The riverbed morphology of sand-bedded rivers is dynamically changing as a consequence of quasi continuous bedload transport. In the meantime, the dimension, size and dynamics of developing bedforms is highly depending on the regime of the river and sediment availability, both affected by natural and anthropogenic factors. Consequently, the assessment of morphological changes as well as the monitoring of riverbed balance is challenging in such a variable environment. In relation with a general research on the longer term sediment regime of River Maros, a fairly large alluvial river in the Carpathian Basin, the primary aim of the present investigation was to assess uncertainties related to morphological monitoring, i.e. testing the reproducibility of hydromorphological surveys and digital elevation model generation by performing repeated measurements among low water conditions on selected representative sites. Surveys were conducted with the combination of an ADCP sonar, GPS and total station. The most appropriate way of digital elevation modelling (DEM) was tested and 30-point Kriging was identified to be optimal for comparative analysis. Based on the results, several uncertainties may affect the reproducibility of measurements and the volumetric deviation of DEM pairs generated. The mean horizontal difference of survey tracks was 3-4 m in case of each site, however this could not explain all the DEM deviation. Significant riverbed change between measurements could also be excluded as the main factor. Finally, it was found that results might be affected greatly by systematic errors arising during motor boat ADCP measurements. Nevertheless, the observed, normalised and aggregated DEM uncertainty (600-360 m3/rkm) is significantly lower than the changes experienced between surveys with a month or longer time lag. Consequently, the developed measurement strategy is adequate to monitor long term morphological and sediment balance change on sand bedded large river.
Nowadays there is a growing demand for rapid and accurate determination of grain size distribution. The conventional pipette method is time-consuming and provides less detailed data compared to recently introduced methods. However, in Hungarian practice the pipette method is still considered to be the standard one, as there are a long series of measurements, and grain size thresholds used in sedimentology and soil sciences are based on this approach. The aim of our research was to determine the comparability of the laser diffraction method (LDM) with the conventional pipette method (PM), in order to investigate the controversial question on the interchangeability of the two methods. Based on our measurements on some representative fluvial sediment samples, we found that the largest difference in results can be expected in the silty grain size range. However if the main fractions (clay, silt, sand) are considered the methods provided similar very results, and correlation factors were above 0.92. In all, the LDM has a clear advantage because of its speed, reproducibility and fewer possibilities for operator failure.
In Inner Somogy the former researches concluded that the grain size of stabilised aeolian dunes decreases from north to south fitting to grain size distribution of the alluvial fan the dunes were built of and to the prevailing wind. However, the trend is not so evident, if considering the dune types and sand moving periods. The aim of this paper is to analyse the grain size distribution trends from the point of view of (1) different dune classes, (2) OSL age and (3) general morphological characteristics of the region. During the analysis the grain size distribution of 345 samples from 17 cores (120-300 cm in depth) was determined, and 15 OSL samples were dated. According to the results, the material of simple forms and level 1 dunes (these are the lowest dunes on the surface of the alluvial fan) becomes finer southward, in accordance with the structure of the alluvial fan and prevailing wind direction. Similar trend applies for level 2 dunes (which were formed on the top of level 1 dunes), but it does not apply for level 3 dunes, which are situated on the top of other dunes. It seems that the grain size is inversely proportional to the size of a dune and its age, thus younger and smaller dunes have coarser and less well sorted material. The sediments of the oldest, large parabolic dunes are the finest, younger, medium size parabolic forms have fine material, and the youngest hummocks contain the coarsest sand. The decreasing grain size towards south is the most apparent along longitudinal residual ridges, while within parabolic dunes the wings contain finer material than their elevated head.
The alluvial development of the Great Hungarian Plain has greatly been determined by the subsidence of different areas in the Pannonian Basin. The temporal variation of subsidence rates significantly contributed to the avulsion and shifting of main rivers. This was the case in terms of the Hungarian Lower Danube when occupying its present day N-S directional course. The considerable role of tectonic forcing is also supported by the presence of different floodplain levels. Although, several channel forms are identifiable on these the timing of floodplain development has been reconstructed up till now mostly by the means of geomorphological analysis, and hardly any numerical dates were available. The main aim of this study is to provide the first OSL dates for palaeo-channels located on the high floodplain surface of the Hungarian Lower Danube, and to determine the maximum age of low and high floodplain separation on the Kalocsa Plain. For the analysis two meanders were sampled close to the edge of the step slope between the two levels. According to the results, the development of the investigated palaeo-meanders could be rapid. The formation of the older meander was dated to the Late Atlantic, while the possible separation of the high and low floodplain surfaces could start in the beginning of the Subboreal Phase.
Inland excess water (IEW) is a type of flood where large flat inland areas are covered with water during a period of several weeks to months. The monitoring of these floods is needed to understand the extent and direction of development of the inundations and to mitigate their damage to the agricultural sector and build up infrastructure. Since IEW affects large areas, remote sensing data and methods are promising technologies to map these floods. This study presents the first results of a system that can monitor inland excess water over a large area with sufficient detail at a high interval and in a timely matter. The methodology is developed in such a way that only freely available satellite imagery is required and a map with known water bodies is needed to train the method to identify inundations. Minimal human interference is needed to generate the IEW maps. We will present a method describing three parallel workflows, each generating separate maps. The maps are combined to one weekly IEW map. At this moment, the method is capable of generating IEW maps for a region of over 8000 km2, but it will be extended to cover the whole Great Hungarian Plain, and in the future, it can be extended to any area where a training water map can be created.
