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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 transient is a pulse dampened oscillation or other temporary phenomena occurring in a system prior to reaching a steady-state condition [22]. see flow, unsteady.?

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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 watershed (Keyword) returned 87 results for the whole karstbase:
Showing 16 to 30 of 87
Interactions between ground water and surface water in the Suwannee River Basin, Florida, 1997, Katz B. G. , Dehan R. S. , Hirten J. J. , Catches J. S. ,
Ground water and surface water constitute a single dynamic system in most parts of the Suwannee River basin due to the presence of karst features that facilitate the interaction between the surface and subsurface. Low radon-222 concentrations (below background levels) and enriched amounts of oxygen-18 and deuterium in ground water indicate mixing with surface water in parts of the basin. Comparison of surface water and regional ground water flow patterns indicate that boundaries for ground water basins typically do not coincide with surface water drainage subbasins. There are several areas in the basin where around water flow that originates outside of the Suwannee River basin crosses surface water basin boundaries during both low-flow and high-flow conditions. In a study area adjacent to the Suwannee River that consists predominantly of agricultural land use, 18 wells tapping the Upper Floridan aquifer and 7 springs were sampled three times during 1990 through 1994 for major dissolved inorganic constituents, trace elements, and nutrients. During a period of above normal rainfall that resulted in high river stage and high ground water levels in 1991, the combination of increased amounts of dissolved organic carbon and decreased levels of dissolved oxygen in ground water created conditions favorable for the natural reduction of nitrate by denitrification reactions in the aquifer. As a result, less nitrate was discharged by ground water to the Suwannee River

Changes in the isotopic and chemical composition of ground water resulting from a recharge pulse from a sinking stream, 1998, Katz B. G. , Catches J. S. , Bullen T. D. , Michel R. L. ,
The Little River, an ephemeral stream that drains a watershed of approximately ss km(2) in northern Florida, disappears into a series of sinkholes along the Cody Scarp and flows directly into the carbonate Upper Floridan aquifer, the source of water supply in northern Florida. The changes in the geochemistry of ground water caused by a major recharge pulse from the sinking stream were investigated using chemical and isotopic tracers and mass-balance modeling techniques, Nine monitoring wells were installed open to the uppermost part of the aquifer in areas near the sinks where numerous subterranean karst solution features were identified using ground penetrating radar. During high-flow conditions in the Little River, the chemistry of water in some of the monitoring wells changed, reflecting the mixing of river water with ground water. Rapid recharge of river water into some parts of the aquifer during high-flow conditions was indicated by enriched values of delta O-18 and delta deuterium (-1.67 to -3.17 per mil and -9.2 to -15.6 per mil, respectively), elevated concentrations of tannic acid, higher (more radiogenic) Sr-87/Sr-86 ratios, and lower concentrations of Rn-222, silica, and alkalinity compared to low-how conditions. The proportion of river water that mixed with ground water ranged from 0.10 to 0.67 based on binary mixing models using the tracers O-18, deuterium, tannic acid, silica, Rn-222, and Sr-87/Sr-86. On the basis of mass-balance modeling during steady-state how conditions, the dominant processes controlling carbon cycling in ground water are the dissolution of calcite and dolomite in aquifer material, and aerobic degradation of organic matter. (C) 1998 Elsevier Science B.V. All rights reserved

Karst in Enclosing Rocks of Kimberlite Diatremes on the Siberian Platform , 1998, Filippov, Andrej G.

Karst is widely developed in enclosing carbonate rocks of kimberlite diatremes in Yakutia. The Lower Silurian, and Lower and Middle Ordovician marine carbonate and carbonate-terrigenous rocks were exposed to karstification. The age of the forms is Middle and Upper Carboniferous, Cretaceous-Paleogene, Neogene-Quaternary and Quaternary. Karst forms are found on different elements of macro-relief, such as the top part of high plateaux armoured by traps, high plateau slopes, low carbonate plateaux. With respect to elements of meso-relief, karst has developed in watersheds, valley slopes, and under the bottoms of valleys.


