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Earth Surface Dynamics An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
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ESurf | Articles | Volume 7, issue 2
Earth Surf. Dynam., 7, 505–513, 2019
© Author(s) 2019. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
Earth Surf. Dynam., 7, 505–513, 2019
© Author(s) 2019. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Research article 03 Jun 2019

Research article | 03 Jun 2019

Can the growth of deltaic shorelines be unstable?

Meng Zhao et al.
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Cited articles  
Ashton, A. D. and Murray, A. B.: High-angle wave instability and emergent shoreline shapes: 1. Modeling of sand waves, flying spits, and capes, J. Geophys. Res., 111, F04011,, 2006. a
Baumgardner, S.: Quantifying Galloway: Fluvial, Tidal and Wave Influence on Experimental and Field Deltas, PhD thesis, University of Minnesota, 2016. a
Capart, H., Bellal, M., and Young, D.-L.: Self-similar evolution of semi-infinite alluvial channels with moving boundaries, J. Sediment. Res., 77, 13–22, 2007. a
Crank, J.: Free and Moving Boundary Problems, Clarendon Press, Oxford, UK, 1984. a
Galloway, W. D.: Process framework for describing the morphologic and stratigraphic evolution of deltaic depositional systems, in: Deltas, Models for Exploration, edited by: Broussard, M. L., Houston Geological Society, Houston, Texas, 87–98, 1975. a
Publications Copernicus
Short summary
Typically, we think of a shoreline growing with a smooth line separating the land and the water. If the growth is unstable, however, the land–water front will exhibit a roughness that grows with time. Here we ask whether the growth of deltaic shorelines cab be unstable. Through mathematical analysis we show that growth is unstable when the shoreline is building onto an adverse slope. The length scale of the unstable signal in such a case, however, might be obscured by other geomorphic processes.
Typically, we think of a shoreline growing with a smooth line separating the land and the water....