River deltas as self-organized morphodynamic systems

Seminar on Mathematics in the Bio and Geo Sciences

Meeting Details

For more information about this meeting, contact Andrew Belmonte, Hope Shaffer.

Speaker: Rudy Slingerland, Dept of Geosciences, Penn State

Abstract: Morphodynamic systems in the geosciences consist of two-phase mixtures of water and sediment particles carried by a free surface flow, and bounded by a granular medium. The boundary between the flowing mixture and the granular medium moves as a result of a continuous exchange of sediment particles. Feedbacks between the mixture and the medium produce a given system dynamics. The general problem of morphodynamics is to determine the motion of the boundary for some given initial conditions. In this talk I will try to demonstrate that river-dominated deltas are self-organized morphodynamic systems whose complexity arises from a few simple physical processes repeatedly applied. I will present the main processes and feedback loops that determine a delta’s dynamic equilibrium states, as derived from a combination of field observations and physical and numerical modeling.


Room Reservation Information

Room Number: 106 McAllister

Date: 03/14/2012

Time: 1:00pm - 2:00pm