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Sample records for active sand dunes

  1. Booming Sand Dunes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vriend, Nathalie

    "Booming" sand dunes are able to produce low-frequency sound that resembles a pure note from a music instrument. The sound has a dominant audible frequency (70-105 Hz) and several higher harmonics and may be heard from far distances away. A natural or induced avalanche from a slip face of the booming dune triggers the emission that may last for several minutes. There are various references in travel literature to the phenomenon, but to date no scientific explanation covered all field observations. This thesis introduces a new physical model that describes the phenomenon of booming dunes. The waveguide model explains the selection of the booming frequency and the amplification of the sound in terms of constructive interference in a confined geometry. The frequency of the booming is a direct function of the dimensions and velocities in the waveguide. The higher harmonics are related to the higher modes of propagation in the waveguide. The experimental validation includes quantitative field research at the booming dunes of the Mojave Desert and Death Valley National Park. Microphone and geophone recordings of the acoustic and seismic emission show a variation of booming frequency in space and time. The analysis of the sensor data quantifies wave propagation characteristics such as speed, dispersion, and nonlinear effects and allows the distinction between the source mechanism of the booming and the booming itself. The migration of sand dunes results from a complicated interplay between dune building, wind regime, and precipitation. The morphological and morphodynamical characteristics of two field locations are analyzed with various geophysical techniques. Ground-penetrating radar images the subsurface structure of the dunes and reveal a natural, internal layering that is directly related to the history of dune migration. The seismic velocity increases abruptly with depth and gradually increases with downhill position due to compaction. Sand sampling shows local

  2. Fortune Cookie Sand Dunes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2003-01-01

    MGS MOC Release No. MOC2-432, 25 July 2003

    This Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC) image shows a field of small barchan sand dunes in the north polar region near 71.7oN, 51.3oW. Some of them are shaped like fortune cookies. The message these dunes provide: winds blow through this region from the lower right toward the upper left. The steep slip face slopes of these dunes, which point toward the upper left, indicate the wind direction. The scene is illuminated by sunlight from the upper right. The image is 3 km (1.9 mi) wide.

  3. Sand Dunes with Frost

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2004-01-01

    9 May 2004 This Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC) image shows a suite of frost-covered sand dunes in the north polar region of Mars in early spring, 2004. The dunes indicate wind transport of sand from left to right (west to east). These landforms are located near 78.1oN, 220.8oW. This picture is illuminated by sunlight from the lower left and covers an area about 3 km (1.9 mi) across.

  4. Sand Dunes in Hellas

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2003-01-01

    MGS MOC Release No. MOC2-537, 7 November 2003

    The smooth, rounded mounds in this Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC) picture are sand dunes. The scene is located in southern Hellas Planitia and was acquired in mid-southern autumn, the ideal time of year for Hellas imaging. Sunlight illuminates the scene from the upper left. These dunes are located near 49.1oS, 292.6oW. The picture covers an area 3 km (1.9 mi) wide.

  5. Sand Dunes, Afghanistan

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2001-01-01

    This ASTER image covers an area of 10.5 x 15 km in southern Afghanistan and was acquired on August 20, 2000. The band 3-2-1 composite shows part of an extensive field of barchan sand dunes south of Kandahar. The shape of the dunes indicates that the prevailing wind direction is from the west. The image is located at 30.7 degrees north latitude and 65.7 degrees east longitude.

    The U.S. science team is located at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif. The Terra mission is part of NASA's Science Mission Directorate.

  6. Discrimination of active and inactive sand from remote sensing - Kelso dunes, Mojave Desert, California

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Paisley, Elizabeth C. I.; Lancaster, Nicholas; Gaddis, Lisa R.; Greeley, Ronald

    1991-01-01

    Landsat TM images, field data, and laboratoray reflectance spectra were examined for the Kelso dunes, Mojave Desert, California to assess the use of visible and near-infrared (VNIR) remote sensing data to discriminate aeolian sand populations on the basis of spectral brightness. Results show that areas of inactive sand have a larger percentage of dark, fine-grained materials compared to those composed of active sand, which contain less dark fines and a higher percentage of quartz sand-size grains. Both areas are spectrally distinct in the VNIR, suggesting that VNIR spectral data can be used to discriminate active and inactive sand populations in the Mojave Desert. Analysis of laboratory spectra was complicated by the presence of magnetite in the active sands, which decreases their laboratory reflectance values to those of inactive sands. For this application, comparison of TM and laboratory spectra suggests that less than 35 percent vegetation cover does not influence the TM spectra.

  7. Sand dunes as migrating strings

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guignier, L.; Niiya, H.; Nishimori, H.; Lague, D.; Valance, A.

    2013-05-01

    We develop a reduced complexity model for three-dimensional sand dunes, based on a simplified description of the longitudinal and lateral sand transport. The spatiotemporal evolution of a dune migrating over a nonerodible bed under unidirectional wind is reduced to the dynamics of its crest line, providing a simple framework for the investigation of three-dimensional dunes, such as barchan and transverse dunes. Within this model, we derive analytical solutions for barchan dunes and investigate the stability of a rectilinear transverse dune against lateral fluctuations. We show, in particular, that the latter is unstable only if the lateral transport on the dune slip face prevails over that on the upwind face. We also predict the wavelength and the characteristic time that control the subsequent evolution of an unstable transverse dune into a wavy ridge and the ultimate fragmentation into barchan dunes.

  8. Sand dunes as migrating strings.

    PubMed

    Guignier, L; Niiya, H; Nishimori, H; Lague, D; Valance, A

    2013-05-01

    We develop a reduced complexity model for three-dimensional sand dunes, based on a simplified description of the longitudinal and lateral sand transport. The spatiotemporal evolution of a dune migrating over a nonerodible bed under unidirectional wind is reduced to the dynamics of its crest line, providing a simple framework for the investigation of three-dimensional dunes, such as barchan and transverse dunes. Within this model, we derive analytical solutions for barchan dunes and investigate the stability of a rectilinear transverse dune against lateral fluctuations. We show, in particular, that the latter is unstable only if the lateral transport on the dune slip face prevails over that on the upwind face. We also predict the wavelength and the characteristic time that control the subsequent evolution of an unstable transverse dune into a wavy ridge and the ultimate fragmentation into barchan dunes.

  9. Sand dune tracking from satellite laser altimetry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dabboor, Mohammed

    Substantial problems arise from sand movement in arid and semi-arid countries. Sand poses a threat to infrastructure, agricultural and urban areas. These issues are caused by the encroachment of sand on roads and railway tracks, farmland, towns and villages, and airports, to name a few. Sand movement highly depends on geomorphology including vegetation cover, shape and height of the terrain, and grain size of the sand. However, wind direction and speed are the most important factors that affect efficient sand movement. The direction of the movement depends on the main direction of the wind, but it has been shown that a minimum wind speed is required, e.g. wind gusts, to initiate sand transport. This fact prevents a simple calculation of sand transport from conventional wind data as wind records rarely contain sub-minute intervals masking out any wind gusts. An alternative of predicting sand transport is the direct observation of sand advance by in situ measurements or via satellite. Until recently, satellite imagery was the only means to compare dune shape and position for predicting dune migration over several years. In 2003, the NASA laser altimetry mission ICESat became operational and monitors elevations over all surface types including sand dunes with an accuracy of about 10-20 cm. In this study, ICESat observations from repeat tracks (tracks overlapping eachother within 50 m) are used to derive sand dune advance and direction. The method employs a correlation of the elevation profiles over several dunes and was sucessfully validated with synthetic data. The accuracy of this method is 5 meters of dune advance. One of the most active areas exhibiting sand and dune movement is the area of the Arabian Peninsula. Approximately one-third of the Arabian Peninsula is covered by sand dunes. Different wind regimes (Shamal, Kaus) cause sand dune movement in the selected study area in the eastern part of the Arabian Peninsula between 20-25 degrees North and 45-55 degrees

  10. Active sand dunes are largest dust source in the Sahara Desert

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bhattacharya, Atreyee

    2012-09-01

    Dried up lakebeds and playas in the Sahara Desert of North Africa are large sources of dust in the atmosphere. The Bodélé Depression at the southern edge of the Sahara Desert, for example, is the single largest source of dust in the world; on average, 100 dust storms a year originate from the Bodélé Depression. A new study by Crouvi et al., however, finds that active sand dunes could be even bigger sources of desert dust in the atmosphere. Atmospheric dust plays active roles in climate and biological processes in the ocean: It regulates heating at the surface of the Earth; modifies cloud properties that affect rainfall; and acts as the only source of iron, a critical nutrient for microorganisms in the ocean. Little is known about types of dust sources in the Sahara Desert, which alone accounts for more than 50% of the dust in the atmosphere.

  11. Possible seasonal activity of gullies on an sand dune (Russell crater, Mars)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jouannic, Gwénaël.; Gargani, Julien; Costard, François

    2010-05-01

    Recent work has shown that gullies are among the most youthful features on Mars (Malin and Edgett, 2000; Costard et al., 2002; Reiss and Jaumann, 2003, Malin et al., 2006). Here we show that the gullies located on the Russell Crater dune are not only extremely youthful but also seem to be still actives. Various geomorphological features consistent with a seasonal activity suggest reactivated flows over the last three terrestrial years. Moreover, using an assemblage of 26 HiRISE images over a 31 month period (November 2006-May 2009) and superposed with MOLA tracks, we performed a quantitative analysis of the sinuosity and branching of the gullies on the shallow slope of the Russell crater. These geomorphologicals features suggest that debris flow have been formed by a fluid flow. As pure water generally is not thought to be stable on the surface of Mars under current conditions, these gullies could be indicative of a highly localized zone of meta-stability heretofore unidentified in the literature or by a highly mineralized water. Equally, the occurrence of the gullies on a dune may point to a near-surface source, i.e. near surface permafrost (Vedie et al. 2008), that could have been emplaced under conditions associated with late Amazonian obliquity excursions (Costard et al., 2002). Nevertheless, the precise composition of the fluid (CO2, mineralized water,…) is still unknown. Costard, F., Forget, F., Mangold, N., Peulvast, J.P., 2002. Formation of recent martian debris flow by melting of near-surface ground ice at high obliquity. Science, 295, 110-113. Malin, M.C., Edgett, K.E., 2000. Evidence for recent groundwater seepage and surface runoff on Mars. Science, 288, 2330-2335. Malin, M.C., Edgett, K.E., Posiolova, L.V., McColley, S.M., Dobrea, E.Z., 2006. Present day impact crater rate and contemporary gully activity on Mars. Science, 314, 1573-1577. Reiss, D., Jaumann, R., 2003. Recent debris flows on Mars : Seasonal observations of the Russell Crater dune field

  12. Investigation of Reversing Sand Dunes at the Bruneau Dunes, Idaho, as Analogs for Features on Mars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zimbelman, J. R.; Scheidt, S. P.

    2012-12-01

    The Bruneau Dunes in south-central Idaho include several large reversing sand dunes located within a cut-off meander of the Snake River. These dunes include the largest single-structured sand dune present in North America. Wind records from the Remote Automated Weather Station (RAWS) installation at the Mountain Home Air Force Base, which is ~21 km NW of the Bruneau Dunes, have proved to be very helpful in assessing the regional wind patterns at this section of the western Snake River Plains province; a bimodal wind regime is present, with seasonal changes of strong (sand-moving) winds blowing from either the northwest or the southeast. During April of 2011, we obtained ten precision topographic surveys across the southernmost reversing dune using a Differential Global Positioning System (DGPS). The DGPS data document the shape of the dune going from a low, broad sand ridge at the southern distal end of the dune to the symmetrically shaped 112-m-high central portion of the dune, where both flanks of the dune consist of active slopes near the angle of repose. These data will be useful in evaluating the reversing dune hypothesis proposed for enigmatic features on Mars called Transverse Aeolian Ridges (TARs), which could have formed either as large mega-ripples or small sand dunes. The symmetric profiles across TARs with heights greater than 1 m are more consistent with measured profiles of reversing sand dunes than with measured profiles of mega-ripples (whose surfaces are coated by large particles ranging from coarse sand to gravel, moved by saltation-induced creep). Using DGPS to monitor changes in the three-dimensional location of the crests of the reversing dunes at the Bruneau Dunes should provide a means for estimating the likely timescale for changes of TAR crests if the Martian features are indeed formed in the same manner as reversing sand dunes on Earth.

  13. The Role of Reproductive Phenology, Seedling Emergence and Establishment of Perennial Salix gordejevii in Active Sand Dune Fields

    PubMed Central

    Yan, Qiaoling; Liu, Zhimin; Ma, Junling; Jiang, Deming

    2007-01-01

    Background and Aims The function of sexual reproduction of perennials in restoration of vegetation of active dune fields frequently has been underestimated. The objective of this study was to evaluate the role of sexual reproduction of the perennial Salix gordejevii in the revegetation of active dunes. Methods Seedling emergence and establishment of S. gordejevii were examined both in controlled experiments (germination at different burial depths with different watering regimes) and in field observations in three dune slacks. The reproductive phenology and soil seed bank of S. gordejevii, the dynamics of soil moisture, the groundwater table and the landform level of three dune slacks were monitored. Key Results Seeds of S. gordejevii began maturation on 1 May, and seed dispersal lasted from 8 May to 20 May. Seeds on the soil surface germinated significantly faster than those buried in soil (P<0·05). Seedling emergence was negatively correlated with landform level. When most seedlings emerged, there was a significantly positive correlation between soil moisture and seedling emergence (P<0·01). Rainfall was negatively correlated with seedling emergence. Seedling establishment was significantly and positively correlated with seedling emergence (P<0·05), and 72·3 % of the emergent seedlings were established at the end of the growing season. These results indicated that (a) seeds matured and dispersed before the rainy season; (b) seeds germinated as soon as they contacted a moist surface and relied more on soil moisture than on rainfall; and (c) more seedlings emerged at lower sampling points in dune slacks. Conclusions In natural conditions, restoration of active sand dune fields generally commences with revegetation of dune slacks where sexual reproduction of perennials contributes greatly to species encroachment and colonization and hence plays an important role in restoration of active dune fields. Furthermore, aeolian erosion in dune slacks, leading to good

  14. Coastal Sand Dune Plant Ecology: Field Phenomena and Interpretation

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McDonald, K.

