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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 hyetograph is a graph of rainfall intensity against time [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 methodology (Keyword) returned 82 results for the whole karstbase:
Showing 16 to 30 of 82
The environmental hazards of locating wastewater impoundments in karst terrain, 2002, Memon B. A. , Azmeh M. M. , Pitts M. W. ,
A wastewater storage lagoon failed due to the development of a sinkhole at a site in the Lehigh River valley in Allentown, Pennsylvania (PA). The polluted wastewater from the lagoon entered into the underlying aquifer and moved within a narrow pathway controlled by cracks, fissures, and solution channels within the karstified Allentown Formation of the Cambrian Period. The Allentown Formation serves as the principal aquifer for the public water supply of the area. To develop appropriate remedial measures, a thorough understanding of the geologic setting was required. Therefore, a geologic and hydrogeologic characterization of the area was completed, aerial photography and satellite imagery interpretations were performed, stratigraphic core holes were drilled and geophysically logged, and the data correlated to define structural control and movement of ground water and pollutants. A number of wells were drilled and constructed, and water levels were monitored on a continuous basis to correlate with climatic changes and determine the direction of flow. Water samples were collected periodically and analyzed to delineate the vertical and lateral extent of migration of pollutants. Five saturated (water-bearing) zones were identified within the bedrock based on the analysis of cores and interpretation of geophysical logs. Ground water in the lower zones is polluted; the concentration of pollution increases with depth. Monitoring stations were established in the creek, south of the site, to measure flow rate several times during different seasons, and at different reaches, to determine the losing and gaining sections of the creek. Pumping tests were conducted to determine hydraulic characteristics of the aquifer. Based on the hydrogeologic model of the karstified aquifer, flow regime and structural control, a plan of action was defined and initiated to remediate the aquifer. The ground water is being remediated using a pump and treat methodology. The cleanup effort is continuous and the pollutant level is fluctuating with an overall-declining trend. The application of this technology has also created a pressure trough, thereby controlling off the site migration of pollutants. (C) 2002 Published by Elsevier Science B.V

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

Phreatic overgrowths on speleothems: a useful tool in structural geology in littoral karstic landscapes. The example of eastern Mallorca (Balearic Islands), 2002, Fornos Jj, Gelabert B, Gines A, Gines J, Tuccimei P, Vesica P,
Along the eastern coast of Mallorca, many littoral caves partly filled with brackish waters occur. The most peculiar aspect of these caves is the presence of abundant phreatic overgrowths formed on pre-existing supports located at the underground pools' water table, which corresponds to the present sea level. Besides a specific geomorphological interest, these subaqueous speleothems provide an excellent record of Quaternary sea level stands. The clear relation between phreatic speleothem growth and the contemporary sea level allows the control of the tectonic evolution of an area, by comparing speleothems’ ages and heights with the regionally established eustatic curves. In the studied region different altimetric positions of coeval phreatic speleothems suggest the existence of a recent tectonic activity. The characteristics and chronology of this tectonic event are the objectives of this paper, pointing out at the same time the potential of phreatic speleothems in structural geology investigations. Along the coastline of the studied area, alignments of phreatic speleothems attributed to high sea stands 5a, 5c and 5e are recorded at increasing elevations northwards. This is an evidence of a significant tectonic tilting that took place, at least partially, after substage 5a because phreatic speleothems of this substage are now located at different altitudes. Considering that tectonic tilting has been continuous from post-substage 5a (approximately 85 ka) until now, and that normal displacement is approximately of 1.5 m, the average minimum velocity of the tilting can be estimated about 0.02 mm/year in the southern part with respect to the north end. Data obtained from phreatic speleothems have been compared with other regional, stratigraphical, geomorphological and tectonic evidence that all together point to the same existence of the postulated tectonic tilting. Consequently, phreatic speleothem investigation results in a new method that allows the quantification of average velocities of tilting as well as other tectonic movements with high precision. This methodology can be extended to any littoral karstic landscape where phreatic speleothems are present

Groundwater modelling in aquifers with highly karstic and heterogeneous characteristics (KHC) in Palestine, 2002, Froukh Lj,
Groundwater modelling is hindered by the lack of adequate information about the groundwater system and hence the need for an interactive and efficient system for data preparation and results analysis. Such a lack of information usually necessitates the use of tedious iterative methodology within a sensitivity analysis scheme. The heterogeneous aquifer systems complicate the issue since more data is required to simulate the system. This study demonstrates the integrated approach to bridge the gap between data handling and modelling. The karst cretaceous aquifer system (complex aquifer system) of the Eastern Basin in the West Bank is used to illustrate this approach. The groundwater modelling approach integrates the outputs from different programs for data preparation and analysis. These include (1) Groundwater Database (GWW) (2) Geographic Information System (GIS) (3) Groundwater Modelling System (GMS). In addition, the paper will summarize the data collection efforts, problems faced and experience gained working with heterogeneous media. This involves linking the results from various field investigations for groundwater development programs in the West Bank


