sides of the northern Atlantic. Information about the stripe karst and non-stripe karst outcrops and their contained caves was assembled into computer-based databases, enabling relationships between the internal attributes of the caves and their external geological and geomorphological environments to be analysed. A rather consistent pattern emerged. For example, karst hydrological system distances are invariably shorter than 3.5km, and cave passages are positioned randomly in a vertical dimension, whilst commonly remaining within 50m of the overlying surface. This consistency is suggestive that the relevant cave inception, development and removal processes operated at a regional scale, and over long timescales. A consequence of the epigean association of caves with the landscape is that cave development can only be understood in the context of the geomorphological evolution of the host region. A review of the latest knowledge of the inception and development of caves in sedimentary limestones concluded that the speleogenesis of the central Scandinavian caves cannot be explained by these ideas. Five new inter-related conceptual models are constructed to explain cave development in metacarbonate rocks in the various Caledonide terranes. These are:
1. The tectonic inception model - this shows that it is only open fracture routes, primarily created by the seismic shocks that accompany deglaciation, which can provide the opportunity for dissolution of metalimestone rocks that have negligible primary porosity.
2. The external model of cave development - this black-box approach reveals how the formation, development and destruction of the karst caves are related to the evolution of their local landscape. During the Pleistocene, these processes were dominated by the cycle of glaciation, leading to cyclic speleogenesis, and the development of ever-longer and deeper systems, where the maximum distance to the surface commonly remains within one-eighth of the extent of change in local relief.
3. The hydrogeological model - this demonstrates that the caves developed to their mapped dimensions in timescales compatible with the first two models, within the constraints imposed by the physics and chemistry of calcite dissolution and erosion, primarily in almost pure water. Relict caves were predominantly formed in phreatic conditions beneath active deglacial ice-dammed lakes, with asymmetric distributions on east- and west-facing slopes. Mainly vadose caves developed during the present interglacial, primarily vadose, conditions, with maximum dimensions determined by catchment area. Combination caves developed during both deglacial and interglacial stages. The cross-sections of phreatic passages obey a non-fractal distribution, because they enlarged at maximum rates in similar timescales. Phreatic cave entrances could be enlarged at high altitudes by freeze / thaw processes at the surface of ice-dammed lakes, and at low altitudes by marine activity during isostatic uplift.
4. The internal static and dynamic model of cave development - this white-box approach demonstrates that many caves have ‘upside-down’ morphology, with relict phreatic passages overlying a single, primarily vadose, streamway. Both types of passage are guided along inception surfaces that follow the structural geology and fractures of the carbonate outcrops. Dynamically, the caves developed in a ‘Top-Down, Middle-Outwards’ (TDMO) sequence that may have extended over several glacial cycles, and passages in the older multi-cycle caves were removed downwards and inwards by glacial erosion.
5. The Caledonide model - this shows that the same processes (with some refinements) applied to cave development in most of the other (non-central Scandinavian) Caledonide areas. The prime influences on cave dimensions were the thicknesses of the successive northern Atlantic glacial icesheets and the positions of the caves relative to deglacial ice-dammed lakes and to local topography. Other influences included contact metamorphism, proximity to major thrusts, and marine incursions. With knowledge of these influences for each area, mean cave dimensions can be predicted.
The thesis provides the opportunity for the five models to be extended, so that cave development in other glaciated metamorphic and sedimentary limestones can be better understood, and to be inverted, so that landscape evolution can be derived from cave data.


Manifestation and measurement of the fractal characteristics of karst hydrogeological formations, 2006,
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Maramathas A. J. , Boudouvis A. G. ,
A new method of estimating the fractal dimension of the percolation backbone of karst systems, which are discharged through karst springs, is presented. This method is based on the simulation of the spring by the MODKARST deterministic mathematical model. Application has been made to the Psiloritis, karst formation in Crete, which feeds the periodically brackish karst spring 'Almiros' in Crete. Furthermore, the estimated dimension justifies an independently determined power law that quantifies the sea intrusion into the karst system. (c) 2005 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved

