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Criticality on the planform behavior of the Ganges River meanders

Criticality on the planform behavior of the Ganges River meanders
Criticality on the planform behavior of the Ganges River meanders
The critical point of planform transition from straight to meandering in the wandering Ganges is identifiable. Maps indicate cutoffs occur at multiple decadal intervals. Recent remote-sensing data indicate that four similar meanders cutoff, or attempted to cutoff, after c. 31-35 years, primarily due to channel-aggradation. As main-channels aggrade, sinuosity is maximized for broad channel widths and small radii of curvature and relaxes for bends of greater radii. Maximized form resistance occurs close to self-organized criticality and super-elevated flows develop along the outer banks of bends and promote cutoffs. Avulsions lead to main channel narrowing and prevent further bend tightening, relaxing the system by reducing sinuosity. Thus, the wandering river oscillates in space and time across the transition from a more ordered to a more chaotic state. Planform behaviour is described by the Jerolmack-Mohrig mobility number and the Parker stability criterion. These parameters well-define meander behaviour as they approach criticality and then relax via partial or completed avulsions. The results have significance for river engineering, river network and stratigraphic modelling. Such an approach could be of practical value when predicting the behaviours of other major wandering rivers.
0091-7613
859-862
Carling, Paul
8d252dd9-3c88-4803-81cc-c2ec4c6fa687
Gupta, Niladri
8dec96a6-b85b-4202-a4ec-bb8f9ca030a3
Atkinson, Peter
96e96579-56fe-424d-a21c-17b6eed13b0b
Qing He, Huang
8c9c971b-4e7a-4470-9cde-1ed7587ee2d2
Carling, Paul
8d252dd9-3c88-4803-81cc-c2ec4c6fa687
Gupta, Niladri
8dec96a6-b85b-4202-a4ec-bb8f9ca030a3
Atkinson, Peter
96e96579-56fe-424d-a21c-17b6eed13b0b
Qing He, Huang
8c9c971b-4e7a-4470-9cde-1ed7587ee2d2

Carling, Paul, Gupta, Niladri, Atkinson, Peter and Qing He, Huang (2016) Criticality on the planform behavior of the Ganges River meanders. Geology, 44 (10), 859-862. (doi:10.1130/G38382.1).

Record type: Article

Abstract

The critical point of planform transition from straight to meandering in the wandering Ganges is identifiable. Maps indicate cutoffs occur at multiple decadal intervals. Recent remote-sensing data indicate that four similar meanders cutoff, or attempted to cutoff, after c. 31-35 years, primarily due to channel-aggradation. As main-channels aggrade, sinuosity is maximized for broad channel widths and small radii of curvature and relaxes for bends of greater radii. Maximized form resistance occurs close to self-organized criticality and super-elevated flows develop along the outer banks of bends and promote cutoffs. Avulsions lead to main channel narrowing and prevent further bend tightening, relaxing the system by reducing sinuosity. Thus, the wandering river oscillates in space and time across the transition from a more ordered to a more chaotic state. Planform behaviour is described by the Jerolmack-Mohrig mobility number and the Parker stability criterion. These parameters well-define meander behaviour as they approach criticality and then relax via partial or completed avulsions. The results have significance for river engineering, river network and stratigraphic modelling. Such an approach could be of practical value when predicting the behaviours of other major wandering rivers.

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Accepted/In Press date: 4 August 2016
e-pub ahead of print date: 31 August 2016
Published date: October 2016
Organisations: Earth Surface Dynamics

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 402157
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/402157
ISSN: 0091-7613
PURE UUID: 899b1bb4-853b-4557-9a83-0d4cdf87c292
ORCID for Peter Atkinson: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0002-5489-6880

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Date deposited: 02 Nov 2016 14:41
Last modified: 17 Dec 2019 06:34

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