The paper deals with the activities of the Cave Protection Department of the Slovak Caves Administration in the field of speleoclimatic monitoring in the Slovakian show caves since 1996. The monitoring is concentrated on detail survey of basic climatic parameters processes (temperature, relative air humidity, dew point, air velocity, atmospheric pressure etc.) in by now studied show caves during minimally one year. The essence of obtained knowledge is to enhance cave protection in the practice of show caves, better understand the geoecosystems; determine visitors' influence, the period of regeneration and evaluation of possible negative influences. The results of the monitoring are used for determining the carrying capacity of individual caves, limits for visitors, guiding the manageiant and other necessary measures. Presented caves were surveyed by priorities like: World Heritage site, ice caves, natural air mass communication with surface climate, potential threats - all in relation to cave utilization and operation. Technical eqqipment, as well as research methodology are described in detail in the paper.

Forum: [Karst, Kras or Karasattu] 'Methodology of Academic Mediocrity sheds little light on the dark karstic underground', 2003, Hromnik C. A.

Morphometric and spatial distribution prarmeters of karstic depressions, Lower Suwannee River Basin, Florida, 2003, Denizman, C.
This study describes an application of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) to examine the morphometric and spatial distribution of karstic depressions in the lower Suwannee River basin. Morphometris analysis of some 25,000 karstic depressions in an area covered by twenty-four 1:24,000 scale standard USGS topographic quadrangles were made possible by the analytical capabilities of the GIS. The parameters calculated for the study area include length, width, orientation, area, depth, circularity index, depression density, pitting index, and nearest neighbor index. Analysis of ~25,000 depressions in the lower Suwannee River basin reveals that the Florida karst is represented by broad, shallow depressions with an average density of 6.07 depressions/km and an average pitting index of 14.5. Morphometric and spatial distribution parameters of karstic depressions within the lower Suwannee River basin show significant variations. The robust GIS methodology used in this study provides not only a rapid analysis of spatial data on a large population of karstic depressions, but also an objective approach with consistent measurement and calculation processes in which human errors and bias were eliminated. In accordance with the increasing use of GIS in analyzing spatial data on diverse applications, this study shows that the GIS environment can also be efficiently used for karst landform studies.

An improved method for determination of holocene coastline changes around two ancient settlements in southern Anatolia: A geoarchaeological approach to historical land degradation studies, 2003, Bal Y, Kelling G, Kapur S, Akca E, Cetin H, Erol O,
Two well-known ancient sites in southern Anatolia were selected to investigate and quantify the impact of historical land degradation on the Mediterranean coast of Turkey. These sites are the Luwian settlements of Kelenderis (modern Aydincik) and nearby Nagidos (Bozyazi), both in Mersin Province and both occupied since around 4000 BP. Changes in local climatic conditions over this period have produced variations in the rates of fluvial transport of sediment/soil from the hinterland into the relevant deltaic regions, thus influencing rates of coastal progradation and aggradation. In addition, both eustatic and neotectonic movements have contributed to deltaic subsidence and/or hinterland uplift, with consequential impact on coastal evolution (positive or negative). The novel gcoarchaeological methodology adopted in this study involves the creation of a graphical archive from detailed and standardised measurements taken from rectified mono- and stereoscopic aerial photographs. These archival data were then integrated with data from several types of historical map and field measurements in order to develop a geographical information system (GIS) database that could be interrogated, enabling graphical models of past coastal change to be constructed and calculations then made of the coastal configurations at successive historical periods. These calculations reveal that over the past 6000 years there has been only limited erosion/degradation in the karstic hinterland supplying the sediment to these two study sites (contrary to some previous statements concerning the high degradation risk of Mediterranean karst terrains). Furthermore, rates of progradation in each delta appear to have become diminished or even reversed in the past several decades as a result of both natural and anthropogenic factors. The precise contribution of neotectonic movements in this seismically active zone remains unquantified and is a topic requiring further interdisciplinary study.

