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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 cave breathing is a resonance phenomenon in which air currents throb back and forth through constricted passages in a cave with periodicity of a few seconds to a few minutes. synonyms: (french.) passage respirant; (german.) grotte mit resonanz; (greek.) anapneousa ope; (italian.) grotta a soffio alterno; (spanish.) gruta resonante; (turkish.) magara esintisi. see also blowing cave.?

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

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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

Search in KarstBase

Your search for long-term (Keyword) returned 109 results for the whole karstbase:
Showing 1 to 15 of 109
Geomorphology of Punchbowl and Signature Caves, Wee Jasper, New South Wales, 1964,
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Jennings, J. N.

Because of the ease of its exploration, the Punchbowl-Signature system (Map reference 677587, Army 1/50,000 Sheet 8627-IV, Goodradigbee) is the most frequently visited of the Wee Jasper caves though it contains even less calcite decoration than does Dip Cave. On the other hand, the system is of considerable scientific interest, both biological and geomorphological. Biologically the interest centres on the long-term investigations of the colony of Bentwing Bats (Miniopterus schreibersii blepotis), initiated by G. Dunnet, sustained and enlarged by D. Purchase. On the geomorphological side, though it is now a dry inactive system like Dip Cave, it possesses a morphology which reveals much of the history of its excavation by a former underground river and so contrasts with its neighbour in the same geological formation only a mile away where there are many difficulties in the way of interpretation of its evolution (Jennings, 1963a).

Karst processes of the eastern upper Galilee, Northern Israel, 1974,
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Gerson R,
Karst processes dominate most of the geomorphic activity in the Upper Galilee, consisting mainly of dolomites and limestones. Study of the chemical evolution of water passing through the karst hydrologic cycle clearly shows that the major portion of its carbonate solute is gained subaerially and in the upper part of the vadose zone. Most cave and spring water is already saturated with respect to aragonite and calcite.The karst depressions typical to surface morphology are mostly associated with fault-line traces. Their evolution is possible mainly in areas sloping initially less that 5[deg].The absence of evolved caves, representing well-developed karst of an earlier period, is attributed mainly to the marginal climate throughout the past combined with tectonic, and hence hydrologic, instability of the region.The discharge of the karst prings shows clearly dependence on annual precipitation, with a lag of about 2 years of the response to drought or more humid periods. Long-term fluctuations are larger in the smaller T'eo Spring than in the affluent 'Enan Springs.Most of the denuded material is extracted from the region as dissolved load via underground conduits and only small amounts as clastics. Mean long-term denudation is approximately 20 mm/1000 years, averaged for the surface area contributing to the springs.In spite of the above, most topographic forms are shaped by runoff erosion, active during medium to high intensity rainstorms. Solution processes prevail during low to medium rainfall intensities, while different parts of the region are denuded at similar rates. Even in karst depressions, erosion becomes dominant after their bottoms are covered by almost impervious terra-rossa mantle

Hydrogeologic Constraints on Yucatan's Development, 1974,
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Doehring Do, Butler Jh,
The Republic of Mexico has an ambitious and effective national water program. The Secretaria de Recursos Hidraulicos (SRH), whose director has cabinet rank in the federal government, is one of the most professionally distinguished government agencies of its kind in the Americas. Resources for the Future, Inc., has been assisting the World Bank with a water planning study which the Bank is undertaking jointly with the Mexican government. The study is intended to provide guidelines for the development of government policies and projects designed to bring about the most efficient use of Mexico's water resources. However, to date, their study has not been directed toward the growing problems of the northern Yucataan Peninsula which are discussed here.LeGrand (13) suggested that man has inherited a harsh environment in carbonate terranes. In the case of the northern Yucatan Peninsula, the physical environment creates a set of hydrogeologic constraints to future economic and social development. Planning for intermediate and long-range land use on the peninsula must be related directly to the limited and fragile groundwater source. Continued contamination will make future aquifer management a difficult challenge for federal, state, and territorial agencies. We conclude that any strategy for long-range land use in the study area should include establishment of a regional aquifermonitoring network for long-term measurements of key hydrogeologic parameters, including precipitation, evapotranspiration, water table elevations, and water quality. Information from this network would flow into a central facility for storage, interpretation, and analysis. At present the SRH is collecting some of these data. Expansion of the existing program to provide sound information for regional planning will greatly benefit present as well as future generations. If such a program is implemented, it will represent a model for regional planning in other tropical and subtropical karstic terrains

