The KWI conduit

The KWI conduit

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The KWI conduit
Series Title:
The KWI Conduit
Karst Waters Institute
Karst Waters Institute
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United States


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Contents: Welcome to The Conduit -- 2013 Karst Award Recipient Dr. Norman Pace -- Announcement - William L. Wilson Scholarship Deadline -- Upcoming 2014 Conference - Hypogene Cave Morphologies -- Where are they know? Wilson Scholarship Research -- How the Karst Waters Institute Became Established -- KWI Happenings -- Upcoming Conferences and Courses.
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Vol. 12, no. 2 (2012)
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Volume 12, Number 2 December 2012 Building understanding of karst through interdisciplinary action


K A R S T W A T E R S I N S T I T U T E THE CONDUIT Page 2 Welcome to The Conduit 3 2013 Karst Award Recipient Dr. Norman Pac e 3 Announcement William L. Wilson Scholarship Deadline 4 Upcoming 2014 Conference Hypogene Cave Morphologies 4 Where are they know? Wilson Scholarship Research 5 How the Karst Waters Institute Became Established 6 KWI Happenings 6 Upcoming Conferences and Courses 7 Table of Contents Development Committee Chair Comptroller Dr. David C. Culver Dept. of Environmental Science American University Washington, DC Secretary Dr. Ira Sasowsky Dept of Geology & Environmental Science University of Akron Akron, Ohio Front cover: Karst window of Cascade Cavern, Carter Caves State Resort Park, Kentucky. This cave is one of only two commercial caves currently open to visitors in the park; all others are closed because of White Nose Syndrome. Photo by Annette Summers Engel. Current Officers of the Karst Waters Institute President Dr. Janet Herman Department of Environmental Sciences University of Virginia Charlottesville, VA Executive Vice President Dr. William B. White 210 Materials Research Lab Penn State University University Park, Pennsylvania Vice President for Research Dr. Carol Wicks Dept. of Geology & Geophysics Louisiana State University Baton Rouge, Louisiana Vice President for Education Dr. Horton H. Hobbs, III Dept. of Biology Wittenberg University Springfield, Ohio Vice President for Communications Dr. Annette Summers Engel Dept. of Earth and Planetary Sciences University of Tennessee Knoxville, Tennessee Chairman of the Board Mr. William K. Jones P. O. Box 4142 Leesburg, Virginia The Conduit is an e newsletter of the Karst Waters Institute, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. Karst Waters Institute, Inc. P.O. Box 4124 Leesburg, Virginia 20177 Gifts are tax deductible in the United States to the extent allowed by law. Visit for more information. Copyright Karst Waters Institute. All rights reserved. Building understanding of karst through interdisciplinary action Send address changes to vp_communications @ Please include subject line when e mailing. Questions about submitting material can also be sent to this address. Thanks! If interested in advertising in The Conduit please inquire at ADVERTISING??? Current Board Members Ms. Emily Davis Speleobooks Schoharie, New York Dr. Horton H. Hobbs, III Dept. of Biology Wittenberg University Springfield, Ohio Dr. Jonathan B. Martin Dept. of Geology University of Florida Gainesville, Florida Dr. Benjamin Schwartz Dept. of Biology Texas State University San Marcos, Texas Dr. John W. Hess Geological Society of America Boulder, Colorado Secretary Dr Ira Sasowsky Dept of Geology & Environ. Science University of Akron Akron, Ohio Dr. William B. White Penn State University University Park, Pennsylvania Dr. Paul J. Moore ExxonMobil Houston, Texas Treasurer Mr. Harvey R. DuChene HNK Energy LLC Lake City, Colorado Vice Chair Dr. Dorothy Vesper Dept. of Geology & Geography West Virginia University Morgantown, West Virginia Dr. John Mylroie Dept. of Geosciences Mississippi State University Starkville, MS Dr. Daniel Doctor U.S. Geological Survey, Reston, Virginia Dr. Steve Taylor Illinois Natural History Survey University of Illinois Urbana Champaign Champaign, Illinois Dr. Paul J. Moore ExxonMobil Houston, Texas


