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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 bailer is 1. a cylindrical container used to withdraw a sample of water from a well. 2. a cylindrical container with a bottom valve for the clearing of drill cuttings from the bottom of a borehole [16].?

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


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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 criteria (Keyword) returned 72 results for the whole karstbase:
Showing 16 to 30 of 72
Genetic types of caves in Slovakia, 1998,
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Bella, Pavel

Karst and non-karst regions in the territory of Slovakia are notable for a very broad typological range of caves. The criteria of cave genetic classification in the existing works concerning parts of the Western Carpathians are not integrated. We suggest fundamental principles of classification and charaterize the basic genetic types of caves in this paper. We also advert to several problems of karstological and speleological terminology (exokras and endokarst, karst and pseudokarst).


Searching for a 3-way model of spatial and seasonal variations in the chemical composition of karstic freshwaters, 1999,
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Barbieri P, Adami G, Reisenhofer E,
A procedure is described for the search of a three,way;principal components model, characterizing a data set concerning the spatial and temporal distribution of the physico-chemical parameters which govern the composition of waters collected from springs, ponds and;rivers of the Karst of Trieste. Ten physico-chemical parameters were determined-for eleven sampling sites and eleven sampling times. A:graphic method was applied in order to find the number of components in each of the three ways of the model, explaining a relatively high quantity of variation of the. data, with a limited number of components, i.e. with descriptive parsimony, and generating interpretable factors. The examination of 125 possible Tucker3 models, having from 1 to 5 components in each of the ways, allowed us to identify the model having two components in each of the three ways as the one satisfying the desired criteria. The chance of reducing to a simpler PARAFAC model has been successfully explored,and two trilinear components were then computed. The first one is mainly related to a spatial factor conditioning the considered waters, while the second is related to a seasonal factor

Geology and evolution of lakes in north-central Florida, 1999,
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Kindinger J. L. , Davis J. B. , Flocks J. G. ,
Fluid exchange between surficial waters and groundwater in karst environments, and the processes that control exchange, are of critical concern to water management districts and planners, High-resolution seismic data were collected from 30 lakes of north-central Florida. In each case study, lake structure and geomorphology were controlled by solution and/or mechanical processes. Processes that control lake development are twofold: (1) karstification or dissolution of the underlying limestone, and (2) the collapse, subsidence, or slumping of overburden to form sinkholes. Initial lake formation is directly related to the karst topography of the underlying host limestone. Case studies have shown that lakes can be divided by geomorphic types into progressive developmental phases: (1) active subsidence or collapse phase (young); (2) transitional phase (middle age); (3) baselevel phase (mature); and (4) polje (drowned prairie) - broad flat-bottom that have one or all phases of sinkhole. Using these criteria, Florida lakes can be classified by size, fill, subsurface features, and geomorphology

Seismotectonic versus man-induced morphological changes in a cave on the Arrabida chain (Portugal), 1999,
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Crispim Ja,
Distinctions between cave morphologies originating from seismic or active tectonics and those generated by natural elastic breakdown or by human activity must be made using unambiguous interpretative criteria. Easily accessible caves in particular, which may have been visited for centuries or millennia, or caves located near engineering works or quarries using great quantities of explosives, may have broken speleothems, breakdowns or detachment joints unrelated to seismic events or tectonic movements. Zambujal cave lies near neotectonic and seismic structures associated with a Plio-Quaternary 200 m uplift of the Arrabida chain and has suffered impacts resulting from quarrying, followed by possible vandalism. It is thus an example for which it is difficult to decipher morphological agents as there is the possibility that identical forms have been generated by several causes, which may have repeated at different episodes of its evolution. However, a careful morphological interpretation makes it possible to accept the existence of two seismic episodes, an 'ancient' one and a 'modern' one. The detection of other episodes between these is only possible using absolute dating. (C) Elsevier, Paris