    1973-01-01

    Discusses the advantages and disadvantages of selecting coastal sand dunes as the location for field ecology studies. Presents a descriptive zonal model for seaboard sand dune plant communities, suggestions concerning possible observations and activities relevant to interpreting phenomena associated with these forms of vegetation, and additional…

  15. Crest line minimal model for sand dune

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guignier, Lucie; Valance, Alexandre; Lague, Dimitri

    2013-04-01

    In desert, complex patterns of dunes form. Under unidirectional wind, transverse rectilinear dunes or crescent shaped dunes called barchan dunes can appear, depending on the amount of sediment available. Most rectilinear transverse sand dunes are observed to fragment, for example at White Sands (New Mexico, United States of America) or Walvis Bay (Namibia). We develop a reduced complexity model to investigate the morphodynamics of sand dunes migrating over a non-erodible bed under unidirectional wind. The model is simply based on two physical ingredients, namely, the sand capture process at the slip face and the cross-wind sand transport. The efficiency of the sand capture process is taken to be dependent of the dune height and lateral diffusion is considered on both the windward and lee sides of the dune. In addition, the dune cross section is assumed to be scale invariant and is approximated by a triangular shape. In this framework, the dune dynamics is reduced to the motion of a string representing the dune crest line and is expressed as a set of two coupled nonlinear differential equations. This simple model reveals its ability to reproduce basic features of barchan and transverse dunes. Analytical predictions are drawn concerning dune equilibrium shape, stability and long-term dynamics. We derive, in particular, analytical solutions for barchan dunes, yielding explicit relationships between their shape and the lateral sand diffusion; and analytical predictions for the migration speed and equilibrium sand flux. A stability analysis of a rectilinear transverse dune allows us to predict analytically the wavelength emerging from fluctuations of the dune crest. We also determine the characteristic time needed for the rectilinear dune to fragment into a multitude of barchan dunes. These outcomes show that extremely simple ingredients can generate complex patterns for migrating dunes. From several dune field data, we are able to determine values of the model

  16. The sedimentary structure of linear sand dunes

    PubMed

    Bristow; Bailey; Lancaster

    2000-07-06

    Linear sand dunes--dunes that extend parallel to each other rather than in star-like or crescentic forms--are the most abundant type of desert sand dune. But because their development and their internal structure are poorly understood, they are rarely recognized in the rock record. Models of linear dune development have not been able to take into account the sub-surface structure of existing dunes, but have relied instead either on the extrapolation of short-term measurements of winds and sediment transport or on observations of near-surface internal sedimentary structures. From such studies, it has not been clear if linear dunes can migrate laterally. Here we present images produced by ground penetrating radar showing the three-dimensional sedimentary structure of a linear dune in the Namib sand sea, where some of the world's largest linear dunes are situated. These profiles show clear evidence for lateral migration in a linear dune. Moreover, the migration of a sinuous crest-line along the dune produces divergent sets of cross-stratification, which can become stacked as the dune height increases, and large linear dunes can support superimposed dunes that produce stacked sets of trough cross-stratification. These clear structural signatures of linear dunes should facilitate their recognition in geological records.

  17. Hematite Outlier and Sand Dunes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2003-01-01

    [figure removed for brevity, see original site]

    Released 4 December 2003

    This image shows a crater just south of the edge of the famous hematite-bearing surface, which is visible in the context image as a smooth area to the north. The crater has two features of immediate note. The first is a layered mound in the north part of the crater floor. This mound contains hematite, and it is an outlying remnant of the greater deposits to the north that have otherwise completely disappeared in this crater. The second feature is a dune field in the center of the crater floor, with dark dunes indicating winds from the northwest. The dunes grade into a dark sand sheet with no coherent structure, indicating that the sand layer thins out to the south and east.

    Image information: VIS instrument. Latitude -4.4, Longitude 357.3 East (2.7 West). 19 meter/pixel resolution.

    Note: this THEMIS visual image has not been radiometrically nor geometrically calibrated for this preliminary release. An empirical correction has been performed to remove instrumental effects. A linear shift has been applied in the cross-track and down-track direction to approximate spacecraft and planetary motion. Fully calibrated and geometrically projected images will be released through the Planetary Data System in accordance with Project policies at a later time.

    NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory manages the 2001 Mars Odyssey mission for NASA's Office of Space Science, Washington, D.C. The Thermal Emission Imaging System (THEMIS) was developed by Arizona State University, Tempe, in collaboration with Raytheon Santa Barbara Remote Sensing. The THEMIS investigation is led by Dr. Philip Christensen at Arizona State University. Lockheed Martin Astronautics, Denver, is the prime contractor for the Odyssey project, and developed and built the orbiter. Mission operations are conducted jointly from Lockheed Martin and from JPL, a division of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena.

  18. Singing-sand avalanches without dunes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dagois-Bohy, S.; Courrech du Pont, S.; Douady, S.

    2012-10-01

    Singing-sand dunes have attracted curiosity for centuries and are now the subject of controversy. We address here two aspects of this controversy: first the possible link between the frequency heard and the shear rate (for a gravity avalanche on a dune slip-face, scaling as 0.4g/d, with d the ‘mean’ grain diameter), and second, the assumed necessity of a layered dune structure under the avalanche that acts as a resonator. Field recordings of singing dunes over the world reveal that they can present very different spectral characteristics: a dune with polydisperse grains produces a very broad and noisy spectrum, while a dune with sorted grains produces a well-defined frequency. Performing laboratory avalanches on a hard plate with singing-dune sand shows that there is no need for a dune below the sand avalanche to produce the singing sound, and a fortiori neither for the dune's layered structure nor for its particular sound transmission. By sieving the polydisperse grains, the same well-defined frequency is obtained to that of the dune with sorted grains, with the same diameter-frequency relation. The various frequencies heard in the field avalanches match the shear rates not calculated from the average size, but from the various peaks of the grain size distributions.

  19. Invasive plants on disturbed Korean sand dunes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kim, Kee Dae

    2005-01-01

    The sand dunes in coastal regions of South Korea are important ecosystems because of their small size, the rare species found in this habitat, and the beautiful landscapes they create. This study investigated the current vegetative status of sand dunes on three representative coasts of the Korean peninsula, and on the coasts of Cheju Island, and assessed the conditions caused by invasive plants. The relationships between the degree of invasion and 14 environmental variables were studied. Plots of sand dunes along line transects perpendicular to the coastal lines were established to estimate vegetative species coverage. TWINSPAN (Two-Way Indicator Species Analysis), CCA (Canonical Correspondence Analysis), and DCCA (Detrended Canonical Correspondence Analysis) were performed to classify communities on sand dunes and assess species composition variation. Carex kobomugi, Elymus mollis, and Vitex rotundifolia were found to be the dominant species plotted on the east, the west, and the peripheral coasts of Cheju Island, respectively. Vegetation on the south coast was totally extinct. The 19 communities, including representative C. kobomugi, C. kobomugi- Ixeris repens, C. kobomugi- Oenothera biennis, E. mollis, Lolium multiflorum- Calystegia soldanella, and V. rotundifolia- C. kobomugi, were all classified according to TWINSPAN. Oenothera biennis and L. multiflorum were exotics observed within these native communities. CCA showed that invasive native and exotic species distribution was segregated significantly, according to disturbance level, exotic species number, gravel, sand and silt contents, as well as vegetation size. It further revealed that human disturbance can strongly favor the settlement of invasive and exotic species. Restoration options to reduce exotic plants in the South Korean sand dune areas were found to be the introduction of native plant species from one sand dune into other sand dune areas, prohibition of building and the introduction of exotic

  20. Antioxidant activity of raw, cooked and Rhizopus oligosporus fermented beans of Canavalia of coastal sand dunes of Southwest India.

    PubMed

    Niveditha, Vedavyas R; Sridhar, Kandikere R

    2014-11-01

    The raw and processed (cooked and cooked + solid-state fermented with Rhizopus oligosporus) split beans of two landraces of coastal sand dune wild legumes (Canavalia cathartica and Canavalia maritima) of the southwest coast of India were examined for bioactive compounds (total phenolics, tannins and vitamin C) and antioxidant potential (total antioxidant activity, ferrous-ion chelating capacity, DPPH free radical-scavenging activity and reducing activity). One-way ANOVA revealed significant elevation of bioactive compounds as well as antioxidant activities in fermented beans compared to raw and cooked beans in both legumes (p < 0.001). The EC50 values in fermented beans of both legumes were significantly lowest compared to raw and cooked beans (p < 0.001). In principal component analysis, total phenolics along with antioxidant activities (total antioxidant, ferrous-ion chelating and free radical-scavenging activities) of fermented beans of C. cathartica, while total antioxidant and free radical-scavenging activities of fermented beans of C. maritima were clustered. The present study demonstrated that split beans of coastal sand dune Canavalia fermented by R. oligosporus endowed with high bioactive principles as well as antioxidant potential and thus serve as future nutraceutical source.

  1. Compressive strength of dune sand reinforced concrete

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mohammed, Mani; Abdelouahed, Kriker; Allaoua, Belferrag

    2017-02-01

    Many areas of south Algeria suffer from the problem of accumulation of sand on constructions. In fact, the phenomenon of sand silting causes technical and economical problems. Besides, these areas and other regions in Algeria suffer from the problem of unavailability of suitable sand for building. The use of dune sand offers an alternative solution for construction. In the same context, many researches confirm the possibility of using dune sand in the composition of concrete. In this paper, concrete made with dune sand was studied. For correction of the granulometry of dune sand by river sand, the rates of 50% DS+50% RS and 40% DS+60% RS were used. Also, two types of fibers were used, with 45 and 30 mm lengths, and diameters of 1 and 0.5 mm respectively. The percentage of the used fibers in the sand concrete was 1% and 1.5%. In this work an improvement of the compressive strength for the metal fibers reinforced sand concrete compared to plain concrete was obtained.

  2. Microbial Characterization of Qatari Barchan Sand Dunes

    PubMed Central

    Chatziefthimiou, Aspassia D.; Nguyen, Hanh; Richer, Renee; Louge, Michel; Sultan, Ali A.; Schloss, Patrick; Hay, Anthony G.

    2016-01-01

    This study represents the first characterization of sand microbiota in migrating barchan sand dunes. Bacterial communities were studied through direct counts and cultivation, as well as 16S rRNA gene and metagenomic sequence analysis to gain an understanding of microbial abundance, diversity, and potential metabolic capabilities. Direct on-grain cell counts gave an average of 5.3 ± 0.4 x 105 cells g-1 of sand. Cultured isolates (N = 64) selected for 16S rRNA gene sequencing belonged to the phyla Actinobacteria (58%), Firmicutes (27%) and Proteobacteria (15%). Deep-sequencing of 16S rRNA gene amplicons from 18 dunes demonstrated a high relative abundance of Proteobacteria, particularly enteric bacteria, and a dune-specific-pattern of bacterial community composition that correlated with dune size. Shotgun metagenome sequences of two representative dunes were analyzed and found to have similar relative bacterial abundance, though the relative abundances of eukaryotic, viral and enterobacterial sequences were greater in sand from the dune closer to a camel-pen. Functional analysis revealed patterns similar to those observed in desert soils; however, the increased relative abundance of genes encoding sporulation and dormancy are consistent with the dune microbiome being well-adapted to the exceptionally hyper-arid Qatari desert. PMID:27655399

  3. Microbial Characterization of Qatari Barchan Sand Dunes.

    PubMed

    Abdul Majid, Sara; Graw, Michael F; Chatziefthimiou, Aspassia D; Nguyen, Hanh; Richer, Renee; Louge, Michel; Sultan, Ali A; Schloss, Patrick; Hay, Anthony G

    This study represents the first characterization of sand microbiota in migrating barchan sand dunes. Bacterial communities were studied through direct counts and cultivation, as well as 16S rRNA gene and metagenomic sequence analysis to gain an understanding of microbial abundance, diversity, and potential metabolic capabilities. Direct on-grain cell counts gave an average of 5.3 ± 0.4 x 105 cells g-1 of sand. Cultured isolates (N = 64) selected for 16S rRNA gene sequencing belonged to the phyla Actinobacteria (58%), Firmicutes (27%) and Proteobacteria (15%). Deep-sequencing of 16S rRNA gene amplicons from 18 dunes demonstrated a high relative abundance of Proteobacteria, particularly enteric bacteria, and a dune-specific-pattern of bacterial community composition that correlated with dune size. Shotgun metagenome sequences of two representative dunes were analyzed and found to have similar relative bacterial abundance, though the relative abundances of eukaryotic, viral and enterobacterial sequences were greater in sand from the dune closer to a camel-pen. Functional analysis revealed patterns similar to those observed in desert soils; however, the increased relative abundance of genes encoding sporulation and dormancy are consistent with the dune microbiome being well-adapted to the exceptionally hyper-arid Qatari desert.

  4. Layers, Landslides, and Sand Dunes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2003-01-01

    [figure removed for brevity, see original site]

    Released 27 October 2003

    This image shows the northern rim of one of the Valles Marineris canyons. Careful inspection shows many interesting features here. Note that the spurs and gullies in the canyon wall disappear some distance below the top of the canyon wall, indicating the presence of some smooth material here that weathers differently from the underlying rocks. On the floor of the canyon, there are remains from a landslide that came hurtling down the canyon wall between two spurs. Riding over the topography of the canyon floor are many large sand dunes, migrating generally from the lower right to upper left.