Structures tectoniques et contraintes de cheminement des eaux dans les aquiferes karstiques du barrois (Lorraine/Champagne, France), 1999, Devos A, Jaillet S, Gamez P,
Between Lorraine and Champagne, in the east of the Paris Basin, covered karst is developed in Portlandien limestone of Barrois in contact with sand and clay of the Perthois Cretaceous. The cuesta landscape is altered by folding tectonics (syncline of Treveray) and faulting tectonics (fault trough of the Marne). These govern the organization of underground flow. In low water period, hydrological methods (smoothed hydrological profiles, water tracing) display disturbances of the Barrois river (Saulx, Marne) and limits of underground watershed ('Rupt-du-Puits' cave system, 21 km long, 13 km). Macro-tectonics influence vertical infiltration (pit). Fault and dip (Macro-tectonics) divide the aquifer into different sections. Hydrological methods with flow studies confirm structural tilting of the area to the west.ResumeEntre Lorraine et Champagne, dans l'est du Bassin parisien, au contact des calcaires portlandiens du Barrois et des sables et argiles cretaces du Perthois, se developpe un karst couvert. Le paysage de cotes est ici perturbe par une tectonique souple (synclinal de Treveray) et cassante (fosse d'effon-drement de la Marne) determinant l'organisation spatiale des ecoulements. En periode d'etiage, les methodes hydrologiques (profils hydrologiques lisses, tracages), permettent de montrer l'influence de cette tectonique d'ondulation et de basculement sur l'ecoulement des rivieres barroises (Saulx, Marne). Fractures et microfractures influencent la zone de transit vertical des eaux du karst (zone des puits) tandis que les failles compartimentent les aquiferes (systeme du Rupt-du-Puits, 21 km de conduits, 13 km2). Les methodes d'etudes hydrologiques, confirment le basculement de la region vers l'ouest deduit des comparaisons de nivellement

A geomorphological strategy for conducting environmental impact assessments in karst areas, 1999, Veni G. ,
In their efforts to protect regional groundwater supplies, governmental agencies are increasingly requiring studies of karst areas and their features. In areas where tracer tests or geophysics are not required, funded, or otherwise feasible, geomorphological methods remain as the primary tool for assessing karst. This study proposes a geomorphologically-based environmental impact assessment strategy for karst areas. While it is supported with results from a study of the karstic Edwards Aquifer recharge zone on the Camp Bullis Military Training Installation, TX, USA, it is based on the study of several karst areas and is generalized to accommodate and be fine-tuned for regional variations. Biological and other resource issues can also be assessed with this strategy. The assessment identifies environmentally sensitive features and areas, as is often required to meet regulatory directives. In karst areas with relatively small features, excavation is a key tool for accurate assessment. Although the results of this study will help to better manage karst areas, proper management must be done on a regional scale. The highly permeable nature of karst precludes adequate management solely on a feature-by-feature basis. Studies on the relationship of water quality to impervious cover show adverse environmental impacts significantly increase when impervious cover exceeds 15% of a surface watershed. The Camp Bullis study finds similar impacts in its groundwater drainage basin, supporting the argument of 15% impervious cover as a regionally effective means of also protecting karst aquifers when coupled with protection of critical areas identified by field surveys.