Karstic groundwater flow characteristics in the Cretaceous Chalk aquifer, Northern Ireland, 1999,
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Barnes S,
The Cretaceous Chalk in Northern Ireland (Ulster White Limestone Formation) is a locally important aquifer for both public and private supply, yet little is known about its groundwater flow regime. This issue is important for the protection of existing groundwater abstractions and for the development of new sources as it will help determine groundwater vulnerability and resource potential in the Chalk. The subject has been addressed using hydrochemical variations from individual springs, together with artificial and natural water tracing techniques employed from river-sinks located at outcrop. A common orientation has been established between traced groundwater flow routes and the dominant northwest-southeast fracture trend within the Ulster White Limestone Formation. Hydraulic gradient has also been shown to have little significance in controlling the flow direction, suggesting poor fracture connectivity and thus extreme aquifer heterogeneity. Tracer breakthrough curve characteristics and velocities (up to 2838 metres per day) are indicative of conduit rather than fracture flow. In addition, the highly variable water chemistry associated with all the proven river-sink supplied springs has been independently classified to meet conduit flow criteria. Conversely, the much less variable water chemistry associated with springs draining Chalk subcrop areas (with no influence from river-sinks) is consistent with a less active karstic regime

From a conceptual model of karst hydrological systems to water-vulnerability mapping, 1999,
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Jeannin Py. , Zwahlen F. , Doerfliger N.
A conceptual model of karst hydrological systems is presented hereIt considers that water flows through four cascading subsystems: soils, epikarst, unsaturated zone, and saturated zoneThis model lead us to define four criteria which appear to be significant for intrinsic vulnerability assessment with respect to a spring or a well: characteristics of epikarst (E), characteristics of protective cover (P), recharge or infiltration type (I) and presence/absence of a well-developed conduit network (K)The method has proved to be adequate for karst in Central EuropeIn the future, it should be tested in other areas and compared to numerical approaches of karst systems

Sources et hydrosystmes karstiques des rgions arides et semi-arides, essai gographique, 2000,
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Nicod, Jean
SPRINGS AND KARSTIC HYDROSYSTEMS IN THE ARID AND SEMI-ARID AREAS. A GEOGRAPHICAL ESSAY - The patterns of the main springs and hydrosystems in the deserts and surroundings are sorted, according to their geomorphological situation (piedmont, coastal or inner plateau), to structure of the aquifers and working of groundwater (storage capacity, artesian systems) and to the hydrochemical criteria particularly the solute load in Mg2+, SO42- and Cl-. From the best known examples, the main problems on the genesis and working of the karstic hydro-systems in arid environment are discussed: - the incidence of tectonic stress and paleokarstic and paleoclimatic inheritances; - the recent periods of recharge (in Northern Sahara and Near and Middle East); - the interactions in ionic solutions and hyper-karstic processes: particular_ly with the strong acid, H2SO4, the "double solvency effect", and the mixing water corrosion near the salt water wedge in the coastal karsts.

Working with knowledge at the science/policy interface: a unique example from developing the Tongass Land Management Plan, 2000,
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Shawiii Charles G. , Everest Fred H. , Swanston Douglas N. ,
An innovative, knowledge-based partnership between research scientists and resource managers in the U.S. Forest Service provided the foundation upon which the Forest Plan was developed that will guide management on the Tongass National Forest for the next 10-15 years. Criteria developed by the scientists to evaluate if management decisions were consistent with the available information base were applied to major components of the emerging final management strategy for the Forest. While the scientists remained value neutral on the contents of the Forest Plan and the management directions provided in it, their evaluation indicated that the decisions it contained for riparian and fish sustainability, wildlife viability, karst and cave protection, slope stability, timber resources, social/economic effects, and monitoring achieved a high degree of consistency with the available scientific information. The Forest Plan, revised to conform with existing scientific knowledge, represents a management strategy designed to sustain the diversity and productivity of the ecosystem while producing goods and services commensurate with the agency’s multiple-use mandate. Execution of this research/management partnership highlighted the role of scientific knowledge in forestry decision-making and provided a new mechanism to input such information into the decision making process. The partnership continues as the scientists are addressing high priority information needs generated by the planning effort in order to have additional information available for plan implementation and revision through adaptive management over the next 3-5 years

