In earth science, the dumping of the load carried by a river, glacier, or the sea. Deposition occurs when the river, glacier, or sea is no longer able to carry its load for some reason, for example a shallowing of gradient, decreasing speed, decreasing energy, decrease in the volume of water in the channel, or an increase in the friction between water and channel. Glacial deposition
occurs when ice melts.
Many types of deposition are found along the course of a river.
These are found in semi-arid areas where mountain streams enter a main valley or plain at the foot of the mountains. The sudden decrease in velocity causes the stream to deposit its load. Smaller fans are common in glaciated areas at the edge of major glacial troughs, particularly at the base of a hanging valley
These are small ridges of material deposited where the river velocity is reduced midstream. If there are many riffles the river is said to be braided
Levees and flood plain deposits
These are formed, over a long period of time, in places where a river regularly bursts its banks. Water loses velocity quickly leading to the rapid deposition of coarse material near the river channel edge to form embankments, called levees. Finer material is carried further away and deposited on the flood plain.
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