Linear and nonlinear input/output models for karstic springflow and flood prediction at different time scales, 1999, Labat D. , Ababou R. , Mangin A. ,
Karstic formations function as three-dimensional (3D) hydrological basins, with both surface and subsurface flows through fissures, natural conduits, underground streams and reservoirs. The main characteristic of karstic formations is their significant 3D physical heterogeneity at all scales, from fine fissuration to large holes and conduits. This leads to dynamic and temporal variability, e.g, highly variable flow rates, due to several concurrent flow regimes with several distinct response times. The temporal hydrologic response of karstic basins is studied here from an input/output, systems analysis viewpoint. The hydraulic behaviour of the basins is approached via the relationship between hydrometeorological inputs and outputs. These processes are represented and modeled as random, self-correlated and cross-correlated, stationary time processes. More precisely, for each site-specific case presented here, the input process is the total rainfall on the basin and the output process is the discharge rate at the outlet of the basin (karstic spring). In the absence of other data, these time processes embody all the available information concerning a given karstic basin. In this paper, we first present a brief discussion of the physical structure of karstic systems. Then, we formulate linear and nonlinear models, i.e. functional relations between rainfall and runoff, and methods for identifying the kernel and coefficients of the functionals (deterministic vs. statistical; error minimisation vs. polynomial projection). These are based mostly on Volterra first order (linear) or second order (nonlinear) convolution. In addition, a new nonlinear threshold model is developed, based on the frequency distribution of interannual mean daily runoff. Finally, the different models and identification methods are applied to two karstic watersheds in the french Pyrenees mountains, using long sequences of rainfall and spring outflow data at two different sampling rates (daily and semi-hourly). The accuracy of nonlinear and linear rainfall-runoff models is tested at three time scales: long interannual scale (20 years of daily data), medium or seasonal scale (3 months of semi-hourly data), and short scale or 'flood scale' (2 days of semi-hourly data). The model predictions are analysed in terms of global statistical accuracy and in terms of accuracy with respect to high flow events (floods)

Uncalculated impacts of unsustainable aquifer yield including evidence of subsurface interbasin flow, 2000, Bacchus St,
Unsustainable withdrawals from regional aquifers have resulted in adverse impacts considerable distances from the point locations of supply wells. In one area of the southeastern (SE) Coastal Plain, conservative estimates for repair/replacement of some residential wells damaged or destroyed by unsustainable yield from the Floridan aquifer system exceeded $4 million. However, a comprehensive assessment of damage/economic loss to private property and public resources due to unsustainable yield from that regional karat aquifer has not been made. Uncalculated direct costs to home-owners from damage attributed to those withdrawals are associated with destruction of homes from increased sinkhole formation, devalued waterfront property, and removal of diseased and dead trees. Examples of other uncalculated economic burdens resulting from unsustainable aquifer yield in the SE Coastal Plain include: (1) irreversible damage to the aquifer matrix and concomitant increased potential for groundwater contamination, (2) large-scale wildfires with subsequent degradation of air quality, debilitation of transportation corridors, and destruction of timber, wildlife habitat and property, and (3) destruction of 'protected' natural areas. This paper provides a general background of the regional Floridan aquifer system's karst characteristics, examples of known impacts resulting from ground water mining in the SE Coastal Plain, and examples of additional damage that may be related to unsustainable yield from the Upper Floridan aquifer. Costs of these impacts have not been calculated and are not reflected in the price users pay for ground water. Evidence suggests that the classic watershed management approach must be revised in areas with mined regional karst aquifers to include impacts of induced recharge from the surficial aquifer, and subsurface interbasin flow. Likewise, associated impacts to surface water and interrelated systems must be calculated The true cost of groundwater mining to this and future generations should be determined using a multidisciplinary approach

Simulation of daily and monthly stream discharge from small watersheds using the SWAT model, 2000, Spruill C. A. , Workman S. R. , Taraba J. L. ,
The Soil and Water Assessment Tool (SWAT) was evaluated and parameter sensitivities were determined while modeling daily streamflows in a small central Kentucky watershed over a two-year period. Streamflow data from 1996 were used to calibrate the model and streamflow data from 1995 were used for evaluation. The model adequately predicted the trends in daily streamflow during this period although Nash-Sutcliffe R-2 values were -0.04 and 0.19 for 1995 and 1996, respectively The model poorly predicted the timing of some peak flow values and recession rates during the last half of 1995. Excluding daily peak flow values from August to December improved the daily R-2 to 0.15, which was similar to the 1996 daily R2 value. The Nash-Sutcliffe R-2 for monthly total flows were 0.58 for 1995 and 0.89 for 1996 which were similar to values found in the literature. Since very little information was available on the sensitivity of the SWAT model to various inputs, a sensitivity analysis/calibration procedure was designed to evaluate parameters that were thought to influence stream discharge predictions. These parameters included, drainage area, slope length, channel length, saturated hydraulic conductivity, and available water capacity. Minimization of the average absolute deviation between observed and simulated streamflows identified optimum values/ranges for each parameter. Saturated hydraulic conductivity alpha baseflow factor; drainage area, channel length, and channel width were the most sensitive parameters in modeling the karst influenced watershed. The sensitivity analysis process confirmed die trace studies in the karst watershed that a much larger area contributes to streamflow than can be described by the topographic boundaries. Overall, the results indicate that the SWAT model can be an effective tool for describing monthly, runoff from small watersheds in central Kentucky that have developed on karat hydrology however calibration data are necessary to account for solution channels draining into or out of the topographic watershed

