Erosion, Transportation and Deposition

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Four Processes of Erosion

Hydraulic Action - Sheer force of the water breaks rock particles away from the river channel.

Abrasion - Eroded rocks picked up by the river scrape and rub against the channel, wearing it away. Most erosion happens by abrasion. 

Attrition - Eroded rocks picked up by the river smash into each other and break into smaller fragments. Their edges also get rounded off as they rub together. 

Solution - River water dissolves some types of rock, e.g chalk and limestone. 

(The faster a river's flowing, the more erosion happens)

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Transportation is the movement of eroded material

Traction - large particles like boulders are pushed along the river bed by the force of the water. 

Saltation - pebble-sized particles are bounced along the river bed by the force of water. 

Suspension - small particles like silt and clay are carried along by the water. 

Solution - soluble materials dissolve in the water and are carried along. 

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Deposition is when a river drops eroded material

1. Deposition is when a river drops the eroded material its transporting.

2. It happens when a river slows down (loses velocity)

3. There are a few reasons why rivers slow down and deposit material:

  • The volume of water in the river falls
  • The amount of eroded material in the water increases
  • The water is shallower, e.g. on the inside of a bend
  • The river reaches its mouth
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