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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 contaminate is to introduce a substance that would cause (a) the concentration of that substance in the around water to exceed the maximum contaminant levels; or (b) an increase in the concentration of that substance in the ground water where the existing concentration of that substance exceeds the maximum contaminant levels [22]. see also pollutant.?

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;
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Your search for transport (Keyword) returned 369 results for the whole karstbase:
Showing 16 to 30 of 369
Karst du Rawyl (Hautes Alpes calcaires de Suisse occidentale), matires dissoutes et en suspension emportes par les sources, 1984,
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Wildberger, A.
HIGH ALPINE KARST OF RAWYL (SOUTHWESTERN SWITZERLAND): DISSOLVED AND SUSPENDED MATERIALS IN THE WATER OF KARSTIC SPRINGS - The karst of the Rawyl area is located between 1200 and 3250m elevation, at an average height of 2500m. The mean annual rainfall is about 2m. The output of dissolved and suspended material was measured at various important springs, subjected to a glacial to nivo-glacial discharge pattern. The dissolution rate is around 0,06 to 0,075 mm/year of which 1 to 25% are suspended materials, the rest being transported under dissolved form. The flushed material does not correspond exactly with the lithology of the aquifer: for the dissolved material, Mg is in excess compared to the Mg in the carbonates (exchange of cations Ca-Mg); for the suspended material, the clay minerals clearly out-weight the quartz (selection by different sizes and forms).

The hydraulics of conduit flow in carbonate aquifers., 1984,
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Gale S. J.

Analysis of the morphology of dissolution-bedform assemblages and hydraulically-transported sediments found within conduits in carbonate aquifers in North America and the British Isles has allowed the hydraulic conditions under which conduit flows occur to be established. Mean values of flow velocity, boundary-shear stress, conduit Reynolds number, conduit Froude number, boundary friction factor, boundary roughness and flow power have been calculated. The values obtained are in agreement with other evidence in the conduits and are comparable to those obtained from other, similar, hydraulic systems.

Shallow-marine carbonate facies and facies models, 1985,
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Tucker M. E. ,
Shallow-marine carbonate sediments occur in three settings: platforms, shelves and ramps. The facies patterns and sequences in these settings are distinctive. However, one type of setting can develop into another through sedimentational or tectonic processes and, in the geologic record, intermediate cases are common. Five major depositional mechanisms affect carbonate sediments, giving predictable facies sequences: (1) tidal flat progradation, (2) shelf-marginal reef progradation, (3) vertical accretion of subtidal carbonates, (4) migration of carbonate sand bodies and (5) resedimentation processes, especially shoreface sands to deeper subtidal environments by storms and off-shelf transport by slumps, debris flows and turbidity currents. Carbonate platforms are regionally extensive environments of shallow subtidal and intertidal sedimentation. Storms are the most important source of energy, moving sediment on to shoreline tidal flats, reworking shoreface sands and transporting them into areas of deeper water. Progradation of tidal flats, producing shallowing upward sequences is the dominant depositional process on platforms. Two basic types of tidal flat are distinguished: an active type, typical of shorelines of low sediment production rates and high meteorologic tidal range, characterized by tidal channels which rework the flats producing grainstone lenses and beds and shell lags, and prominent storm layers; and a passive type in areas of lower meteorologic tidal range and higher sediment production rates, characterized by an absence of channel deposits, much fenestral and cryptalgal peloidal micrite, few storm layers and possibly extensive mixing-zone dolomite. Fluctuations in sea-level strongly affect platform sedimentation. Shelves are relatively narrow depositional environments, characterized by a distinct break of slope at the shelf margin. Reefs and carbonate sand bodies typify the turbulent shelf margin and give way to a shelf lagoon, bordered by tidal flats and/or a beach-barrier system along the shoreline. Marginal reef complexes show a fore-reef--reef core--back reef facies arrangement, where there were organisms capable of producing a solid framework. There have been seven such phases through the Phanerozoic. Reef mounds, equivalent to modern patch reefs, are very variable in faunal composition, size and shape. They occur at shelf margins, but also within shelf lagoons and on platforms and ramps. Four stages of development can be distinguished, from little-solid reef with much skeletal debris through to an evolved reef-lagoon-debris halo system. Shelf-marginal carbonate sand bodies consist of skeletal and oolite grainstones. Windward, leeward and tide-dominated shelf margins have different types of carbonate sand body, giving distinctive facies models. Ramps slope gently from intertidal to basinal depths, with no major change in gradient. Nearshore, inner ramp carbonate sands of beach-barrier-tidal delta complexes and subtidal shoals give way to muddy sands and sandy muds of the outer ramp. The major depositional processes are seaward progradation of the inner sand belt and storm transport of shoreface sand out to the deep ramp. Most shallow-marine carbonate facies are represented throughout the geologic record. However, variations do occur and these are most clearly seen in shelf-margin facies, through the evolutionary pattern of frame-building organisms causing the erratic development of barrier reef complexes. There have been significant variations in the mineralogy of carbonate skeletons, ooids and syn-sedimentary cements through time, reflecting fluctuations in seawater chemistry, but the effect of these is largely in terms of diagenesis rather than facies