    Image information: VIS instrument. Latitude -14.1, Longitude 306.7 East (53.3 West). 19 meter/pixel resolution.

    Note: this THEMIS visual image has not been radiometrically nor geometrically calibrated for this preliminary release. An empirical correction has been performed to remove instrumental effects. A linear shift has been applied in the cross-track and down-track direction to approximate spacecraft and planetary motion. Fully calibrated and geometrically projected images will be released through the Planetary Data System in accordance with Project policies at a later time.

    NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory manages the 2001 Mars Odyssey mission for NASA's Office of Space Science, Washington, D.C. The Thermal Emission Imaging System (THEMIS) was developed by Arizona State University, Tempe, in collaboration with Raytheon Santa Barbara Remote Sensing. The THEMIS investigation is led by Dr. Philip Christensen at Arizona State University. Lockheed Martin Astronautics, Denver, is the prime contractor for the Odyssey project, and developed and built the orbiter. Mission operations are conducted jointly from Lockheed Martin and from JPL, a division of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena.

  5. Sedimentological, Mineralogical and Geochemical Characterization of Sand Dunes in Saudi Arabia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Benaafi, Mohammed; Abdullatif, Osman

    2014-05-01

    , provenance and tectonic history of the sand dunes. Geochemical analysis indicated that most of sand dunes are quartz arenite type, except in the Red sea, basement related central Saudi Arabia and Najran areas, the sand dunes are sub-arkoses, sub-litharenite and litharenite. The concentration of major,trace and rare elements showed active continental margins as a tectonic setting of Red sea, basement related Najran and central Arabia sand dune. In contrast, passive continental margins for the other locations. The distribution of major, trace and rare earth elements showed similarity in chemical composition between basement related sand dunes in Red sea, Najran and central Arabia.

  6. Autumn Frost, North Polar Sand Dunes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1999-01-01

    Autumn in the martian northern hemisphere began around August 1, 1999. Almost as soon as northern fall began, the Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC) started documenting the arrival of autumn frost--a precursor to the cold winter that will arrive in late December 1999. The first features to become covered by frost were the sand dunes that surround the north polar ice cap. The dunes seen here would normally appear very dark--almost black--except when covered by frost. Why the dunes begin to frost sooner than the surrounding surfaces is a mystery: perhaps the dunes contain water vapor that emerges from the sand during the day and condenses again at night. This picture shows dunes near 74.7oN, 61.4oW at a resolution of about 7.3 meters (24 feet) per pixel. The area covered is about 3 km (1.9 mi) across and is illuminated from the upper right. The picture appears to be somewhat fuzzy and grainy because the dunes here are seen through the thin haze of the gathering north polar winter hood (i.e., clouds).

  7. Evidence of active dune sand on the Great Plains in the 19th century from accounts of early explorers

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Muhs, D.R.; Holliday, V.T.

    1995-01-01

    Dune fields are found in several areas of the Great Plains, and though mostly stabilised today, the accounts of early explorers show that they were more mobile in the last century. Using an index of dune mobility and tree ring data, it is found that these periods of mobility were related to temperature-induced drought, the high temperatures increasing evapotranspiration. Explorers also record that rivers upwind of these dune fields had shallow braided channels in the 19th century, and these would have supplied further aeolian sand. It is concluded that these dunes are extremely susceptible to climate change and that it may not need global warming to increase their mobility again. -K.Clayton

  8. 'Sharks Teeth' -- Sand Dunes in Proctor Crater

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2001-01-01

    Sometimes, pictures received from Mars Global Surveyor's Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC) are 'just plain pretty.' This image, taken in early September 2000, shows a group of sand dunes at the edge of a much larger field of dark-toned dunes in Proctor Crater. Located at 47.9oS, 330.4oW, in the 170 km (106 mile) diameter crater named for 19th Century British astronomer Richard A. Proctor (1837-1888), the dunes shown here are created by winds blowing largely from the east/northeast. A plethora of smaller, brighter ripples covers the substrate between the dunes. Sunlight illuminates them from the upper left.

  9. The dune effect on sand-transporting winds on Mars

    PubMed Central

    Jackson, Derek W. T.; Bourke, Mary C; Smyth, Thomas A. G.

    2015-01-01

    Wind on Mars is a significant agent of contemporary surface change, yet the absence of in situ meteorological data hampers the understanding of surface–atmospheric interactions. Airflow models at length scales relevant to landform size now enable examination of conditions that might activate even small-scale bedforms (ripples) under certain contemporary wind regimes. Ripples have the potential to be used as modern ‘wind vanes' on Mars. Here we use 3D airflow modelling to demonstrate that local dune topography exerts a strong influence on wind speed and direction and that ripple movement likely reflects steered wind direction for certain dune ridge shapes. The poor correlation of dune orientation with effective sand-transporting winds suggests that large dunes may not be mobile under modelled wind scenarios. This work highlights the need to first model winds at high resolution before inferring regional wind patterns from ripple movement or dune orientations on the surface of Mars today. PMID:26537669

  10. The dune effect on sand-transporting winds on Mars.

    PubMed

    Jackson, Derek W T; Bourke, Mary C; Smyth, Thomas A G

    2015-11-05

    Wind on Mars is a significant agent of contemporary surface change, yet the absence of in situ meteorological data hampers the understanding of surface-atmospheric interactions. Airflow models at length scales relevant to landform size now enable examination of conditions that might activate even small-scale bedforms (ripples) under certain contemporary wind regimes. Ripples have the potential to be used as modern 'wind vanes' on Mars. Here we use 3D airflow modelling to demonstrate that local dune topography exerts a strong influence on wind speed and direction and that ripple movement likely reflects steered wind direction for certain dune ridge shapes. The poor correlation of dune orientation with effective sand-transporting winds suggests that large dunes may not be mobile under modelled wind scenarios. This work highlights the need to first model winds at high resolution before inferring regional wind patterns from ripple movement or dune orientations on the surface of Mars today.

  11. Mapping the Stratigraphy of Booming Sand Dunes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vriend, N. M.; Hunt, M. L.; Clayton, R. W.

    2008-12-01

    Booming dunes emit a loud rumbling sound after a man-made or natural sand avalanche is generated on the slip face of a large desert dune. The sound consist of one dominant frequency (70 - 105 Hz) with several higher harmonics. A recent publication (Vriend et al., 2007) presented a model of an internal, natural waveguide that propagates the booming emission, amplifies the sound, and sets the booming frequency. The mapping of the subsurface layering, which is necessary for the existence of a waveguide, prompted additional work on the dune structure and stratigraphy. The current work highlights geophysical measurements at Eureka Dunes in Death Valley National Park, CA and Dumont Dunes in the Mojave Desert, CA. Seismic refraction studies indicate strong layering with large velocity jumps across the interfaces. Ground Penetrating Radar (GPR) profiles, at frequencies of 100 MHz and 200 MHz, map out the stratigraphic structure of the dunes. Variations in the near surface layering are able to predict the seasonal variability in booming frequency both quantitatively and qualitatively. The Kirchhoff migrated GPR profiles are superimposed on the local topography obtained with a laser rangefinder. The complex dune structure is resolved to a depth of over 30 meters for the 100 MHz antenna. The GPR profiles of the longitudinal Eureka dune display complex internal structures from old dune crests. Both slopes have slip faces at 30 degrees with parallel layering (< 2m) at the near surface. At the transverse Dumont dune the GPR profile exhibits strong parallel layering on the booming leeward slipface only. The shallower windward face features a remarkable tilted repetitive layering that cuts through the surface. At Dumont Dunes the layering on the leeward face explains the change in booming frequency between 70 - 95 Hertz in the period 2005 - 2008. The tilted layering structure of the shallow windward face prevents the formation of a waveguide and is never able to sustain the

  12. Morphological characteristics and sand volumes of different coastal dune types in Essaouira Province, Atlantic Morocco

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Flor-Blanco, Germán; Flor, Germán; Lharti, Saadia; Pando, Luis

    2013-04-01

    Altogether three coastal dune fields, one located north and two south of the city of Essaouira, Atlantic Morocco, have been investigated to establish the distribution and overall sand volumes of various dune types. The purpose of the study was to characterize and classify the aeolian landforms of the coastal dune belt, to estimate their sand volumes and to assess the effectiveness of coastal dune stabilization measures. The northern dune field is 9 km long and lined by a wide artificial foredune complex fixed by vegetation, fences and branches forming a rectangular grid. Active and ephemeral aklé dunes border the inner backshore, while some intrusive dunes have crossed the foredune belt and are migrating farther inland. The total sand volume of the northern dune belt amounts 13,910,255 m3. The central coastal sector comprises a much smaller dune field located just south of the city. It is only 1.2 km long and, with the exception of intrusive dunes, shows all other dune types. The overall sand volume of the central dune field amounts to about 172,463 m3. The southern dune field is characterized by a narrower foredune belt and overall lower dunes that, in addition, become progressively smaller towards the south. In this sector, embryonic dunes (coppice, shadow dunes), tongue-like and tabular dunes, and sand sheets intrude from the beach, the profile of which has a stepped appearance controlled by irregular outcrops of old aeolianite and beach rock. The total volume of the southern dune field amounts 1,446,389 m3. For the whole study area, i.e. for all three dune fields combined, a sand volume of about 15,529,389 m3 has been estimated. The sand of the dune fields is derived from coastal erosion and especially the Tensift River, which enters the sea at Souira Qedima some 70 km north of Essaouira. After entering the sea, the sand is transported southwards by littoral drift driven by the mainly north-westerly swell climate and the Trade Winds blowing from the NNE. This

  13. [Research progress on plant diversity conservation in sand dune areas].

    PubMed

    Liu, Zhi-min; Ma, Jun-ling

    2008-01-01

    The landscape in sand dune areas is characterized by the alternate distribution of sand dune and interdune lowland, and the unique floras in these areas are some endemic or rare plant species. In recent years, the decrease in plant species richness and the disappearance of some endemic or rare plant species in these areas have been received special attention, which were listed in the Program of International Biodiversity Conservation, and studied in many countries and districts. In this paper, the research progress in these fields was summarized from the aspects of significance of plant diversity conservation, formation mechanisms of plant diversity, ways of plant diversity conservation, roles of plant diversity research in the development of ecological theories, and important issues in operating plant diversity conservation project. To conserve plant diversity in sand dune areas, attentions should be paid to the differences in conservation goals (to maintain high species richness or to conserve endemic or rare species) among different regions, and the balances between the stabilization of active sand and the conservation of endemic or rare species, and the maintenance of high species richness and the conservation of endemic or rare species. It needed also to consider the sand dune and the interdune lowland as a unified landscape unit to explore the impacts of disturbances and habitat fragment on plant diversity.

  14. Laboratory studies of dune sand for the use of construction industry in Sri Lanka

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    de Silva Jayawardena, Upali; Wijesuriya, Roshan; Abayaweera, Gayan; Viduranga, Tharaka

    2015-04-01

    With the increase of the annual sand demand for the construction industry the excessive excavation of river sand is becoming a serious environmental problem in Sri Lanka. Therefore, it is necessary to explore the possibility for an alternative to stop or at least to minimize river sand mining activities. Dune sand is one of the available alternative materials to be considered instead of river sand in the country. Large quantities of sand dunes occur mainly along the NW and SE coastal belt which belong to very low rainfall Dry Zone coasts. The height of dune deposits, vary from 1m to about 30 meters above sea level. The objective of this paper is to indicate some studies and facts on the dune sand deposits of Sri Lanka. Laboratory studies were carried out for visual observations and physical properties at the initial stage and then a number of tests were carried out according to ASTM standards to obtain the compressive strength of concrete cylinders and mortar cubes mixing dune sand and river sand in different percentages keeping a constant water cement ratio. Next the water cement ratio was changed for constant dune sand and river sand proportion. Microscopic analysis shows that the dune sand consist of 95 % of quartz and 5 % of garnet, feldspar, illmenite and other heavy minerals with clay, fine dust, fine shell fragments and organic matters. Grains are sub-rounded to angular and tabular shapes. The grain sizes vary from fine to medium size of sand with silt. The degree of sorting and particle size observed with dune sands are more suited with the requirement of fine aggregates in the construction industry. The test result indicates that dune sand could be effectively used in construction work without sieving and it is ideal for wall plastering due to its'-uniformity. It could also be effectively used in concrete and in mortars mixing with river sand. The best mixing ratio is 75% dune sand and 25% river sand as the fine aggregate of concrete. For mortar the mixing

  15. Early diagenesis of eolian dune and interdune sands at White Sands, New Mexico

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Schenk, C.J.; Fryberger, S.G.

    1988-01-01

    The degree of early diagenesis in eolian dune and interdune sands at White Sands, New Mexico, is largely a function of the relationship between sand location and the water table. Most active and vegetation-stabilized dune sands are in the vadose zone, whereas interdune sands are in the capillary fringe and phreatic zones. Crystallographically controlled dissolution of the framework gypsum grains results in elongate, prismatic etch pits on sand grains from the capillary fringe and phreatic zones, whereas dissolution of sand grains in the vadose zone is slight, causing minute irregularities on grain surfaces. Vadose water percolating through the sand is manifest as meniscus layers. Consequently, dune sands in the vadose zone are cemented mainly by meniscus-shaped gypsum at grain contacts. Pendant cements formed on the lower margins of some sand grains. Cementation in the capillary fringe and the phreatic zone is more extensive than the vadose regardless of strata type. Typically, well-developed gypsum overgrowths form along the entire edge of a grain, or may encompass the entire grain. Complex diagenetic histories are suggested by multiple overgrowths and several episodes of dissolution on single grains, attesting to changing saturation levels with respect to gypsum in the shallow ground water. These changes in saturation are possibly due to periods of dilution by meteoric recharge, alternating with periods of concentration of ions and the formation of cement due to evaporation through the capillary fringe. ?? 1988.

