Journal of Geographical Sciences ›› 2020, Vol. 30 ›› Issue (12): 2033-2052.doi: 10.1007/s11442-020-1826-4

• Research Articles • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Simulating cross-sectional geometry of the main channel in response to changes in water and sediment in Lower Yellow River

WANG Yanjun1,2(), WU Baosheng2,*(), ZHONG Deyu2   

  1. 1. Key Laboratory of River Regulation and Flood Control of Ministry of Water Resources, Yangtze River Scientific Research Institute, Wuhan 430010, China
    2. State Key Laboratory of Hydroscience and Engineering, Tsinghua University, Beijing 100084, China
  • Received:2020-08-12 Accepted:2020-09-20 Online:2020-12-25 Published:2021-01-05
  • Contact: WU Baosheng E-mail:yanjun1113@126.com;baosheng@tsinghua.edu.cn
  • About author:Wang Yanjun, PhD, specialized in geomorphology and fluvial processes. E-mail: yanjun1113@126.com
  • Supported by:
    Key Program of National Natural Science Foundation of China(51639005);Central Public-interest Scientific Institution Basal Research Fund of China(CKSF2019214/HL);Central Public-interest Scientific Institution Basal Research Fund of China(CKSF2019411/HL)

Abstract:

To understand the non-equilibrium morphological adjustment of a river in response to environmental changes, it is essential to (i) accurately identify how past conditions of water and sediment have impacted current morphological adjustment of the river, and (ii) establish a corresponding simulation for non-equilibrium conditions. Based on discharge and suspended sediment concentration (SSC) as well as 82 cross-sectional data items for the Huayuankou-Lijin reach of the Lower Yellow River in the period 1965-2015, the process of adjustment of the geometry of the main channel (area, width, depth, and geomorphic coefficient), and its responses to changes in discharge and SSC for different reaches are statistically analyzed. Following this, a delayed response model (DRM) of the geometry of the main channel subjected to variations in discharge and SSC is established using a multi-step analytical model, with the discharge and SSC as the main controlling factors. The results show that the area, width, and depth of the main channel decreased initially, then increased, decreased again, and finally increased again. These features of the geometry of the channel were positively correlated with the 4-year moving average discharge and negatively with the 4-year moving average SSC. The geomorphic coefficient for the Huayuankou-Sunkou reach exhibited a trend of decrease, whereas that of the Sunkou-Lijin reach decreased initially, then increased, decreased again, and finally increased again. Except for the Huayuankou-Gaocun reach in 1965-1999, the coefficient was negatively correlated with the 4-year moving average discharge and positively with SSC. The simulated values of the morphological parameters of the main channel for all sub-reaches obtained using the DRM agreed well with the measured values. This indicates that the DRM can be used to simulate the process of response of the cross-sectional geometry of the main channel to variations in the water and sediment. The results of the model show that the adjustment of the geometry of the main channel was affected by the discharge and the SSC at present (30%) as well as for the previous 7 years (70%). The proposed model offers insights into the mechanism whereby past water and sediment influence the current morphological adjustment of the river, and provides an effective method for predicting the magnitude and trend of the geometry of the main channel under different flow conditions.

Key words: Lower Yellow River, water and sediment changes, cross-sectional geometry of the main channel, delayed response model