Five. Impelling and Resisting Forces in River Systems

  1. Kirstie A. Fryirs1 and
  2. Gary J. Brierley2

Published Online: 28 SEP 2012

DOI: 10.1002/9781118305454.ch5

Geomorphic Analysis of River Systems: An Approach to Reading the Landscape

Geomorphic Analysis of River Systems: An Approach to Reading the Landscape

How to Cite

Fryirs, K. A. and Brierley, G. J. (2012) Impelling and Resisting Forces in River Systems, in Geomorphic Analysis of River Systems: An Approach to Reading the Landscape, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd, Chichester, UK. doi: 10.1002/9781118305454.ch5

Author Information

  1. 1

    Department of Environment and Geography, Macquarie University, North Ryde, NSW 2109, Australia

  2. 2

    School of Environment, University of Auckland, Auckland, New Zealand

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 28 SEP 2012
  2. Published Print: 16 NOV 2012

ISBN Information

Print ISBN: 9781405192750

Online ISBN: 9781118305454

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Keywords:

  • erosion-deposition balance;
  • fluid flow;
  • geomorphic units;
  • impelling forces;
  • Lane balance;
  • resisting forces;
  • river channels;
  • river systems

Summary

This chapter first outlines the primary forms of impelling and resisting forces in river systems, following summary comments on the mechanics of fluid flow. This is followed by a discussion of the way that energy is used in river systems in the context of the degradation-aggradation balance along longitudinal profiles, and the associated distribution of erosion and depositional processes. The balance of these forces along longitudinal profiles is the key determinant of the balance of erosional and depositional processes that make up source, transfer and accumulation zones. The Lane balance diagram provides a key conceptualisation of this dynamic. Flow energy is used in differing ways in these zones. Understanding of these relationships at any given site, appreciating the ways in which differing forces are applied in any given system and unravelling the ways in which one reach is connected to another are key skills in efforts to read the landscape.