  16. Hierarchical organization of a Sardinian sand dune plant community

    PubMed Central

    Ceccherelli, Giulia; Bertness, Mark

    2016-01-01

    Coastal sand dunes have attracted the attention of plant ecologists for over a century, but they have largely relied on correlations to explain dune plant community organization. We examined long-standing hypotheses experimentally that sand binding, inter-specific interactions, abiotic factors and seedling recruitment are drivers of sand dune plant community structure in Sardinia, Italy. Removing foundation species from the fore-, middle- and back-dune habitats over three years led to erosion and habitat loss on the fore-dune and limited plant recovery that increased with dune elevation. Reciprocal species removals in all zones suggested that inter-specific competition is common, but that dominance is transient, particularly due to sand burial disturbance in the middle-dune. A fully factorial 2-year manipulation of water, nutrient availability and substrate stability revealed no significant proximate response to these physical factors in any dune zone. In the fore- and middle-dune, plant seeds are trapped under adult plants during seed germination, and seedling survivorship and growth generally increase with dune height in spite of increased herbivory in the back-dune. Sand and seed erosion leads to limited seed recruitment on the fore-dune while high summer temperatures and preemption of space lead to competitive dominance of woody plants in the back-dune. Our results suggest that Sardinian sand dune plant communities are organized hierarchically, structured by sand binding foundation species on the fore-dune, sand burial in the middle-dune and increasingly successful seedling recruitment, growth and competitive dominance in the back-dune. PMID:27478701

  17. Hierarchical organization of a Sardinian sand dune plant community.

    PubMed

    Cusseddu, Valentina; Ceccherelli, Giulia; Bertness, Mark

    2016-01-01

    Coastal sand dunes have attracted the attention of plant ecologists for over a century, but they have largely relied on correlations to explain dune plant community organization. We examined long-standing hypotheses experimentally that sand binding, inter-specific interactions, abiotic factors and seedling recruitment are drivers of sand dune plant community structure in Sardinia, Italy. Removing foundation species from the fore-, middle- and back-dune habitats over three years led to erosion and habitat loss on the fore-dune and limited plant recovery that increased with dune elevation. Reciprocal species removals in all zones suggested that inter-specific competition is common, but that dominance is transient, particularly due to sand burial disturbance in the middle-dune. A fully factorial 2-year manipulation of water, nutrient availability and substrate stability revealed no significant proximate response to these physical factors in any dune zone. In the fore- and middle-dune, plant seeds are trapped under adult plants during seed germination, and seedling survivorship and growth generally increase with dune height in spite of increased herbivory in the back-dune. Sand and seed erosion leads to limited seed recruitment on the fore-dune while high summer temperatures and preemption of space lead to competitive dominance of woody plants in the back-dune. Our results suggest that Sardinian sand dune plant communities are organized hierarchically, structured by sand binding foundation species on the fore-dune, sand burial in the middle-dune and increasingly successful seedling recruitment, growth and competitive dominance in the back-dune.

  18. Space Radar Image of Namibia Sand Dunes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1994-01-01

    This spaceborne radar image shows part of the vast Namib Sand Sea on the west coast of southern Africa, just northeast of the city of Luderitz, Namibia. The magenta areas in the image are fields of sand dunes, and the orange area along the bottom of the image is the surface of the South Atlantic Ocean. The region receives only a few centimeters (inches) of rain per year. In most radar images, sandy areas appear dark due to their smooth texture, but in this area the sand is organized into steep dunes, causing bright radar reflections off the dune 'faces.' This effect is especially pronounced in the lower center of the image, where many glints of bright radar reflections are seen. Radar images of this hyper-arid region have been used to image sub-surface features, such as abandoned stream courses. The bright green features in the upper right are rocky hills poking through the sand sea. The peninsula in the lower center, near Hottentott Bay, is Diaz Point; Elizabeth Point is south of Diaz Point. This image was acquired by Spaceborne Imaging Radar-C/X-Band Synthetic Aperture Radar (SIR-C/X-SAR) onboard the space shuttle Endeavour on April 11, 1994. The image is 54.2 kilometers by 82.2 kilometers (33.6 miles by 51.0 miles) and is centered at 26.2 degrees South latitude, 15.1 degrees East longitude. North is toward the upper left. The colors are assigned to different radar frequencies and polarizations of the radar as follows: red is L-band, horizontally transmitted and received; green is L-band, horizontally transmitted, vertically received; and blue is C-band, horizontally transmitted, horizontally received. SIR-C/X-SAR, a joint mission of the German, Italian, and United States space agencies, is part of NASA's Mission to Planet Earth.

  19. Controls on Dune Deformation Patterns in White Sands, New Mexico

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, D. B.; Ferdowsi, B.; Jerolmack, D. J.

    2015-12-01

    Eolian dune fields exhibit a variety of pattern transitions, including: the ab initio appearance of dunes from no dunes; transverse to barchan and unvegetated barchan to vegetated parabolic. Recent model predictions offer some insight into the mechanisms underlying some of these transitions. However, there are few direct observations, and tests providing empirical verification are sparse. The White Sands dune field exhibits all three of the aforementioned transitions in sequence, from the upwind to downwind margin, and has the potential to be a testing ground for these predictions. Repeat LiDAR data at White Sands provide an excellent opportunity to study not only dune structure, but also dune dynamics, which can provide insight into how dunes destabilize from one dune morphology into another. We employ a recently developed method for decomposing dune migration into two components: "translation" of a dune, and changes in dune shape referred to as "deformation". We find that the fastest moving dunes (i.e. the dunes translating most quickly) have the largest amount of deformation. Patterns of deformation also vary depending on dune type: transverse dunes experience coherent deformation, while parabolic dunes exhibit highly localized and apparently random deformation. Only a fraction of the deformation can be explained by the migration rate. A significant amount of deformation appears to be attributable to dune-dune interactions, which destabilize dune patterns in locations where dune density is high. At the interface between the transverse to barchan dune patterns, we describe how transverse dunes break up into barchans and compare it to published model results. Regarding the barchan to parabolic transition, we find that the onset of vegetation drives a gradual slowdown in migration rates, while the magnitude of deformation drops and becomes localized to dune crests as the arms are stabilized by plants.

  20. Great Kobuk Sand Dunes, Alaska: A Terrestrial Analog Site for Polar, Topographically Confined Martian Dune Fields

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dinwiddie, C. L.; Hooper, D. M.; Michaels, T. I.; McGinnis, R. N.; Stillman, D.; Bjella, K.; Stothoff, S.; Walter, G. R.; Necsoiu, M.; Grimm, R. E.

    2010-12-01

    Martian dune systems belong to two broad categories: (i) the sprawling north polar erg, rich in and immobilized by seasonal and perennial volatiles; and (ii) isolated low- to high-latitude dune fields confined by topography. While modern dune migration on Mars is nearly imperceptibly slow, recent studies are producing robust evidence for aeolian activity, including bedform modification. Cold-climate terrestrial dunes containing volatile reservoirs provide an important analog to Martian polar dunes because permafrost and seasonal cycles of CO2 and H2O frost mantling are thought to partially decouple Martian polar dunes from atmospheric forcing. The 67°N latitude, 62 km2 Great Kobuk Sand Dunes (GKSD) are a terrestrial analog for polar, intercrater dune fields on Mars. Formative winds affected by complex topography and the presence of volatiles and intercalated snow within the GKSD have direct analogy to factors that impede migration of Martian polar dunes. This system offers the opportunity to study cold-climate, noncoastal, topographically constrained, climbing and reversing barchanoid, transverse, longitudinal, and star dunes. The Kobuk Valley climate is subarctic and semiarid with long, cold winters and brief, warm summers. Niveoaeolian sedimentation occurs within west-facing lee slope catchments. In March 2010, we found the seasonally frozen layer to range in thickness from 1.5 to 4.0 m, and no evidence for shallow permafrost. Instead, using GPR and boreholes, we found a system-wide groundwater aquifer that nearly parallels topography and cuts across steeply dipping bedforms. GPR cannot uniquely detect ice and water; however, a similar analysis of rover-based GPR might be used to detect volatiles in Martian dunes. The perennial volatile reservoir is liquid because of mean annual air temperature, intense solar heating before, during, and after 38 days of continuous summer daylight, high dry sand thermal conductivity, higher wet sand thermal conductivity

  1. Sand availability control on dune shape and orientation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gao, Xin; Narteau, Clement; Rozier, Olivier; Courrech Du Pont, Sylvain

    2015-04-01

    An increasing body of evidence indicates that sand availability does not only control dune type but also the underlying dune growth mechanism. Consequently, the same wind regime can produce different bedform orientations. Here, we use numerical simulations with different conditions of sand availability to predict dune shape and alignment in asymmetric bimodal wind regimes. In zones of abundant sand supply, linear dunes grow in height and propagate selecting the orientation for which the normal to crest components of transport reaches a maximum. In zones of limited sand supply, linear dunes grow by extension in the direction of the resultant sand flux. Considering these two independent dune growth mechanisms, we find good agreement between numerical and analytical models, and estimate the magnitude of wind velocity acceleration up the dune stoss slopes. In the extensional mode of linear dune formation, there is no abrupt change in dune trend when the divergence angle between the two winds crosses 90°. Instead, there are systematic transitions in dune type from linear to barchan for critical values of the divergence angle that depend on the transport ratio. We show how the growth rates of the two dune growth mechanisms may be used to infer the dune field morphology in zones of low sediment availability.

  2. Diurnal emissivity dynamics in bare versus biocrusted sand dunes.

    PubMed

    Rozenstein, Offer; Agam, Nurit; Serio, Carmine; Masiello, Guido; Venafra, Sara; Achal, Stephen; Puckrin, Eldon; Karnieli, Arnon

    2015-02-15

    Land surface emissivity (LSE) in the thermal infrared depends mainly on the ground cover and on changes in soil moisture. The LSE is a critical variable that affects the prediction accuracy of geophysical models requiring land surface temperature as an input, highlighting the need for an accurate derivation of LSE. The primary aim of this study was to test the hypothesis that diurnal changes in emissivity, as detected from space, are larger for areas mostly covered by biocrusts (composed mainly of cyanobacteria) than for bare sand areas. The LSE dynamics were monitored from geostationary orbit by the Spinning Enhanced Visible and Infrared Imager (SEVIRI) over a sand dune field in a coastal desert region extending across both sides of the Israel-Egypt political borderline. Different land-use practices by the two countries have resulted in exposed, active sand dunes on the Egyptian side (Sinai), and dunes stabilized by biocrusts on the Israeli side (Negev). Since biocrusts adsorb more moisture from the atmosphere than bare sand does, and LSE is affected by the soil moisture, diurnal fluctuations in LSE were larger for the crusted dunes in the 8.7 μm channel. This phenomenon is attributed to water vapor adsorption by the sand/biocrust particles. The results indicate that LSE is sensitive to minor changes in soil water content caused by water vapor adsorption and can, therefore, serve as a tool for quantifying this effect, which has a large spatial impact. As biocrusts cover vast regions in deserts worldwide, this discovery has repercussions for LSE estimations in deserts around the globe, and these LSE variations can potentially have considerable effects on geophysical models from local to regional scales.

  3. Variation of bee communities on a sand dune complex in the Great Basin: Implications for sand dune conservation

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Sand dunes across the Mojave and Great Basin Deserts house rich bee communities. The pollination services these bees provide can be vital in maintaining the diverse, and often endemic, dune flora. These dune environments, however, are threatened by intense off-highway vehicle (OHV) use. Conservati...

  4. The effects of psammophilous plants on sand dune dynamics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bel, Golan; Ashkenazy, Yosef

    2014-07-01

    Mathematical models of sand dune dynamics have considered different types of sand dune cover. However, despite the important role of psammophilous plants (plants that flourish in moving-sand environments) in dune dynamics, the incorporation of their effects into mathematical models of sand dunes remains a challenging task. Here we propose a nonlinear physical model for the role of psammophilous plants in the stabilization and destabilization of sand dunes. There are two main mechanisms by which the wind affects these plants: (i) sand drift results in the burial and exposure of plants, a process that is known to result in an enhanced growth rate, and (ii) strong winds remove shoots and rhizomes and seed them in nearby locations, enhancing their growth rate. Our model describes the temporal evolution of the fractions of surface cover of regular vegetation, biogenic soil crust, and psammophilous plants. The latter reach their optimal growth under either (i) specific sand drift or (ii) specific wind power. The model exhibits complex bifurcation diagrams and dynamics, which explain observed phenomena, and it predicts new dune stabilization scenarios. Depending on the climatological conditions, it is possible to obtain one, two, or, predicted here for the first time, three stable dune states. Our model shows that the development of the different cover types depends on the precipitation rate and the wind power and that the psammophilous plants are not always the first to grow and stabilize the dunes.

