New topologic relationship as an indicator of drainage network evolution

New topologic relationship as an indicator of drainage network evolution The relationship between the number of links and the number of segments of natural drainage networks is restricted to a narrow envelope. Theoretically, within this envelope a family of curves with the general form y = 2x ‐ (2n ‐ 1) is defined, where y is the number of links, x is the number of segments, and n is the Strahler stream order defined for n = 2, 3, 4, or 5. A comparison of these curves with >100 natural drainage networks indicates that these curves delineate threshold and hypothetical boundary conditions that can be used to predict stream order. Although a number of Strahler orders are possible for a network composed of a fixed set of links and segments, the data suggest that only one most probable order appears in nature. As drainage networks develop from simple to complex, the range of bifurcation ratios fluctuates until a nearly constant value is reached. For any network of given order, the bifurcation ratio increases to an improbable value. When this value is reached, branching increases the order of the network, and thus the bifurcation ratio is decreased. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Water Resources Research Wiley

New topologic relationship as an indicator of drainage network evolution

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Publisher
Wiley
Copyright
Copyright © 1972 by the American Geophysical Union.
ISSN
0043-1397
eISSN
1944-7973
DOI
10.1029/WR008i006p01497
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

The relationship between the number of links and the number of segments of natural drainage networks is restricted to a narrow envelope. Theoretically, within this envelope a family of curves with the general form y = 2x ‐ (2n ‐ 1) is defined, where y is the number of links, x is the number of segments, and n is the Strahler stream order defined for n = 2, 3, 4, or 5. A comparison of these curves with >100 natural drainage networks indicates that these curves delineate threshold and hypothetical boundary conditions that can be used to predict stream order. Although a number of Strahler orders are possible for a network composed of a fixed set of links and segments, the data suggest that only one most probable order appears in nature. As drainage networks develop from simple to complex, the range of bifurcation ratios fluctuates until a nearly constant value is reached. For any network of given order, the bifurcation ratio increases to an improbable value. When this value is reached, branching increases the order of the network, and thus the bifurcation ratio is decreased.

Journal

Water Resources ResearchWiley

Published: Dec 1, 1972

References

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