K A R S T W A T E R S I N S T I T U T E THE CONDUIT Page 3 Welcome to The Conduit -Annette Summers Engel This e newsletter is distributed twice a year to over 700 karst enthusiasts globally. This issue of The Conduit contains information about the upcoming KWI Awards banquet in March 2013. This year, we will honor Dr. Norman Pace. Also included in The Conduit are announcements for the Wilson Scholarship and upcoming conference in 2014 A short article, written by the 2012 Wilson scholarship recipient, Amanda Laskoskie summarizes her research to date. Believe it or not, KWI first came into KWI from Volume 1, Issue 1 of The Conduit some years! Happy holidays! 2013 Karst Award Recipient Dr. Norman Pace Dr Norman Pace received an A.B from Indiana University and the Ph.D. from the University of Illinois. He has held faculty positions at several institutions, including the National Jewish Hospital and Research Center, the University of Colorado Medical Center Indiana University and the University of California, Berkeley. He currently is Distinguished Professor of Molecular, Cellular and Developmental Biology at the University of Colorado, Boulder. Pace works in two scientific arenas. On one hand he is a molecular biologist, and his laboratory has made substantive contrib utions to our understanding of nucleic acid structure and processing. Noteworthy recent efforts have involved elucidation of the crystal structure and catalytic mechanism of the RNA moiety of ribonuclease P, an enzyme composed of RNA instead of the usual protein. On the other hand, Pace is a microbial ecologist. His laboratory has led the field in the development and use of molecular tools to study microbial ecosystems. This work has led to the discovery of many novel organisms and an understand ing of some unusual symbioses. The results have expanded substantially the known diversity of microbial life in the environment. Current efforts range from high temperature environments and human disease to the microbiology of the human occupied indoor environment. Pace is a member of the National Academy of Sciences; and he is a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the American Academy of Microbiology, and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. He has received a number of awards, for instance the 1996 Procter and Gamble Award in Applied and Environmental Microbiology the 2007 Lifetime Achievement Award from the American Society for Microbiology the 2008 Lifetime Achievement in Science Award from the RNA Society, the 2008 Tiedje Lifetime Achievement Award in Environmental Microbiology from the International Society for Microbial Ecology and the 2001 Selman A. Waksman Award for Distinguished Contributions in Microbiology from the National Academy of Sciences. This In 2001, he was appointed a Fellow of the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. Additionally, Pace is an expert in cave exploration. He has led and participated in numerous expeditions in this country and internationally. Pace has been elected a Fellow of the National Speleological Society, the Cave Research Foundation and the Explorers Club He received the Lewis Bicking Award from the NSS for his contributions to American caving The 2013 KWI Karst Award banquet will be held in Boulder, Colorado, the evening of March 2, 2013. Festivities start at 6:00 PM at Tangerine (2777 Iris Ave., ). This honoree, Dr Norman Pace, will speak on the topic of "The Microbes Below: Caves, Aquifers and Drinking Water Distribution Systems." Other awards will also be given. Reserve your seat(s) by sending a check for $60/person to the Karst Waters Institute, PO Box 4142, Leesburg, VA 20177. Dinner includes hors d'oeuvres, dinner with choice of entrees, & wine/beverages.