Benchmark Papers in Karst Science, 2007,
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A collection of benchmark papers in karst science: The Decade 1971 ? 1980 13. The Geochemistry of Some Carbonate Ground Waters in Central Pennsylvania, D. Langmuir 14. Genetic Interpretation of Regressive Evolutionary Processes: Studies on Hybrid Eyes of Two Astyanax Cave Populations (Characidae, Pisces), H. Wilkins 15. Cavernicoles in Lava Tubes on the Island of Hawaii, F.G. Howarth 16. Evolutionary Genetics of Cave-Dwelling Fishes of the Genus Astyanax, J.C. Avise and R.L. Selander 17. Deducing Flow Velocity in Cave Conduits from Scallops, R.L. Curl 18. The Origin of Maze Caves, A.N. Palmer 19. Foraging by Cave Beetles: Spatial and Temporal Heterogeneity of Prey, T.C. Kane and T.L. Poulson 20. Considerations of the Karst Ecosystem, R. Rouch 21. Diffuse Flow and Conduit Flow in Limestone Terrain in the Mendip Hills, Somerset (Great Britain), T.C. Atkinson 22. The Development of Limestone Cave Systems in Dimensions of Length and Depth, D.C. Ford and R.O. Ewers The Decade 1981 ? 1990 23. Magnetostratigraphy of Sediments in Mammoth Cave, Kentucky, V.A. Schmidt 24. Uranium-Series Ages of Speleothem from Northwest England: Correlations with Quaternary Climate, M. Gascoyne, D.C. Ford and H.P. Schwarcz 25. Analysis and Interpretation of Data from Tracer Tests in Karst Areas, W.K. Jones 26. Evolution of Adult Morphology and Life-History Characters in Cavernicolous Ptomaphagus Beetles, S.B. Peck 27. Ecology of the Mixohaline Hypogean Fauna along the Yugoslav Coasts, B. Sket 28. Fractal Dimensions and Geometries of Caves, R.L. Curl 29. Regional Scale Transport in a Karst Aquifer. 1. Component Separation of Spring Flow Hydrographs, S.J. Dreiss 30. Morphological Evolution of the Amphipod Gammarus minus in Caves: Quantitative Genetic Analysis, D.W. Fong 31. The Flank Margin Model for Dissolution Cave Development in Carbonate Platforms, J.E. Mylroie and J.L. Carew 32. Sulfuric Acid Speleogenesis of Carlsbad Cavern and Its Relationship to Hydrocarbons, Delaware Basin, New Mexico and Texas, C.A. Hill The Decade 1991 ? 2000 33. Origin and Morphology of Limestone Caves, A.N. Palmer 34. How Many Species of Troglobites Are There? D.C. Culver and J.R. Holsinger 35. Annual Growth Banding in a Cave Stalagmite, A. Baker, P.L. Smart, R.L. Edwards and D.A. Richards 36. Natural Environment Change in Karst: The Quaternary Record, S.-E. Lauritzen 37. Pattern and Process in the Biogeography of Subterranean Amphipods, J.R. Holsinger 38. A Chemoautotrophically Based Cave Ecosystem, S.M. Sarbu, T.C. Kane and B.K. Kinkle 39. Rhodopsin Evolution in the Dark, K.A. Crandall and D.M. Hillis 40. Climate and Vegetation History of the Midcontinent from 75 to 25 ka: A Speleothem Record from Crevice Cave, Missouri, USA, J.A. Dorale, R.L. Edwards, E. Ito and L.A. González

Fractal analysis of the distribution of cave lengths in Slovenia, 2007,
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Verbovš, Ek T.

The lengths of the Slovenian caves follow the power-law distribution through several orders of magnitude, which implies that the caves can be considered as natural fractal objects. Fractal dimensions obtained from distribution of all caves are about 1.07, and vary within different tectonic and hydrogeological units. Some deviations from the ideal best fit line in log-log plots (i.e. lower and upper cut-off limits) can be explained by underestimation, as many very short caves are not registered. The study of tectonic and hydrogeological setting indicates that the greatest dimensions occur in the rocks with karstic-fracture and fracture porosity and the lowest in low-permeability rocks. Proximity to major tectonic structures shows a detectable effect on the cave length distribution, and the influence is greatest for the caves closer to the faults and thrust fronts. Dimensions are lower than those of fracture networks and faults, which can be most probably explained by flow channeling along the fracture networks, which causes the decrease of fractal dimension. The physical causes of power law scaling and variations in fractal dimensions (power law exponents) are still poorly understood, but the behaviour of fracture networks is believed to be caused by a scale-independent fractal fragmentation of the blocks, and during the process of forming the caves inherit some fractal geometrical properties of the networks.


