Events Calendar

Braided rivers on the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau, China

Friday, September 27, 2019
3:00 pm - 4:00 pm
Social Science Centre (SSC)
Room: 1004
Braided rivers on the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau, China

Braided rivers on the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau, China

Peng Gao, Associate Professor
Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs, Syracuse University

Friday, September 27, 2019
3 pm - 4 pm, SSC 1004

Braided rivers are widely distributed in the source region of the five large rivers in China, Yellow, Yangtze, Lancang (Mekong), Nu (Salween), and Yarlung Tsangpo Rivers (from north to south). Sitting on the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau (QTP), these rivers have unique alpine environments with elevations ranging between 3500 and 4700 m. Although they play important roles in remaining fragile ecosystems on the QTP under the influence of climate change, little is known about their morphological structures and hydraulic processes shaping these structures.

Beginning with introducing geographic distributions of these braided rivers on the QTP, this talk will introduce physiographic conditions, including topography, land covers, channel morphological characteristics and bed materials, of the major braided river reaches along each river on the QTP. Building upon these   conditions, a new concept, termed as alluvial river cluster, is proposed to characterize fundamental similarity in the hierarchical morphological channel structures of these braided rivers and their dominant hydrological and hydraulic  processes. This similarity is exemplified in two case studies in the source areas of Yangtze and Lancang Rivers.

Professor Peng Gao is a fluvial geomorphologist at Syracuse University (Maxwell School). His current research focuses on morphodynamic and hydrodynamic processes controlling morphological changes of meandering and braided rivers, and impacts of groundwater and gully erosion on Zoige peatland in the  northeastern Qinghai-Tibet Plateau, China. His work has been published in a  variety of peerreviewed journals including Reviews of Geophysics, Water Resources Research, Earth Surface Processes and Landforms, and Geomorphology.

Part of the Department of Geography Speaker Series

Department of Geography
Department of Geography
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