Journal of Geographical Sciences ›› 2013, Vol. 23 ›› Issue (2): 219-230.doi: 10.1007/s11442-013-1005-y

• Research Articles • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Morphological evolution of mouth bars on the Yangtze estuarine waterways in the last 100 years

HE Yufang1,2, CHENG Heqin1, CHEN Jiyu1   

  1. 1. State Key Laboratory of Estuarine and Coastal Research,East China Normal University,Shanghai 200062, China;
    2. The Second Design and Research Institute of Water Conservancy and Hydropower of Hebei Province, Shijiazhuang 050021,China
  • Received:2012-08-28 Revised:2012-11-15 Online:2013-02-20 Published:2013-02-20


The mouth bar in the Yangtze estuarine waterways has a significant influence on navigational transport within the estuary,flood discharge and construction of the Shanghai Port.In this paper the morphological evolution and mechanisms of mouth bar formation of the Yangtze estuarine waterways are studied by analyzing hundreds of years of historical data and the latest profile maps of some or the main mouth bar channels in the Yangtze Estuary. The results are shown as follows:The mouth bars in the North Branch have moved gradually from outside the mouth to the inside and formed a huge sand bar.In the North Channel,the head of the mouth bar has migrated about 30 kilometers downstream,and a channel bar has been developing since 2001.Two mouth bar tops,which always existed in the North Passage, disappeared in 2010.The head of the mouth bar in the South Passage has migrated downstream about 14 km and the number of tops increased at first but is reduced to only one now. According to the results,we can conclude that the evolution of the mouth bars differs depending on their location.In the North Branch it is directly related to large-scale reclamation in Chongming Island,but in the North Passage it has a close relationship with regulation of the Yangtze Estuary Deepwater Channel.However,the evolution of mouth bars in the North Channel and South Passage is not only connected with the Yangtze Estuary Deepwater Channel Regulation Project,but also with the reclamation in the East Hengsha Shoal and the closure of the Qingcaosha Reservoir.

Key words: Yangtze Estuary, mouth bar, inside sand bars, water-depth of the top of the mouth bar, channel bar, regulation of estuary