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Disciplinary Sessions
Inter- and Transdisciplinary Sessions

Session programme


GM – Geomorphology

Programme group chairs: Peter van der Beek, Marco Van De Wiel, Joanna Nield, Taylor Schildgen, Kristen Cook, Arjen Stroeven, Daniel Parsons

GM1 – Geomorphology - General

GM1.2 | PICO

Geomorphological mapping is one of the most important tools that helps to understand landscape character and evolution. In the digital era, cartographic products have become increasingly accessible to scientists and the wider society due to the development of GIS technology, increases in data and software availability (i.e. open source), and the expansion of user-friendly and easy-to-access interfaces. Geomorphological maps are crucial in a range of pure scientific and applied disciplines. Applications include reconstructing past depositional environments, landscape evolution modelling, establishing chronologies, geohazard assessment, planning of engineering activities and land use. Recent technological advances in data collection have enhanced mapping quality to new levels of detail and accuracy. Significant developments include the accessibility of high resolution datasets and new data collection methods (e.g. LiDAR data, high-resolution satellite imagery, drones/unmanned aerial vehicles, geophysical imaging), and innovative processing methods (e.g. Structure-from-Motion photogrammetry). These are often combined with more traditional field-based mapping approaches. As a result of recent advances, we are now able to identify landforms that were not previously detectable and to interpret processes which were previously unknown or unrecognised. Moreover, new semi-automatic and automatic mapping approaches can support rapid delimitation and extraction of selected landforms or even whole landform assemblages.

This session aims to showcase recent advances in landform mapping, and we invite contributions related to mapping of specific landforms as well as whole landsystems in different environments. We particularly welcome studies that (a) demonstrate the potential of multi-method and innovative mapping approaches, (b) showcase novel methods of data collection to solve previously overlooked problems, or (c) present mapping of previously unmapped or newly-emerging landscapes.

Keynote lecture:
Jeremy Ely (Sheffield, UK): Global glacial geomorphology

Convener: Marek Ewertowski | Co-conveners: Benjamin Chandler, Ramón Pellitero Ondicol, Aleksandra Tomczyk
| Fri, 12 Apr, 08:30–10:15
PICO spot 1

In the last 20 years, a major breakthrough in palaeo-environmental research has been the utilisation of 2D and 3D seismic reflection data and its integration with borehole petrophysics and core lithologies: the so-called “geological Hubble”. This step-change in seismic data quality and interpretive techniques has allowed imaging and analysis of the subsurface from the seafloor down to the Moho, and for palaeo-geographies and contemporary processes to be reconstructed across 1D (borehole) to 4D (repeat seismic) scales.

Though many Earth scientists know the basic principles of these subsurface datasets, they are often unaware of the full capability of seismic data paired with borehole data. We hope that this session will provide a window into the exciting and cross-disciplinary research currently being performed using geomorphological approaches, state-of-the-art seismic interpretation, and integrative methodologies.

Submissions are welcome from a range of geological settings, thus, exposing seismic interpreters and non-specialists to differing geological perspectives, the latest seismic workflows, and examples of effective seismic and borehole integration. Examples could include (but are not restricted to), glacigenic tunnel valley complexes, igneous intrusions, submarine landslides, channel and canyon systems, salt tectonics overburden expression, methane hydrates, and subsurface fluid flow, all under the theme of how seismic data are interpreted and how the results are applied (e.g. palaeo-environmental reconstruction, seafloor engineering, or carbon sequestration).

The submissions will highlight the rationale behind the interpretation of seismic geometries and will generate discussions around potential issues of equifinality (i.e. similar seismic geometries arising from different Earth processes). We thus invite submissions that aim to present new insights in seismic geomorphology and particularly welcome studies integrating borehole and geotechnical drilling information with shallow high-resolution seismic data and deeper traditional legacy oil industry data. Such studies are a crucial component in seismic inversion and refining or elucidating the accuracy of palaeo-geographies that are interpreted from just seismic data.

The session will be an excellent opportunity for subsurface geoscientists to showcase and discuss with contemporary geomorphologists and environmental scientists what can be achieved by utilising seismic and borehole data to unravel the Earth’s past.

Co-organized as CL1.28/CR2.10/SM1.7/SSP2.19
Convener: Andrew Newton | Co-conveners: Katrine Juul Andresen, Kieran Blacker, Rachel Harding, Elodie Lebas
| Mon, 08 Apr, 16:15–18:00
Room 0.31
| Attendance Tue, 09 Apr, 14:00–15:45
Hall X2

Seismic techniques are becoming widely used to detect and quantitatively characterise a wide variety of natural processes occurring at the Earth’s surface. These processes include mass movements such as landslides, rock falls, debris flows and lahars; glacial phenomena such as icequakes, glacier calving/serac falls, glacier melt and supra- to sub-glacial hydrology; snow avalanches; water storage and water dynamics phenomena such as water table changes, river flow turbulence and fluvial sediment transport. Where other methods often provide limited spatial and temporal coverage, seismic observations allow recovering sequences of events with high temporal resolution and over large areas. These observational capabilities allow establishing connections with meteorological drivers, and give unprecedented insights on the underlying physics of the various Earth’s surface processes as well as on their interactions (chains of events). These capabilities are also of first interest for real time hazards monitoring and early warning purposes. In particular, seismic monitoring techniques can provide relevant information on the dynamics of flows and unstable slopes, and thus allow for the identification of precursory patterns of hazardous events and timely warning.

This session aims at bringing together scientists who use seismic methods to study Earth surface dynamics. We invite contributions from the field of geomorphology, cryospheric sciences, seismology, natural hazards, volcanology, soil system sciences and hydrology. Theoretical, field based and experimental approaches are highly welcome.

