Depositional landforms of groundwater Upsc

Depositional landforms of groundwater

A variety of depositional forms are developed within the limestone caves.

The main chemical component in limestone is Calcium Carbonate.

The groundwater may become saturated with Calcium bicarbonate. The Calcium bicarbonate is formed by a reaction between Carbonic acid which is present in the rainwater and the calcium carbonate present in the rock.

Calcium carbonate is easily soluble in the Carbon-di-oxide absorbed rainwater, which is Carbonated Water.

When this hard water reaches the cave, Calcium Carbonate is deposited by the water carrying a solution of Calcium Carbonate evaporates by evaporation it loses its carbon dioxide, as it trickles over the rough rock surfaces.

This happens when Carbon dioxide bubbles out of the solution and goes back into the air by the process of carbonation in reverse.

With the help of evaporated Calcite or Calcium Carbonates is precipitated.

The forms of Depositional landforms of groundwater are Stalactites, Stalagmites, pillar etc


A flow of liquid in a small stream. Also can be said as “a small flow of liquid” or drip
Depositional landforms of groundwater
Stalagmites, Stalactites and pillars By Dave Bunnell / Under Earth Images – Own work, CC BY-SA 2.5,


The water dripping from the ceiling of the caves initially forms pendant soda straws and over time it may grow into icicle-shaped stalactites.

Stalactites hand as icicles of varying diameters. Normally Stalactites are broad at their bases and taper towards the free ends showing up different forms and rising up from the floor of the caves.

It has to be noted, that the Stalactites were formed by the dripping of water from the surface or via the thin pipe of the stalactite which is present immediately below it.

Stalactites grow at about 7.5 mm per year.


The water drips onto the floor which further deposits the calcium carbonate and forms more rounded and cone-shaped stalagmites.

Stalagmites take the shape of a column, a disc with either a smooth, rounded bulging end or a miniature crater-like depression.


The stalagmite and stalactites over time join together to rise to columns and pillars of varying diameters.

* * All the Notes in this blog, are referred from Tamil Nadu State Board Books and Samacheer Kalvi Books. Kindly check with the original Tamil Nadu state board books and Ncert Books.