Question by Depressed Geek: What part of the Yangtze river has low currents?

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Answer by Charles K
What part of the Yangtze river has low currents?When flooding occurs, it frequently results from the deposit of silt in the bed of the Yangtze. Upon leaving the mountains and entering the plain, the current in the Yangtze sharply decreases, and thus the flow cannot continue to carry the entire amount of silt. As a result, a significant portion is deposited in the bed, causing the bottom to rise. A similar situation occurs in many of the Yangtze’s tributaries. Flooding thus presents a great danger to the inhabitants of the adjacent plains. An acoustic Doppler current profiler is used to characterize the river velocity against the morphology of the Yangtze River from Chonqing to the sea. High flow velocities occur in the Three Gorges section and lower velocities in the middle and lower reaches of the river. This is largely due to the change in river pattern from a high gradient deeply-cut valley to a flat fluvial plain. Flow velocities fluctuate in the middle Yangtze due to the presence of meander bends of different length. There are numerous smaller velocity fluctuations in the lower Yangtze channel that reflect multichannel pattern with numerous sand bars and a river morphology affected by bedrock outcrops. Water depths of 40–100 m occur in the Three Gorges valley but decrease to 15–40 m in the middle and lower Yangtze. At the Gezhou Reservoir, 30 km downstream of the Three Gorges damsite velocity drops to low (< 1.0 m s− 1) 20 km reach. A second low velocity (< 0.5 m s− 1) zone, about 20 km in length, is located in the lower Yangtze near the coast probably due to the tidal influence. The results from this research will serve as a datum for evaluating changes to the river once the Three Gorges dam is completed in 2009.

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