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Seeking the shore: Evidence for active submarine canyon head incision due to coarse sediment supply and focusing of wave energy

Seeking the shore: Evidence for active submarine canyon head incision due to coarse sediment supply and focusing of wave energy
Seeking the shore: Evidence for active submarine canyon head incision due to coarse sediment supply and focusing of wave energy

Submarine flows carve canyons into continental shelves, yet the conditions and events responsible for canyon incision are incompletely understood. Coarse sediment flux has been shown to promote terrestrial bedrock incision via abrasion in rivers, but similar processes in submarine canyons have yet to be systematically documented. We use repeat bathymetry, provenance analysis, wave modeling, and channel network analysis to show that longshore sheltering and wave focusing by the Delgada submarine canyon induce sediment accumulation and elevated wave shear stresses in its headwall region that frequently mobilize coarse bed material. These mobilizations scour bedrock in the headwall and generate abrasive turbidity currents that work to carve the canyon's active channel into bedrock. These findings highlight an important positive feedback between submarine canyons, waves, and sediment supply and suggest that submarine canyons adjacent to wave-dominated, coarse sediment-rich coastlines seek the shoreline through headward incision.

connectivity, erosion, provenance, sediment, submarine canyons, wave focusing
0094-8276
12403-12413
Smith, M. Elliot
edbf4b40-1761-4d60-b3e7-228d69576aed
Werner, Samuel H.
ce9c100b-fe09-445d-b181-1829e79f0a88
Buscombe, Daniel
7b779813-a764-4955-b86c-6aa4774a1cfe
Finnegan, Noah J.
639137a3-35b3-4e13-8b31-c9afe7c9e440
Sumner, Esther J.
dbba4b92-89cc-45d9-888e-d0e87e5c10ac
Mueller, Erich R.
fca1b44e-14c7-4926-9e5c-4185a71d25d1
Smith, M. Elliot
edbf4b40-1761-4d60-b3e7-228d69576aed
Werner, Samuel H.
ce9c100b-fe09-445d-b181-1829e79f0a88
Buscombe, Daniel
7b779813-a764-4955-b86c-6aa4774a1cfe
Finnegan, Noah J.
639137a3-35b3-4e13-8b31-c9afe7c9e440
Sumner, Esther J.
dbba4b92-89cc-45d9-888e-d0e87e5c10ac
Mueller, Erich R.
fca1b44e-14c7-4926-9e5c-4185a71d25d1

Smith, M. Elliot, Werner, Samuel H., Buscombe, Daniel, Finnegan, Noah J., Sumner, Esther J. and Mueller, Erich R. (2018) Seeking the shore: Evidence for active submarine canyon head incision due to coarse sediment supply and focusing of wave energy. Geophysical Research Letters, 45 (22), 12403-12413. (doi:10.1029/2018GL080396).

Record type: Article

Abstract

Submarine flows carve canyons into continental shelves, yet the conditions and events responsible for canyon incision are incompletely understood. Coarse sediment flux has been shown to promote terrestrial bedrock incision via abrasion in rivers, but similar processes in submarine canyons have yet to be systematically documented. We use repeat bathymetry, provenance analysis, wave modeling, and channel network analysis to show that longshore sheltering and wave focusing by the Delgada submarine canyon induce sediment accumulation and elevated wave shear stresses in its headwall region that frequently mobilize coarse bed material. These mobilizations scour bedrock in the headwall and generate abrasive turbidity currents that work to carve the canyon's active channel into bedrock. These findings highlight an important positive feedback between submarine canyons, waves, and sediment supply and suggest that submarine canyons adjacent to wave-dominated, coarse sediment-rich coastlines seek the shoreline through headward incision.

Full text not available from this repository.

More information

Accepted/In Press date: 10 November 2018
e-pub ahead of print date: 14 November 2018
Published date: 28 November 2018
Keywords: connectivity, erosion, provenance, sediment, submarine canyons, wave focusing

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 428227
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/428227
ISSN: 0094-8276
PURE UUID: c6a18304-33a8-4502-bd8a-fc6bbf1f3766

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 15 Feb 2019 17:30
Last modified: 07 Oct 2020 00:36

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