First time-lapse monitoring of fjord-deltas using new technology

Kate Heerema | Uni Durham


Submarine gravity currents are one of the most important processes of moving sediments across our planet. However, direct monitoring of these flows has proven difficult due to their inaccessible, unpredictable and destructive nature. My research at Durham University utilises one of the first ever direct and detailed monitoring data of these underwater flows. There are two different test sites:

  • Bute Inlet, Canada
  • Monterey Canyon, USA.


Multiple moorings with Acoustic Doppler Current Profilers (ADCPs) were deployed for 6 months at Bute Inlet, and for 18 months in total in Monterey. Using Matlab, the ADCP data is analysed by looking at front flow properties, flow velocities, and flow intensity. This data is compared to internal and external flow parameters. 

In addition, this research will include analysis of sediment cores obtained in Bute Inlet, and flow modelling at NGI, Oslo.


Kate Heerema
UNI Durham
PhD student – ESR 5
Peter Talling
UNI Durham
Principal Investigator – ESR 5


ESRs’ experiences of the BSRG2018
@ Edinburgh, Scotland (18-19 Dec 2018)

Conferences, ESR 10, ESR 5, ESR 9, News | 2019-01-24

Kate (ESR5), Ricarda (ESR9) and Maarten (ESR10) participated at the British Sedimentological Research Group Annual Group Meeting (BSRG AGM 2018), which was held the 19th and 20th of December 2018 in Edinburgh, United Kingdom. Read about their experiences of this conference here!

What is PhD life like beyond the science? –
behind the scenes @ Durham University, UK

ESR 5, News | 2018-12-19

Beside studying the submarine environment in a variety of ways, we all have been relocated as part of the EU programme. We live in countries we have not lived in before for extended amounts of time. So, besides the science side of our PhDs, we also get to explore and discover new countries and their cultures!

Lake Lucerne Workshop –
why do we actually meet?

ESR 5, ESR 8, News | 2018-09-25

What happens behind the curtain at an annual SLATE workshop? Starting off a series of blog posts on the recent gathering at Lake Lucerne, Kate (ESR5) and Stefano (ESR8) not only provide insight regarding the scientific activities, but as well point out additional benefits of such an event for the ESR students.