A nonlinear rainfall-runoff model using neural network technique: Example in fractured porous media, 2003, Lallahem S. , Mania J. ,
One of the more advanced approaches for simulating groundwater flow in karstic and fractured porous media is the combination of a linear and a nonlinear model. The paper presents an attempt to determine outflow influencing parameters in order to simulate aquifer outflow. Our approach in this study is to create a productive interaction system between expert, mathematical model, MERO,. and artificial neural networks (ANNs). The proposed method is especially suitable for the problem of large-scale and long-term simulation. In the present project, the first objective is to determine aquifer outflow influencing parameters by the use of MERO model, which gave a good results in a fissured and chalky media, and then introduce these parameters in neural network (NN). To determine outflow influencing parameters, we propose to test the NN under fourth different external input scenarios. The second objective is to investigate the effect of temporal information by taking current and past data sets. The good found results reveal the merit of ANNs-MERO combination and specifically multilayer perceptron (MLP) models. This methodology provided that the network with lower, lag and number hidden layer, consistently produced better performance. (C) 2003 Elsevier Science Ltd. All rights reserved

Surface cover infiltration index: a suggested method to assess infiltration capacity for intrinsic vulnerability in karstic areas in absence of quantitative data, 2004, Ekmekci Mehmet, Tezcan Levent
Karst is a hydrogeological environment of importance not only for its water resources potential but also for its scenic and economic potential, thereby increasing the intensity of human impact. The uniqueness of karst in this regard stems from its high sensitivity and vulnerability to imposed pressures and its distinctive response to these pressures. Therefore, a clear definition and formulation of the concept of intrinsic vulnerability is essential for the design of vulnerability and/or management criteria of the karstic system as a resource. In this regard, the recharge rate, the amount of water passing through the unsaturated zone into the aquifer, is among the principal attributes of the intrinsic vulnerability. Where data and measurements are available for even large areas, recharge can be evaluated quantitatively on the basis of field measurements and the water balance equation. However, particularly for countries suffering from lack of essential data for a quantitative evaluation of the net recharge rate, the recharge can be estimated using some derived parameters such as the so called Surface Cover Infiltration Index proposed in this paper. The DRASTIC method which is modified by using SCI, soil thickness and precipitation, allows the unique hydrological behavior of karst to be considered by redistributing of the intrinsic vulnerability values on the basis of hydrologic connections between neighboring cells. Following a detailed description of the SCI index and the modification of DRASTIC method for karst aquifers, a case study carried out to demonstrate this method is presented in this paper whose objective is to discuss and thus elaborate the suggested methodology. The Olimpos National Park area was selected because the great variation in lithology, landuse and topography. It was found that the relative vulnerability may vary particularly in the neighborhood of the highly vulnerable cells covered by carbonate rocks. The methodology was applied using ARC-GIS software. All spatial features used in computations were classified by the appropriate functions built into the software.

An approach to the multi-element and multi-scale classification of the Limestone Pavement environment of Hutton Roof and Farleton Fell, Cumbria, UK, 2004, Huxter, Eric Andrew

 Limestone Pavements are highly significant components of the physiographic and ecological landscapes of the UK. As relict glacial features they are subject to destruction by natural processes but also by human intervention. This thesis identifies the most effective methods to monitor such change at a variety of temporal and spatial scales, based on the Morecambe Bay pavements at Hutton Roof and Farleton Fell. The starting point for such a study is a methodology to define the baseline on which to base change detection and the key to this is the development of a suitably detailed scene model. This must reflect the environment at the macro-, meso- and micro- scales and also incorporate considerations of the dynamics involved in the landscape evolution. The scene model (the Land Surface Classification Hierarchy (LSCH)) was developed by field measurement of the reflectance spectra of the main elements, biotic and abiotic, with measurements of the pavement surface in terms of the scale of karren development and the texture of the limestone itself. Study of the DEM allowed a fractal dimension to be established and also the nature of ice-flow and its contribution to pavement development, with extending flow, entraining fractured limestone blocks above a plastic, impermeable shale band, being the main mechanism. At the meso scale pavements were classified according to clint form derived from intra-pavement trends in grike direction calculated by Preferred Direction Analysis. Measurements of the key karren forms, runnels, solution pits and pipes and grikes allow assessment of their contribution to the variability of the pavement surface as an element of the scene model through the identification of solution domains. Identification of different lithologies allowed an investigation of spatial variation across the study area, although lithological control on karren form and magnitude is weaker than variability from age of exposure as shown by statistical analysis of karren morphometry using univariate comparative methods and Link diagrams, bivariate and multivariate regression, discriminant analysis, cluster analysis, multi-dimensional scaling and star diagrams with the derived Star Index. Pavements were classified according to karren morphometry. The traditional view of pedestals as an indicator of solution rates, and hence the concentration of solution at the surface, is challenged through the investigation of water flow over the pavement surface and the consideration of the role of lichen as a protective agent as well as the size of solution pits and grike width. It is suggested that only 10% of solution potential is achieved at the surface with 43% in the immediate epikarst. From this solution rate diagrams were developed, allowing the dating of exposure of pavements. These were shown to be within the period when human impact in the area was becoming significant and confirms an early anthropogenic impact on this element of the landscape. Further to this the development of grikes as emergent features was confirmed and this linked to the concept of breakthrough, allowing a model of grike development to be proposed, an important consideration in the dynamics of pavement change. At the micro scale texture analysis allowed the calculation of fractal measures which are related to variations in reflectance. The radiometric response of biotic and abiotic elements of the scene model was analysed confirming the facility of the baseline scene reflectance model of the pavement. Remotely sensed images from the Airborne Digital Camera were linked to ATM, CASI and TM images assessing the effect of scale on change detection and the evaluation of the pavement environment.