  5. Temporal observations of a linear sand dune in the Simpson Desert, central Australia: Testing models for dune formation on planetary surfaces

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Craddock, Robert A.; Tooth, Stephen; Zimbelman, James R.; Wilson, Sharon A.; Maxwell, Ted A.; Kling, Corbin

    2015-10-01

    Linear dunes are the most common dune form found on planetary surfaces, yet questions remain about their formation. Temporal observations of a linear dune located in the Simpson Desert of central Australia were made to monitor dune movement and to test competing hypotheses regarding linear dune formation. Our observations were collected on three separate occasions from 2006 to 2014. Rebar stakes were placed in a gridded pattern so that multiple measurements of sand thickness, GPS surveys, and photographs could be taken at the same locations over time. We observed widespread reworking of sand on and around the dune crest, with sand accumulation locally exceeding a meter between surveys. Overall, the height of the dune crest increased by several centimeters. We also observed fluctuations in the sand cover in the adjacent swales that often exceeded 2-3 cm between surveys, yet we did not observe any appreciable changes in the position of the dune's downwind terminus. Weather data indicate that the effective sand-transporting winds in the Simpson are widely unimodal. Net sediment flux (resultant drift direction) is toward the north-northwest, locally at an oblique angle to dune orientation. Collectively, our results suggest that the linear dune is actively maintained by vertical accretion. The implications from our observations are that linear dunes on other planetary surfaces could form in wind regimes that are widely unimodal, even where the resultant drift direction is locally oblique to dune orientation. In particular, such findings may provide support for global circulation models of Titan.

  6. Twentieth century dune migration at the Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve, Colorado, relation to drought variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marín, L.; Forman, S. L.; Valdez, A.; Bunch, F.

    2005-08-01

    The Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve in southern Colorado contains a large dune mass banked against the Sangre de Cristo Mountains. The dune mass is bounded for hundreds of kilometers by a vegetated low-relief sand sheet with abundant active parabolic and barchanoid dunes. The clear morphology of these dunes, formed by winds mostly from the southwest, and the unambiguous identification of these forms in remotely sensed images provide straightforward targets to assess temporal changes in dune position. A digital database of georeferenced remote sensing images from 1936 to 1999 is used to quantify parabolic and barchan dune migration rates and surface reflectance, an indicator of vegetation cover, with evolving drought conditions in the twentieth century. The total net migration of 13 parabolic dunes in 63 years is 0.31 to 0.66 km, whereas 11 barchan dunes moved an average of 0.12 to 0.47 km. Compared to intervening wet year, there is at least a three-fold increase in average parabolic dune migration, during well-documented droughts in the 1930s, 1950s, and 1990s with a concomitant reduction in vegetation cover and surface water resources. The landscape response to the most recent drought in the late twentieth century is documented by an average parabolic dune migration rate of 30 m/year, which is a six-fold acceleration over prior wet years, and similar to dune response during the 1930s. A nonlinear threshold for parabolic dune migration is indicated with lower quartile Palmer Drought Severity Index values of < - 2, which corresponds to at least a 25% reduction in summer and autumn precipitation.

  7. Geomorphology of coastal sand dunes, Baldwin County, Alabama

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Bearden, Bennett L.; Hummell, Richard L.; Mink, Robert M.

    1989-01-01

    Alabama's coastal eolian deposits are primarily vegetated dunes that are exemplified by sand ridges with flat to undulating upper surfaces and continuous irregular crests. Dune fields occur along Morgan peninsula between the foredune line and Little Lagoon and the Mobile Bay area. These dune fields consist primarily of one or more continuous ridges that parallel the coast and are generally vegetaed to grassy. Washover of the beach and backshore during Hurricane Frederic (1979) and subsequent smaller scale storms resulted in significant erosion of many of Alabama's dune fields. The primary dunes or foredunes are beginning to recover from the effects of these storms; however, numerous breaks in the primary dune line are present. Sand dunes in coastal Alabama provide protection against storm-generated waves and washover. The foredunes are protected by adherence to a Coastal Construction Control Line (CCCL) or construction setback line identified by markers along coastal Baldwin County.

  8. Mulitple Origins of Sand Dune-Topography Interactions on Titan

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Goggin, H.; Ewing, R. C.; Hayes, A.; Cisneros, J.; Epps, J. C.

    2015-12-01

    The interaction between sand dune patterns and topographic obstacles is a primary signal of sand transport direction in the equatorial region of Saturn's moon, Titan. The streamlined, tear drop appearance of the sand-dune patterns as they wrap around obstacles and a dune-free zone on the east side of many obstacles gives the impression that sand transport is from the west to east at equatorial latitudes. However, the physical mechanism behind the dune-obstacle interaction is not well explained, leaving a gap in our understanding of the equatorial sand transport and implied wind directions and magnitudes on Titan. In order to better understand this interaction and evaluate wind and sand transport direction, we use morphometric analysis of optical images on Earth and Cassini SAR images on Titan combined with analog wind tunnel experiments to study dune-topography interactions. Image analysis is performed in a GIS environment to map spatial variations in dune crestline orientations proximal to obstacles. We also use digital elevation models to and analyze the three-dimensional geometry - height, length, width and slope of the dune-topography relationships on Earth. Preliminary results show that dune patterns are deflected similarly around positive, neutral, or negative topography, where positive topography is greater than the surrounding dune height, neutral topography is at dune height and negative topography is lower than dune heights. In the latter case these are typically intra-dune field playas. The obstacle height, width, slope and wind variability appear to play a primary role in determining if a lee-dune, rather than a dune-free lee-zone, develops. In many cases a dune-free playa with evaporite and mud desiccation polygons forms lee-ward of the obstacle. To support and elaborate on the mapping and spatial characterization of dune-topography interactions, a series of experiments using a wind tunnel were conducted. Wind tunnel experiments examine the formation

  9. Sand dunes on the central Delmarva Peninsula, Maryland and Delaware

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Denny, Charles Storrow; Owens, James Patrick

    1979-01-01

    Inconspicuous ancient sand dunes are present in parts of the central Delmarva Peninsula, Maryland and Delaware. Many dunes are roughly V-shaped, built by northwest winds, especially on the east sides of some of the large rivers. On the uplands, the form and spacing of the dunes are variable. A surficial blanket composed mainly of medium and fine-grained sand-the Parsonsburg Sand-forms both the ancient dunes and the broad plains between the dunes. The sand that forms the dunes is massive and intensely burrowed in the upper part; traces of horizontal or slightly inclined bedding appear near the base. Quartz is the dominant mineral constituent of the sand. Microline is abundant in the very fine to fine sand fraction. The heavy-mineral assemblages (high zircon, tourmaline, rutile) are more mature than in most of the possible source rocks. The most abundant minerals in the clay-sized fraction are dioctahedral vermiculite, kaolinite, illite, montmorillonite, and gibbsite. The first four minerals are common in deposits of late Wisconsin and Holocene age. The gibbsite may be detrital, coming from weathered rocks of Tertiary age. The soil profile in the dune sand is weakly to moderately developed. At or near the base of the Parsonsburg Sand are peaty beds that range in age from about 30,000 to about 13,000 radiocarbon years B.P. Microfloral assemblages in the peaty beds suggest that the dunes on the uplands formed in a spruce parkland during the late Wisconsin glacial maximum. The river dunes may also be of late Wisconsin age, but could be Holocene.

  10. Relating climate and sand transport to incipient dune development.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    van Puijenbroek, Marinka; Limpens, Juul; Gleichman, Maurits; Berendse, Frank

    2014-05-01

    Sea levels are continuously rising, increasing the risk of flooding and coastal erosion in low-elevation countries, such as the Netherlands. Coastal dunes are seen as a flexible and natural type of coastal defence, that is able to keep pace with rising water levels. Until now most research has focussed on dynamics and maintenance of established dunes, largely ignoring two critical transitions in early dune development: the transition from bare beach to vegetated incipient dune and that from incipient dune to established foredune. This knowledge is essential to enable more accurate prediction and even stimulation of new dune formation through sand nourishment. We explored the relative contributions of climate and sand transport to incipient dune development combining a 30 year time-series of aerial photographs (1979 - 2010) of the natural Wadden Island coast with high-resolution monitoring data of sand volume changes and climatic parameters. We selected 20 strips of 2.5 km in length along the coast of the Wadden Islands, with a 2 km buffer between them to avoid autocorrelation. For each of these strips of coast we assessed the changes in presence and area of incipient dunes over periods of 5-6 years. Change in fore dune volume and beach width were derived from high resolution beach elevation data. Seawater level and climate data were derived from a nearby meteorological station Preliminary analysis of the first half of the dataset showed that incipient dune area was positively related to beach width, but negatively to storm intensity. In our poster we will present the whole dataset and discuss the implications of our results for future dune development and anthropogenic sand nourishment schemes.

  11. Dune ages in the sand deserts of the southern Sahara and Sahel

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bristow, Charlie; Armitage, Simon

    2015-04-01

    In this paper we aim to document the history of aeolian processes within the southern Sahara as part of the INQUA Dune Atlas. We review available luminescence ages for sand dunes across the southern Sahara and attempt to correlate periods of sand accumulation and to develop an improved understanding of the dune chronology on a regional basis. This was achieved by analysing dune age by country, as well as by latitude and longitude. The results show a very patchy spatial distribution of dune ages with large gaps that encompass some of the largest sand seas. Despite these gaps, some related patterns in dune morphology and stratigraphy appear to be consistent between northern Nigeria and southern Mali where older linear dunes are distinct from younger Late Holocene transverse and barchanoid dunes. Elsewhere in Mauretania linear dunes with different orientations appear to have accumulated at different times, most likely in response to changes in atmospheric circulation. Regional climatic changes are identified where dunes are transgressed by lake deposits within endorehic basins. We identify four locations where dune accumulation is terminated by lacustrine transgressions, two of which, in Lake Chad and the Bodélé Depression, occur shortly after the last glacial maximum (LGM). The third example at Gobiero in Niger occurred later, in the early Holocene, around 8.4 ka and a fourth marks a later transgression of Palaeolake MegaChad after 4.7 ka. Larger-scale latitudinal and longitudinal distributions in dune ages across the southern Sahara do not show any consistent patterns, though this may due to the small sample size relative to the study area. In addition, local variations in external controls such as wind regime, rainfall, vegetation and sand supply need to be considered, sometimes on a site by site basis. Limiting the analysis to dune ages determined using the single-aliquot regenerative-dose (SAR) protocol indicates a lack of dune preservation during the LGM and

  12. Complexity confers stability: Climate variability, vegetation response and sand transport on longitudinal sand dunes in Australia's deserts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hesse, Paul P.; Telfer, Matt W.; Farebrother, Will

    2017-04-01

    The relationship between antecedent precipitation, vegetation cover and sand movement on sand dunes in the Simpson and Strzelecki Deserts was investigated by repeated (up to four) surveys of dune crest plots (≈25 × 25 m) over a drought cycle (2002-2012) in both winter (low wind) and spring (high wind). Vegetation varied dramatically between surveys on vegetated and active dune crests. Indices of sand movement had significant correlations with vegetation cover: the depth of loose sand has a strong inverse relationship with crust (cyanobacterial and/or physical) while the area covered by ripples has a strong inverse relationship with the areal cover of vascular plants. However, the relationship between antecedent rainfall and vegetation cover was found to be complex. We tentatively identify two thresholds; (1) >10 mm of rainfall in the preceding 90 days leads to rapid and near total cover of crust and/or small plants <50 cm tall, and (2) >400 mm of rainfall in the preceding three years leads to higher cover of persistent and longer-lived plants >50 cm tall. These thresholds were used to predict days of low vegetation cover on dune crests. The combination of seasonality of predicted bare-crest days, potential sand drift and resultant sand drift direction explains observed patterns of sand drift on these dunes. The complex vegetation and highly variable rainfall regime confer meta-stability on the dunes through the range of responses to different intervals of antecedent rainfall and non-linear growth responses. This suggests that the geomorphic response of dunes to climate variation is complex and non-linear.

  13. Documentation of Recent Surface Winds on Martian Sand Dunes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zimbelman, J. R.; Johnson, M. B.

    2013-12-01

    Images from the High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (HiRISE) are of sufficient resolution to record wind ripple patterns on the surfaces of sand dunes present across the surface of Mars. We are in the early stages of an investigation to map the ripple orientations preserved on Martian sand dunes, in order to evaluate the recent wind flow over the dunes, and compare that wind flow pattern to the winds documented over terrestrial sand dunes. HiRISE image ESP_025645_1455 covers a sand dune field on the floor of a 20-km-diameter unnamed impact crater in the Terra Cimmeria region of the southern highlands, east of the Hellas impact basin. This image is centered at 34.23 S latitude, 138.437 E longitude with 25 cm/pixel resolution, and was taken on Jan 25 of 2012 during northern spring (Ls = 57.4). Using ArcGIS, lines were drawn across three ripples perpendicular to the ripple crests, avoiding places where complex ripple patterns suggest more than one recent wind direction. The length of the lines provides a measure of ripple wavelength, and the line orientation gives azimuth (with a 180 degree absolute ambiguity). The barchan-like shape of some dunes, including occasional slip faces, suggest sand driving winds were from the southwest, although dune asymmetries indicate the wind regime likely was much more complex than a unimodal wind. Measurements of ripple orientations are being collected from dune locations across the planet, which should provide new constraints for the modeling of recent Martian winds. This work was supported by NASA MDAP grant NNX12AJ38G.

  14. Do dune sands redden with age? The case of the northwestern Negev dunefield, Israel

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Roskin, Joel; Blumberg, Dan G.; Porat, Naomi; Tsoar, Haim; Rozenstein, Offer

    2012-08-01

    The redness index of aeolian sand has been shown to be a promising qualitative spectroscopic method to define sand grain redness intensity, which reflects the extent of iron-oxide quartz grain coatings. This study investigates the relationship between redness intensity and optically stimulated luminescence (OSL) based depositional ages of sand samples taken from exposed and fully-drilled vegetated linear dunes in the northwestern Negev dunefield, Israel. Sand redness intensity did not vary greatly along the Negev sand transport paths and dune sections dated to be active during the Late Pleistocene (˜18-11.5 ka), Late Holocene, and modern times. No correlation was found between RI intensity (i.e., redness) and the depositional age of the sand. The relatively uniform RI values and sedimentological properties along most of the dunes suggest that sand grain coating development, and consequent rubification, have probably been minimal since the Late Pleistocene. Although it is possible that RI developed rapidly following deposition in a wetter Late Pleistocene climate, the drier and less stormy Holocene does not seem conducive to sand-grain rubification. Based on analyses of northern Sinai sand samples, remote sensing, and previous studies, we suggest that the attributes of the sand grain RI have been inherited from upwind sources. We propose that the sand grain coatings are early diagenetic features that have been similarly red since their suggested aeolian departure from the middle and upper Nile Delta.

