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Why is it important?

Rivers self-organise by forming and destroying channels, banks and floodplains. Distinctive river patterns emerge in nature such as braided, wandering or meandering. Generic experimental setups or physics-based numerical models that can produce all patterns do not exist. This reflects the lack of quantitative understanding how feedbacks between the channels and self-formed banks and floodplains lead to these river patterns. This understanding is urgently needed to predict the rivers’ response to natural and man-induced changes in forcings, notably climate change, land use change, river restoration and flood mitigation works.


This is the first of a series of articles that I have been publishing about the necessary conditions for river meandering. In this article we discuss the influence of perturbations necessary to continues dynamic changes of the river in downstream direction. We apply a simple moving boundary in an experimental setup to perturb the channel and show the first dynamic meandering river in the laboratory.

Dr Wout M van Dijk
Arcadis NV

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This page is a summary of: Experimental meandering river with chute cutoffs, Journal of Geophysical Research Atmospheres, August 2012, American Geophysical Union (AGU), DOI: 10.1029/2011jf002314.
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