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Landscape Dynamics, Erosion and Sedimentation

The sedimentary record is fundamentally controlled by sediment routing systems, which transfer sediment from upland source catchments to depositional sinks. Consequently, to decode the stratigraphic archive, we need to understand the behaviour, response, and sensitivity of sediment routing systems to both tectonics and climate. This talk explores how far we have come in addressing this grand challenge.

Alex will examine how geomorphic, sedimentological and numerical modelling techniques can be used to constrain how the earth surface processes are influenced by tectono-climatic boundary conditions, and how they govern the production of stratigraphy.

Field examples from California and the Mediterranean explore the extent to which we can now quantitatively “invert” stratigraphy for tectonic or climatic forcing, and highlight some of the problems that still remain.

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Alex Whittaker

Imperial College

Alex Whittaker read Natural Sciences at the University of Cambridge between 1998 and 2002, before moving to Edinburgh University to do a PhD in landscape dynamics and neo-tectonics. Following an Entente Cordiale Fellowship at Université Joseph Fourier in Grenoble, France, Alex subsequently moved to Imperial College London to work with Philip Allen on sediment routing system dynamics. He was appointed a Lecturer at Imperial in 2010 and Senior Lecturer in 2014.
Mud Trench - October London Lecture

Event Details

Date: 18 November 2015

Venue: The Geological Society, Burlington House, London

Speaker: Alex Whittaker


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