Coastal and Continental Morphodynamics laboratory

scientific production online repository

The "Coastal and Continental Morphodynamics" laboratory (M2C) is a Joint Research Unit (UMR 6143) created in 1996, under the supervision of the French National Center for Scientific Research (CNRS), the university of Caen Normandie (UNICAEN) and the university of Rouen Normandy (URN). The staff of the laboratory includes 86 persons: 37 researchers, 21 engineers and technicians, 28 PhD students. The research of the M2C laboratory focuses on the characterization and modeling of natural processes dynamics in different compartments along the LAND-SEA continuum, at different scales of time and space. The research is organized into 5 themes::
  • Water and sediment cycles in watersheds;
  • Macrotidal estuarine environment: hydrodynamics interactions, sedimentology, biochemistry;
  • Dynamics of the coastline and of the internal platform;
  • Morphological evolution of coastal watersheds in response to climatic and tectonic forcing since the late Cenozoic;
  • Hydrodynamics, sediments and structures: Processes and interactions.


This research is carried out with an interdisciplinary approach integrating researchers specialized in mechanics, geosciences, oceanography, hydrology, microbiology and ecology of organisms. Our research combines in-situ measurements with numerous dedicated equipment, experimental approaches and numerical moodeling.

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Last publications

[hal-02062245] Quantification of tributaries contributions using a confluence-based sediment fingerprinting approach in the Canche river watershed (France)  (05/04/2019)  
Since a few years, land use management aims to reduce and control water erosion processes in watersheds but there is a lack of quantitative information on the contribution of the sources of transported sediment. This is most important in agricultural areaswhere soils are sensitive to erosion. The geology of these areas is often characterized by large expanses of relatively homogeneous quaternary silts. The possibility of distinguishing the sources of erosion according to their geological substratum is thus very delicate. This information is important because its lack can lead to the mis-implementation of erosion control measures. To address this request, a confluence-based sediment fingerprinting approach was developed on the Canche river watershed (1274 km2; northern France), located in the European loess belt, an area that is affected by diffuse and concentrate erosion processes. Suspended particulate matter was collected during five seasonal sampling campaigns using sediment traps at the outlet of each tributary and confluencewith the main stream of the Canche river. The final composite fingerprintwas defined using physico-chemical and statistical analyses. The best tracer parameters for each tributary were selected using stepwise discriminant function analyses. These parameters were introduced into a mass balance mixing model incorporating Monte-Carlo simulations to represent the uncertainty. Estimates of the overall mean contributions fromeach tributary were quantified at different temporal scales. The annual sediment flux tributaries contributions range from 3 to 22% at the outlet of the Canche river, and annual sediment flux range from 0.87 to 40.7 kt yr−1. The Planquette and the Créquoise tributaries appear to be those producing the largest sediment flux. In contrast, tributarieswith the highest number of erosion control on their area exhibit the lowest values of sediment flux. Our results indicate a positive impact of recent land management policies in the Canche river watershed.

[hal-02134174] Empowering conventional Rock-Eval pyrolysis for organic matter characterization of the siderite-rich sediments of Lake Towuti (Indonesia) using End-Member Analysis  (21/05/2019)  
[hal-02089637] Early screening of new accumulating versus non-accumulating tree species for the phytomanagement of marginal lands  (20/04/2019)  
[hal-02043689] Laboratory hyperspectral imaging a powerful tool for a fast-high-resolution analysis of natural sample: application to sediment core  (05/04/2019)  
[hal-02096802] Anthropic impacts on Sub-Saharan urban water resources through their pharmaceutical contamination (Yaoundé, Center Region, Cameroon)  (12/04/2019)  
[hal-01982516] Theoretical calculation of the power of wind turbine or tidal turbine  (05/04/2019)  
[hal-02044193] L’analyse multi-capteurs, un enjeu pour une connaissance plus précise des échantillons  (05/04/2019)  
[hal-02063301] Le géoradar : un outil versatile pour les études stratigraphiques du littoral  (05/04/2019)  
[hal-02076363] Dynamics of the Flow Exchanges between Matrix and Conduits in Karstified Watersheds at Multiple Temporal Scales  (29/04/2019)  
[hal-02080378] Assessing temporal variability and controlling factors of the sediment budget of a small agricultural catchment in Northern France (the Pommeroye)  (05/04/2019)  





International collaboration (co-authors)



M2C lab. in Caen

Morphodynamique Continentale et Côtière
Université de Caen Normandie (Campus 1)
24 rue des Tilleuls
14000 Caen Cedex

M2C lab. in Rouen

Morphodynamique Continentale et Côtière
Université de Rouen Normandie (bâtiment Blondel Nord)
Place Emile Blondel
76821 Mont-Saint-Aignan Cedex