A river formations experiment
A physical model for river erosion and snake formation.
This was a joint project between the three Lansey brothers. The
river began with a straight line route through a flat bed of sand and ended with the snakey canyon
shown in the picture.
The grass needed watering. Also, I always knew why rivers snake (see
Mississippi at right), we thought it'd be neat to try it out. Ask me and I'll be
happy to explain how it works, its not complicated.
Apparatus:See diagram below. Prop a plastic drawer up at an angle on some chairs, put a small hole in the bottom by the downhill side (with bucket underneath) and fill it with washed sand. Get the sand completely wet then wait for it to pack down. Constant flow rate is crucial, see our method below.
Flow rate smoothifier:Per the diagram below: a hose (green) was put in an overflowing bucket (left) which kept bucket water level at a constant height. A siphon hose (gray) then took water from the bucket to the river source at a constant rate. The constant rate was important to keep consitancy
Why did it happen so fast? Real rivers take years and years! Well tiny snakes form and disappear immediately, bigger ones move more dirt and take longer, a large river snake can take quite a while to form and evolve.
Note: Please do not make a larger model without a renewable water source.
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