K A R S T W A T E R S I N S T I T U T E THE CONDUIT Page 4 Upcoming 2014 Conference Hypogene Cave Morphologies The William L. Wilson Scholarship in Karst Science was established in 2002 to recognize the significant karst science contributions of the late William (Bill) L. Wilson. Bill Wilson used a variety of techniques, and unusual creativity, to tackle some of the most difficult karst science questions in Florida and elsewhere. He developed a leading karst consulting company in the United States, Subsurface Evaluations, Incorporated. To stimulate the development of new, energetic, motivated, and creative karst scientists, and to remember the person of Bill Wilson and his dedication to karst science, the scholarship has been established in his memory. The value of the scholarship as a one time award is $1,000. To apply for the William L. Wilson Scholarship, the following conditions exist : The applicant must be currently enrolled in, or have been accepted into, a MS degree program at an institution of higher education in the USA. PhD students are not eligible. A written proposal of the planned karst study must be submitted. It is limited to 1000 words or less for the narrative, not counting figure captions and references The research topic should be one concerning karst science, from the field of geochemistry, geology or hydrology. A very simple budget indicating how the funds would be used should also be included (it does not count in the 1000 word limit ). Applicants are requested to not Academic transcripts of undergraduate, and any graduate work, should be submitted. Copies issued to the student by their institution are preferred. Two submitted. It is requested that these letters be submitted as e mails by the letter writers. Applications are due by February 15, 2013 They should be submitted electronically as a single pdf file, containing the application transcripts, etc ., to: Dr. John E. Mylroie Department of Geosciences, Mississippi State University, Mississippi State, MS 39762 Questions regarding the scholarship should be addressed to Dr. Mylroie Applicants will be notified in early March of the decision of the Scholarship Committee. Publications derived from supported research should acknowledge the Karst Waters Institute and the William L. Wilson Scholarship For more information, go to: Announcement William L. Wilson Scholarship Deadline The Hypogene Cave Morphologies conference will be held at the Gerace Research Centre ( GRC ) on San Salvador Island, The Bahamas the first week of February, 2014 Exact dates are still to be determined. The main theme of the conference will be to examine and discuss the unique cave morphologies and speleogens associated with hypogene caves, from the scale of 100 km+ cave maps down to the centimeter wall rock shapes and forms. Hypogene caves can be argued to represent a laminar flow regime that is quite different from the turbulent flow found in epigenic stream caves coupled to surface hydrology Can these morph ologies be uniquely characterized to identify hypogene caves? What effect do these laminar flow regimes have on geochemical dissolution models in hypogene settings? Do flank margin caves fall in a hypogene flow environment? Initial plans call for an opening day, optional field trip to see two very large but easily accessible flank margin caves on Eleuthera Island that have a large suite of morphologies commonly associated with hypogene caves. The rest of the conference will be held on San Salvador Island, with morning talk sessions, evening poster sessions, and afternoon field trips to see caves and karst The geologic setting of time and space constraints will help illuminate possible mechanisms of cave formation. The GRC is a field station (see for more information about the field station; note the British centre Registration will open in 2013. The registration fee, when established, will cover all meals and lodging at the GRC as well as all San Salvador field trip expenses, field guide, etc. Participants will arrive by commercial air to San Salvador. The Eleuthera pre conference field grip will fly Nassau to Eleuthera and then on to San Salvador for the start of the conference. Time will be made available to enjoy the sights and culture of San Salvador, including swimming and snorkeling on beautiful tropical beaches. Space will be limited for this conference, and participation will initially be by invitation, opening to volunteered abstrac ts as lodging space allows (~50 people in two to a room accommodation ). Contact John Mylroie at: for more information


K A R S T W A T E R S I N S T I T U T E THE CONDUIT Page 5 Where are they now? Wilson Scholarship Research Amanda Laskoskie winner of the 2012 Wilson Scholarship, M.S. student at West Virginia University, provided details about what she has been working on since receiving the scholarship. In the past year, I have focused on the development and methods for using hydrogel tracer beads ( HTBs ) in the field to mimic nonaqueous liquid ( NAPL ) fate and transport. HTBs are made from alginate, derived from marine algae. 3M Glass Bubbles and Risk Reactor ultraviolet pigment is added to make an innocuous highly visible floating bead. Initial work focused on HTB optimization. Various drop height and alginate percents were tested to determine which combination resulted in a most spherical bead. The 3 % beads at 30 cm drop heights were most spherical, while higher drop heights resulted in a more oblong bead and lower alginate percents resulting in bead malformations ( Figure 1). Field testing of the HTBs was completed throughout the summer and fall of 2012. Research was put on hold during a visit to Buckeye Creek Cave, which found the cave stream stagnant as a result of the drought conditions experienced throughout most of the United States this past summer. A backup surface stream, Rhine Creek, was found in Terra Alta, WV. Comparative tracer tests of fluorescein and the buoyant HTBs demonstrated the beads travel preferentially in quicker flow paths than the fluorescein, arriving two minutes before fluorescein was detected. The test section at Rhine Creek was 64 meters long and the discharge was 85 L/s. Recovery rates of the dye were 86 and 78% and the HTBs was 52 and 47 % (Figure 2). The low recovery is due to trapping mechanisms in the stream such as vegetation and exposed bed as well as not catching all beads that made it to the collection point. The beads travel faster than the dye because they are buoyant and float in the center of the stream at the surface which is the fastest flowing part of the stream. Conversely, the dye disperses laterally and horizontally throughout the water column and therefore experiences a slower travel time. The transport of the HTBs is what is expected with NAPL contaminants and are therefore a suitable proxy for NAPL fate and transport in karst systems. Figure 1: Beads formed with various drop heights and alginate percents The short and long axes were measured to determine bead spherosity Figure 2: Breakthrough curves of HTBs and fluorescein for consecutive tracer tests at Rhine Creek -Submitted by Amanda Laskoskie West Virginia University Research completed by the 2009 winner of the William L. Wilson Scholarship, Cassie J. Gray (Louisiana State University) was recently published in The ISME Journal (advance online publication, diversity and impact on carbonate geochemistry across a changing geochemical gradient in a karst employed with CH2M Hill in Houston, Texas.