Drainage-basin-scale geomorphic analysis to determine reference conditions for ecologic restoration--Kissimmee River, Florida, 2000,
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Warne Andrew G. , Toth Louis A. , White William A. ,
Major controls on the retention, distribution, and discharge of surface water in the historic (precanal) Kissimmee drainage basin and river were investigated to determine reference conditions for ecosystem restoration. Precanal Kissimmee drainage-basin hydrology was largely controlled by landforms derived from relict, coastal ridge, lagoon, and shallow-shelf features; widespread carbonate solution depressions; and a poorly developed fluvial drainage network. Prior to channelization for flood control, the Kissimmee River was a very low gradient, moderately meandering river that flowed from Lake Kissimmee to Lake Okeechobee through the lower drainage basin. We infer that during normal wet seasons, river discharge rapidly exceeded Lake Okeechobee outflow capacity, and excess surface water backed up into the low-gradient Kissimmee River. This backwater effect induced bankfull and peak discharge early in the flood cycle and transformed the flood plain into a shallow aquatic system with both lacustrine and riverine characteristics. The large volumes of surface water retained in the lakes and wetlands of the upper basin maintained overbank flow conditions for several months after peak discharge. Analysis indicates that most of the geomorphic work on the channel and flood plain occurred during the frequently recurring extended periods of overbank discharge and that discharge volume may have been significant in determining channel dimensions. Comparison of hydrogeomorphic relationships with other river systems identified links between geomorphology and hydrology of the precanal Kissimmee River. However, drainage-basin and hydraulic geometry models derived solely from general populations of river systems may produce spurious reference conditions for restoration design criteria

Karst groundwater protection: the case of the Rijeka region, Croatia, 2000,
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Biondić, Bož, Idar

The problem of protection of water resources in the karst area of Croatia has been particularly acute for the last 30 years. Specific natural conditions under which the dynamics of groundwater is formed and developed were reasons for difficulties in preparation of uniform criteria of protection. Present experience makes it possible to establish a more organized approach to the problem. This applies, in particular, to the surroundings of the town Rijeka, where considerable funds were invested into research on new groundwater abstractions, but also toward their protection. In this paper the general approach to karst water protection in Croatia will be presented. This consists of an explanation of natural conditions, necessary research activities, general criteria and measures for protection, improvement of sanitary conditions in zones of high protection, design of new constructions in protection zones, urban planning and protection, etc. A part of the paper will be directed to the regulation procedure and organizational problems in such an active approach to karst water protection.


Classification of terrestrial subterranean fauna of volcanic substrates in the Canary Islands, 2001,
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Garca Helga, Martin Jos L. , Orom Y. P.
A system is proposed for classifying the species occurring in the hypogean environment in relation to their ecological and evolutionary characteristics. The ecological criteria utilized relate to the preferred habitat of the animals (the epigean, endogean or hypogean environment) and the evolutionary criteria specify the grade of adaptive modification in three characteristics: reduction of eyes, amount of pigmentation and extent of elongation of the appendages. The object of developing this classification is to provide a system appropriate for those regions; such as those with volcanic rocks; in which the cave faunas include elements originating in different environments, and in which the species show very variable adaptive grades, depending primarily on the antiquity of the island or other distinct geological zone, where they are found.

Occurrence of cyanazine compounds in groundwater: Degradates more prevalent than the parent compound, 2001,
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Kolpin D. W. , Thurman E. M. , Linhart S. M. ,
A recently developed analytical method using liquid chromatography/mass spectrometry was used to investigate the occurrence of cyanazine and its degradates cyanazine acid (CAC), cyanazine amide (CAM), deethylcyanazine (DEC), and deethylcyanazine acid (DCAC) in groundwater. This research represents some of the earliest data on the occurrence of cyanazine degradates in groundwater. Although cyanazine was infrequently detected in the 64 wells across Iowa sampled in 1999, cyanazine degradates were commonly found during this study. The most frequently detected cyanazine compound was DCAC (32.8%) followed by CAC (29.7%), CAM (17.2%), DEC (3.1%), and cyanazine (3.1%). The frequency of detection for cyanazine or one or more of its degradates (CYTOT) was more than 12-fold over that of cyanazine alone (39.1% for CYTOT Versus 3.1% for cyanazine). Of the total measured concentration of cyanazine, only 0.2% was derived from its parent compound-with DCAC (74.1%) and CAC (18.4%) comprising 92.5% of this total. Thus, although DCAC and CAC had similar frequencies of detection, DCAC was generally present in higher concentrations. No concentrations of cyanazine compounds for this study exceeded water-quality criteria for the protection of human health. Only cyanazine, however, has such a criteria established. Nevertheless, because these cyanazine degradates are still chlorinated, they may have similar toxicity as their parent compound-similar to what has been found with the chlorinated degradates of atrazine. Thus, the results of this study documented that data on the degradates for cyanazine are critical for understanding its fate and transport in the hydrologic system. Furthermore, the prevalence of the chlorinated degradates of cyanazine found in groundwater suggests that to accurately determine the overall effect on human health and the environment from cyanazine its degradates should also be considered. In addition, because CYTOT was found in 57.6% of the samples collected from alluvia[ aquifers, about 2-5 times more frequently than the other major aquifer types (glacial drift, bedrock/karst, bedrock/nonkarst) under investigation, this finding has long-term implications for the occurrence of CYTOT in streams. It is anticipated that low-level concentrations of CYTOT will continue to be detected in streams for years after the use of cyanazine has terminated (scheduled for the year 2000 in the United States), primarily through its movement from groundwater into streams during base-flow conditions

