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Stream Sediment

A. Introductionphoto: sandy/gravelly river bar

Types of energy


Learning Outcomes - you should be able to:

B. Driving Forces Affecting Entrainment

hjulstrom diagramVelocity

Shear stress

Velocity gradientdiagram: lift force

Stream power per unit bed area: w

w = r g Q s / w

where: r = density of water

Q = discharge

s = slope

w = channel width

C. Resisting Forces Affecting Entrainment photo: cutbank sediment layers

Grain size for coarser sediments

Density (mass per unit volume)

Grain shape

Layering or packing

Cohesion for finer particles

Sorting of bed material

photo: river bank vegetationD. Bank Erosion

Fluvial entrainment: corrasion

Weakening and weathering processes

photo: muddy braided riverE. Transportation & Deposition

Suspended load

Bed load: rolling, sliding, & saltation offsite link icon: bed load movie

Dissolved load


F. Summary

Mechanical work: erosion, transportation & deposition

Erosion & deposition function of


Amount of work

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©Karen A. Lemke:
Last revised September 14, 2015