Mayan Urbanism: Impact on a Tropical Karst Environment, 1979,
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Deevey Es, Rice Ds, Rice Pm, Vaughan Hh, Brenner M, Flannery Ms,
From the first millennium B.C. through the 9th-century A.D. Classic Maya collapse, nonurban populations grew exponentially, doubling every 408 years, in the twin-lake (Yaxha-Sacnab) basin that contained the Classic urban center of Yaxha. Pollen data show that forests were essentially cleared by Early Classic time. Sharply accelerated slopewash and colluviation, amplified in the Yaxha subbasin by urban construction, transferred nutrients plus calcareous, silty clay to both lakes. Except for the urban silt, colluvium appearing as lake sediments has a mean total phosphorus concentration close to that of basin soils. From this fact, from abundance and distribution of soil phosphorus, and from continuing post-Maya influxes (80 to 86 milligrams of phosphorus per square meter each year), which have no other apparent source, we conclude that riparian soils are anthrosols and that the mechanism of long-term phosphorus loading in lakes is mass transport of soil. Per capita deliveries of phosphorus match physiological outputs, approximately 0.5 kilogram of phosphorus per capita per year. Smaller apparent deliveries reflect the nonphosphatic composition of urban silt; larger societal outputs, expressing excess phosphorus from deforestation and from food waste and mortuary disposal, are probable but cannot be evaluated from our data. Eutrophication is not demonstrable and was probably impeded, even in less-impacted lakes, by suspended Maya silt. Environmental strain, the product of accelerating agroengineering demand and sequestering of nutrients in colluvium, developed too slowly to act as a servomechanism, damping population growth, at least until Late Classic time

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Davis Jd, Brook Ga,
Upper Sinking Cove, dissecting the eastern escarpment of the Cumberland Plateau, is characterized by a multiple aquifer, predominantly vadose hydrologic system with minor surface components. There is a central trunk channel along the axis of the cove and a network of independent tributaries. Aquitards within the limestones, particularly Hartselle Formation shales, have influenced both cave and surface landform development by perching ground waters and slowing the vertical growth of closed depressions. Long-term solutional denudation in the portion of the cove underlain by limestones (40 per cent) is an estimated 56 mm per 1000 years, suggesting that karst development began 15-16 million years ago. Despite lower soil CO2 and spring water hardness, 61 per cent of annual denudation occurs in the six winter months when 76 per cent of yearly runoff occurs. Landform development in Upper Sinking Cove appears to have begun as stream erosion carved a valley first in the sandstone caprock of the escarpment and later in the underlying Pennington Formation limestones containing numerous shale layers which promoted surface stream flow. Eventually stream erosion exposed the massive Bangor limestones which allowed deep ground water flow. Surface streams were pirated underground with the eventual formation of the chain of three closed depressions which constitute Upper Sinking Cove

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Laurila T. , Lattila H. ,
The occurrence of ozone concentrations and exposure indices related to the adverse effects of ozone upon vegetation are reported for four Finnish background stations. In Finland, ozone concentrations are often near the background tropospheric values of cn. 30 ppb. Very high concentrations are not observed. The maximum 1-h average in this data set was 79 ppb. The exposure parameter, which accumulates growing season 1-h average concentrations above a 40 ppb base-line in daylight hours, gave clearly different exposure sums for the stations. These values varied between 4000 and 8500 ppb-h in the southern archipelago, 3000-6500 ppb-h in the southern coastal region, 2000-4000 ppb-h in central parts of the country, and 400-1000 ppb-h in the northern parts of the country. The date of the start of the vegetative season is important in high northern latitudes, because the spring maximum of ozone concentrations is relatively intense compared to the summer maximum. In northern Scandinavia, ozone exposures are particularly sensitive to the date of the start of the growing season. The long daylight period in northern Scandinavia is less important in this respect, since during the growing season ozone concentrations are usually below 40 ppb during the morning and evening hours. A good correlation was found between growing season average concentrations of the sum of gaseous HNO3 and particulate NO3-, and on ozone exposure index which accumulates concentrations above a 40 ppb base-line, confirming the anthropogenic origin of the elevated ozone exposures