Timing the transport of water through the upper vadose zone in a karstic system above a cave in Isreal, 1986,
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Even H. , Carmi I. , Magaritz M. , Gerson R.

Regional scale transport in a karst aquifer, 1. Component separation of spring flow hydrographs, 1989,
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Dreiss S. J.

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Hotzl H. , Kass W. , Reichert B. ,
In situ tracing experiments have proved to be reliable tools to get direct information on subsurface flow direction and flow parameters. Beside dyes, salts, radioisotopes and drift bodies, microbes can be used as tracers. In several comparative experiments carried out in porous and karst aquifers by the International Association of Tracer Hydrology (ATH) the microbial markers (bacteria and bacteriophages) have shown promising results. They are especially suitable to explain and model the subsurface transport of microorganisms

The sulfate speleothems of Thampanna cave, Nullarbor Plain, Australia, 1991,
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James, Julia M.

Examination of gypsum speleothems and chemical analysis of the cave drip waters (ions to chloride mole ratios, tot. dissolved solids, nitrate) confirm that the major source of the sulfate in Thampanna cave (Western Australia) is from seawater transported by rain.

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Gammage Rb, Dudney Cs, Wilson Dl, Saultz Rj, Bauer Bc,
Subterranean networks of cavities and fissures can present circulatory systems facilitating convective and advective transport of radon-bearing air. Evidence points to aerostatic pressure differentials being the principal driving force for subterranean transport of radon in some hilly limestone terrains of the southern Appalachians; differences between the underground and outside air temperatures, and the concomitant differences in air density, appear to be the dominant factor in producing the differences in aerostatic pressure. Examples are presented of houses experiencing elevated indoor levels as a consequence of being built on top of and apparently communicating with such subterranean systems. The location of a house near the upper or lower end of a subterranean circulatory system can result in amplification of indoor radon levels in winter or summer, respectively. These phenomena have been studied in and around houses located in the hilly karst areas of Huntsville, AL, and Oak Ridge, TN

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Jones B. ,
Caymanite is a laminated, multicoloured (white, red, black) dolostone that fills or partly fills cavities in the Bluff Formation of the Cayman Islands. The first phase of caymanite formation occurred after deposition, lithification, and karsting of the Oligocene Cayman Member. The second phase of caymanite formation occurred after joints had developed in the Middle Miocene Pedro Castle Member. Caymanite deposition predated dolomitization of the Bluff Formation 2-5 Ma ago. Caymanite is formed of mudstones, wackestone, packstones, and grainstones. Allochems include foraminifera, red algae, gastropods, bivalves, and grains of microcrystalline dolostone. Sedimentary structures include planar laminations, graded bedding, mound-shaped laminations, desiccation cracks, and geopetal fabrics. Original depositional dips ranged from 0 to 60-degrees. Although caymanite originated as a limestone, dolomitization did not destroy the original sedimentary fabrics or structures. The sediments that formed caymanite were derived from shallow offshore lagoons, swamps, and possibly brackish-water ponds. Pigmentation of the red and black laminae can be related to precipitates formed of Mn, Fe, Al, Ni, Ti, P, K, Si, and Ca, which occur in the intercrystalline pores. These elements may have been derived from terra rossa, which occurs on the weathered surface of the Bluff Formation. Caymanite colours were inherited from the original limestone. Stratigraphic and sedimentologic evidence shows that sedimentation was episodic and that the sediment source changed with time. Available evidence suggests that caymanite originated from sediments transported by storms onto a highly permeable karst terrain. The water with its sediment load then drained into the subsurface through joints and fissures. The depth to which these waters penetrated was controlled by the length of the interconnected cavity system. Upon entering cavities, sedimentation was controlled by a complex set of variables