Co-organized as CR2.9/GI4.12/GMPV7.1/HS11.55/NH4.6/SM1.4/SSS12.13
Convener: Florent Gimbert | Co-conveners: Wei-An Chao, Velio Coviello (deceased), Andrea Manconi, Anne Schöpa
| Mon, 08 Apr, 14:00–15:45
Room G2
| Attendance Mon, 08 Apr, 16:15–18:00
Hall X2

Planetary Geomorphology aims to bring together geomorphologists from terrestrial sciences with those who work on other bodies such as Mars, Venus, Mercury, the Moon, icy satellites of the outer solar system, comets, and asteroids. Studies of landscapes on any scale on any solid body are welcome. We particularly encourage those who use Earth analogues (either in the field or laboratory) to present their work. Submissions can include studies on glacial, periglacial, aeolian, volcanic, fluvial, or "undetermined" landforms. We welcome contributions from early-career scientists and geomorphologists who are new to planetary science.

Co-organized as PS1.2
Convener: Susan Conway | Co-conveners: Davide Baioni, Frances E. G. Butcher, Tjalling de Haas, Nikolaus J. Kuhn
| Fri, 12 Apr, 14:00–15:45
Room -2.32
| Attendance Fri, 12 Apr, 10:45–12:30
Hall X2
GM1.6 | PICO

#FlumeFriday is a twitter hashtag established by the HYDRALAB+ project, to share insights and expertise from all types of physical modelling experiments and to build an active online community to support hydraulic experimentalists. #FlumeFriday provides an opportunity to improve the communication of scientific results to the public and to broaden societal involvement in laboratory activities. Since its inception in March 2016, participants and followers of the hashtag have grown extensively with worldwide participation, and many different types of experiment represented in posts.

This online community provides an opportunity to bring together the scientists involved in experimental work who come from many different disciplines including, but not limited to, geologists, geographers, biologists, engineers, geochemists and sedimentologists. These experts bring complementary field, laboratory, numerical and modelling skills to understand the processes controlling environmental flow dynamics using both established and novel instrumentation and techniques.

In this session, we welcome submissions from all our past, present and future #FlumeFriday contributors to share more details about their innovative and novel approaches to experimental modelling, including any interesting and unusual results.

We would also encourage contributions focused on methodologies, instrumentation and techniques, both established and innovative, to share knowledge on how to overcome difficulties and improve results. A particular emphasis is put on recent advances or new challenges associated with the idea of using low-cost and easy-to-find materials as hydro/morphodynamic or bio/geochemical markers or surrogates. The sharing of new strategies and initiatives to support an open science approach in experimental hydraulics is also welcome.

Co-organized as BG1.15/GI2.8/HS11.58/SSP3.18
Convener: Hannah Williams | Co-conveners: Carla Faraci, Rachel Hale, Stuart McLelland, Rosaria Ester Musumeci
| Fri, 12 Apr, 10:45–12:30
PICO spot 1
ITS1.2/GD1.5/EOS3.4/GI1.7/GM1.8/GMPV1.9/SSP1.10/TS12.3 Media|ECS

Geoscience witnessed a flurry of major breakthroughs in the 19th and 20th century, leading to major shifts in our understanding of the Earth system. Such breakthroughs included new concepts, such as plate tectonics and sequence stratigraphy, and new techniques, like radiometric dating and remote sensing. However, the pace of these discoveries has declined, raising the question of whether we have now made all of the key geoscience breakthroughs. Put another way, have we reached “Peak Geoscience” and are we now in a time of synthesis, incremental development and consolidation? Or are there new breakthroughs on the horizon? If so what will these developments be?

One key remaining challenge is the management of the inherent uncertainties in geoscience. Despite the importance of understanding uncertainty, it is often neglected by interpreters, geomodellers and experimentalists. With ever-more powerful computers and the advent of big data analytics and machine learning, our ability to quantify uncertainty in geological interpretation, models and experiments will be crucial.

This session aims to bring together those with an interest in the future of geoscience. We welcome contributions from any field of geoscience which either demonstrate a new, disruptive geoscience breakthrough or provide insights into where the next breakthrough will come. We encourage contributions associated with uncertainty in geoscience models and data, machine learning or big data analytics.

Co-organized as GD1.5/EOS3.4/GI1.7/GM1.8/GMPV1.9/SSP1.10/TS12.3
Convener: Andrew Davies | Co-conveners: Juan Alcalde, Helen Cromie, Lucia Perez-Diaz
| Mon, 08 Apr, 16:15–18:00
Room N1
| Attendance Mon, 08 Apr, 10:45–12:30
Hall X2
SSS12.2 | PICO

A well-designed experiment is a crucial methodology in Soil Science, Geomorphology and Hydrology.
Depending on the specific research topic, a great variety of tempo-spatial scales is addressed.
From raindrop impact and single particle detachment to the shaping of landscapes: experiments are designed and conducted to illustrate problems, clarify research questions, develop and test hypotheses, generate data and deepen process understanding.
Every step involved in design, construction, conduction, processing and interpretation of experiments and experimental data might be a challenge on itself, and discussions within the community can be a substantial and fruitful component for both, researchers and teachers.
This PICO session offers a forum for experimentalists, teachers, students and enthusiasts.
We invite you to present your work, your questions, your results and your method, to meet, to discuss, to exchange ideas and to consider old and new approaches.
Join the experimentalists!

Co-organized as GM1.11/HS9.1.5
Convener: Thomas Iserloh | Co-conveners: Miriam Marzen, Wolfgang Fister, Jorge Isidoro, Ian Pattison
| Thu, 11 Apr, 10:45–12:30
PICO spot 3