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Felton Gk,
A ground water catchment was instrumented as a karst hydrology and water quality laboratory to develop long-term flow and water quality data. This catchment located in Woodford and Jessamine Counties in the Inner Bluegrass, Central Kentucky encompasses approximately 1620 ha, 40 water wells, over 400 sinkholes, 2 karst windows, and 1 sinking stream. The land uses consist of approximately 59% beef pasture, horse farm, and golf course; 16% row crops; 6% orchard; 13%forest; and 6% residential. The instrumentation consisted of a recording rain gage, an H-flume, a water stage recorder, and an automated water sampler. Flow data for 312 days were analyzed, and a peak flow rate prediction equation, specific to this catchment, was developed Recession curves were analyzed and found to be of two distinct mathematical forms, log curves and exponential curves. Prediction equations were good for the log-type recession curve and fair for the exponential-type recession curve. For the exponential recessions, the peak flow rate was found to be bimodally distributed The recession events were classified as either high flow or low flow, with the point of separation at 113 L/s. It was hypothesized that the flow system was controlled by pipe flow above 113 L/s and by open channel flow below 113 L/s. Subsequent analysis resulted in adequate prediction for the low flow events. Explained variation associated with the high flow events was low and attributed to storage in the karst system that was not incorporated into the predictor equation

Thesis Abstract: Long-term quaternary chronologies from cave deposits, 1995,
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Farrant A. R.

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Frumkin A, Ford Dc,
Rock salt is approximately 1000 times more soluble than limestone and thus displays high rates of geomorphic evolution. Cave stream channel profiles and downcutting rates were studied in the Mount Sedom salt diapir, Dead Sea rift valley, Israel. Although the area is very arid (mean annual rainfall approximate to 50 mm), the diapir contains extensive karst systems of Holocene age. In the standard cave profile a vertical shaft at the upstream end diverts water from a surface channel in anhydrite or elastic cap rocks into the subsurface route in the salt. Mass balance calculations in a sample cave passage yielded downcutting rates of 0.2 mm s(-1) during peak flood conditions, or about eight orders of magnitude higher than reported rates in any limestone cave streams. However, in the arid climate of Mount Sedom floods have a low recurrence interval with the consequence that long-term mean downcutting rates are lower: an average rate of 8.8 mm a(-1) was measured for the period 1986-1991 in the same sample passage. Quite independently, long-term mean rates of 6.2 mm a(-1) are deduced from C-14 ages of driftwood found in upper levels of 12 cave passages. These are at least three orders of magnitude higher than rates established for limestone caves. Salt cave passages develop in two main stages: (1) an early stage characterized by high downcutting rates into the rock salt bed, and steep passage gradients; (2) a mature stage characterized by lower downcutting rates, with establishment of a subhorizontal stream bed armoured with alluvial detritus. In this mature stage downcutting rates are controlled by the uplift rate of the Mount Sedom diapir and changes of the level of the Dead Sea. Passages may also aggrade. These fast-developing salt stream channels may serve as full-scale models for slower developing systems such as limestone canyons

Long-term Quaternary uplift rates inferred from limestone caves in Sarawak, Malaysia., 1995,
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Farrant A. R. , Smart P. L. , Whitaker F. F. , Tarling D. H.

