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Published 2006 | Submitted
Book Section - Chapter Open

Sediment patches, sediment supply, and channel morphology


Bed surface particle size patchiness may play a central role in bedload and morphologic response to changes in sediment supply in gravel-bed rivers. Here we test a 1-D model (from Parker ebook) of bedload transport, surface grain size, and channel profile with two previously published flume studies that documented bed surface response, and specifically patch development, to reduced sediment supply. The model over predicts slope changes and under predicts average bed surface grain size changes because it does not account for patch dynamics. Field studies reported here using painted rocks as tracers show that fine patches and coarse patches may initiate transport at the same stage, but that much greater transport occurs in the finer patches. A theory for patch development should include grain interactions (similar size grains stop-ping each other, fine ones mobilizing coarse particles), effects of boundary shear stress divergence, and sort-ing due to cross-stream sloping bed surfaces.

Additional Information

© 2006 Taylor & Francis Group, London. This work was supported in part by the California Water Resources Center and the NSF National Center for Earth Surface Dynamics.

Attached Files

Submitted - PatchesRCEM2005Dietrich.pdf


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August 22, 2023
October 23, 2023