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That dissolution of limestone is the solubility of calcite (and hence of limestone) in pure water is very low, but is vastly increased in the presence of carbon dioxide. this gas, dissolved in the water to produce carbonic acid, permits dissociation of calcium carbonate, and dissolution rates and loads are therefore directly related to carbon dioxide content. this accounts for the importance to limestone dissolution of plant growth; soil water contains greatly more carbon dioxide than stream waters. further dissolution occurs due to mixing of saturated waters of different carbon dioxide content (see mischungskorrosion), because of a nonlinear relationship between carbonate saturation and carbon dioxide content. this process is of major significance to continued dissolution within the phreas. cold water can dissolve more carbon dioxide but, with respect to cave development, this climatic factor is overwhelmed by the higher organic activity producing more carbon dioxide in warmer environments. loss of carbon dioxide, by diffusion into open air, causes water to precipitate calcite as speleothems. limestone dissolution may also be achieved by organic acids or by strong acids, particularly sulphuric acid, though such effects are normally far less than that of carbon dioxide. strong acid dissolution is probably involved in the inception of most underground drainage. dissolution by sulphuric acid formed by oxidation of sulfide minerals or gases may be a major cave-forming process in some regions, and was largely responsible for the enlargement of carlsbad caverns and lechuguilla cave, new mexico .?
Checkout all 2699 terms in the KarstBase Glossary of Karst and Cave Terms
Caves - landscapes without light
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. Several interactive installations are available as well as audiovisual room presenting current state of the art in current research findings. 28 spectacular Austrian caves are presented. Important goal of the exhibition is to demonstrate how Vienna is supplied by drinking water from karst areas.
The book "Hypogene Karst Regions and Caves of the World" is finished
The book “Hypogene Karst Regions and Caves of the World” is a project, initiated and coordinated by the Commission on Karst Hydrogeology and Speleogenesis of the International Union of Speleology, as a part of its ongoing HypoKarst project ("Hypogene Karst & Speleogenesis: Nature, Processes, Mechanisms, Manifestations and Applications") This book is going to be published by Springer, in its series “Cave and Karst Systems of the World”. ...
Karst session at the AGU Fall 2016 Meeting in San Francisco
There will be a karst session at the AGU Fall 2016 Meeting in San Francisco, USA in December 12-16: Characterization, Modeling, and Remediation of Fissured, Carbonate, and Karst Groundwater Systems Session Description: Fractures, conduits and surface solution features in carbonate karst systems lead to strong surface/subsurface interactions that result in significant water, mass, energy, and contaminant transport within the critical zone. ...
A new book on caves and karst in Austria
After 4 years of work I am happy to announce that our book 'Höhlen und Karst in Österreich' (Caves and karst in Austria; Editors: Christoph Spötl, Lukas Plan & Ehrad Christian) will be printed until mid of July (Click here to download a book flyer) It is in German but has engl. ...
Unusual perspective on caves
Many inspiring ideas on caves can be found in images created by children, generated by the International Contest of Kid’s Drawing "Caves in the Eyes of our Children" Follow the link in the recent blog of Olga Shamanskaya for an outstanding collection of kid’s drawings. ...
Session on Karst Aquifers at the 43th IAH Congress, France
A call is released to submit an abstract to a session devoted to karst aquifers, which will be held in September in Montpellier during the 43rd IAH CONGRESS (http://www60iah2016. ...