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Jones B. ,
Caves, fossil mouldic cavities, sinkholes and solution-widened joints are common in the Cayman and Pedro Castle members of the Bluff Formation (Oligocene Miocene) on Grand Cayman and Cayman Brac because they have been subjected to repeated periods of karst development over the last 30 million years. Many voids contain a diverse array of sediments and/or precipitates derived from marine or terrestrial environs, mineral aerosols, and groundwater. Exogenic sediment was transported to the cavities by oceanic storm waves, transgressive seas, runoff following tropical rain storms and/or in groundwater. At least three periods of deposition were responsible for the occlusion of voids in the Cayman and Pedro Castle members. Voids in the Cayman Member were initially filled or partly filled during the Late Oligocene and Early Miocene. This was terminated with the deposition of the Pedro Castle Member in the Middle Miocene. Subsequent exposure led to further karst development and void-filling sedimentation in both the Cayman and Pedro Castle members. Speleothems are notably absent. The void-filling deposits formed during these two periods, which were predominantly marine in origin, were pervasively dolomitized along with the host rock 2 5 million years ago. The third period of void-filling deposition. after dolomitization of the Bluff Formation, produced limestone, various types of breccia, terra rossa, speleothemic calcite and terrestrial oncoids. Most of these deposits formed since the Sangamon highstand 125 000 years ago. Voids in the present day karst are commonly filled or partly filled with unconsolidated sediments. Study of the Bluff Formation of Grand Cayman and Cayman Brac shows that karst terrains on isolated oceanic islands are characterized by complex successions of void-filling deposits that include speleothems and a variety of sediment types. The heterogenetic nature of these void-filling deposits is related to changes in sea level and climatic conditions through time

Alpine karsts. Genesis of large subterranean networks. Examples : the Tennengebirge (Austria) - the Ile de Crémieu, the Chartreuse and the Vercors (France), PhD Thesis, 1993,
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Audra, Philippe

This work, based on the study of several underground alpine networks, aims to propose some milestone in the history of these karstic regions.

The first part of the work is made up of three regional studies.

The Tennengebirge mountains are a massif of the limestone High Alps in the region of Salzburg in Austria. A cone karst close to the base level developed in the Neogene. Streams from the Alps fed the karst, resulting in the huge horizontal networks of which the Eisriesenwelt provides evidence. During the successive phases of upthrust, the levels of karstification, whether on the surface or deeper down, settled into a tier pattern, thus descending in stages from the base level. From the Pliocene era onwards, thanks to an increase in potential, alpine shafts replace the horizontal networks. The formation of these shafts is more pronounced during glaciation. The study of the Cosa Nostra - Bergerhöhle system developing 30 km of conduits on a gradient reaching almost 1 500 m provides a fairly full view of the karstification of this massif. It includes the horizontal levels developed in the Miocene and the Plio-Pleistocene, joined together by vertical sections. The most noteworthy features of the Tennengebirge, as in the neighboring massifs, lie first and foremost in the extreme thickness of the limestone which has recorded and immunized the differents steps of karstification. Secondly, the size of the networks can be, for the most part, accounted for by the contribution of allogenous waters from the streams of the Neogene and the glaciers of the Pleistocene. Generally sudden and unexpected, these flows of water engendered heavy loads (up to 600 m), simultaneously flooding several levels. To a lesser extent, the situation is similar today.

The Ile de Cremieu is a low limestone plateau on the western edge of the Jura. Due to its location in the foothills, the lobes of the Rhône glacier have covered it up, obliterating the surface karst. However, widespread evidence of anteglacial morphologies remains : paleokarst, cone karst, polygenic surface. Because of glacial plugging, access to the underground karst is limited. The main cavity is the cave of La Balme. Its initial development dates back to an early period. The morphological study has permitted the identification of several phases which go back to the Pleistocene and which are related to the Rhône glacier. The latter brought about modifications in the base level by supplying its merging waters as well as moraine material. These variations in the base level shaped the drainage structure. The underground glacial polishes are one of the noteworthy aspects recorded.