Karst Water Research in Slovenia, 2000, Kranjc, Andrej

About 43% of the territory of Slovenia is karst and more than 50% of its inhabitants are supplied with water from karst. Karst in Slovenia is divided into Dinaric, Alpine and transitional karst. Each of these types bears its own hydrological properties. Already in the antique literature underground water connections are mentioned. Water tracing in the Slovene Karst is among the first modern tracing research. Karst water research may be divided into several periods: (1) aimed at determining underground water connections between swallow-holes and springs (the first half of the 20th century), (2) to achieve combined water tracing tests (since 1970), (3) to define karst watersheds, (4) to study water percolation through the epikarst and the vadose zone (since 1980). In particular, the researches of karst water quality must be emphasised, as well as the study of karst hydrology as a phenomenon in itself. At the end a logical question appears: what are the future perspectives of karst water studies in Slovenia? Water tracing of not yet fully ascertained connections or repeating the water tracing tests under different hydrological conditions; a detailed determination of watersheds and water flow with the help of tracers directly injected underground; to develop water tracing techniques and methods; to study in the field percolation water behaviour; modelling; to theoretically determine physical laws. Special attention must also be paid to education.


Timescales for nitrate contamination of spring waters, northern Florida, USA, 2001, Katz B. G. , Bohlke J. K. , Hornsby H. D. ,
Residence times of groundwater, discharging from springs in the middle Suwannee River Basin, were estimated using chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs), tritium ((3) H), and tritium/helium-3 (H-3/He-3) age-dating methods to assess the chronology of nitrate contamination of spring waters in northern Florida. During base-flow conditions for the Suwannee River in 1997-1999, 17 water samples were collected from 12 first, second, and third magnitude springs discharging groundwater from the Upper Floridan aquifer. Extending age-dating techniques, using transient tracers to spring waters in complex karst systems, required an assessment of several models [piston-flow (PFM), exponential mixing (EMM), and binary-mixing (BMM)] to account for different distributions of groundwater age. Multi-tracer analyses of four springs yielded generally concordant PFM ages of around 20 2 years from CFC- 12, CFC- 113, H-3, and He-3. with evidence of partial CFC- 11 degradation. The EMM gave a reasonable fit to CFC- 113, CFC- 12. and H-3 data, but did not reproduce the observed He-3 concentrations or H-3/He-3 ratios, nor did a combination PFM-EMM. The BMM could reproduce most of the multi-tracer data set only if both endmembers had H-3 concentrations not much different front modern values. CFC analyses of 14 additional springs yielded apparent PFM ages from about 10 to 20 years from CFC- 113, with evidence of partial CFC- 11 degradation and variable CFC-12 contamination. While it is not conclusive, with respect to the age distribution within each spring, the data indicate that the average residence times were in the order of 10-20 years and were roughly proportional to spring magnitude. Applying similar models to recharge and discharge of nitrate based on historical nitrogen loading data yielded contrasting trends for Suwanee County and Lafayette County. In Suwance County, spring nitrate trends and nitrogen isotope data were consistent with a peak in fertilizer input in the 1970s and a relatively high overall ratio of artificial fertilizer/manure whereas in Lafayette County, spring nitrate trends and nitrogen isotope data were consistent with a more monotonic increase in fertilizer input and relatively low overall ratio of artificial fertilizer/manure. The combined results of this study indicate that the nitrate concentrations of springs in the Suwannee River basin have responded to increased nitrogen loads from various sources in the watersheds over the last few decades, however, the responses have been subdued and delayed because the average residence time of groundwater discharging from springs are in the order of decades. (C) 2001 Published by Elsevier Science B.V