  15. Sand transportation and reverse patterns over leeward face of sand dune

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jiang, Hong; Dun, Hongchao; Tong, Ding; Huang, Ning

    2017-04-01

    Sand saltation has complex interactions with turbulent flow and dune form. Most models of wind-blown sand consider ideal circumstances such as steady wind velocity and a flat surface, and the bulk of data on wind flow and sand transport over an individual dune has focused mostly on the influence of dune shape or inter-dune space on the wind flow, neglecting the effect of morphology on sand saltation, particularly airflow and sand transportation over the leeward slope. Wind flow structures over the leeward slope of sand dunes have a fundamental influence on the organization of sand dunes. In order to understand sand dune dynamics, lee face airflow and sediment transportation should be paid more attention. Previous field observations could not measure turbulent flow structure well because of the limited observation points and the influence of experiment structure on wind field. In addition, the reverse sand particles over leeward face could not be collected by sand trap in field. Numerous field observations could not measure turbulent flow structure because of the limited observation points and the influence of experimental structures on the wind field. In addition, the reverse transport of sand particles over leeward face could not be collected by sand traps in field. Therefore, this paper aims to investigate the turbulent flow structure and sand transport pattern over the leeward slope. A numerical model of sand saltation over slope terrain is constructed, which also considers the coupling effects between air flow and sand particles. The large eddy simulation method is used to model turbulent flow. Sand transport is simulated by tracking the trajectory of each sand particle. The results show that terrain significantly alters the turbulent air flow structure and wind-blown sand movement, especially over the leeward slope. Here, mass flux increases initially and then decreases with height in the reversed flow region in the direction of wind flow, and the mass flux

  16. Holocene eolian activity in the Minot dune field, North Dakota

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Muhs, D.R.; Stafford, Thomas W.; Been, J.; Mahan, S.A.; Burdett, J.; Skipp, G.; Rowland, Z.M.

    1997-01-01

    Stabilized eolian sand is common over much of the Great Plains region of the United States and Canada, including a subhumid area of ??? 1500 km2 near Minot, North Dakota. Eolian landforms consist of sand sheets and northwest-trending parabolic dunes. Dunes and sand sheets in the Minot field are presently stabilized by a cover of prairie grasses or oak woodland. Stratigraphic studies and accelerator mass spectrometry radiocarbon dating of paleosols indicate at least two periods of eolian sand movement in the late Holocene. Pedologic data suggest that all of the dune field has experienced late Holocene dune activity, though not all parts of the dune field may have been active simultaneously. Similar immobile element (Ti, Zr, La, Ce) concentrations support the interpretation that eolian sands are derived from local glaciofluvial and glaciolacustrine sediments. However, glaciolacustrine and glaciofluvial source sediments have high Ca concentrations from carbonate minerals, whereas dune sands are depleted in Ca. Because noneolian-derived soils in the area are calcareous, these data indicate that the Minot dune field may have had extended periods of activity in the Holocene, such that eolian abrasion removed soft carbonate minerals. The southwest-facing parts of some presently stabilized dunes were active during the 1930s drought, but were revegetated during the wetter years of the 1940s. These observations indicate that severe droughts accompanied by high temperatures are the most likely cause of Holocene eolian activity.

  17. Temperature and humidity measurements within desert barchan sand dunes, relation to dune aeolian mobility and microbial growth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Louge, Michel; Hay, Anthony; Richer, Renee; Valance, Alexandre; Ould el Moctar, Ahmed; Xu, Jin; Abdul-Majid, Sara

    2013-04-01

    We present diurnal variations of temperature and humidity profiles below the surface of hyper-arid aeolian crescent-shaped "barchan" dunes in Qatar and Mauritania, measured using a thermal probe and a new ultra-sensitive capacitance instrument that we developed for this purpose. We also report long-term measurements from a probe sunk on the downwind avalanche face of a mobile Qatar barchan, recording temperature and humidity until it emerged on the upwind slope 15 months later. We interpret the data by modeling heat and moisture transfer at the surface in terms of measured net surface radiation, wind, and atmospheric conditions. We demonstrate the presence of microbes on sand grains within these mobile dunes using microscopic observations, fluorescence counts, metagenomic sequencing, and C12/C13 isotope analysis of carbon dioxide sampled below the surface. By determining how water activity grows with moisture adsorbed on these sands, we delimit regions within the dune where our instruments recorded humidity conducive to microbial growth. Finally, we compare the mobility of two adjacent Mauritania barchans having distinct surface grain size, shape, and depth humidity profiles. Armored by large grains on its surface, the smaller dune was more oblong. As a result, it lacked flow recirculation in its wake, trapped less aeolian sand downwind, and was much less mobile than its smaller size would suggest. This slower mobility led to greater humidity and cohesion at depth than the larger dune exposed to the same atmospheric and wind conditions.

  18. Optically stimulated luminescence dating of aeolian sand in the otindag dune field and holocene climate change

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Zhou, Y.L.; Lu, H.Y.; Mason, J.; Miao, X.D.; Swinehart, J.; Goble, R.

    2008-01-01

    The dune system in Otindag sand field of northern China is sensitive to climate change, where effective moisture and related vegetation cover play a controlling role for dune activity and stability. Therefore, aeolian deposits may be an archive of past environmental changes, possibly at the millennial scale, but previous studies on this topic have rarely been reported. In this study, thirty-five optically stimulated luminescence (OSL) ages of ten representative sand-paleosol profiles in Otindag sand field are obtained, and these ages provide a relatively complete and well-dated chronology for wet and dry variations in Holocene. The results indicate that widespread dune mobilization occurred from 9.9 to 8.2 ka, suggesting a dry early Holocene climate. The dunes were mainly stabilized between 8.0 and 2.7 ka, implying a relatively wet climate, although there were short-term penetrations of dune activity during this wet period. After ???2.3 ka, the region became dry again, as inferred from widespread dune activity. The "8.2 ka" cold event and the Little Ice Age climatic deterioration are detected on the basis of the dune records and OSL ages. During the Medieval Warm Period and the Sui-Tang Warm Period (570-770 AD), climate in Otindag sand field was relatively humid and the vegetation was denser, and the sand dunes were stabilized again. These aeolian records may indicate climate changes at millennial time scale during Holocene, and these climatic changes may be the teleconnection to the climate changes elsewhere in the world. ?? Science in China Press and Springer-Verlag GmbH 2008.

  19. Radionuclide transfer to invertebrates and small mammals in a coastal sand dune ecosystem.

    PubMed

    Wood, M D; Leah, R T; Jones, S R; Copplestone, D

    2009-06-15

    International intercomparisons of models to assess the impact of ionising radiation on wildlife have identified radionuclide transfer assumptions as a significant source of uncertainty in the modelling process. There is a need to improve the underpinning data sets on radionuclide transfer to reduce this uncertainty, especially for poorly-studied ecosystems such as coastal sand dunes. This paper presents the results of the first published study of radionuclide transfer to invertebrates and small mammals in a coastal sand dune ecosystem. Activity concentrations of (137)Cs, (238)Pu, (239+240)Pu and (241)Am are reported for detritivorous, herbivorous, carnivorous and omnivorous biota. Differences in activity concentrations measured in the sand dune biota are related to the trophic level of the organisms and the influence of sea-to-land transfer is apparent in the food chain transfer observed at the site. There are notable differences in the concentration ratios (CRs) calculated for the sand dune biota compared to other terrestrial ecosystems, especially for the small mammals which have CRs that are two orders of magnitude lower than the generic terrestrial ecosystem CRs published by the recent EC EURATOM ERICA project. The lower CRs at the sand dunes may be due to the influence of other cations from the marine environment (e.g. K and Na) on the net radionuclide transfer observed, but further research is required to test this hypothesis.

  20. Laboratory simulations of Martian gullies on sand dunes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Védie, E.; Costard, F.; Font, M.; Lagarde, J. L.

    2008-11-01

    Small gullies, observed on Mars, could be formed by groundwater seepage from an underground aquifer or may result from the melting of near-surface ground ice at high obliquity. To test these different hypotheses, a cold room-based laboratory simulation has been performed. The experimental slope was designed to simulate debris flows on sand dune slopes at a range of angles, different granulometry and permafrost characteristics. Preliminary results suggest that the typical morphology of gullies observed on Mars can best be reproduced by the formation of linear debris flows related to the melting of a near-surface ground ice with silty materials. This physical modelling highlights the role of the periglacial conditions, especially the active-layer thickness during debris-flow formation.

  1. 76 FR 57074 - Transfer of Administrative Jurisdiction at or Near Great Sand Dunes National Park

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-09-15

    ... National Park Service Transfer of Administrative Jurisdiction at or Near Great Sand Dunes National Park... benefit of Great Sand Dunes National Park, Baca National Wildlife Refuge, and the Rio Grande National... (Secretary) acquired certain lands and interests in land for the benefit of Great Sand Dunes National...

  2. 76 FR 68503 - Ungulate Management Plan/Environmental Impact Statement, Great Sand Dunes National Park and...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-11-04

    ... National Park Service Ungulate Management Plan/Environmental Impact Statement, Great Sand Dunes National... Intent to prepare an Environmental Impact Statement for the Ungulate Management Plan, Great Sand Dunes... Ungulate Management Plan, Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve, Colorado. The purpose of this...

  3. Seasonal geomorphic processes and rates of sand movement at Mount Baldy dune in Indiana, USA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kilibarda, Zoran; Kilibarda, Vesna

    2016-12-01

    Winds are very strong, frequent, and have high energy (annual DP ∼800 VU) along the southern shores of Lake Michigan, allowing the coexistence of fixed and active dunes. Six years (2007-13) of monitoring Mount Baldy in the Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore reveals that this is the most active coastal dune in the Great Lakes region. This paper documents aeolian processes and changes in the dune's morphology that occur temporarily, following storms, or seasonally, due to weather (climate) variations. Most of the sand transport in this area takes place during strong storms with gale force (>17.5 m/s) winds, which occur in the autumn and winter months. A single storm, such as the October 28-31, 2013 event, can contribute 25% of the annual sand transport and dune movement inland. In its most active year (June 1, 2011 through May 31, 2012), Mount Baldy moved inland on average 4.34 m, with a maximum of 6.52 m along the blowout's axis (155° azimuth). During this particularly active season, there were six storms with sustained gale force winds, winter air temperatures were warmer than average, and shelf ice on Lake Michigan lasted only one day. The dune is least active during the summer season, when the winds are weakest. The late fall and winter winds are the strongest. But in a typical year, most of the dune's advance inland takes place during the spring thaw when sand is released from over-steepened and lumpy slip face, allowing it to avalanche to the toe of the slip face. However, with a warming air temperatures, a reduction in the duration of winter shelf ice, and rising Lake Michigan levels, the annual rates of sand transport and dune movement may increase. The recent Mount Baldy management strategy, which includes planting vegetation and installing wind barriers on the dune's stoss side in an effort to fix the dune and stop its further movement inland, may potentially cause the destruction of the mobile sand, open dune habitat, resulting in the extinction of rare

  4. Debris Flow Gullies at the Great Kobuk Sand Dunes, Alaska: Implications for Analogous Features on Mars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hooper, D. M.; Dinwiddie, C. L.; Mcginnis, R. N.; Smart, K. J.; Roberts, M.

    2011-12-01

    Debris flows with fresh-appearing gullies or erosion tracks occur on the slopes of several mid- to high-latitude dune fields in both Martian hemispheres. These features originate in alcoves near dune crests, become channelized down lee faces, and terminate with depositional fans. They bear a striking resemblance to small meltwater-induced debris flows observed on the lee slopes of large dunes at the 67 degrees N latitude Great Kobuk Sand Dunes (GKSD), Kobuk Valley National Park, Alaska. The high-latitude, cold-climate GKSD are an optimal terrestrial system within which to conduct a Mars analog study focused on understanding the integrated factors that cause alluvial debris flows to initiate on the lee slopes of aeolian dunes. Debris flow processes in the GKSD are activated by seasonal thawing and consist of a mixture of sand and liquid water cascading down the dune slipface. A distinguishing environmental attribute that separates cold-climate dune fields from temperate and warm-climate dune fields is the seasonal and prolonged occurrence of snow and ice. Cold region dunes often include niveo-aeolian deposits composed of interbedded sand, snow, and ice. The GKSD are variably affected by snowcover for ~70% of each year, which likely has direct analogy to hydrocryospheric factors that influence debris flow development on Mars. Melting and/or sublimation of snow and ice during warm periods cause distinctive morphologic and sedimentologic phenomena ascribed as denivation features or forms, including spongy and hummocky surfaces, tensional cracks, deformed strata, slumping, and compressional structures. We observed small debris flows, niveo-aeolian deposits, and denivation features in the GKSD during fieldwork in March 2010. Wind-transported sand and snow accumulated on the lee slopes of large transverse, longitudinal, and barchanoid dunes. Snow banks with intercalated sand layers are especially prominent and thickest near the top of westward-facing lee slopes at the

  5. Nourishment of perched sand dunes and the issue of erosion control in the Great Lakes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marsh, William M.

