Delta ID    # 53.

Drainage basin: Peninsular India.

Depositional basin: Bay of Bengal


Air temperature range:    oC to oC

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Contributed  by Professor George F. Hart, LSU. Hart 1999.

syn: Penneru River

Photographic album of Penner Delta slides.

To the south, in the region of the Penner River the climate is predominantly semi-arid with summer temperatures of 25 - 46oC and winter temperatures of 18 - 28oC.  In the head region of the basin the climate is arid. The northeast monsoon [October through January] provides a little precipitation but the predominant rain falls when the southwest monsoon [June through September] occur. Post monsoonal cyclonic activity in the Bay of Bengal during September and October produces an increased rainfall in the coastal region. The mean annual rainfall within the drainage basin various from about 550 mm around Anantapur area to 900 mm around  Nellore.

The geology of the drainage basin is predominantly formed from Archean rocks, principally granitic intrustives into metamorphic schists. Pichamuthu, 1978 notes that the Archeans in this region comprise biotite and hornblende granite-gneisses, granodiorite, diorite, and pegmatite.  Of secondary importance are the Dhawar metamorphics comprising phyllites, slates, schists with chlorite, biotite, garnet, staurolite, kyanite, silllimanite and hornblende.  Accompanying these are greenstones and quartzite [Srinivasan & Sreenivas, 1977; Krishnan, 1982]. In the central part of the basin the dominant rocks belong to the Cuddapah and Kurnool Groups consisting of conglomerates, sandstones, shales, dolomites, limestones and cherts.   These are intruded by doloritic and basaltic igneous materials in many places.  In the coastal regions the major sediments are  laterites and recent alluvium.

The recent dissertation by Bhagavan [2001] notes that the earlier work on sedimentology of the Penner River was conducted only as recently as 1988 [Seetharamaiah and Swamy].  This was followed by studies by Kameswara Rao [1991], and Seetharamaiah and Swamy [1994a and b].  Subramanian et al [1987] estimated the total tonnage of sediment transported into the Bay of Bengal as about 6.9 x 106.

The drainage basin 

The Penner river rises in the Chennakesava Hills on the Deccan Plateau in Karnataka State, close to the town of Chik Ballapur.  The source elevation, at 13o 22' N and 77o 41' E is at approximately 1500 m  amsl. It flows across Andhra Pradesh and empties into the Bay of Bengal on the Coromandel Coast near Nellore.  The total length is about 560 km, draining some 55,200 sq km.  88% of the drainage basin is within the State of Andhra Pradesh. 

The drainage pattern is controlled by the underlying geological structure [Ghosh, 1992; Sinha , 1996; Singh, 2000; and Vaidyanathan, 1959]. The major tributaries combining with the Penner River are the north bank Jayamangali, Kunderu and Sagileru,  and the south bank Chitrabvati, Papaghni and Cheyyeru.

The deltaic plain

Bhagavan [2001] notes: The Penner deltaic plain covering about 1425 sq. km. is comprised of the river channel [61 sq. km.],  levee [29 sq. km.], estuary [10.1 sq. km.], lagoon [9 sq. km.], palaeo sand ridges [167 sq. km.], dunes [26 sq. km], spits [2 sq. km.], tidal creek [13 sq. km.], marsh [3.2 sq. km.], channel bars [8.3 sq. km] and flood plains [1096.4 sq. km].

The meso-tidal estuary of the Penner river extends some  7 km upstream  with the tidal influence increasing annually from November  through June with a concurrent inland movement of a salt-water wedge [Bhagavan, 2001]. The Upputeru tidal creek is some 15 km in length and contains the small-boat port of Krishnapatnam.  Isakapalli lagoon  is separated from the Bay of Bengal by the Isakapalli barrier island [a sand spit some 180 m long and up to 3 m high]. The coastal dunes may reach over 7 m high and are stabilized by vegetation. 

The Penner River enters the Bay of Bengal approximately 16 km northeast of Nellore at 14o 35' N and 80o 11' E.

Vibrocore studies of the Penner Delta

Descriptive Statistics