Karstbase Bibliography Database
Karstbase Bibliography Database
Resistivity, refraction and resistivity tomography methods were used to ascertain the dimensions of any sediment body present within solution dolines. Fieldwork was undertaken at two sites within the Yorkshire Dales National Park: High Mark [SD920 679] northeast of Malham Tarn, and on Ingleborough, northeast of Clapham Bottoms [SD765 722].
Results of previous studies of doline fill have been inconclusive. It has been hypothesised (Howard, unpublished) that if dolines do contain significant amounts of sediment, the fill could provide a complete palaeoenvironmental record of the Quaternary.
Resistivity studies undertaken at High Mark used an Offset Wenner array, and field data were inverted to produce a 1-D image of the subsurface. The profiles were located at the base of the doline, in the area believed to contain the greatest sediment thickness. Results suggest that the fill comprises two layers. An upper layer approximately 1 m thick is composed of poorly consolidated clayey sand with an apparent resistivity of 166m. The second layer reaches a depth of 5.6m and is more clay-rich, with an apparent resistivity of 60m. These interpretations are supported by evidence from augering. The upper 10m of limestone below the sediment has been altered during doline formation, weathering and fracturing, and has a resistivity of 220m compared to 440m for the unaltered bedrock.
Refraction profiles were undertaken at High Mark, using the hammer and plate method with a 2m geophone spacing. Profiles were located on the base, flanks and interfluves of the doline. Ground conditions prevented the acquisition of very long offset shots (>10m), and lack of these data hindered interpretation. Profiles undertaken at Ingleborough used an explosive shot placed in a 45cm-deep hole, and a 5m geophone spacing was used. Profiles were located at the base of the dolines.
Results at High Mark suggest that the limestone is overlain by 4m of sediment. The upper layer has a velocity of approximately 0.50m/ms, whereas that of the second layer is 1.19m/ms. Alteration of the upper 6m of the bedrock is indicated by a velocity of 2.00m/ms, compared to 2.99m/ms for the unaltered limestone. The bedrock surface is undulatory, possibly indicating the effects of preferential dissolution or glacial activity.
Results of the refraction surveys at Ingleborough indicate that the limestone is overlain by a single 4m-thick layer of sediment with a velocity of 0.52m/ms. Beneath this, the upper 13m of limestone is altered, with a velocity of 2.45m/ms, which increases to 3.75m/ms in the unaltered limestone below. Velocities obtained are lower than expected, but reliable imaging of the limestone was ensured by siting the profiles close to observed rock exposures. Refraction interpretations indicate that the centre of the doline is not coincident with the position predicted from observation of the surface morphology.
Resistivity tomography profiles were undertaken at the base of the dolines at both sites. A fully automated system employing a Wenner array with 25 electrodes at 5m spacings was used, and six levels were recorded. The field data were inverted and the results suggest that there are about 12.5m of sediment in the High Mark doline. The sediment is underlain by 2m of altered limestone and the bedrock base of the doline is relatively smooth.
In contrast, the thickness of sediment fill in the Ingleborough dolines is 7.5m, but the depressions are bounded by a greater thickness of altered limestone (10m). In places the limestone imaged appears to reach the surface, but is not observed in the field, indicating that minimal sediment cover is not imaged. The surface of the limestone is pitted by smaller sediment-filled depressions, possibly a feature of glacial scour.
Two profiles were forward modelled to test the reliability of the inversion model. The models were similar, but features were displaced to the right of the true section. Synthetic models were constructed to test geological hypotheses concerning the composition of the dolines. The models suggested that the dolines are relatively shallow (<12m) and are underlain by significant thicknesses of altered limestone (~10m).
The combination of results obtained suggests that dolines are not filled by significant quantities of sediment and, consequently, they cannot be used as palaeoenvironmental indicators of the Quaternary.
Jobling A. 2000. Resistivity tomography survey over a topographic depression, West Yorkshire.
BSc thesis (Geophysical Sciences), School of Earth Sciences, University of Leeds, Leeds, LS2 9JT, UK.
Three resistivity profiles were completed across a topographic depression near Garforth, West Yorkshire. The depression is roughly circular, with a radius of approximately 20m. Two profiles ran through the centre of the depression, with a third profile lying outside it. Data from these three profiles were processed, and graphs and pseudosections were compiled. The data were also inverted.
The pseudosections and inversions both showed a large, negative resistivity anomaly centred approximately beneath the surface depression. This anomaly had a resistivity difference of between 600m and 700m compared to that of the surrounding rock.
The most likely reason for this anomaly is dissolution of limestone causing development of a doline or sinkhole. The chance of the depression being an old coal mine or sand mine working has been dismissed due to the location of the site and the nature of the resistivity anomaly.