How is speleothem defined?

Speleothem is a term given to those cave features that form after a cave itself has formed. They are secondary mineral deposits that are created by the solidification of fluids or from chemical solutions. These mineral deposits usually contain calcium carbonate (CaCO3) or limestone, but gypsum or silica may also be found. Stalactites, stalagmites, soda straws, cave coral, boxwork, and cave pearls are all types of speleothems.


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