Changjiang Estuary Sediment Transport Dynamics

  • Qing HeEmail author
  • Leicheng Guo
  • Hong Liu
  • Ya Wang
Part of the Estuaries of the World book series (EOTW)


This chapter deals with river flow and sediment transports in the Changjiang River continuum. We first briefly introduce riverine flow and sediment discharges acting on the estuary and their variations in the past half century. There is an ongoing decrease in sediment discharge since the 1980s, which has accelerated since 2003 when the Three Gorges Dam (TGD) commenced operation. In situ flocculation of suspended sediment is detected in the freshwater river and the blackish estuary, affecting sediment transport in the system. In the estuary, changes in sediment concentrations and grain sizes are observed in response to reduced river-borne sediment load. Analysis of sediment grain sizes, suspended sediment concentration (SSC), and the clay–silt–sand content of the sediments in the estuary reveals the presence of a nearshore depocenter featured by high sediment exchange ratio off the South Passage. Numerical experiments of estuarine circulation and water age suggest that large-scale engineering works have had marked impact on the regional hydrodynamics. Overall, the river, the estuary, and the marginal sea are inherently connected through the water and sediment linkage; therefore, systematical insights on their hydro-, morpho-, and eco-dynamics are required.


River flow Sediment discharge Sediment transport dynamics Flocculation Water age 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.State Key Laboratory of Estuarine and Coastal ResearchEast China Normal UniversityShanghaiChina

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