Likėnai village, Biržai region.
|Dimension:||Ø=17 m, D=1.5 m, T=7.5 ºC. Pavg=242 l/s, Pmin=0 l/s, Pmax=1170 l/s.|
|Guided tours:||self guided|
|Address:||Smardonės šaltinis, Likėnų st., Pabiržė, Biržų r.|
|As far as we know this information was accurate when it was published (see years in brackets), but may have changed since then.
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|1587||first written mention of the medical use.|
|1816||first chemical analysis of the spring water made by Theodoras Grotthuss.|
|1938||opening of the Likėnai health resort.|
|1956||research by the Lithuanian geologist Alfonsas Kondratas|
|1961||flow rate was 540 l/s before reclamation works and 14 l/s afterwards.|
|1985||declared a geological monument.|
|1989–90||research by the Lithuanian geologist Augustinas Linčius|
|2001||research by the Lithuanian geologist Vytautas Narbutas|
|2011||the site was renovated and the shore strengthened with local stones.|
|2012||research by the Lithuanian geologist Kęstutis Kadūnas|
Smardonės šaltinis (Source of Hell) is a karst spring located on the grounds of the Likėnai rehabilitation hospital. It was once the most productive spring in Lituania, in 1961 the flow rate was 540 l/s, but after reclamation works, its capacity decreased to 14 l/s. As a karst spring the production varies from 130 to 540 l/s, and in dry periods it may stop to flow at all. This is the source of the homonymous Smardone stream.
The water of the spring is very high in limestone but also contains hydrogen sulphide gas, which creates a typical smell of rotten eggs. The first chemical analysis of the spring water was made by Theodoras Grotthuss in 1816. He discovered, that the increased content of hydrogen sulfide in the water of Smardone spring is of inorganic and organic origin. Inorganic sources are gypsum (CaSO4•2H2O and pyrite (FeS2). The organic sources are organic remains in the sedimentary rocks and sand, and products of microbiological activities in the groundwater. Hydrogen sulfide is formed by the interaction of these inorganic and organic substances.
Theodoras Grotthuss is the most famous Lithuanian physicist and chemist. He was born and living in Gedučiai manor in Pakruojis district. He was specialized on electrochemistry and photochemistry, and developed the world's first theory of electrolysis. He published the scientific study "Mémoire sur la décomposition de l'eau et des corps, qu'elle tient en dissolution a l'aide de l'électricité galvanique" (Memorandum on the decomposition of water and the bodies it keeps in dissolution by means of galvanic electricity), in which he identified the basic laws of exposure to light.
Due to the bitter taste and the smell, the locals were aware of the uniqueness of the spring. The water from this spring was never used to cook meat, coffee, or tea, but it was used to bake bread and to bathe. The water was used to wash the eyes, the hands and the feet for medical purposes. Or small amounts were slowly sipped. The medical use of the spring was first mentioned in 1587. In 1938 the Likėnai health resort was opened and the water of the springs used for various treatments.
|DDT, DDD, DDE||not detected|
|Cd, Cr and Co||not detected|
|chemical analysis from 1989|