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Enviroscan Ukrainian Institute of Speleology and Karstology

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Speleology in Kazakhstan

Shakalov on 04 Jul, 2018
Hello everyone!   I pleased to invite you to the official site of Central Asian Karstic-Speleological commission ("Kaspeko")   There, we regularly publish reports about our expeditions, articles and reports on speleotopics, lecture course for instructors, photos etc. ...

New publications on hypogene speleogenesis

Klimchouk on 26 Mar, 2012
Dear Colleagues, This is to draw your attention to several recent publications added to KarstBase, relevant to hypogenic karst/speleogenesis: Corrosion of limestone tablets in sulfidic ground-water: measurements and speleogenetic implications Galdenzi,

The deepest terrestrial animal

Klimchouk on 23 Feb, 2012
A recent publication of Spanish researchers describes the biology of Krubera Cave, including the deepest terrestrial animal ever found: Jordana, Rafael; Baquero, Enrique; Reboleira, Sofía and Sendra, Alberto. ...

Caves - landscapes without light

akop on 05 Feb, 2012
Exhibition dedicated to caves is taking place in the Vienna Natural History Museum   The exhibition at the Natural History Museum presents the surprising variety of caves and cave formations such as stalactites and various crystals. ...

Did you know?

That karstification is 1. the processes of solution and infiltration by water, mainly chemical but also mechanical, whereby the surface features and subterranean drainage network of a karstland are developed to form a karst topography, including such surface features as dolines, karren, and mogotes and such subsurface features as caves and shafts. an area currently or formerly undergoing karstification, and thus characterized by karst landforms, is said to be karstified [19]. 2. the process by which karst is formed. the term has been given a wide range of meaning, from almost a synonym or corrosion of soluble rocks by water to a term comprising all processes responsible for the development of karst features including, besides corrosion, such phenomena as mechanical erosion, jointing, and faulting [20]. synonyms: (french.) karstification; (german.) verkarstung; (greek.) apokarstosis; (italian.) carsificazione; (russian.) karstoobrazovanie; (spanish.) karstificacion; (turkish.) karstlasma; (yugoslavian.) okrsavanje, zakrasevanje, karstifikacija.?

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

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What is Karstbase?



Browse Speleogenesis Issues:

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;
See all featured articles from other geoscience journals

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Karstologia, 2007, Vol 49, p. 25-32

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Pétrographie d’une altérite résiduelle de type « fantôme de roche »

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PETROGRAPHY OF A RESIDUAL ALTERITE « GHOST-ROCK ». Classically, the karstogenesis begins with a phase of dissolution along fissures. Progressively, the fissure broadens and more water flows. Some fissures transform in more important void, sometimes galleries. The fondamental fact is that the removal of bed-rock is total, the greatest part by solution (carbonates, calcium and magnesium, sodium and potassium...), the rest one like solid phase (clay minerals, quartz...). We call this process “total removal”. But another karstification process exists: the « ghost-rock » formation.
The first phase of the « ghost-rock » formation begins with an isovolumic alteration of the bed-rock. The insoluble parts remain while the soluble parts are evacuated with underground water. This insoluble part is constituted by clays minerals, silica phase, sparite like fossils, or big cristals and forms a residual alterite. That is the “ghost-rock formation”. This is the case for the present example which is a residual alterite in a very pure wackestone. This object presents like a volume of alterite confined in the intact bed-rock. We study this ghost-rock by a petrographic analysis. The macroscopic approach emphasizes the great porosity of the ghost-rock which is very crumbly. The border between the ghost-rock and the bed-rock is very irregular, emphazising the petrophysic differences.
The microscopic approach shows in the ghost-rock a general collapse of the structure where subsist only the best cristallized grains. The alteration increases to the detriment of the little cristals, saving the bioclasts, or to the detriment of the fissures. One detects also another phase which is constituted by gypsum. The examination using the electron microscope shows that the bed-rock is formed by well soldered grains, crystals, primary pyrite. On the other hand, the ghost-rock is characterised by a great porosity, secondary pyrite, corrosion gulfs on crystals. This is the indication that the acid function comes from sulfuric acid by oxydation of the sulfide. This is the reason of the presence of gypsum. After the alteration, the organic matter present in the bed-rock (black limestone) can reduce the gypsum in secondary sulfide. The conclusion is that the formation of the ghost-rock can develop in a pure limestone, and non only in a limestone with silico-clay skeleton. This ghost-rock represents the first stage of the genesis: an isovolumic alteration, without macroscopic void, before a collapse of the weathering rock.

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Keywords: karst, weathering, ghost-rocks, microscopic analysis

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