Change in perception of karst from morphology to morpho-hydrology:Turkish experience in comprehension of karst, 2004, Ekmekci, Mehmet

Since its establishment as a science in the end of 19th century, methods applied in the study of karst evolved from classification to a system approach providing prediction in x,v,z and t. Information collected to answer the question "what is it" followed by the questions "why and how" and "what if". The change in questions required collection of new information which in turn changed perception of karst by related scientists. An overall evaluation of the progress in karst studies postulates an evolutionary character. Four major stages can be defined with transitional limits to track the change in perception of karst in accordance with the progress in the applied methodology. After discussing the history of karst studies in Turkey, the author questions the reason why the track did not progress parallel to the general evolution of karst studies in the world. Considering the fact that change in perception has caused shifts in meaning of the concepts and terms of karst, it is proposed to define terms not only on the basis of form but the processes of formation and function.

Unattached fraction of radon decay products as a crucial parameter for radon dosimetry in Postojna Cave, 2004, Vaupotič, Janja, Kobal I Van

Short-term summer and winter monitoring was carried out at the lowest point in Postojna cave, on air concentrations on radon (CRn) and radon decay products (CRnDP), the equilibrium factor (F) and unattached fraction of radon decay products (fun), barometric pressure (P), relative air humidity in the cave (RH) and air temperature outside (Tout) and in the cave (Tin), with the emphasis on fun. Dose conversion factors (DCF) for mouth and nasal breathing were calculated from the fun values (ranging from 0.10 to 0.68) and effective doses for the employees in the cave were obtained. These significantly exceed the doses based on the ICRP-65 methodology now in use.

Forecasting Versus Predicting Solute Transport in Solution Conduits for Estimating Drinking-Water Risks, 2004, Field, Malcolm S.

Contaminant releases in karstic terranes can cause rapid and devastating affects on drinking-water supplies. Because future contaminant releases are likely it is necessary that local water managers develop release scenarios so as to be prepared prior to an actual contaminant release occurring. Release scenarios may be forecasted using appropriate historical data or they may be predicted using selected measured parameters. Forecasting contaminant releases to drinking-water supplies in karstic terranes is best accomplished by conducting numerous tracer tests from each potential source location to each exposure point so that acceptable solute-transport parameters for each solution conduit may be estimated from analyses of the breakthrough curves. Compositing the numerous breakthrough curves and fitting a quintic spline allows development of a single representative breakthrough curve that may then be used to forecast the effects of a release. Predicting contaminant releases is accomplished by combining basic measured field parameters for selected solution conduits in functional relationships for application in solute-transport models. The resulting breakthrough curve and solute-transport parameters can be used to predict the effects of a release. The forecasting and prediction methodologies were tested using a hypothetical release into a solution conduit developed in a karstic aquifer. Both methods were shown to produce reasonably acceptable results. The prediction methodology produced better time-of-travel results and better mass recovery and exposure concentration results than did the forecasting methodology.

Karst groundwater: a challenge for new resources, 2005, Bakalowicz M,
Karst aquifers have complex and original characteristics which make them very different from other aquifers: high heterogeneity created and organised by groundwater flow; large voids, high flow velocities up to several hundreds of m/h, high flow rate springs up to some tens of in 3/S. Different conceptual models, known from the literature, attempt to take into account all these particularities. The study methods used in classical hydrogeology-bore hole, pumping test and distributed models-are generally invalid and unsuccessful in karst aquifers, because the results cannot be extended to the whole aquifer nor to some parts, as is done in non-karst aquifers. Presently, karst hydrogeologists use a specific investigation methodology (described here), which is comparable to that used in surface hydrology. important points remain unsolved. Some of them are related to fundamental aspects such as the void structure only a conduit network, or a conduit network plus a porous matrix -, the functioning - threshold effects and nonlinearities -, the modeling of the functioning - double or triple porosity, or viscous flow in conduits - and of karst genesis. Some other points deal with practical aspects, such as the assessment of aquifer storage capacity or vulnerability, or the prediction of the location of highly productive zones

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