UPSC Mains | Geography Optional Paper-1 | Answer Discussion | EROSIONAL SURFACES | K.Siddhartha Sir

EROSIONAL SURFACES : Discuss the problems of erosional surfaces and explain the different methods to identify them with suitable diagrams.

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Source Book

Physical Geography-K. Siddhartha

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The almost plain topographic surfaces having undulating ground surface and remnant low relief caused by dynamic wheels of denudational processes and cutting across geological formations and structures are generally called erosion or planation surface. These include Peneplain, Pediplains, primarrumpf, Endrumpf, Etchplain Panplains, Gipfelflur, Stockwerk and schietelflur, Strath

Erosion surfaces are important markers for deciphering uplift events. Absolute time scales for events of uplift and erosion can be given by correlation with geology and their morphological data, which is an important tool of the study of geomorphology.

Erosion surfaces form significant elements of landscape of a given region and provide prominent clues for the reconstruction of denudation chronology of that region.


  1. Identification
  • Difficult
  • Modified by tectonic movements and other geomorphic and climatic forces.
  • Younger-more uniform, older-dissected
  • Morphometric Techniques – altimetric frequency histograms, superimposed profiles etc.
  1. Dating of Erosion Surfaces
  • Time correlation with other such surfaces with known history.
  • Geological unconformity – buried under thick sediment cover.
  • Interpretation of sequence of sedimentation in adjoining area.
  • Drainage patterns – Reconstruction of evolutionary history.
  • Radio-Carbon Dating – but can’t be applied for surfaces formed before evolution of organic life or where fossils have been destroyed.

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  1. How to start your answer and its introduction.
  2. How to give geographical angle and sense to your answers.
  3. Usage of relevant diagrams and maps.
  4. Well-structured answer covering different dimensions.

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