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Q: what is the nature and scope of geomorphology
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Expert answered|Heather71|Points 1255|
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Asked 10/5/2009 11:23:37 AM
Updated 10/5/2009 12:01:22 PM
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Geomorphology (from Greek: ??, ge, "earth"; µ??f?, morfé, "form"; and ?????, logos, "knowledge") is the scientific study of landforms and the processes that shape them. Geomorphologists seek to understand why landscapes look the way they do: to understand landform history and dynamics, and predict future changes through a combination of field observation, physical experiment, and numerical modeling. Geomorphology is practiced within geology, engineering geology, geodesy, geography, archaeology, and geological engineering. Early studies in geomorphology are the foundation for pedology, one of two main branches of soil science.

Landforms evolve in response to a combination of natural and anthropogenic processes. The landscape is built up through tectonic uplift and volcanism. Denudation occurs by erosion and mass wasting, which produces sediment that is transported and deposited elsewhere within the landscape or off the coast. Landscapes are also lowered by subsidence, either due to tectonics or physical changes in underlying sedimentary deposits. These processes are each influenced differently by climate, ecology, and human activity.

Practical applications of geomorphology include measuring the effects of climate change, hazard assessments including landslide prediction and mitigation, river control and restoration, coastal protection, and assessing the presence of water on Mars.
Added 10/5/2009 12:01:23 PM
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