24 May 2016

Watch underwater canyons take shape in real time

Posted by Lauren Lipuma

Submarine canyons are major underwater routes for transporting rapidly-moving water that is heavy with sediment from the continental shelf to the deep ocean. Few experiments, however, have explored how submarine canyons take shape and grow over time. Here, a group of researchers uses a sandbox experiment to simulate how a fast, sediment-laden current carves these canyons out of the continental slope. They recorded the entire experiment with time-lapse video and published their findings in a recent paper in Geophysical Research Letters, a journal of the American Geophysical Union.

Watch more videos of sandbox experiments from the Morphohydraulics Imaging Laboratory at the National Cheng Kung University, Taiwan, on their YouTube channel.