    1990-09-01

    Although limited in coverage, perched sand dunes situated on high coastal bluffs are considered the most prized of Great Lakes dunes. Grand Sable Dunes on Lake Superior and Sleeping Bear Dunes on Lake Michigan are featured attractions of national lakeshores under National Park Service management. The source of sand for perched dunes is the high bluff along their lakeward edge. As onshore wind crosses the bluff, flow is accelerated upslope, resulting in greatly elevated levels of wind stress over the slope brow. On barren, sandy bluffs, wind erosion is concentrated in the brow zone, and for the Grand Sable Bluff, it averaged 1 m3/yr per linear meter along the highest sections for the period 1973 1983. This mechanism accounts for about 6,500 m3 of sand nourishment to the dunefield annually and clearly has been the predominant mechanism for the long-term development of the dunefield. However, wind erosion and dune nourishment are possible only where the bluff is denuded of plant cover by mass movements and related processes induced by wave erosion. In the Great Lakes, wave erosion and bluff retreat vary with lake levels; the nourishment of perched dunes is favored by high levels. Lake levels have been relatively high for the past 50 years, and shore erosion has become a major environmental issue leading property owners and politicians to support lake-level regulation. Trimming high water levels could reduce geomorphic activity on high bluffs and affect dune nourishment rates. Locally, nourishment also may be influenced by sediment accumulation associated with harbor protection facilities and by planting programs aimed at stabilizing dunes.

  6. Analysis of Wind-blown Sand Movement over Transverse Dunes

    PubMed Central

    Jiang, Hong; Huang, Ning; Zhu, Yuanjian

    2014-01-01

    Wind-blown sand movement often occurs in a very complicated desert environment where sand dunes and ripples are the basic forms. However, most current studies on the theoretic and numerical models of wind-blown sand movement only consider ideal conditions such as steady wind velocity, flat sand surface, etc. In fact, the windward slope gradient plays a great role in the lift-off and sand particle saltation. In this paper, we propose a numerical model for the coupling effect between wind flow and saltating sand particles to simulate wind-blown sand movement over the slope surface and use the SIMPLE algorithm to calculate wind flow and simulate sands transport by tracking sand particle trajectories. We furthermore compare the result of numerical simulation with wind tunnel experiments. These results prove that sand particles have obvious effect on wind flow, especially that over the leeward slope. This study is a preliminary study on windblown sand movement in a complex terrain, and is of significance in the control of dust storms and land desertification. PMID:25434372

  7. Geologic map of Great Sand Dunes National Park, Colorado

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Madole, Richard F.; VanSistine, D. Paco; Romig, Joseph H.

    2016-10-20

    Geologic mapping was begun after a range fire swept the area of what is now the Great Sand Dunes National Park in April 2000. The park spans an area of 437 square kilometers (or about 169 square miles), of which 98 percent is blanketed by sediment of Quaternary age, the Holocene and Pleistocene Epochs; hence, this geologic map of the Great Sand Dunes National Park is essentially a surficial geologic map. These surficial deposits are diverse and include sediment of eolian (windblown), alluvial (stream and sheetwash), palustrine (wetlands and marshes), lacustrine (lake), and mass-wasting (landslides) origin. Sediment of middle and late Holocene age, from about 8,000 years ago to the present, covers about 80 percent of the park.Fluctuations in groundwater level during Holocene time caused wetlands on the nearby lowland that bounds the park on the west to alternately expand and contract. These fluctuations controlled the stability or instability of eolian sand deposits on the downwind (eastern) side of the lowland. When groundwater level rose, playas became lakes, and wet or marshy areas formed in many places. When the water table rose, spring-fed streams filled their channels and valley floors with sediment. Conversely, when groundwater level fell, spring-fed streams incised their valley floors, and lakes, ponds, and marshes dried up and became sources of windblown sand.Discharge in streams draining the west flank of the Sangre de Cristo Range is controlled primarily by snowmelt and flow is perennial until it reaches the mountain front, beyond which streams begin losing water at a high rate as the water soaks into the creek beds. Even streams originating in the larger drainage basins, such as Sand and Medano Creeks, generally do not extend much more than 4 km (about 2.5 miles) beyond where they exit the mountains.The Great Sand Dunes contain the tallest dunes (maximum height about 750 feet, or 230 m) in North America. These dunes cover an area of 72 square kilometers

  8. Late Pleistocene dune activity in the central Great Plains, USA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Mason, J.A.; Swinehart, J.B.; Hanson, P.R.; Loope, D.B.; Goble, R.J.; Miao, X.; Schmeisser, R.L.

    2011-01-01

    Stabilized dunes of the central Great Plains, especially the megabarchans and large barchanoid ridges of the Nebraska Sand Hills, provide dramatic evidence of late Quaternary environmental change. Episodic Holocene dune activity in this region is now well-documented, but Late Pleistocene dune mobility has remained poorly documented, despite early interpretations of the Sand Hills dunes as Pleistocene relicts. New optically stimulated luminescence (OSL) ages from drill cores and outcrops provide evidence of Late Pleistocene dune activity at sites distributed across the central Great Plains. In addition, Late Pleistocene eolian sands deposited at 20-25 ka are interbedded with loess south of the Sand Hills. Several of the large dunes sampled in the Sand Hills clearly contain a substantial core of Late Pleistocene sand; thus, they had developed by the Late Pleistocene and were fully mobile at that time, although substantial sand deposition and extensive longitudinal dune construction occurred during the Holocene. Many of the Late Pleistocene OSL ages fall between 17 and 14 ka, but it is likely that these ages represent only the later part of a longer period of dune construction and migration. At several sites, significant Late Pleistocene or Holocene large-dune migration also probably occurred after the time represented by the Pleistocene OSL ages. Sedimentary structures in Late Pleistocene eolian sand and the forms of large dunes potentially constructed in the Late Pleistocene both indicate sand transport dominated by northerly to westerly winds, consistent with Late Pleistocene loess transport directions. Numerical modeling of the climate of the Last Glacial Maximum has often yielded mean monthly surface winds southwest of the Laurentide Ice Sheet that are consistent with this geologic evidence, despite strengthened anticyclonic circulation over the ice sheet. Mobility of large dunes during the Late Pleistocene on the central Great Plains may have been the result of

  9. Comparison of two Satellite Imaging Platforms for Evaluating Sand Dune Migration in the Ubari Sand Sea (Libyan Fazzan)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Els, A.; Merlo, S.; Knight, J.

    2015-04-01

    Sand dunes can change location, form or dimensions depending on wind direction and strength. Sand dune movements can be effectively monitored through the comparison of multi-temporal satellite images. However, not all remote sensing platforms are suitable to study sand dunes. This study compares coarse (Landsat) and fine (Worldview) resolution platforms, specifically focussing on sand dunes within the Ubari Sand Sea (Libya). Sand dune features (crest line, dune ridge basal outlines) were extracted from Landsat and Worldview 2 imagery in order to construct geomorphic maps. These geomorphic maps were then compared using image overlay and differencing, and the Root Mean Squared Error (RMSE) was used to determine if the mapped dune patterns were significantly different. It was found that Landsat is a sufficient data source when studying dune patterns within a regional sand sea, but smaller dunes identified from Worldview data were not capable of being extracted in the data sourced from Landsat. This means that for studies concerned with the dune patterns and movements within sand seas, Landsat is sufficient. But in studies where the specific dynamics of specific dunes are required, a finer resolution is required; platforms such as Worldview are needed in order to gain more detailed insight and to link the past and present day climate and environmental change.

  10. Seismic Evidence for a Resonance Layer in Booming Sand Dunes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vriend, N. M.; Hunt, M. L.; Clayton, R. W.

    2006-12-01

    "Booming sand dunes" are large desert dunes that emit a loud droning, low-frequency sound during an avalanche of sand on the leeward face of a dune. The monotone sound (70-105 Hz) may continue for up to a minute after initiation, even after all visible motion has ceased. The source of the booming sound has long been a mystery and no accepted scientific explanation has been proposed yet. Seismic refraction experiments conducted with a closely-spaced 48 channel system show a shallow (< 10 m) subsurface layering inside the dune with significant velocity contrasts between the individual layers. The seismic body wave velocities in the top three layers of sand (240 m/s, 360 m/s and 460 m/s) are very close to the acoustic velocity in air (355 m/s) while at the same time the surface waves are highly attenuated. The seismic velocity changes cannot be explained by increasing confined pressure but must be provided by a seasonally changing physical structure. From the seismic survey it is further noted that the layering narrows towards the foothill. During the sustained boom, the frequency rises slightly (from 85 Hertz to 95 Hertz) as the source due to the avalanche proceeds downwards. This observation was deduced from analyzing the booming emission on all 48 geophones in conjunction with a high-quality air microphone. The multi-layer internal structure of the dune provides a resonance cavity that amplifies particular frequencies and creates the loud booming sound. The resonance and its interaction with the air is modeled with finite- difference simulations.

  11. Hydrologic Modeling of the White Sands Dune Field, New Mexico

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bourret, S. M.; Newton, B. T.; Person, M. A.

    2013-12-01

    The shallow groundwater flow system of White Sands dune field, located within the Tularosa Basin of Southern New Mexico, likely stabilizes the base of the largest gypsum dunefield in the world. Water table geometry and elevation play a critical role in controlling dune thickness, spatial extent, and migration rates. The White Sands National Monument (WHSA) is concerned that lowering the water table may lead to increased scour and migration of the dune field, which could be unfavorable to the preservation of the flora and fauna that have adapted to survive there. In response to projected increases in groundwater pumping in the regional Tularosa Basin groundwater system, changes in surface water use, and the threat of climate change, the WHSA is interested in understanding how these changes on a regional scale may impact the shallow dune aquifer. We have collected hydrological, geochemical, and geophysical data in order to identify the sources of recharge that contribute to the shallow dune aquifer and to assess interactions between this water table aquifer and the basin-scale, regional system. Vertical head gradients, temperature, and water quality data strongly suggest that local precipitation is the primary source of recharge to the dune aquifer today. This suggests that the modern dune system is relatively isolated from the deeper regional system. However, geochemical and electrical resistivity data indicates that the deeper basin groundwater system does contribute to the shallow system and suggests that hydrologic conditions have changed on geologic time scales. We have constructed a preliminary cross-sectional hydrologic model to attempt to characterize the interaction of the shallow dune aquifer with the deeper basin groundwater. The model cross-section extends about 80 km across the Tularosa Basin in a NW-SE direction parallel to the primary flow path. We represented 6 km of Precambrian crystalline basement, Paleozoic sedimentary rocks as well as Pleistocene

  12. Phase diagrams of dune shape and orientation depending on sand availability.

    PubMed

    Gao, Xin; Narteau, Clément; Rozier, Olivier; Courrech du Pont, Sylvain

    2015-09-30

    New evidence indicates that sand availability does not only control dune type but also the underlying dune growth mechanism and the subsequent dune orientation. Here we numerically investigate the development of bedforms in bidirectional wind regimes for two different conditions of sand availability: an erodible sand bed or a localized sand source on a non-erodible ground. These two conditions of sand availability are associated with two independent dune growth mechanisms and, for both of them, we present the complete phase diagrams of dune shape and orientation. On an erodible sand bed, linear dunes are observed over the entire parameter space. Then, the divergence angle and the transport ratio between the two winds control dune orientation and dynamics. For a localized sand source, different dune morphologies are observed depending on the wind regime. There are systematic transitions in dune shape from barchans to linear dunes extending away from the localized sand source, and vice-versa. These transitions are captured fairly by a new dimensionless parameter, which compares the ability of winds to build the dune topography in the two modes of dune orientation.

  13. Phase diagrams of dune shape and orientation depending on sand availability

    PubMed Central

    Gao, Xin; Narteau, Clément; Rozier, Olivier; du Pont, Sylvain Courrech

    2015-01-01

    New evidence indicates that sand availability does not only control dune type but also the underlying dune growth mechanism and the subsequent dune orientation. Here we numerically investigate the development of bedforms in bidirectional wind regimes for two different conditions of sand availability: an erodible sand bed or a localized sand source on a non-erodible ground. These two conditions of sand availability are associated with two independent dune growth mechanisms and, for both of them, we present the complete phase diagrams of dune shape and orientation. On an erodible sand bed, linear dunes are observed over the entire parameter space. Then, the divergence angle and the transport ratio between the two winds control dune orientation and dynamics. For a localized sand source, different dune morphologies are observed depending on the wind regime. There are systematic transitions in dune shape from barchans to linear dunes extending away from the localized sand source, and vice-versa. These transitions are captured fairly by a new dimensionless parameter, which compares the ability of winds to build the dune topography in the two modes of dune orientation. PMID:26419614

  14. Fire scars and ancient sand dunes in southern Australia

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1994-01-01

    The rectangular green areas in this view of southern Australia are protected areas of natural forest (national parks and biospheric reserves), and the lighter surrounding colors (tan-brown) are agricultural croplands occupying land which once must have looked as green as the nature reserves but are now cleared of forest. The major green patch has been recently burned, as shown by the irregular pattern of a large, multiple burn scar. The pattern of the fire scar indicates that the fires were driven by winds blowing from left to right. Close examination of the view shows that the forests are rooted in a soil made up of a widespread sheet of ancient dune sand. The dunes can be seen best within the area of the large fire scar where the characteristic wavy, scalloped pattern of crescent dunes can be detected. The crescents indicate that the sand was heaped up by winds blowing from right to left in this view, in the opposite direction to the winds which fanned the fires. A few straight dunes

  15. Circular feature among dunes of the Great Sand Sea, Egypt

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    El-Baz, F.

