Author Archives: Karst Waters Institute

Save the Date! March 27, 2021 – Karst Award for Dr. Annette Summers Engel

How it started? How it’s going! One Speleologist’s Journey into Darkness

Photos of Annette Engel

Please join us for the 2021 KWI Awards Ceremony and Karst Award for Dr. Annette Summers Engel.

Date: Saturday, March 27, 2021
Time: 2:00-4:30, with lecture at 3:15 pm EDT (Eastern Daylight Savings Time; UTC-04:00)
Venue: Zoom (you must register using one of the forms below)

The Karst Waters Institute is pleased to announce that the Karst Award winner for 2021 is Dr. Annette Summers Engel of the University of Tennessee – Knoxville. Please join us on Saturday, March 27, 2021 for presentation of the award, a presentation by Annette, and networking opportunities with other karst/cave scientists.

KWI looks forward to seeing you at the Awards Ceremony to celebrate Annette’s award, hear a presentation by Annette on her work and adventures, and enjoy an afternoon of conversation and companionship with fellow scientists and friends. The meeting is from 2:00-4:30, with the awards lecture at 3:15 pm EDT (Eastern Daylight Savings Time; UTC-04:00). A detailed schedule is forthcoming.

To register, please click on the appropriate link below:

Student Registration ($10 cost covered by donations from KWI Board Members)

Professional Registration ($20)

Frontiers in Karst Colloquium Series – 1st seminar (spring 2021)

The first Karst Waters Institute Frontiers in Karst Colloquium for the spring semester is coming up next week. You have to register in advance to attend (details below).
In collaboration with the NSF-funded Carbonate Critical Zone RCN, we are hosting a series of seminars focused on critical zone processes in carbonates. Presentations will be made by invited speakers from across the range of disciplines within CZ science, particularly highlighting contributions by early-career scientists. Presentations will be approximately 30 minutes long with 10-15 minutes afterward for questions and discussion.

 

Wednesday, February 24 – Weathering of rock to regolith: The activity of deep roots in bedrock fractures

8 am Pacific / 11am Eastern / 5 pm Central European / 11 pm China

Dr. Elizabeth Hasenmueller (St Louis University)

 

For those who cannot attend live, the seminars will also be recorded and made available on the Karst Waters Institute website (https://karstwaters.org/conferences/frontiers-in-karst-colloquium-series/).

Attendance is free and open to anyone. Prior to attending the seminar, you must register at the following link and further details will be sent to your email.

2021 Wilson Scholarship Applications now open

The William L. Wilson and Diane C. Wilson Scholarship in Karst Science recognizes the significant contributions of the late William (Bill) L. Wilson, who tackled some of the most difficult karst science questions in Florida and elsewhere through his consulting company, Subsurface Evaluations, Incorporated. To stimulate the development of new, energetic, motivated, and creative karst scientists and to remember Bill Wilson and his dedication to karst science, the scholarship was established by Diane C. Wilson in his memory. The scholarship includes a one-time award of $1,000.

The scholarship is open to any student who is currently enrolled in, or has been accepted into, a master’s degree program at an institution of higher education in the United States. This year’s deadline for all application materials is February 15, 2021. Information on how to apply can be found at the Karst Waters Institute website (http://karstwaters.org/scholarship/). For additional information, contact Dr. Janet S. Herman (jherman@virginia.edu).

Frontiers in Karst Colloquium Series – 2nd seminar

 The next talk in the Karst Waters Institute Frontiers in Karst Colloquium is coming up soon! In collaboration with the NSF-funded Carbonate Critical Zone RCN, we are hosting a series of seminars focused on critical zone processes in carbonates. Presentations will be made by invited speakers from across the range of disciplines within CZ science, particularly highlighting contributions by early-career scientists. Presentations will be approximately 30 minutes long with 10-15 minutes afterward for questions and discussion.
The second talk will be:

 

Tuesday, October 20 – What has the greatest effect on tree water use: A prescribed fire, a hurricane, or a solar eclipse?

8 am Pacific / 11am Eastern / 5 pm Central European / 11 pm China

Dr. Steven Brantley (The Jones Center at Ichauway, UGA)

For those who cannot attend live, the seminars will also be recorded and made available on the Karst Waters Institute website (https://karstwaters.org/conferences/frontiers-in-karst-colloquium-series/).
Attendance is free and open to anyone, though we are limited to 300 participants. Prior to attending the seminar you must register at the following link and further details will be sent to your email.

Frontiers in Karst Colloquium Series – 1st seminar

 The Karst Waters Institute, in collaboration with the NSF-funded Carbonate Critical Zone RCN, is hosting the Frontiers in Karst Colloquium Series: a virtual seminar series on the theme of critical zone processes in carbonates. Presentations will be made by invited speakers from across the range of disciplines within CZ science, particularly highlighting contributions by early-career scientists. Presentations will be approximately 30 minutes long with 10-15 minutes afterward for questions and discussion. For the fall semester, we have planned talks for September, October, and November.

The first talk will be:

Tuesday, September 22 – Competition among Limestone Depressions Leads to Self-organized Regular Patterning on a Flat Landscape

8 am Pacific / 11am Eastern / 5 pm Central European / 11 pm China

Dr. Xiaoli Dong (UC Davis)

For those who cannot attend live, the seminars will also be recorded and made available on the Karst Waters Institute website (http://karstwaters.org/).Attendance is free and open to anyone, though we are limited to 300 participants. Prior to attending the seminar you must register at the following link and further details will be sent to your email.

