Sediment Classification Ternary Diagram

Shepard (1954) Ternary Classification of Sediments

diagram courtesy Maryland Geological Survey

Icon on main toolbar will draw a ternary diagram, but will currently not plot data, which must be done from a database.

The ternary diagram is really only a two dimensional plot, which is the only reason it will plot on a 2D computer screen or graph.  Since the three percentages sum to 100%, only two are independent.

To plot ternary diagram. Example for sediment size classification, but it will work with any three fields in a database.

Map showing sediment size distributions in part of the Chesapeake Bay Ternary diagram of sediment size distributions in the Chesapeake Bay

To see gravel.

Percentage of gravel on the US East Coast continental shelf, over the predicted bathymetry. Sediment classification in the Chesapeake Bay near Annapolis, over a shaded relief rendition of a 30 m DEM from the NOAA estuaries program. Same color scheme as the ternary diagram above.


Last revision  11/3/2014