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INTRODUCTION TO GEOMORPHOLOGY

Photo: Glacial deposit in WisconsinA. Geomorphology

Photo: Southern Alps, New ZealandB. Why Study Geomorphology?

Innate curiosity

Inspiring landscapes

Practical reasons - impact of landscape on human activities

To help understand climate change

To help understand where organisms live

Landscape restoration


C. Basic Landform Controls

Driving forces

  • solar radiation

  • gravity

  • earth's internal heat

Resisting forces

  • lithology

  • geologic structure

Processes: interaction between driving and resisting forces

D. Process Geomorphology

Equilibrium

Disturbances


Photo: students measuring stream flowE. Experiments in Geomorphology

Procedure is critical in the earth sciences

Procedure for field work

Impact of site selection

F. Our Field Experiment

Measure stream channel geometry and discharge to test hypotheses relating channel geometry to flow conditions

Measure texture of streambed sediment to test hypothese relating sediment texture to channel geometry and flow conditions

 

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©Karen A. Lemke: klemke@uwsp.edu
Last revised September 2, 2016