The massives of the Moucherotte and dent de Crolles belong to the northern French Prealps. They conceal large networks, respectively the Vallier cave and the Dent de Crolles. They were formed in the early Pliocene after the final orogenic phase and are in the form of horizontal conduits. The upthrust, which brought about the embanking of the Isère valley, left them in a perched position by taking away the basin which fed them. They were later, however, able to take advantage of waters from the Isère glacier during a part of the Pleistocene. The Vallier cave contains particularly glacio-karstic sediments of the lower Pleistocene, representing unique evidence of glaciation during this period. The vertical networks were put in place at the end of the Pliocene with the increase in karstification potential ; they underwent changes in the Pleistocene due to the effect of autochton and allogenous glaciers.

The second part of the work deals in general with the various forms and processes of karstification, sometimes going beyond the Alps. The study of cave deposits is a privileged tool in the understanding and reconstruction not only of the history of the networks but also the regional environment. The dating of speleothems by the U / Th method has very ofen given an age of over 350 000 years. The age of the networks is confirmed by the use of paleomagnetism which has yielded evidence of speleothems and glacio-karstic sediments anterior to 780 000 years. Anisotropic measurements of magnetic susceptibility have been used to distinguish the putting into place of glacio-karstic deposits by decantation.

Measurements of calcite rates lead to a typology of sediments based on their nature and carbonate content (rehandled weathered rocks, fluvial sands, carbonated varves, decantation clays). Granulometry confirms this differenciation by supplying precise details of transport and sedimentation modes : suspension and abrupt precipitation of clay, suspension and slow decantation of carbonated varves, suspension and rolling together with a variable sorting of sand and gravel. Mineralogical analyses oppose two types of detrital deposits. On the one hand, the rehandling of antequaternary weathered rocks extracted by the karst as a result of scouring during environmental destabilization and on the other hand, sediments characteristic of the ice age of the Pleistocene. The latter are not highly developed and their arrival in the karst is always later. Examination of heavy minerals, the morphoscopy of quartz grains and study of micromorphologies on thin blades provide precise details of conditions of evolution. The use of these methods of investigation allows for an accurate definition of the features of the evolution of the differents types of fillings, particularly speleothems, rehandled weathered rocks as well as carbonated varves. This wealth and complexity are emphasized by a detailed study of the sedimentary sequences of the Vallier cave and of the Bergerhöhle.
Speleogenesis is approached last of all in the light of above study. Emphasis is placed on the major part played by corrosion in the temporarily phreatic zone and on its many consequences (multi-level concept, simultaneous evolution of levels, origin of deep waterlogged karsts…).
Varia tions in the base level have induced karstification in contexts in which the potential was weak. These were followed by periods of increased potential to which were added the effects of glaciation. Perched horizontal levels belong to the first stages which ended in the early Pliocene, whereas alpine shafts developed in the second context. The role of structure and the parameters governing the shape of conduits (pits, meanders, canyons) are also dealt with. The different parts of the karst are borne in mind when dealing with the strength of karstic erosion during the ice age. It notably appears that it is weak on the crests and more or less non-existent in the deep parts of the karst which are liable to flooding. Finally, a preliminary analysis of an observation of neotectonic traces is presented.

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Kiefer R. H. ,
Time patterns of karst denudation in northwest Georgia (U.S.A.) were investigated at three spring sites for 12 months and at five stream sites for 10 years. Rainfall was evenly distributed and showed no significant seasonality. At the springs, as well as the streams, water hardness was largely controlled by discharge. At the springs, Soil PCO2 and water pH were strongly correlated (r = -0.69 to -0.83). Solute transport in spring waters was highly seasonal, with two conduit flow springs removing more limestone in the winter, and the diffuse flow spring removing more during the growing season. At the stream sites, most denudation occurred during the winter and spring seasons, and least during the summer. Fourier analysis showed that variations in denudation occur on deterministic (long-wave) as well as stochastic (short-wave) time scales. As contributing variables, discharge varied in short-wave and long-wave cycles, whereas soil PCO2 showed only a long-wave cycle. The 12 month deterministic cycles were the most important, with changes in discharge taking precedence over Soil PCO2. Time series regression explains up to 69 per cent of changes in denudation through rain and soil pCO2. Time cycles in available water are the key controlling factor of denudation, and amounts of available Soil CO2 may not be as important in the temporal patterns of karst downwearing as has been believed previously