Morphometric analysis of three-dimensional networks of karst conduits, 2011,
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Pardoiguzquiza Eulogio, Duranvalsero Juan J. , Rodriguezgaliano Victor

The main idiosyncrasy of a typical karst system is the presence of a three-dimensional network of conduits behaving as drains in the system and being responsible of both the quick response of karst springs to rainfall events and the complex distribution of solutes in the system. A morphometric analysis of the three-dimensional geometry of conduits provides quantitative measures that can be used in a range of applications. These morphometric parameters can be used as descriptors of the underground geomorphology, they provide information on speleogenesis processes, they can be correlated with karst denudation ratios, they can be used to control the simulation of realistic stochastic karst networks of conduits, and they can be correlated with hydrogeologic behaviour of the karst system. The main purpose of this paper is to define, describe and illustrate a range of morphometric indexes and morphometric functions that can be calculated nowadays because the availability of three-dimensional topographies provided by speleological work and the availability of the computational and graphical power provided by modern computers. Some of the morphometric parameters describe the existence of preferential directions of karstification, others describe the kartification along the vertical and the possible presence of inception horizons. Other indexes describe the shape complexity of the karstic network, whilst other indexes describe spatial variability of the conduit geometry, and other parameters give account of the connectivity of the three-dimensional network. The morphometric analysis is illustrated with a three-dimensional karstic network in Southern France.
Research highlights


Surface Roughness of Karst Landscapes, 2013,
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Day M. , Chenoweth S.

Surface roughness, also termed landscape, terrain, or topographic roughness in geomorphology, is directly connected to theunevenness of surface elevation values. There are many methods to measure surface roughness mathematically: the ratio ofsurface area and its projection onto a horizontal plane, frequency distributions, fractal analysis, and surface curvature.Recent innovations in remote sensing and geographic information systems have resulted in a renaissance of surfaceroughness in geomorphology as a component of digital terrain modeling. Specific morphometric characterizations of karstterrain roughness have been dogged by issues of data availability and accuracy. The Shuttle Radar Topography Missionsolved many of these problems, providing reliable and accurate elevation data for most of the inhabited world. However,tropical karst landscapes in particular are often heavily forested, obscuring the true surface roughness


Fractal dimensions of cave for exemplary gypsum cave-mazes of Western Ukraine, 2013,
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Andreychouk V. , Bł, Achowicz T. , Domino K.

Characteristics of channel networks in unconfi ned carbonate aquifers, 2014,
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Carbonate aquifers are some of most challenging to characterize because dissolution can greatly enhance permeability, but its effects are often difficult to determine. This study analyzes data from caves, wells, and tracer tests to explore the extent of solution channel networks and the factors that influence their development. The nonlinear dissolution kinetics of calcite, mixing of waters with different CO2 concentrations, and unstable dissolution fronts all promote the development of solution channels, which are widespread in unconfined carbonate aquifers. Fractures are important for guiding channels at a local scale, but hydraulic gradients are the dominant control at a regional scale. Channels provide continuous, large-aperture pathways that result in rapid groundwater flow. Small channels are much more abundant than large channels, and often account for most of the permeability measured in wells. Caves represent the largest channels; they are more common in limestone than in dolostone, and the development of caves rather than smaller channels is also favored where there is sparse fracturing, low matrix porosity, and the presence of sinking stream recharge rather than percolation recharge. Solution channel networks have fractal properties, and their presence explains why carbonate aquifers have higher permeability than aquifers in any other rock type.


Characteristics of channel networks in unconfined carbonate aquifers, 2014,
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Worthington, Stephen R. H.

Carbonate aquifers are some of most challenging to characterize because dissolution can greatly enhance permeability, but itseffects are often diffi cult to determine. This study analyzes data from caves, wells, and tracer tests to explore the extent of solution channel networks and the factors that infl uence their development. The nonlinear dissolution kinetics of calcite, mixing of waters with different CO2 concentrations, and unstable dissolution fronts all promote the development of solution channels, which are widespread in unconfi ned carbonate aquifers. Fractures are important for guiding channels at a local scale, but hydraulic gradients are the dominant control at a regional scale. Channels provide continuous, large-aperture pathways that result in rapid groundwater fl ow. Small channels are much more abundant than large channels, and often account for most of the permeability measured in wells. Caves represent the largest channels; they are more common in limestone than in dolostone, and the development of caves rather than smaller channels is also favored where there is sparse fracturing, low matrix porosity, and the presence of sinking stream recharge rather than percolation recharge. Solution channel networks have fractal properties, and their presence explains why carbonate aquifers have higher permeability than aquifers in any other rock type


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