Palaeo-mixing zone karst features from Palaeocene carbonates of north Spain: criteria for recognizing a potentially widespread but rarely documented diagenetic system, 2001,
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Bacetaa J. I. , Wrightb V. P. , Pujalte V.

Marine-meteoric mixing zone dissolution effects are a major feature of present day karst systems in carbonate platforms,yet are rarely reported in the geological record. An example is described from the upper Danian platform limestones of the Alava province,in  the western Pyrenees,north Spain. This consists of several narrow zones with sponge-like porosity analogous to the "Swiss-cheese" features found in present day mixing  zones. These zones are stained by Fe-oxides and overlie limestones which are irregularly  dolomitized  and contain disseminated pyrite. These high-porosity  zones are interpreted as having developed in marine mixing zones where mixing corrosion and microbially  mediated processes increased dissolution. If collapsed,ancient mixing zones could be misinterpreted as "terra-rossa" palaeosols. The main criteria to identify them as mixing zone products are their occurrence below a palaeo-meteoric phreatic zone,their association with stratified oxic and anoxic redox zones and petrographic evidence for highly variable calcite saturation states.


Palaeo-mixing zone karst features from Palaeocene carbonates of north Spain: criteria for recognizing a potentially widespread but rarely documented diagenetic system , 2001,
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Baceta J. I. , Wrightb V. P. , Pujaltec V.

Marine-meteoric mixing zone dissolution effects are a major feature of present day karst systems in carbonate platforms,yet are rarely reported in the geological record. An example is described from the upper Danian platform limestones of the Alava province,in the western Pyrenees,north Spain. This consists of several narrow zones with sponge-like porosity analogous to the "Swiss-cheese" features found in present day mixing zones. These zones are stained by Fe-oxides and overlie limestones which are irregularly dolomitized and contain disseminated pyrite. These high-porosity zones are interpreted as having developed in marine mixing zones where mixing corrosion and microbially mediated processes increased dissolution. If collapsed,ancient mixing zones could be misinterpreted as "terra-rossa" palaeosols. The main criteria to identify them as mixing zone products are their occurrence below a palaeo-meteoric phreatic zone,their association with stratified oxic and anoxic redox zones and petrographic evidence for highly variable calcite saturation states


A decision-logic framework for investigating subsidence problems potentially attributable to gypsum karstification, 2002,
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Lamontblack J. , Younger P. L. , Forth R. A. , Cooper A. H. , Bonniface J. P. ,
Karst regions, especially gypsum ones, are prone to subsidence; this can cause severe problems in urban areas. However, this subsidence may have causes other than active karstification. A decision-logic framework designed to tackle this issue is presented. It comprises subsidence description identification of causal mechanisms; construction and evaluation of conceptual models; evaluation and parameterization of fundamental processes and development of a management strategy. This framework is applied to an area of active subsidence in the UK underlain by gypsiferous rocks. In this example, particular attention is paid to the evaluation of gypsum dissolution using four criteria: presence of evaporite; presence of undersaturated water; energy to drive water through the system; and an outlet for the water. Gypsum palaeokarst was identified from borehole evidence and contemporary karstification is indicated by groundwaters containing up to 1800 mg/l of dissolved sulphate. Strontium/sulphate ratios enabled the discrimination of gypsum and non-gypsum-derived sulphate ions and correlation with the hydrostratigrapby. Continuous measurement of groundwater levels showed differential potentiometric surfaces between stratigraphical horizons and indicated a complex pattern of groundwater movement. Integration of these data in a physically and chemically based groundwater model, incorporating a void evolution capability, is suggested. (C) 2002 Elsevier Science B.V. All rights reserved

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