Discharge regimes, tides and morphometry in the Mahakam delta channel network

M.G. Sassi

Research output: Thesisinternal PhD, WU


The Mahakam delta in Indonesia constitutes a text book example of a mixed tide and fluvial dominated delta. Understanding the factors that control the division of water and sediment discharge over channels in the delta is relevant in the contexts of geology, ecology and river engineering. In the Mahakam river and its delta, the tide interacts with the river outflow. River-tide interaction exerts an influence on the discharge regimes and on the division of water and sediment at the bifurcations in the delta. Bifurcations control the dispersal of sediments that eventually govern the shape and evolution of the delta. In this thesis, spatial and temporal aspects of delta evolution are shown to be reflected in scaling relations between the geometric properties of delta channels and the discharge conveyed by the channels, which is known as downstream hydraulic geometry (HG). Downstream HG relations as established in this research, feature a transition from the landward part to the seaward part of the delta characterized by a clear break in scaling behavior. The variation of river discharge throughout the network is largely impacted by river-tide interaction, which is captured by downstream HG relations.


Original languageEnglish
QualificationDoctor of Philosophy
Awarding Institution
  • Wageningen University
  • Uijlenhoet, Remko, Promotor
  • Hoitink, Ton, Co-promotor
Award date11 Feb 2013
Place of Publication[S.l.]
Print ISBNs9789461734679
Publication statusPublished - 2013


  • deltas
  • discharge
  • tides
  • canals
  • channels
  • morphometrics
  • sediment
  • rivers
  • indonesia

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