K A R S T W A T E R S I N S T I T U T E THE CONDUIT Page 6 How the Karst Waters Institute Became Established Reprinted from The Conduit (Volume 1, Issue 1) In November of 1988, Dr. David C. Culver, Chairman of the Department of Biology at American University, convened a conference near Charles Town, West Virginia to examine the nature of karst research in the United States. The meeting was oriented towards biospeleology but the disciplines of geochemistry, hydrology and geology were also represented. What was then known as the Spring and Ground Water Resources Institute (now the Freshwater Institute) sponsored the meeting, and provided funds to bring together the assembled scientists, including three from Europe. They looked at karst research in the United States, and compared the American situation to other countries which had karst research institutes. Some simple truths evolved from the meeting: 1. Karst research was under funded in the U.S. 2. Karst research in the U.S. did not receive a lot of respect from mainstream science. 3. Lack of young karst scientists. 4. Various problems of reality and perception regarding karst science could be remedied by establishing a karst research laboratory in the U.S. 5. Foreign karst laboratories thrived be st not in remote field locations where the karst was, but in areas where routine interaction with mainstream scientists was possible, and where logistical support was good. The meeting adjourned without any real plan to continue Over the following months, Dave Culver worked with John Mylroie and Bill Jones, two participants of the November 1988 meeting, to examine how establishment of a U.S. karst laboratory could proceed. With help from Dr. Robert Putz of the Spring and Ground Water Resources Institute, a second conference was planned for March 1990 to focus on the issue of a U.S. karst laboratory. A select group of senior karst scientists from across the country met in West Virginia to develop the laboratory concept. The meeting was extremely successful, and resulted in laying out the fundamental issues of the mission, goals and objectives for what was beginning to be called the "Karst Waters Institute" or KWI ". As the framework of an institute took form, discussions ranged on how to actually execute the formation of the KWI It was clear that the ideal goal would be a totally independent, endowed institution. In reality, it was realized that association with one or more universities or gover nme nt agencies might be the only practical way to obtain the funding necessary to pull together scientists, technicians, graduate students, and visiting scholars. An intermediate goal still seemed possible, in which the basic operations of the KWI were to be funded from gifts and endowment, but the actual research was funded by grants and contracts In the months following the March 1990 meeting, a number of approaches were followed with some vigor, but with little success. In hindsight, it seems clear that we had gotten ahead of ourselves, trying to sell an institute that didn't really e xis t. In January of 1991, at Dave Culver's invitation, John Mylroie took a leave of absence from Mississippi State University and spent the spring semester in Washington, D.C. at American University, where he worked with Dave Culver to develop the institute. A series of projects were proposed, including a demonstration project to develop the Karst Hydrology Atlas of West Virginia under the direction of Bill Jones. Dave Culver and Bill Jones developed the papers for incorporation of the KWI which were signed in September of 1991, and an inaugural meeting of the KWI Board of Directors was set for early November 1991 On November 9, 1991 the Karst Waters Institute officially came into being, with successful adoption of the incorporation papers and Bylaws by the Board of Directors. Further activity was done on the paperwork of organization, and plans were developed to find sources of funds to allow the KWI to move from a paper organization into a physical entity. The KWI now has offices courtesy of Environmental Data in Charles Town, WV. After the meeting was over, a press release was developed and distributed. The press release generated a lot of interesting responses, and more are still coming in The Bylaws of the KWI call for an annual meeting each March. The first annual meeting was held March 21 through 22 in Charles Town, WV, and the results of that meeting are presented in a detailed article in this initial issue of the Karst Wate rs Institute Newsletter. Because there have been so many inquiries about the Karst Waters Institute, this brief history was presented to bring everyone up to date and give a common ground to all those interested in the KWI Included immediately following this article are the Mission Statement, Goals and Objectives of the KWI KWI Happenings Institute and Board Members meet in Charlotte, North Carolina The Fall meeting was held November 3, 2012, at the Weston in Charlotte, prior to the annual Geological Society of America meeting. In attendance were Board members, Institute officers, Associates, and guests. Some Board members were included by conference call or Skype. The next Institute and Board meeting will be in Boulder, Colorado, on March 3, 2013.


