The Worlds Largest Cave

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Caves contain unique geological and meteorological records. Increasingly, the sediments they hold and the strata from which they are formed are being using to study and understand the Earth in ever more detail. They hold particularly valuable insights as they have been undisturbed erosion, be that due to human activity or natural meteorological processes. However, caves are dark, and so those parts that are beyond reach of the lights that speleologists can carry, have not been studied. Until now.
Commendium has been part of a worldwide project to LIDAR scan the great natural chambers of the world in order to create a data set for further study. To date fifteen have been completed. We visited and documents caves in The USA, Mexico, Belize, China, Oman, Malaysia, France and Spain. It involved full scale speleological expeditions to enter and explore these places.
Commendium constructed a detailed digital 3D model of the all the caves in a variety of formats. The data sets are being used to date events in the cave development and also to date deposits that are being used to reveal climate change records over the last million years. This is corroborated with data from other sources, such as Ice Caps Cores, to improve the worldwide understanding of climate change. Cave records will allow climate change studies to reach back almost ten times further than any other source. National Geographic funded one element of this project, from which Commendium helped to build an array of 3D interpretations to help their readers understand these wonderful places. A film of the largest of the caves was made by Commendium and can be viewed on Youtube.