Although it is widely recognized that intracontinental rift basins include basin axis systems and transverse systems, the means by which these deposits of are partitioned in space and time is poorly understood. Connell et al. describe fluvial morphology and sedimentation in an experimental basin designed to explore processes in asymmetrical rift basins. In the experimental setting that allowed for constant sediment supply, subsidence, and base level, results illustrate how the locations of axial and tributary systems were controlled by autogenic influences of changes in relative discharge, evolving topographic gradients and boundaries, and resultant sediment redistribution. The dynamic, internal interactions of axial and transverse systems likely play an important role on geomorphic attributes of comparable real-world basins.
Fluvial Morphology and Sediment-Flux Steering of Axial–Transverse Boundaries In An Experimental Basin by Sean D. Connell, Wonsuck Kim, Chris Paola, and Gary A. Smith