KWI Karst Award for 2020: Prof. Stein-Erik Lauritzen

The Karst Waters Institute will present the 2020 Karst Award to Dr. Stein-Erik Lauritzen, Professor of Speleology and Quaternary Geology at the University of Bergen, Norway, at the 9th Conference Climate Change: The Karst Record (originally scheduled to be held in Innsbruck, Austria, in June, 2020 but canceled due to COVID-19).  This location is appropriate because Dr. Lauritzen organized the first karst climate conference, in Bergen, in 1996.

Dr. Lauritzen received a Cand. Real. (Candidatus realium) degree from the University of Oslo in 1979 with a major in organic chemistry.  He remained at the University of Oslo as a research associate until 1985 but switched his research interests from organic chemistry to nuclear chemistry.  In 1987 Dr. Lauritzen joined the faculty of the University of Bergen where he advanced to full professor in 1999.  He very early recognized the importance of speleothem age-dating and established a laboratory for uranium-series isotope measurements.  Very much the international scholar, Dr. Lauritzen has traveled widely to the karst areas of the world and has held appointments at the Racoviță Institute of Speleology in Cluj, Romania and the Karst Institute of the Slovenian Academy of Sciences in Postojna, Slovenia.  Generous in sharing his expertise, many of his papers are co-authored with karst researchers throughout the world.

Dr. Stein-Erik Lauritzen is an outstanding example of what cave and karst science is all about. As befits a scientist with the title of professor of speleology, Dr. Lauritzen’s 160+ technical papers span almost every aspect of the cave-related sciences but can be divided broadly into three categories:  Geomorphology of caves and karst landscapes, karst processes and aquifer studies, and paleoclimate, paleobiology, and archaeology.  At the basic data end of the scale, there are cave maps and scientific cave descriptions.  There are descriptions of stripe karst, there are hydraulic interpretations of scallops, there are interpretations of the origin of maze caves.  On the more theoretical end of the scale, there are analyses of the dissolution process and the hydraulics of karst water flow.

Perhaps the most important discovery in the karst-related sciences is that isotope and trace element profiles in speleothems provide a high resolution climatic record.  The ability to use uranium/thorium isotope dating to provide an absolute time scale for the speleothem record has moved cave science from the fringes to the mainstream of science.  Dr. Lauritzen is one of the pioneers in this endeavor.  He established the first Quaternary uranium-series dating laboratories in Scandinavia and has continuously updated this laboratory as new experimental experiment techniques appear.  His published work includes paleoclimate and also applying isotope dating to paleontological studies.

KWI and Glenwood Springs Citizens Alliance Talk 3/28/20 (CANCELED)

Update: the KWI meeting and associated talk listed below has been canceled due to concerns about coronavirus.

 

This year, KWI will depart from its tradition of holding an Awards Dinner (the KWI Karst Award for 2020 will be presented to Dr. Stein-Eric Lauritzen of Bergen, Norway by Ira Sasowsky in July at the KR9 Conference “Climate Change, The Karst Record” in Innsbruck, Austria). Instead, KWI will host a  meeting in conjunction with the Glenwood Springs Citizens Alliance.

The speaker will be Mr. Richard Rhinehart who will give a talk entitled “City Under Siege: How Caves and Karst Might Just Save the City of Glenwood Springs, Colorado.” Mr. Rhinehart’s talk will discuss the geology and hydrology of Glenwood Springs and the surrounding area, and how a proposed giant quarry on the north side of the town could impact the local population and economy. The meeting will be held from 7 – 9 pm on March 28 in the Roosevelt Room of the Hotel Colorado and will be open to the general public. Prior to Mr. Rhinehart’s presentation, KWI will introduce itself to the attendees and announce the award winners, including the recipient of the Wilson Scholarship.

 

KARSYS course: a web-tool for modeling karst aquifers in 3D

 

Update: the KARSYS modeling courses in Bowling Green, Kentucky and Reston, Virginia have been canceled due to concerns about coronavirus. The courses have been rescheduled to take place online, and have already filled to capacity. Thank you for your interest!

Join us for the KARSYS course, a web-tool for modeling karst aquifers in 3D. The course will be held on May 20th, 2020 in Reston, Virginia at the USGS headquarters, and on May 22nd, 2020 in Bowling Green, Kentucky at Western Kentucky University.

KARSYS is developed for geologists and hydrogeologists working in karst regions, in order to address questions related to aquifers and groundwater in a very pragmatic and concrete way. It enables 3D modelling of karst aquifers by synthesizing all standard geological and hydrological data and coupling a series of simple hydraulic principles.
The course is sponsored by the Karst Waters Institute and it is free of charge, thanks to the Cave Conservancy Foundation, U.S. Geological Survey and Western Kentucky University. There is a limited amount of space so hurry up and register today.

For a flyer with detailed information including the course schedule, click here.

For information regarding the Reston, VA location contact Dan Doctor at dhdoctor@usgs.gov.

For information regarding the Bowling Green, KY location, contact Katarina Kosič Ficco at katarina.kosic@dcr.virginia.gov.

KWI Karst Award Recipient for 2020 Announced

The Board of the Karst Waters Institute has announced that Dr. Stein-Erik Lauritzen, Professor of Earth Science at University of Bergen, Norway, will be the recipient of the 2020 Karst Award.  This prestigious honor has been given annually since 1999 to a scientist who has made significant contributions to the field.

Dr. Lauritzen has made seminal and ongoing contributions to the field of speleothem science and the study of glacier ice-contact speleogenesis. He and his students and colleagues have helped to build an understanding of paleoclimate in the terrestrial realm.

The award will be presented at the Climate Change – the Karst Record IX (KR9) Conference at Innsbruck, Austria, 12-15 July, 2020.  Information on the meeting can be found at https://www.uibk.ac.at/congress/kr9/