Geo-Marine Letters

, Volume 1, Issue 1, pp 23–28 | Cite as

Suspended sediment transport in surface waters of the California Current off southern California: 1977–78 floods

  • Scott E. Thornton


Floods in southern California during the rainy season of 1977–78 followed four years of severe drought when vegetative cover of drainage areas was at a minimum. LANDSAT Band 5 analyses following these floods suggest extensive transport of suspended sediment to 80 to 100 km from the coastline. Current patterns can be explained by a decaying Davidson Current situation and a large semipermanent cyclonic gyre that controls distribution of surface suspended sediment throughout the California Borderland. This gyre, and associated spinoff eddies, produce three distinct cells of suspended sediment in surface waters. These cells may control sedimentation patterns of terrigenous silt and clay.


Suspended Sediment Current Pattern Suspended Load Surface Mixed Layer LANDSAT Imagery 
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Copyright information

© A.M. Dowden, Inc. 1981

Authors and Affiliations

  • Scott E. Thornton
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Geological SciencesUniversity of Southern CaliforniaLos Angeles

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