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Bodhankar N, Chatterjee B,
During the rainy season deterioration in the quality of water, supplied through dug wells and tube wells, near an abandoned limestone quarry was reported. The abandoned quarry is now being used as an urban waste disposal site. The problem was further complicated by hospitalization of several inhabitants who were using this water for domestic purposes. Looking into the consequences, chemical analysis of water from the quarry, dug wells and tube wells was carried out. The water was found to be contaminated. The transportation of pollutants from the quarry to the groundwater system was facilitated by karst features. Furthermore, four major sources domestic waste disposal, water conservation structures, landfills, and water wells contributing to pollution were identified. This case study is an attempt to provide an understanding of how the karst features facilitate groundwater contamination. It will help us answer a few questions such as why karst hydrogeology deserves special attention in urban expansion and what protective measures should be planned in view of rapid urbanization

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Panno S. V. , Wiebel C. P. , Heigold P. C. , Reed P. C. ,
Three regolith-collapse sinkholes formed near the Dongola Unit School and the Pentecostal Church in the southern Illinois village of Dongola (Union County) during the spring of 1993. The sinkholes appeared over a three-month period that coincided with development of a new municipal well. The new well was drilled through clay-rich, valley-fill sediment into karstified limestone bedrock. The piezometric surface of the limestone aquifer is above land surface, indicating the presence of an upward hydraulic gradient in the valley and that the valley fill is acting as a confining unit. Pumping during development of the well lowered the piezometric surface of the limestone aquifer to an elevation below the base of the valley fill. It is hypothesized that drainage of water from the sediments, the resulting loss of hydrostatic pressure and buoyant force in overlying sediments, increased intergranular pressure, and the initiation of groundwater flow toward the well resulted in rapid sediment transport, subsurface erosion, and collapse of the valley-fill sediment. The sinkholes follow an approximately east west alignment, which is consistent with one of the two dominant alignments of passages of nearby joint-controlled caves. A constant electrode-separation resistivity survey of the school playground was conducted to locate areas that might contain incipient sinkholes. The survey revealed a positive resistivity anomaly trending N75E in the southern part of the study area. The anomaly is linear, between 5 and 10 m wide. and its trend either intersects or is immediately adjacent to the three sinkholes. The anomaly is interpreted to be a series of pumping-induced cavities in the valley-fill sediments that formed over a preexisting crevice in the karstified bedrock limestone

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Collins Me, Cum M, Hanninen P,
Doline formation in karst areas has been a major concern in Florida. Recently, there has been increased interest in investigating the subsurface conditions that influences preferential flow in these karst landscapes. This information is necessary to improve transport and fate models of contaminants. In addition, there is interest in knowing if the formation and expansion of dolines can be predicted by studying subsurface conditions and flow patterns. The soils on the Newberry Limestone Plain are typically sandy above a thin or absent phosphatic, clayey Hawthorne Formation. Underlying this formation is the Crystal River Limestone. A field survey with ground-penetrating radar (GPR) was conducted on the Newberry Limestone Plain at a site with recently formed dolines. The objectives were (i) to investigate the subsurface materials, (ii) to ascertain subsurface landscape variability, (iii) to relate the subsurface landscapes to subsurface flow patterns, and (iv) to predict doline growth and formation in the study area. The results of this study indicated that the subsurface features; presence of clay over limestone, location of solution pipes and paleo-dolines are variable. In general, the subsurface landscape does not follow the surface topography. Subsurface solute movement can be estimated in these landscapes assuming the clay layer that drapes the limestone acts as an aquatarde. Thus, subsurface modeling of flow at the study site is improved. Locations of paleo-dolines and solution pipes were obvious in the radar data. Predictions, though, of future doline formation and growth at the study site were difficult with GPR. Fracture patterns, e.g. dips in the limestone, can be evaluated and weak zones where paleo-dolines have formed can be identified. This study would not have been possible without the use of the GPR. The radar was able to obtain continuous information on 16% of the site to a depth of 3 m. A highly detailed soil survey using conventional methods would have provided only 0.8% coverage of the site

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