Encyclopedia of Coastal Science

2019 Edition
| Editors: Charles W. Finkl, Christopher Makowski

Modeling Platforms, Terraces, and Coastal Evolution

  • Douglas L. Inman
  • Scott A. JenkinsEmail author
  • Patricia M. Masters
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-93806-6_216

Terraces and their associated platforms and sea cliffs are the wave-cut and wave-built features associated with the land-water interface of seacoasts and lake shores. Along ocean coasts, they are the primary signature of the stillstands in water level during the transgressions and regressions of Pleistocene and Holocene epochs. The mechanics of terracing are fundamental to understanding the evolution of today’s coastlines with their platforms, sea cliffs, barriers, spits, and capes. Coastal evolution models must incorporate processes that treat sediment transport and deposition as well as the abrasion and cutting of bedrock formations. This can be accomplished by coupled models, one treating the mobile sediment and the other bedrock cutting.


Early studies of terraces, platforms, and sea cliffs include the work of de Beaumont (1845), Cialdi (1866), Fisher (1866), and Gilbert (1885). Gilbert’s study of the active topographic features along the shores of the Great Lakes,...

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© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Douglas L. Inman
    • 1
  • Scott A. Jenkins
    • 1
    Email author
  • Patricia M. Masters
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Center for Coastal Studies, Scripps Institution of OceanographyUniversity of California, San DiegoLa JollaUSA
  2. 2.Scripps Institution of OceanographyUniversity of CaliforniaSan DiegoUSA