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Ng K. C. , Jones B. ,
Groundwater in the dolostone aquifers of the Bluff Group (Oligocene-Miocene) on Grand Cayman is divided into fresh, lightly and highly brackish, and saline (Type I and II) zones according to chemical characteristics that were determined during a 3 year (1985-1988) monitoring program. Brackish and Type I saline waters display the greatest variation in chemical properties whereas the Type II saline water has the most stable chemical characteristics. Most groundwaters from these dolostone aquifers are thermodynamically capable of precipitating calcite and/or dolomite. The saturation indices for these minerals, however, vary through time and space even in the context of small water lens. Simple mixing of fresh and sea water cannot explain the chemistry of the water found in the joint and karst controlled dolostone aquifers of Grand Cayman. Deviation from a simple mixing model is due to variations caused by tidal fluctuation, the rate of rain water recharge, influx of Ca-rich groundwater from the surrounding limestone aquifers, influx of CO2-rich surface water from sinkholes and swamps, and water-rock interactions (dissolution and precipitation of calcite and dolomite). Sustained groundwater abstraction from a lens can significantly alter the hydrochemistry of the water lens. This suggests that hydrochemical characterization of small fresh water lenses, like those on Grand Cayman, cannot be based on spot or short-term sampling. Interpretation of such fluids in terms of calcite-dolomite precipitation and/or dissolution must be treated with caution if the data base has not been derived from long-term monitoring

Paleoclimatic implications of radiocarbon dating of speleothems from the Cracow-Wielun Upland, southern Poland, 1995,
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Pazdur A. , Pazdur M. F. , Pawlyta J. , Gorny A. , Olszewski M. ,
We report preliminary results of a long-term systematic study intended to gather paleoclimatic records from precisely dated speleothems. The research project is limited to speleothems deposited in caves of the Cracow-Wielun Upland, the largest and best-explored karst region in Poland, covering ca. 2900 km(2) with >1000 caves. Speleothem samples were selected from collections of the Geological Museum of the Academy of Mining and Metallurgy in Cracow. Radiocarbon dates of these samples from ca. 45-20 ka BP almost exactly coincide with age range of the Interplenivistulian. A break in speleothem formation between ca. 20 and 10 ka up may be interpreted as a result of serious climatic deterioration associated with the maximum extent of the last glaciation. We observed differences among C-14, U/Th and AAR dating results. Changes of delta(13)C and delta(18)O in speleothems that grew between ca. 30 and 20 ka sp may be interpreted as changes of paleoclimatic conditions

Geomagnetic palaeosecular variation recorded in North And Central American speleothems, PhD thesis, 1995,
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Lean, C. M. B.

The aim of this project was to collect samples of stalagmites from Northern and Central America in order to produce records of the palaeosecular variation of the earth's magnetic field. Two stalagmites were sampled from Western Canada and ten from Mexico and Guatemala which could be compared with contemporaneous stalagmite records from these areas (Latham, 1981; Latham et al, 1982; 1986; 1987; 1989).
The stalagmites were generally weakly magnetised but remanence directions were stable upon stepwise thermal and alternating-field demagnetisation. Consistency in directions recorded between central and corresponding lateral sub-samples within two stalagmites (MSC2 from Canada and CP1 from Guatemala) inferred that any depositional errors caused by surface effects were less than the measurement errors. Grain size analysis showed the presence of a fine-grained magnetic fraction (0.01 - 0.1?:m) sourced from the cave drip-waters (either by direct deposition or by chemical precipitation) and a coarser magnetic fraction (0.01 - >10?:m) sourced from the flood-borne detritus. The latter source was dominant in stalagmites which were regularly inundated with water. The type of magnetic mineral present was determined by the geology of the catchment area; magnetite dominated in the Vancouver Island stalagmites, titanomagnetite in the Mexican stalagmites and haematite in the Guatemalan stalagmite.
Uranium-series dating of samples was hindered by the young ages of many of the samples, by low uranium concentrations and by the presence of allogenic thorium. If significant amounts of allogenic thorium were present, a sample age could be calculated based on an estimate of the initial thorium ratio ([230Th/232Th]0). Analysis of samples from Sumidero Recuerdo in Mexico, however, suggested that this ratio is not constant with time and may vary by a factor of two over approximately 1700 years. Due to these imprecisions many dates were out of stratigraphic sequence and age estimates were made assuming constant growth rates, except where growth had ceased for a finite length of time.
Records of sequential change of palaeomagnetic direction were obtained from the Mexican stalagmite SSJ3 and the Canadian stalagmite MSC2. The reliability of the latter record was confirmed by comparison with another Canadian stalagmite record (Latham et al, 1987) and contemporaneous lacustrine records. Other records were disappointing due to poor temporal resolution; each sub-sample represented a period of approximately 1000 years in Mexican stalagmites SSJ2 and SSJ4. Such slow growth rates are insufficient for the resolution of secular variation features with periods of less than 2000 years and are only suitable to gain information about the nature of long-term secular variations, for example the far-sided virtual geomagnetic poles and low inclinations predominant throughout the Holocene in Southern Mexico.
The existence of matching contemporaneous stalagmite records of secular variation together with the demonstrated lack of depositional inclination errors is encouraging, despite the sometimes "hit or miss" aspects of sample selection. Nevertheless it has been proved that speleothem records have the potential to complement the existing archaeomagnetic, lava and lacustrine data.