The sensitive, partly fixed dune areas are good indicators of alteration, since they react rapidly to changing environmental conditions. Due to the climate changes, especially the increased aridity during the Holocene, many blown sand areas became active. Later, humanity had increasing impact of on its environment, thus sand movements occurred due to anthropogenic activities. Aeolian activities were identified not only in the historical times but also a few decades ago, when the moving sand caused significant problems on surfaces becoming bare. The present work will provide good evidence on sand movement in historical times caused by human impact on the environment with the help of OSL dating and archaeological research in the vicinity of the town of Apostag, which is located on the largest blown-sand area of Hungary on the Danube-Tisza Interfluve. The aims of the research were to identify the ethnical groups and their possible activities; to map the geomorphology of the study area; to determine the periods of aeolian activity; to assign the possible types of human activities in connection with climatic changes enabling aeolian activity.
It is highly probable that the precipitation and temperature changes induced by global warming projected for the 21st century will affect the regime of Carpathian Basin rivers, e.g. that of River Maros. As the river is an exceptionally important natural resource both in Hungary and Romania it is necessary to outline future processes and tendencies concerning its high and low water hydrology in order to carry out sustainable cross-border river management. The analyses were based on regional climate models (ALADIN and REMO) using the SRES A1B scenario. The modelled data had a daily temporal resolution and a 25 km spatial resolution, therefore beside catchment scale annual changes it was also possible to assess seasonal and spatial patterns for the modelled intervals (2021- 2050 and 2071-2010). Those periods of the year are studied in more detail which have a significant role in the regime of the river. The study emphasizes a decrease in winter snow reserves and an earlier start of the melting period, which suggest decreasing spring flood levels, but also a temporally more extensive flood season. Changes in early summer precipitation are ambiguous, and therefore no or only slight changes in runoff can be expected for this period. Nevertheless, it seems highly probable that during the summer and especially the early autumn period a steadily intensifying water shortage can be expected. The regime of the river is also greatly affected by human structures (dams and reservoirs) which make future, more detailed modelling a challenge.
Freshwater carbonate deposit, as a special phenomenon in the Danube-Tisza Interfluve, located in the centre of Hungary, is a significant geological heritage in the Carpathian Basin. At present there is not any applicable method to investigate the presence of carbonate layers in an undisturbed way, as neither vegetation nor morphological characteristics indicate unambiguously these formations. Ground-penetrating radar technology is widely used in various earth science related researches, and the number of applications is steadily increasing. The aim of the study was to determine the spatial extension of freshwater limestone using geophysical methods near Lake Kolon, Hungary. The lake, which is now a protected wetland area with opened water surfaces, was formed in the paleo-channel of the River Danube. Measurements were performed with the help of ground-penetrating radar, the results were calibrated by high spatial resolution drillings. Investigations have been made since 2012, and freshwater limestone was detected at several locations determining the more exact extension of the formation. Ground-penetrating radar proved to be an appropriate method to detect the compact and fragmented freshwater limestone layers in such an environment. However, based on the results the method can be best applied under dry soil or sediment conditions while the uncertainty of the results increases significantly as a matter of higher soil moisture. Further control measurements are necessary verified by several drillings in order to give an exact method to determine freshwater limestone.
Freshwater carbonates are unique depositions in the centre of the Carpathian Basin, with debated origin and age. Their formation on the sand covered area of the Danube-Tisza Interfluve is mainly related to lakes appearing in low lying interdune areas from time-totime. Carbonate deposition is governed by various processes, but in general it can be traced back to climatic and concomitant surface and subsurface hydrological variations. Therefore marl, limestone and dolomite layers can be a marker of environmental change. To identify the type of environmental change they may indicate absolute or numerical ages are needed. In previous studies this issue has been addressed by the means of radiocarbon dating. In the present study we attempted to bracket the age of freshwater carbonate formation with the help of optically stimulated luminescence dating and compared our results to radiocarbon data from the literature. In general, the luminescence properties of the investigated samples proved to be suitable for determining the age of the bedding and covering sediments. OSL dates confirmed previous interpretations that freshwater carbonate formation in the area could have a peak around 10,5 ka. However, the termination of the deposition could not be unambiguously determined at the present stage of the analysis. The compound geomorphology and sedimentology of the study area call for further investigations.
The lowland region of the South-Eastern Carpathian Basin faces extreme hydrological conditions, therefore the more detailed understanding, monitoring and predicting of the hydrological regime on catchments have high importance. However, in the region only few measured data are available in terms of evaporation, runoff, infiltration and water retention, and this is especially true concerning small catchments. In the meantime these areas support extensive agriculture, therefore more information is needed to manage future drying and irrigational demands. In the present research runoff and discharge were modelled for a ten year period and compared to at-a-station measurement data on the Fehértó-majsa Canal, a sub-catchment of the Tisza River, in order to test the predictability of hydrological changes related to future climate change. Modelling was made by applying a coupled MIKE SHE/MIKE 11 model and integrating all available topographic, pedologic, climatic, hydrologic and vegetation data. Consequently, another motivation of the research was to assess the suitability, data demand and limitations of the MIKE modelling environment on lowland catchments. As from all available data sources soil data seemed to be the least accurate, sensitivity tests were made by changing different soil parameter. Based on the results, the developed model is highly suitable for the estimation of annual and monthly runoff. Nevertheless, concerning daily data a general overestimation of discharge was experienced during low flow periods, and a time lag appeared between measured and modelled discharge peaks during high flow periods. In all, the results of the study can greatly support the realization of water management and planning projects in the drought prone sand land catchments where only a few directly measured data are available