1997 Edition

Alluvial fan, cone

  • W. B. Bull
Reference work entry

An alluvial fan is a body of stream deposits whose surface approximates a segment of a cone that radiates downslope from the point where the stream leaves a mountaïnous area. Alluvial fans have greatly diverse sizes, slopes, types of deposits and source-area characteristics. They are most widespread in the drier parts of the world but have been studied also in humid regions such as Japan, the Himalaya Mountains (Drew, 1873), and Canada (Winder, 1965), and in the Arctic regions (Hoppe and Ekman, 1964; Legget and others, 1966). [Talus cone is sometimes taken to be steeper than talus fan (see Talus Fan or Cone). The same distinction is sometimes made with alluvial fan and cone. (editor)]

Deposition on Alluvial Fans

Flow on alluvial fans varies from clear water to viscous mud. Water-laid sediments occur chiefly as sheets of sediments deposited by a network of braided streams, and as stream-channel deposits. The discharge per unit of time Q is equal to the product of the width w, the mean...

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Copyright information

© Reinhold Book Corporation 1968

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  • W. B. Bull

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