Networks fed by subsurface flow are a natural, but dynamically simple, system in which to consider general problems of network growth. Here we present four examples in which this dynamic simplicity can be used to develop a quantitative understanding of a natural kilometer-scale network of streams. In these four sections, we investigate the relation between the position of a spring in the network and the groundwater flux into it, the flow of water through streams and the stream shape, and the influence of solar radiation on the rate of sediment transport around the streams. In each case, a quantitative comparison is made between theory and observation. (C) 2012 Published by Elsevier Masson SAS on behalf of Academie des sciences.
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