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Extraction of Glacio-Geomorphological Units of Tons River Watershed Based on Remote Sensing Techniques


Tons basin has the maximum share of glaciers, more than 50 glaciers, as well as glacierised area in Uttarakhand and Himachal Pradesh and the majority of the glaciers are of valley type. One of the important features of the glaciers of Tons valley is the presence of a thick mantle of supraglaciers moraine cover which can be attributed to the terrain characteristics, besides, the avalanche fed nature of the glaciers. The present study is the extraction of Glacio-geomorphological unit of Tons River basin based on the visual interpretation of remote sensing data. It was very much difficult in field, to extract all glacio-geomorphological units in glaciated area, but based on the remote sensing data, it becomes easy to identify. With the help of glacio-geomorphological map it has been found that four most important glaciers which fed the Tons River are Bandarpunch Glacier, Jaundar Bamak glacier, Jhajju Bamak and Tilku glacier. The tributaries of Tons River i.e. Harkidun Gad, Rupin Nadi and Supin Nadi are mainly fed by the mountain glaciers, valley glaciers and glacier lakes. The erosional terraces, glacio-fluvial terraces, open “U” shaped valleys, proglacial lake, lateral moraines, terminal moraines, palaeo-cirque and debris/talus cones are well developed in this glaciated regions. Glacio-geomorphic features are very much significant for palaeo-climatic reconstruction, showing variations, temporally and spatially. At the same time, these landforms, which are also altered by processes prevailing during interglacial period, helps in the geo-environment studies and glacier related problems like avalanches, global warming and cloudburst etc.

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The author is indebted to the Department of Geology, Centre of Advance study, Lucknow University and the Geological Survey of India for all the valuable logistic support and help needed to do this research work.

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Correspondence to Arpita Pankaj.

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Pankaj, A., Kumar, P. & Mishra, A. Extraction of Glacio-Geomorphological Units of Tons River Watershed Based on Remote Sensing Techniques. J Indian Soc Remote Sens 40, 725–734 (2012).

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  • Glacio-fluvial terraces
  • Open “U” shaped valleys
  • Proglacial Lake
  • Palaeo-cirque
  • Glacio-geomorphological facies and glacier related problem