K A R S T W A T E R S I N S T I T U T E THE CONDUIT Page 7 Upcoming Conferences and Courses Karst sessions at the 2013 NGWA Summit The National and International Conference on Groundwater April 28 May 2, 2013, San Antonio, TX, USA The abstract submission deadline has passes, but registration is still open. Meeting information can be found at http :// / The following list summarizes some of the karst sessions: Innovative Approaches for Investigating and Managing Karst Groundwater Resources Challenges in Characterizing and Modeling Karst Aquifer Systems Characterizing Biology with Water Quality in Karst: What Can It Tell Us About Aquifer Health National Cave and Karst Management Symposium The 20 th National Cave and Karst Management Symposium ( NCKMS ) is now accepting abstracts for its next meeting, which will be held November 4 8, 2013 at the National Cave and Karst Research Institute ( NCKRI ) in Carlsbad, New Mexico. For details about the conference, abstract submissions (due March 15, 2013), manuscript submission deadlines (June 1, 2013), and registration, go to Anyone needing financial assistance to attend NCKMS especially students, are encouraged to apply for a George N. Huppert Scholarship. For information about the scholarship and how to apply, visit: Summer 2013 Karst Field Studies Program The Hoffman Environmental Research Institute, through its Center for Cave and Karst Studies and in cooperation with the Mammoth Cave International Center for Science and Learning and Western Kentucky University, announce the Summer 2013 Karst Field Studies Program. Courses this summer will include: Karst Geology, June 2 8, Dr. Art Palmer Karst Geophysics, June 9 15, Dr. Lewis Land Cave Photography, June 10 14, Dr. Dave Bunnell Karst Hydrology June 17 21, Drs. William White and Nicholas Crawford Cave Biology and Ecosystems, June 17 21, Dr. Dave Ashley Courses may be taken for graduate, undergraduate, or continuing education credit. Courses may also be taken as non credit workshops. For more information about the program, courses, how to register, and instructors, visit While visiting the website be sure to also check out the 'Scholarships' tab for information about the Nick Crawford Karst Education Scholarship, a competitive award designed to offer financial assistance for attending a course. Questions should be directed to the Karst Field Studies Director, Dr. Leslie North, at 16 th International Congress of Speleology July 21 28, 2013, Brno, Czech Republic Registration is still open. Early registration ends Jan. 31, 2013. Visit http :// for more details.

Contents: Welcome to
The Conduit --
2013 Karst Award Recipient Dr. Norman Pace --
Announcement William L. Wilson Scholarship Deadline --
Upcoming 2014 Conference Hypogene Cave Morphologies --
Where are they know? Wilson Scholarship Research --
How the Karst Waters Institute Became Established --
KWI Happenings --
Upcoming Conferences and Courses.


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