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Karsk Lanscape - Essay Example

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Karst is a distinctive topography in which the landscape is largely shaped by the dissolving action of water on carbonate underground rocks, such as limestone, dolomite or marble. The process of development of karst takes place is called karstification (Marshak,…
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Karsk Lanscape
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Download file to see previous pages When rain water first flows through acidic soils, it becomes much more acidic and more capable of dissolving superior quality rocks and large volume of the rock. As acidified water percolates through the cracks on limestone, it enlarges them gradually, allowing more water to get through. Continuation of this process with time enlarges the fissures to an extent they can take in entire rain water moments after falling. Underground, the water from the fissures join up to form small underground streams, causing massive and widespread corrosion and dissolution of rocks. These lead to development of underground cavities at varied depths and of different sizes. Notable karst areas include the Nullarbor Plain in Australia and Chocolate hills, Philippines among many others (Larsen, 2003).
Karstification results in formation of varied features of varied sizes and at different depths. Karst topography has some small sized features on its surface collectively referred to as Karren or Lapiez. Examples of these are:
As acidic rain occurs, it runs on the surface and causes dissolution of limestone or other soluble surface rock. As it keeps running over the surface, it dissolves and sculptures it with each run of water causing grooves and solution flutes on the ground. This causes a vast area of parallel flutes known by their German name Rillenkarren
Vertical joints and bedding planes in limestone can be widened and enlarged by solutions to form a series of deep elongated slots called grikes. Such larger and fairly deeper features are known as grikes.
These are closed depressions in karst areas, usually circular in outline. Dolines either formed by dissolution of rocks close to the surface or by underground dissolution that forms a cavity whose roof then collapses to expose a hollow depression on the surface. Sinkholes formed by dissolution of rock is are fairly well rounded ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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