A new surface-processes model combining glacial and fluvial erosion

Jean Braun, Dan Zwartz, Jonathan H. Tomkin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


We have developed a new surface-processes model incorporating large-scale fluvial processes, local hill-slope processes and glacial erosion. Ice thickness and velocity are calculated under a shallow-ice approximation. Simulation experiments in fast-growing orogens comparing the efficiencies of fluvial and glacial erosion, where the two are operating simultaneously over several glacial cycles, show that: glacial landscapes can support greater ice masses than fluvial landscapes; glacial valley and lake shapes create a disequilibrium between landform and land-forming process that leads to pulses of high erosion at the end of glacial periods; glacial erosion rates can reach a constant value in a uniformly growing orogen; and glacial erosion is capable of eroding drainage divides when the ice is moderately thick.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)282-290
Number of pages9
JournalAnnals of Glaciology
StatePublished - 1999
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Earth-Surface Processes

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