Degradation (geology)

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In geology, degradation refers to the lowering of a fluvial surface, such as a stream bed or floodplain, through erosional processes.[1][2] It is the opposite of aggradation. Degradation is characteristic of channel networks in which either bedrock erosion is taking place, or in systems that are sediment-starved and are therefore entraining more material than is being deposited. When a stream degrades, it leaves behind a fluvial terrace. This can be further classified as a strath terrace—a bedrock terrace that may have a thin mantle of alluvium—if the river is incising through bedrock. These terraces may often be dated with methods such as cosmogenic radionuclide dating, OSL dating, and paleomagnetic dating (using reversals in the Earth's magnetic field to constrain the timing of events) to find when a river was at a particular level and how quickly it is downcutting.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Estuarine & Floodplain degradation". Eurobodalla Landcare. Retrieved 2009-08-31. [dead link]
  2. ^ Galay, V. J. (1983). "Causes of River Bed Degradation". Water Resources Research 19 (5): 1057. Bibcode:1983WRR....19.1057G. doi:10.1029/WR019i005p01057. 
  • Holly, Forrest M.; Karim, M. Fazle (1986). "Simulation of Missouri River Bed Degradation". Journal of Hydraulic Engineering 112 (6): 497. doi:10.1061/(ASCE)0733-9429(1986)112:6(497). 
  • Gibling, M.R. (2005). "Discontinuity-Bounded Alluvial Sequences of the Southern Gangetic Plains, India: Aggradation and Degradation in Response to Monsoonal Strength". Journal of Sedimentary Research 75 (3): 369. Bibcode:2005JSedR..75..369G. doi:10.2110/jsr.2005.029.