Large Rivers Group Field Work and Publication

The large rivers Group of Prof. Latrubesse conducted fieldwork in the Amazon basin related to the ongoing NSF and Science without Borders-CAPEs projects in the summer of 2015. The first field stage involved paleoecological and Quaternary research in Brazilian Southwestern Amazon with colleagues from University of Acre (Profs. Jonas P. Souza Filho and Edson Guilherme), and University of Rochester (Dr. Penny Higgins). The second field phase took place along the Amazon River in between the confluences with Negro and Madeira Rivers. The study is part of the research project of Doctoral Candidate Edward Park and the field work was developed in collaboration with Prof. Maximiliano Bayer (UFG-Brazil) and Prof. Latrubesse’s Brazilian graduate student, Landerlei Almeida (UNESP). Samples for suspended sediment concentration and geochemistry are currently under analysis in our labs by Dr Samia Aquino. The research objectives aims to investigate the impacts of tributaries on suspended sediment distribution patterns along the anabranching main channel of the Amazon River. The Amazon confluences with the Negro River is the largest on Earth in water discharge where distinct water types meet: Solimões-Amazon (muddy white water) and Negro (black water) Rivers. Results on surface water patterns were recently published in the prestigious journal Water Resources Research (Park and Latrubesse, 2015) under the title “Surface water types and sediment distribution patterns at the confluence of mega rivers: The Solimões-Amazon and Negro Rivers”. 

The third field phase concentrated in the upper Amazon in Peruvian territory. Prof. Latrubesse conducted geomorphologic studies to reconstruct the paleogeography of the Amazon basin as part of the current NSF-FESD project. Prof. Thomas Dunne (UCSB) and Prof. Rolf Aalto (U. of Exeter) joined this field expedition.

The team also attended the 9th Symposium of River Coastal and Estuarine Morphodynamics (RCEM). Prof. Latrubesse is member of the International Advisory Board of the organization, and he was in charge of a field course titled The Amazon River from late Tertiary to present: paleogeographic reorganization of the basin, Quaternary record and present morphodynamic. Doctoral Candidate Edward Park offered an oral presentation and attended an advance course on the use of Acoustic Doppler Profilers.







PhD Candidate Edward Park Received Multiple Awards

Edward Park (PhD Candidate) received multiple awards in 2015, including the M. Gordon ‘Reds’ Wolman Doctoral award, the highest graduate student award in Geomorphology. Below are the list of his awards in 2015:

  • The Achievement Award for recognition for excellence in research, publication and institutional building, Department of Geography and the Environment, University of Texas at Austin, $ 150.
  • Winner of the Student paper competition (PhD level), Association of American Geographers (AAG), Water Resources Specialty Group (WRSG), $ 400.
  • Continuing Graduate School College Fellowship, Office of Graduate School, University of Texas at Austin. $ 36,463.
  • Tinker Field Research Grant, LILLAS, University of Texas at Austin. $ 800.
  • Best Paper Award (co-authored), Association of American Geographers (AAG) Latin America Specialty Group (LASG). $ 250.
  • Graduate Students Scholarship, LILLAS Benson Brazil Center, University of Texas at Austin. $ 700.
  • M. Gordon “Reds” Wolman Doctoral Student Research Award (highest student award in Geomorphology), Association of American Geographers (AAG) Geomorphology Specialty Group (GSG). $ 600.
  • Veselka Field Research Grant, University of Texas at Austin. $ 500.
  • Sim Travel Award, Korean-American Association of Geospatial Technologies and Environmental Sciences (KAGES). $ 500.
  • ALOS-PALSAR imagery grant: middle Amazon River floodplains for doctoral research. Alaska Satellite Facility (ASF).
  • Professional Development Award. Office of Graduate School, University of Texas at Austin. $ 541.

The monetary awards Edward received will be used for his field work in the Amazon River during summer 2015. Edward is looking at the hydro-morphodynamics of the two large rivers at the confluence: Rio Solimoes and Rio Negro. He will investigate their mixing rates and their distributions at different spatiotemporal scales both at the water surface and below the water surface. To get the water flow information below surface, he will conduct boat surveys using acoustic Doppler current profiler and multi-depth water quality measurements in the Amazon River near Manaus.

Edward at AAG-Geomorphology Specialty Grouop Business Meeting with Professor Peng Gao (Award Committee Chair) at Syracuse University.
Edward receiving ‘Reds’ Wolman award at AAG-Geomorphology Specialty Group Business Meeting with Professor Peng Gao (right, Award Committee Chair) at Syracuse University.
Prof. Latrubesse in collaboration with Prof. Jose. C Stevaux (Brazil) and Prof. Rajiv Sinha (India) organizes a special session in the 8th IAG International Conference on Geomorphology August, 27th to 31st, 2013,  Paris, France  Session S24A – Tropical Rivers:  Hydro-Physical Processes, Impacts, Hazards and Management (IGCP 582 and IAG Working Group on Tropical rivers)
The overall scope of the IGCP Unesco 582 project Hydro-Physical Processes, Impacts, Hazards and Management and the working group Tropical rivers of IAG is to provide an integrated assessment of long-term direct impacts of climate variability and human-induced change and management of tropical rivers basins by identification, quantification and modeling of key hydro-geomorphologic indicators during the past and present times. The potential impacts of global change on fluvial systems and of their socio-economic implications and flood hazards are also analyzed. Several of the largest and many of the most vulnerable rivers of the world are located in the equatorial and monsoonal region as well as some of the most active areas of fluvial sedimentation and erosion of the planet.We welcome in this session contributions on the Quaternary history,
morphodynamics, hydro-geomorphology, hazards and management of tropical rivers

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