Spatial variability of controls on downstream patterns of sediment storage: A case study in the lane cove catchment, New South Wales, Australia

Kahli Macnab, Carol Jacobson*, Gary Brierley

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

This study uses GIS techniques to examine the spatial distribution of stream power along major streamlines in the Lane Cove catchment in northern Sydney, Australia. Channel gradient estimates derived from a 5 m resolution digital elevation model (DEM) are combined with streamflow data to estimate stream power along river courses. Stream power and its constituent components are then related to a detailed field-based assessment of sediment storage along the trunk stream and primary tributaries. At the catchment scale, sediment storage per unit length decreases as channel gradient and gross stream power increase. However, local controls such as variability in valley width and occurrence of confluence zones exert a greater influence upon sediment storage, disrupting systematic catchment-wide relationships. The total volume of storage along each streamline has a strong linear relationship to the area of the subcatchment, but the distribution of sediment along streamlines varies between subcatchments. The GIS framework employed in this project allows generation of continuous, empirical data, thereby providing catchment-specific predictive capacity that can accompany theoretical approaches to stream power modelling.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)255-271
Number of pages17
JournalGeographical Research
Volume44
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2006

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