Accession Number:

ADA499594

Title:

Analysis and Modeling of Complex Geomorphic Systems: Technique Development, Data Collection, and Application to Rangeland Terrain

Descriptive Note:

Final rept. 1 Aug 2004-31 Jul 2008

Corporate Author:

COLORADO UNIV AT BOULDER OFFICE OF CONTRACTS AND GRANTS

Personal Author(s):

Report Date:

2008-10-01

Pagination or Media Count:

163.0

Abstract:

This report describes the results of a four-year, multi-faceted investigation into the physics of sediment transport and erosion in channels and hillslopes. The project addressed two objectives 1 develop and explore new mathematical computational tools for modeling complex land-surface systems, and in particular the applicability of stochastic transport theory and fractional calculus and 2 use numerical modeling and field data analysis to develop a better understanding of the processes, mechanisms, and dynamics of land-surface change in semi-arid rangeland environments, with a focus on the Colorado piedmont. These two aims are interconnected in the sense that rangeland landscapes provide a template for documenting and measuring process dynamics, while mathematical and numerical models contribute to interpreting these landscapes. This report is divided into three main sections. The first focuses on the primary thrust of the project, which involves applying recent concepts in stochastic transport theory and fractional calculus to sediment transport and dispersion. Our objective was to determine what new light these methods may shed on the dynamics of geomorphic systems. The second section analyzes the interplay between rainfall, runoff, vegetation, and erosion in setting the dynamics of the ephemeral channel networks that are so common in rangeland landscapes. The third section explores the shaping of channel cross-section geometry, which turns out to play a critical role in governing flows of mass and energy across the landscape.

Subject Categories:

  • Geology, Geochemistry and Mineralogy

Distribution Statement:

APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE