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The establishment and influence of Baimakou paleo-dam in an upstream reach of the Yangtze River, southeastern margin of the Tibetan Plateau

The establishment and influence of Baimakou paleo-dam in an upstream reach of the Yangtze River, southeastern margin of the Tibetan Plateau
The establishment and influence of Baimakou paleo-dam in an upstream reach of the Yangtze River, southeastern margin of the Tibetan Plateau
Landslide damming is an important disturbance factor in the river evolution of mountain belts and may control river morphology at variable timescales. This temporal aspect is mostly discussed in terms of the spatial relationships between the dams and river longitudinal profiles within any given region. Largely lacking are detailed studies of the geomorphic response for individual dams. Here we present field evidence and 24 optically stimulated luminescence (OSL) ages that show the history of a landslide dam in an upstream reach of Yangtze River at the southeastern margin of the Tibetan Plateau and its influence on river evolution. The distribution of lacustrine ages suggests that there was only one long-term damming event, induced by landslide blocking the river. The dammed lake formed at 12.1 ka, and disappeared at 7.5 ka. The estimated dam height was 120 m, lake area was 96 km2, and lake volume was 7.5 km3. In addition, the grain size and distribution of lacustrine deposits indicate the dam failed cataclysmically when the lake finally drained. Today, the river long profile upstream of the dam site remains lower and the channel is wider in contrast to the downstream reach. Consequently, the former dam still influences channel morphology. Our study shows that the interaction of landslide dams with the rivers in the southeastern Tibetan Plateau may impeded valley incision and headward erosion in those cases where damming continued over periods of several thousand years.
landslide dam, river long profile, luminescence dating, Yangtze River
0169-555X
Carling, Paul
8d252dd9-3c88-4803-81cc-c2ec4c6fa687
Liu, Weiming
f789da5e-9ebc-40b2-ad92-26ae6daf8ba6
Hu, Kaiheng
5d7c88eb-78ff-47ba-9720-8288eb55835f
Lai, Zhongping
56f19b0c-49d3-43fe-b620-167be1840f4e
Cheng, Ting
43775026-2d70-492b-959f-85c51e62d0c9
Xu, Yali
f35b0954-a621-4a09-9cca-e803f228455b
Carling, Paul
8d252dd9-3c88-4803-81cc-c2ec4c6fa687
Liu, Weiming
f789da5e-9ebc-40b2-ad92-26ae6daf8ba6
Hu, Kaiheng
5d7c88eb-78ff-47ba-9720-8288eb55835f
Lai, Zhongping
56f19b0c-49d3-43fe-b620-167be1840f4e
Cheng, Ting
43775026-2d70-492b-959f-85c51e62d0c9
Xu, Yali
f35b0954-a621-4a09-9cca-e803f228455b

Carling, Paul, Liu, Weiming, Hu, Kaiheng, Lai, Zhongping, Cheng, Ting and Xu, Yali (2018) The establishment and influence of Baimakou paleo-dam in an upstream reach of the Yangtze River, southeastern margin of the Tibetan Plateau. Geomorphology, [GEOMOR 6491]. (doi:10.1016/j.geomorph.2018.08.028).

Record type: Article

Abstract

Landslide damming is an important disturbance factor in the river evolution of mountain belts and may control river morphology at variable timescales. This temporal aspect is mostly discussed in terms of the spatial relationships between the dams and river longitudinal profiles within any given region. Largely lacking are detailed studies of the geomorphic response for individual dams. Here we present field evidence and 24 optically stimulated luminescence (OSL) ages that show the history of a landslide dam in an upstream reach of Yangtze River at the southeastern margin of the Tibetan Plateau and its influence on river evolution. The distribution of lacustrine ages suggests that there was only one long-term damming event, induced by landslide blocking the river. The dammed lake formed at 12.1 ka, and disappeared at 7.5 ka. The estimated dam height was 120 m, lake area was 96 km2, and lake volume was 7.5 km3. In addition, the grain size and distribution of lacustrine deposits indicate the dam failed cataclysmically when the lake finally drained. Today, the river long profile upstream of the dam site remains lower and the channel is wider in contrast to the downstream reach. Consequently, the former dam still influences channel morphology. Our study shows that the interaction of landslide dams with the rivers in the southeastern Tibetan Plateau may impeded valley incision and headward erosion in those cases where damming continued over periods of several thousand years.

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1-s2.0-S0169555X1830326X-main - Accepted Manuscript
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More information

Accepted/In Press date: 21 August 2018
e-pub ahead of print date: 24 August 2018
Keywords: landslide dam, river long profile, luminescence dating, Yangtze River

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 424496
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/424496
ISSN: 0169-555X
PURE UUID: f505c16d-931e-4009-b21c-0c99c53532d0

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Date deposited: 05 Oct 2018 11:37
Last modified: 26 Nov 2021 06:08

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Contributors

Author: Paul Carling
Author: Weiming Liu
Author: Kaiheng Hu
Author: Zhongping Lai
Author: Ting Cheng
Author: Yali Xu

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