National Cave and Karst Research Institute


National Cave and Karst InstituteThe National Cave and Karst Research Institute (NCKRI) facilitates and conducts programs in research, education, data management, and stewardship in all fields of speleology. NCKRI promotes and performs projects of national and international application through dedicated staff and partners. NCKRI partners with programs and departments at NMT to support research projects such as the development of caves and karst, characterizing their unique geomicrobiology, and evaluating their hydrogeology.

Karst landscapes and their associated features like caves, springs, underground rivers, and sinkholes are fascinating, but often not well‐understood by students and professionals in earth and natural sciences. Karst landscapes are prevalent on 20‐25% of the land worldwide. Karst is a fragile landscape with vulnerable aquifer systems. 

NCKRI Headquarters is located in Carlsbad, New Mexico. The building and its operating practices are testaments for living softly on karst. It was constructed utilizing environmentally friendly products and it includes many “green” features such as an artificial bat roost that allows for scientific study of these highly beneficial mammals. NCKRI is currently developing a suite of exhibits to engage audiences to take a learning voyage centered on cave and karst systems.