The spring semester 2021 will certainly take place online until Easter. Exceptions: Courses that can only be carried out with on-site presence. Please note the information provided by the lecturers.

651-4902-00L  Quaternary Geology and Geomorphology of the Alps

SemesterSpring Semester 2016
LecturersS. Ivy Ochs, U. H. Fischer, K. Hippe
Periodicityyearly recurring course
Language of instructionEnglish


AbstractAfter a brief introduction to the scientific principles of glaciology, we survey the present state of knowledge on Pleistocene glacial periods and post-glacial landscape modification in the Alps. Emphasis is on understanding modes of formation of landscape elements attributable to glacial, glaciofluvial, periglacial, fluvial, hillslope, and mass wasting processes.
ObjectiveThrough a combination of lectures, classroom practical exercises, and field mapping of Quaternary landforms, an intuitive understanding of the formation and evolution of the landscape of the Alps and the forelands will be built up.
We focus on development of the following skills: landform recognition on remote imagery and in the field; depositional process identification based on sediment characterization; reconstruction of valley-scale geomorphological evolutionary sequences.
ContentThe following topics will be covered: glacier mass and energy balance; glacier motion; glacier hydrology; glacial erosion; glacial sediment balance; piedmont and valley glacier landsystems; till formation; glaciofluvial sediments; alluvial and debris-flow fan processes; Alpine rock slope failure landform/sediment associations; Alpine Quaternary stratigraphy; long-term uplift and denudation of the Alps.
Lecture notesSlides from the lectures will be made available.
LiteratureLists of key scientific articles will be given for each topic.
Relevant scientific articles will be distributed during the course.
Prerequisites / NoticeRequired attendance at lectures and excurisions (several 1-day excursions during the semester and one 3-day field mapping session during the summer).
Grading will be a combination of classroom participation, student presentations, practical exercises, field reports, and field maps from the excursions.