Articles | Volume 5, issue 1
Research article
22 Mar 2017
Research article |  | 22 Mar 2017

Laboratory rivers: Lacey's law, threshold theory, and channel stability

François Métivier, Eric Lajeunesse, and Olivier Devauchelle

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Cited articles

Andreotti, B., Forterre, Y., and Pouliquen, O.: Les milieux granulaires-entre fluide et solide: Entre fluide et solide, EDP sciences, Les Ulis, France 2012.
Andrews, E. D.: Bed-material entrainment and hydraulic geometry of gravel-bed rivers in Colorado, Geol. Soc. Am. Bull, 95, 371–378, 1984.
Ashmore, P.: Fluvial Geomorphology, in: Morphology and dynamics of braided rivers, vol. 9 of Treatise on Geomorphology, 289–312, Academic Press, San Diego, CA, USA, 2013.
Brauderick, C. A., Dietrich, W. E., Leverich, G. T., and Sklar, L. S.: Experimental evidence for the conditions necessary to sustain meandering in coarse-bedded rivers, P. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA, 106, 16936–16941, 2009
Buffington, J. M. and Montgomery, D. R.: A systematic analysis of eight decades of incipient motion studies, with special reference to gravel-bedded rivers, Water Resour. Res., 33, 1993–2029, 1997.
Short summary
More than a century of experiments have demonstrated that many features of natural rivers can be reproduced in the laboratory. Here, we revisit some of these experiments to show that, regardless of the river's planform (single-thread or braiding), laboratory rivers behave like their natural counterparts. We further suggest that sediment transport could be responsible for the transition into a braided river, which could, in turn, explain the scarcity of laboratory single-thread channels.