Gypsum balls

"Cave perspiration"

One of the speleothems formed by capillarity processes of “exudation” from the gypsiferous matrix is the case of the gypsum balls. The water, charged with calcium sulphate, emerges into the cave through small cracks and pores and starts to evaporate, so precipitating the gypsum. The forms are concentric and are frequently filled with clayey material carried from the gypsum stratum. Occasionally, one can observe their structure – with a hollow, clayfilled centre and an overlying crust of gypsum (Figure 12).

Gypsum bals formed by capillary processes and exudation from the gypsum bedrock

Figura 12

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