Agricultural chemicals at the outlet of a shallow carbonate aquifer, 1996,
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Felton Gk,
A groundwater catchment, located in Woodford and Jessamine Counties in the Inner Bluegrass of Kentucky, was instrumented to develop long-term flow and water quality data. The land uses on this 1 620-ha catchment consist of approximately 59% in grasses consisting of beef farms, horse farms, and a golf course; 16% row crops; 6% orchard; 13% forest; and 6% residential. Water samples were analyzed twice a week for, Ca, Mg, Na, Cl-, HCO3-, SO4=, NO3-, total solids, suspended solids, fecal coliforms, fecal streptococci, and triazines. Flow rate and average ambient temperature were also recorded. No strong linear relationship was developed between chemical concentrations and other parameters. The transient nature of the system was emphasized by one event that drastically deviated from others. Pesticide data were summarized and the ''flushing'' phenomena accredited to karst systems was discussed. The total solids content in the spring was consistent at approximately 2.06 mg/L. Fecal bacteria contamination was well above drinking water limits (fecal coliform and fecal streptococci averages were 1 700 and 4 300 colony-forming-units/100 mL, respectively) and the temporal variation in bacterial contamination was not linked to any other variable

Two Ordovician unconformities in North China: Their origins and relationships to regional carbonate-reservoir characteristics, 1997,
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Liu B. , Wang Y. H. , Qian X. L. ,
The two unconformities developed on the tops of the Lower Ordovician Liangjiashan Formation (UF1) and the Middle Ordovician Majiagou- or Fengfeng Formation (UF2) are essential boundaries that controlled the formation and distribution of the Lower Paleozoic karst-related reservoirs. UF1 and UF2 have been interpreted as representing short-and long-terms of tectonic uplift, respectively, but new evidence led us to conclude that they were created by different original mechanisms and therefore the related reservoirs should be predicted in different ways. UF1 was commonly interpreted as the result of southern upwarping of the basement, but sequence-stratigraphic analysis supports its origin by eustatic sea-level changes. Spatially, the most favorable regional reservoirs controlled by UF1 should be located in the central area of North China, where the carbonate sediments experienced intensive shallow-subsurface dolomitization with following meteoric water leaching. UF2 was created by tectonic event which resulted in an intra-plate downward flexure and subsequent peripheral bulge. In the depression belt of central North China the younger strata (Fengfeng Fm) were protected, but along the bulge meteoric water eroded them. As a result, the potential regional reservoirs related to UF2 are likely to be distributed along the peripheral-uplift belts, especially around the remnant of the Fengfeng Formation. Based on the analysis of these two unconformities, the Early Paleozoic tectono-sedimentary evolution of North China Plate can be largely divided into four stages: (1) the Cambrian Period, characterized by eustatic sea-level rise and tectonic subsidence; (2) early stage of the Early Ordovician, characterized by eustatic-sea-level fall exceeding tectonic subsidence and development of UF1; (3) from the late stage of the Early Ordovician to the Middle Ordovician, featured by eustatic-sea-level rise and slow tectonic subsidence;(4) from the late stage of the Middle Ordovician to the Early Carboniferous, distinguished by vigorous tectonic uplift and development of UF2

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