Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name


Degree Program

Earth and Environmental Sciences


Earth and Environmental Sciences

Major Professor

Georgiou, Ioannis

Second Advisor

Reed, Denise

Third Advisor

Kolker, Alexander S.


In this study the patterns of sediment transport and deposition in the channels and receiving basin of a crevasse splay in the modern Mississippi River delta are examined, with emphasis on the development of a distributary mouth bar. Simultaneous hydroacoustic and optical measurements on the mouth bar show that the bar conforms to the progradational stage of an existing conceptual model of mouth bar development. This is confirmed by cores dated using Beryllium-7, which provides a record of the deposition on the bar over a 90-day period. Stratigraphic data from cores obtained on the bar are used to extend the conceptual model to account for variable riverine inputs. A numerical model, developed and validated using field data is capable of representing the fundamental sedimentary processes responsible for mouth bar progradation. These results will be of interest to coastal geologists, engineers and coastal managers alike.


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