Project

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Advance and application of a surface process model for the simulation of sediment routing systems

Applicant Simpson Guy
Number 132076
Funding scheme Project funding
Research institution Département des sciences de la Terre Université de Genève
Institution of higher education University of Geneva - GE
Main discipline Geology
Start/End 01.04.2011 - 30.06.2015
Approved amount 227'568.00
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Keywords (6)

modeling; topography; geomorphology; sediment; erosion; deposition

Lay Summary (English)

Lead
Lay summary
Earth’s landscape is a dynamic surface shaped by the interplay between tectonics and climate-mediated surface processes related to erosion, sediment transport and deposition. Sediment is moved in flowing surface water from the erosional engine in mountainous regions to its eventual deposition in basins by the sediment routing system. The last decades has seen considerable work on trying to understand different aspects of the sediment routing system using surface process models. Though such models have been successful in their ability to generate realistic looking topography they lack predictive power because they are based on oversimplified physics - particularly concerning overland fluid flow - and because their parameters are poorly constrained. This project proposes to further develop and apply an existing, new generation of surface process developed previously by the main applicant. This numerical model is based on fully dynamic, two dimensional surface water flow coupled to realistic physically-based laws for erosion, sediment transport and deposition. We will firstly parallelise this code in order to take advantage of high performance clusters now available at the university. We will then apply the model to address two main aspects of the sediment routing system. The first is the problem of channel initiation and formation of mature drainage basins, the second is the problem of controls on the morphology and dynamics of alluvial rivers. As part of this research grant, we request 3 years of funding for one new PhD student to be based within the Department of Geology and Paleontology at the University of Geneva, working under the guidance of Dr. Guy Simpson. The project also involves collaboration with Dr. Sebastien Castelltort who is based at the ETH in Zurich.
Direct link to Lay Summary Last update: 21.02.2013

Responsible applicant and co-applicants

Employees

Name Institute

Publications

Publication
Model shows that rivers transmit high-frequency climate cycles to the sedimentary record
Simpson Guy, Castelltort Sébastien (2012), Model shows that rivers transmit high-frequency climate cycles to the sedimentary record, in Geology, 40, 1131.

Collaboration

Group / person Country
Types of collaboration
Shiva Pudasaini Germany (Europe)
- in-depth/constructive exchanges on approaches, methods or results
Line Probst Switzerland (Europe)
- Research Infrastructure

Scientific events

Active participation

Title Type of contribution Title of article or contribution Date Place Persons involved
AGU Talk given at a conference Non-oscillatory Central Differencing (NOC) Scheme to Solve the Shallow Water Equations Coupled with Sediment Transport and Bed Evolution in Two Dimensions. 08.12.2013 San Francisco, United States of America Zia Haseeb; Simpson Guy;


Abstract

Earth’s landscape is a dynamic surface shaped by the interplay between tectonics and climate-mediated surface processes related to erosion, sediment transport and deposition. Sediment is moved in flowing surface water from the erosional engine in mountainous regions to its eventual deposition in basins by the sediment routing system. The last decades has seen considerable work on trying to understand different aspects of the sediment routing system using surface process models. Though such models have been successful in their ability to generate realistic looking topography they lack predictive power because they are based on oversimplified physics - particularly concerning overland fluid flow - and because their parameters are poorly constrained. This project proposes to further develop and apply an existing, new generation of surface process developed previously by the main applicant. This numerical model is based on fully dynamic, two dimensional surface water flow coupled to realistic physically-based laws for erosion, sediment transport and deposition. We will firstly parallelise this code in order to take advantage of high performance clusters now available at the university. We will then apply the model to address two main aspects of the sediment routing system. The first is the problem of channel initiation and formation of mature drainage basins, the second is the problem of controls on the morphology and dynamics of alluvial rivers. As part of this research grant, we request 3 years of funding for one new PhD student to be based within the Department of Geology and Paleontology at the University of Geneva, working under the guidance of Dr. Guy Simpson. The project also involves collaboration with Dr. Sebastien Castelltort who is based at the ETH in Zurich.
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