Chemical and physical controls on waters discharged from abandoned underground coal mines, 2001, Lopez D. L. , Stoertz M. W. ,
Abandoned up-dip drift mines in high-sulphur coal are a major source of acid mine drainage (AMD) in Appalachia. Studies of mines in the Monday Creek watershed of southeastern Ohio show that mines are recharged by surface runoff into subsidence features that dilate the natural stress-relief fracture system. The direct connection between the ground surface and the mines leads to a rapid response in the hydrograph, with a one- to four-day lag between precipitation and corresponding peak mine discharge. Subsidence occurs in topographic depressions where overburden is presumably relatively thin. Subsidence features drain 20-36% of the surface area. Unsaturated storage appears to be volumetrically insignificant, so that far more recharge occurs than the 5% often assumed for this region. Mine storage can change rapidly due to subsidence recharge. Hydrologically, mines with subsidence features behave like karst systems, with meteoric quickflow' representing more than 50% of the total flow. Mine discharge concentrations are relatively uniform through time, suggesting either equilibrium controls on chemistry or drainage of a well-mixed pool, or both. Evidence of dilution by high flows is slight. The first high flows after a baseflow period show only a slight increase in concentrations, attributed to flushing of stored reaction products. Loadings (concentrations x flow) depend on volumetric discharge and as a consequence are highly variable. The Eh/pH environment in up-dip drift mines indicates that mine waters are in contact with the atmosphere at least part of the time, unlike a true groundwater. Iron buffering partly controls pH, which clusters around values of 3.6-5.0

Introduction of wavelet analyses to rainfall/runoffs relationship for a karstic basin: The case of Licq-Atherey karstic system (France), 2001, Labat D. , Ababou R. , Mangin A. ,
Karstic systems are highly heterogeneous geological formations characterized by a multiscale temporal and spatial hydrologic behavior with more or less localized temporal and spatial structures. Classical correlation and spectral analyses cannot take into account these properties. Therefore, it is proposed to introduce a new kind of transformation: the wavelet transform. Here we focus particularly on the use of wavelets to study temporal behavior of local precipitation and watershed runoffs from a part of the karstic system. In the first part of the paper, a brief mathematical overview of the continuous Morlet wavelet transform and of the multiresolution analysis is presented. An analogy with spectral analyses allows the introduction of concepts such as wavelet spectrum and cross-spectrum. In the second part, classical methods (spectral and correlation analyses) and wavelet transforms are applied and compared for daily rainfall rates and runoffs measured on a French karstic watershed (Pyrenees) over a period of 30 years. Different characteristic time scales of the rainfall and runoff processes are determined, These time scales are typically on the order of a few days for floods, but they also include significant half-year and one-year components and multi-annual components. The multiresolution cross-analysis also provides a new interpretation of the impulse response of the system. To conclude, wavelet transforms provide a valuable amount of information, which may be now taken into account in both temporal and spatially distributed karst modeling of precipitation and runoff

Determining the source of stream contamination in a karst water system, southwest Virginia, USA, 2001, Younos T. , Kaurish F. W. , Brown T. , De Leon R. ,
Karst terrane provides a linkage between surface water and ground water regimes by means of caves, sinkholes and swallets, and sinking streams, and facilitates the inter-watershed transfer of water and contaminants through these subsurface systems. The goal of this study was to develop procedures to identify the sources of degradation of a creek situated in a complex karst-water system. The study approach consisted of using dye tracing technique to determine subsurface flow paths through the karst system, a water-sampling network to identify and characterize pollution sources within the surface watershed and subsurface flow regime, and evaluation of analytical data for several water quality parameters. The results of this study provide an interesting perspective of water and contaminant movement in karst-water systems and pinpoint the sources of stream contamination for a case study site in southwest Virginia where two springs supply water to a contaminated freshwater stream

Application of morphometric relationships to active flow networks within the Mammouth Cave Watershed, MSc Thesis., 2001, Glennon, A.

Numerous quantitative relationships have been formulated to describe the nature of surface-drainage networks. These parameters have been used in various studies of geomorphology and surface-water hydrology, such as flood characteristics, sediment yield, and evolution of basin morphology. Little progress has been made in applying these quantitative descriptors to karst flow systems due to the lack of sufficiently complete data and inadequate technology for processing the large, complex data sets. However, as a result of four decades of investigation, an abundance of data now exists for the Mammoth Cave Watershed providing the opportunity for broader quantitative research in the organization of a large, highly-developed, karst-drainage network. Developing Geographic Information System (GIS) technology has provided tools to 1) book-keep the karst system's large, complex spatial data sets, 2) analyze and quantitatively model karst processes, and 3) visualize spatially and temporally complex data. []Karst aquifers display drainage characteristics that in many ways appear similar to surface networks. The purpose of my research was to explore techniques by which quantitative methods of drainage-network analysis can be applied to the organization and flow patterns in the Turnhole Bend Groundwater Basin of the Mammoth Cave Watershed. []Morphometric analysis of mapped active base-flow, stream-drainage density within the Turnhole Bend Groundwater Basin resulted in values ranging from 0.24 km/km2 to 1.13 km/km2. A nearby, climatologically similar, nonkarst surface drainage system yielded a drainage density value of 1.36 km/km2. Since the mapped cave streams necessarily represent only a fraction of the total of underground streams within the study area, the actual subsurface values are likely to be much higher. A potential upper limit on perennial drainage density for the Turnhole Bend Groundwater Basin was calculated by making the assumption that each sinkhole drains at least one first-order stream. Using Anhert and Williams’ (1998) average of 74 sinkholes per km2 for the Turnhole Bend Groundwater Basin, the minimum flow-length draining one km2 is 6.25-7.22 km (stated as drainage density, 6.25-7.22 km/km2). []Stream ordering of cave streams and their catchments generally follow Hortonian relationships observed for surface-stream networks. Subsurface streams within the Mammoth Cave Watershed generally exhibit a converging, dendritic pattern and possess drainage basins proportionately large for their order. However, even at base-flow conditions, the Turnhole Bend drainage system continues to possess confounding characteristics. These include at least one leakage to an adjacent groundwater basin (Meiman et al., 2001), diverging streams sharing the same surface catchment (Glennon and Groves, 1997), and highly complex, three-dimensional basin boundaries (Meiman et al., 2001). In spite of the incomplete data set available for the Mammoth Cave Watershed, study of initial values suggests an orderly subsurface flow network with numerical results that allow for comparison of the karst-flow network to surface fluvial systems.


An Examination of Perennial Stream Drainage Patterns Within the Mammoth Cave Watershed, Kentucky, 2002, Glennon, L. , Groves, C.
Quantitative relationships describing the nature of surface drainage networks have been used to formulate flood characteristics, sediment yield, and the evolution of basin morphology. Progress has been slow in applying these quantitative descriptors to karst flow systems. Developing geographic information system (GIS) technology has provided tools to 1) manage the karst systems large, complex spatial datasets; 2) analyze and quantitatively model karst processes; and 3) visualize spatially and temporally complex data. The purpose of this investigation is to explore techniques by which quantitative methods of drainage network analysis can be applied to the organization and flow patterns in the Turnhole Bend Basin of the Mammoth Cave Watershed. Morphometric analysis of mapped active base-flow, stream-drainage density within the Turnhole Bend Groundwater Basin resulted in values ranging from 0.24 km/km? to 1.13 km/km?. A nearby, climatologically similar, nonkarst surface drainage system yielded a drainage density value of 1.36 km/km?. Since the mapped cave streams necessarily represent only a fraction of the total of underground streams within the study area, the actual subsurface values are likely to be much higher. A potential upper limit on perennial drainage density for the Turnhole Bend Groundwater Basin was calculated by making the assumption that each sinkhole drains at least one first-order stream. Using Anhert and Williams (1998) average of 74 sinkholes per km? for the Turnhole Bend Groundwater Basin, the minimum flow-length draining one km? is 6.25-7.22 km (stated as drainage density, 6.25-7.22 km/km?).

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