    1981-01-01

    A circular crater, about 4 kilometers in diameter and located at 24.2 deg N, 26.4 deg E, was discovered in Landsat images among the linear dunes of the Great Sand Sea, Egypt. The crater has a sharp and crenulated rim crest, a terraced wall, a discontinuous inner structure (approximately 1.6 kilometers in diameter), and a few rim blocks. Its morphological and morphometric characteristics are similar to those of meteorite impact craters and other circular structures on the moon and the terrestrial planets. Because of its interaction with windblown sand, it is particularly comparable with craters on Mars.

  16. Spring Time View of North Polar Sand Dunes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1998-01-01

    Spring has come to the martian northern hemisphere. The northern spring season began in mid-July 1998. With the arrival of spring comes the annual shrinkage of the north polar frost cap. Sunlight is now falling on the north polar cap, and all of the carbon dioxide frost and snow that accumulated during winter has been sublimating--going directly from solid to gas--and the surface beneath the frost is being revealed.

    The MOC image shown above, 45205, was obtained during the 452nd orbit of Mars Global Surveyor at 3:10 p.m. PDT on July 26, 1998. The image is located near latitude 76.87oN, longitude 253.81oW, and it shows a close-up view of martian sand dunes. These dunes were not visible to MOC until the last week of July. Just a few months earlier, the dunes were likely covered with frost, obscured by thick clouds, and cloaked by the darkness of the martian polar winter. Indeed, small patches of bright frost were still present when the picture was taken (e.g., the bright patches on the west (left) side of each crescentic dune in (left image).

    As the above picture illustrates, the camera on board Mars Global Surveyor (MOC) continued to take exciting new views of the martian surface throughout July 1998. As the month progressed, the ground track-- the area visible to the camera--migrated farther north. Simultaneously, sunlight began falling on the north polar regions, making it possible to take some pictures at far northern latitudes. However, these regions have been tricky to photograph because of thick clouds and hazes. The image shown here, for example, is relatively bland gray (has relatively low contrast) because of clouds.

    As first seen by the Viking 2 Orbiter in 1976, a vast 'sea' of sand dunes surrounds the north polar cap. The dunes imaged by MOC (above) are classic forms known as barchan dunes--the small, crescent-shaped hills (see left image above)-- and transverse dunes--ridges that resemble coalesced barchans (shown in right image above). These

  17. Aeolian sand as a tool for understanding Mars: Thermal infrared remote sensing of volcaniclastic Mars-analog sand dunes in Christmas Lake Valley, Oregon, U.S.A.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Edgett, Kenneth S.

    1996-10-01

    INTRODUCTION: On Earth, aeolian sand dunes are used as tools of scientific inquiry. Holocene and Pleistocene dunes preserve clues about Quaternary climate variations and human activities ranging from Ice Age hunting practices to Twentieth Century warfare. Modern dunes contain the sedimentary textures and structures necessary for interpreting ancient sandstones, and they provide natural laboratories for investigation of aeolian physics and desertification processes. The dunes of Mars can likewise be used as scientific tools. Dunes provide relatively dust-free surfaces. From a remote sensing perspective, martian dunes have much potential for providing clues about surface mineralogy and the interaction between the surface and atmosphere. Such information can in turn provide insights regarding crust composition, volcanic evolution, present and past climate events, and perhaps weathering rates. The Mars Global Surveyor Thermal Emission Spectrometer (TES) is expected to reach the planet in September 1997. TES will provide 6 to 50 micrometer spectra of the martian surface at ground resolutions of 3 to 9 km. Sandy aeolian environments on Mars might provide key information about bedrock composition. To prepare for the TES investigation, I have been examining a thermal infrared image of a Mars-composition analog dune field in Christmas Lake Valley, Oregon. COMPOSITION AND GEOLOGIC SETTING: The "Shifting Sand Dunes" dune field is located at the eastern end of Christmas Lake Valley, in what was once the Pleistocene Fort Rock Lake [1]. Much of the sand that makes up the Shifting Sand Dunes dune field is reworked Mt. Mazama airfall from its terminal eruption 6,800 years ago, plus material deflated from the lake bed [1, 2]. The main constituents of the dunes are volcanic glass and devitrified glass fragments, plagioclase crystals, basalt lithic fragments, aggregates of silt and clay-size volcanic ash, pyroxenes, opaque oxide minerals (mostly magnetite), and trace occurrences of

  18. Sand Dunes of Nili Patera in 3-D

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2001-01-01

    The most exciting new aspect of the Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) Extended Mission is the opportunity to turn the spacecraft and point the Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC) at specific features of interest. Opportunities to point the spacecraft come about ten times a week. Throughout the Primary Mission (March 1999 - January 2001), nearly all MGS operations were conducted with the spacecraft pointing 'nadir'--that is, straight down. A search for the missing Mars Polar Lander in late 1999 and early 2000 demonstrated that pointing the spacecraft could allow opportunities for MOC to see things that simply had not entered its field of view during typical nadir-looking operations, and to target areas previously seen in a nadir view so that stereo ('3-D') pictures could be derived.

    One of the very first places photographed by the MOC at the start of the Mapping Mission in March 1999 was a field of dunes located in Nili Patera, a volcanic depression in central Syrtis Major. A portion of this dune field was shown in a media release on March 11, 1999, 'Sand Dunes of Nili Patera, Syrtis Major'. Subsequently, the image was archived with the NASA Planetary Data System, as shown in the Malin Space Science Systems MOC Gallery. On April 24, 2001, an opportunity arose in which the MGS could be pointed off-nadir to take a new picture of the same dune field. By combining the nadir view from March 1999 and the off-nadir view from April 2001, a stereoscopic image was created. The anaglyph shown here must be viewed with red (left-eye) and blue (right-eye) '3-D' glasses. The dunes and the local topography of the volcanic crater's floor stand out in sharp relief. The images, taken more than one Mars year apart, show no change in the shape or location of the dunes--that is, they do not seem to have moved at all since March 1999.

  19. Cruise Report: South China Sea Upper Slope Sand Dunes Project, May 8-14, 2013

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2013-06-01

    NPS-OC-14-003 NAVAL POSTGRADUATE SCHOOL MONTEREY, CALIFORNIA CRUISE REPORT: SOUTH CHINA SEA UPPER SLOPE SAND DUNES PROJECT...Report 3. DATES COVERED (From-To) May 8-14, 2013 4. TITLE AND SUBTITLE Cruise Report: South China Sea Upper Slope Sand Dunes Project, May 8-14, 2013...in partnership with Taiwan, a field project to investigate the effects of the large amplitude sand dunes , discovered on the upper slope of the

  20. Natural and human controls of the Holocene evolution of the beach, aeolian sand and dunes of Caesarea (Israel)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Roskin, J.; Sivan, D.; Shtienberg, G.; Roskin, E.; Porat, N.; Bookman, R.

    2015-12-01

    The study focuses on the Holocene appearance, chronology and drivers of beach sand deposition and inland aeolian sand transport around the Roman-Byzantine ruins of Caesarea, Israel. Beach sand, sand sheets, nebkha, linear and transverse dunes as well as parabolic and transverse interdunes along two transects were sampled in the current study down to their substrate. Sixteen new optically stimulated luminescence ages cluster at ∼5.9-3.3 ka, ∼1.2-1.1 ka (800-900 AD) and ∼190-120 years ago (1825-1895 AD) indicating times of middle and late Holocene sand sheet depositions and historical dune stabilization. The first age cluster indicates that beach sand accumulated when rates of global sea level rise declined around 6-5 ka. Until ∼4 ka sand sheets encroached up to 2.5 km inland. Historical and archaeological evidence points to sand mobilization since the first century AD. Sand sheets dating to 1.2-1.1 ka, coevally found throughout the dunefield represent sand stabilization due to vegetation reestablishment attributed to gradual and fluctuating decline in human activity from the middle Early Islamic period until the 10th century. Historical and chronological evidence of the existence of transverse and coppice dunes from the 19th century suggest that dunes only formed in the last few centuries. The study illustrates the initial role of natural processes, in this case decline in global sea level rise and the primary and later role of fluctuating human activity upon coastal sand mobility. The study distinguishes between sand sheets and dunes and portrays them as sensors of environmental changes.

  1. Normal incidence measurement in a subaqueous sand dune field in the South China Sea.

    PubMed

    Chiu, Linus Y S; Chang, Andrea Y Y

    2014-11-01

    Regions with subaqueous sand dunes have been discovered on the upper continental slope of the northern South China Sea. These large subaqueous sand dunes are expected to cause errors in the measurement of normal incidence reflection. This letter presents experiment results of two normal incidence survey tracks conducted in 2013, and the errors in reflection coefficient estimation and the resulting sediment properties induced by sand dune bedforms. The results demonstrate that the reflected energy is focused and scattered by different parts of sand dune bedforms and that they produce significant variation in the estimated reflection coefficients and the inverted geoacoustic properties.

  2. Dynamics of Unusual Debris Flows on Martian Sand Dunes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Miyamoto, Hideaki; Dohm, James M.; Baker, Victor R.; Beyer, Ross A.; Bourke, Mary

    2004-01-01

    Gullies that dissect sand dunes in Russell impact crater often display debris flow-like deposits in their distal reaches. The possible range of both the rheological properties and the flow rates are estimated using a numerical simulation code of a Bingham plastic flow to help explain the formation of these features. Our simulated results are best explained by a rapid debris flow. For example, a debris flow with the viscosity of 10(exp 2) Pa s and the yield strength of 10(exp 2) Pa can form the observed deposits with a flow rate of 0.5 cu m/s sustained over several minutes and total discharged water volume on the order of hundreds of cubic meters, which may be produced by melting a surface layer of interstitial ice within the dune deposits to several centimeters depth.

  3. Dynamics of unusual debris flows on Martian sand dunes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Miyamoto, Hideaki; Dohm, James M.; Baker, Victor R.; Beyer, Ross A.; Bourke, Mary

    2004-07-01

    Gullies that dissect sand dunes in Russell impact crater often display debris flow-like deposits in their distal reaches. The possible range of both the rheological properties and the flow rates are estimated using a numerical simulation code of a Bingham plastic flow to help explain the formation of these features. Our simulated results are best explained by a rapid debris flow. For example, a debris flow with the viscosity of 102 Pa s and the yield strength of 102 Pa can form the observed deposits with a flow rate of 0.5 m3/s sustained over several minutes and total discharged water volume on the order of hundreds of cubic meters, which may be produced by melting a surface layer of interstitial ice within the dune deposits to several centimeters depth.

  4. A Comparative Analysis of Barchan Dunes in the Intra-Crater Dune Fields and the North Polar Sand Sea

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bourke, M. C.; Balme, M.; Zimbelman, J.

    2004-01-01

    Martian sand dunes have the potential to contribute data on geological history through a study of their form. Recognition of the characteristics of both recent and ancient dunes is the first step towards understanding the present as well as past aeolian systems, and by proxy, climatic conditions on Mars. Dunes studied in detail in Viking 1 and 2 Orbiter images have been classified as barchan, barchanoid, transverse, and complex. Regionally, they are concentrated in four locations: The North and South Polar regions, in intra crater dune fields and in troughs and valleys. Here we present the results of a morphometric analysis of barchan dunes in two of these locations: the North Polar Sand Sea (NPSS) and intra-crater dunes.

  5. Climate-driven changes to dune activity during the Last Glacial Maximum and deglaciation in the Mu Us dune field, north-central China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xu, Zhiwei; Lu, Huayu; Yi, Shuangwen; Vandenberghe, Jef; Mason, Joseph A.; Zhou, Yali; Wang, Xianyan

    2015-10-01

    One significant change of terrestrial landscapes in response to past climate change has been the transformation between activity and stability of extensively distributed wind-blown sand dunes. The relations between the dynamics of the aeolian landscape and its drivers are not yet completely understood, however. Evidence of aeolian sand deposition during the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM) is scarce in many mid-latitude dune fields, whereas abundant evidence exists for aeolian sand accumulation during the deglaciation, i.e. after about 15 ka. Whether this contrast actually reflects changes in dune activity is still unclear, making paleoclimatic interpretation uncertain. Comprehensive field investigation and luminescence dating in the Mu Us dune field, north-central China, demonstrates that aeolian sands deposited during the LGM are preserved as fills in periglacial sand wedges and beneath loess deposits near the downwind dune field margin. The scarcity of LGM dune sand elsewhere in the dune field is interpreted as the result of intensive aeolian activity without substantial net sand accumulation. Increasing sand accumulation after 15 ka, reflected by much more extensive preservation, signals a change in sand supply relative to sand transportation through the dune field. Reduced wind strength and other environmental changes including regional permafrost degradation after 15 ka transformed the dune field state from net erosion to net accumulation; the dunes, however, remained largely mobile as they were in the LGM. Similar diverging patterns of dune sand accumulation and preservation before and after 15 ka in many mid-latitude dune fields imply broad climatic controls linked to the changes in high-northern-latitude forcing.

  6. Quantifying wind blown landscapes using time-series airborne LiDAR at White Sands Dune Field, New Mexico

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ewing, R. C.

    2011-12-01

    Wind blown landscapes are a default geomorphic and sedimentary environment in our solar system. Wind sand dunes are ubiquitous features on the surfaces of Earth, Mars and Titan and prevalent within the aeolian rock records of Earth and Mars. Dunes are sensitive to environmental and climatic changes and a complete understanding of this system promises a unique, robust and quantitative record of paleoclimate extending to the early histories of these worlds. However, our understanding of how aeolian dune landscapes evolve and how the details of the wind are recorded in cross-strata is limited by our lack of understanding of three-dimensional dune morphodynamics related to changing boundary conditions such as wind direction and magnitude and sediment source area. We use airborne LiDAR datasets over 40 km2 of White Sands Dune Field collected from June 2007, June 2008, January 2009, September 2009 and June 2010 to quantify 1) three-dimensional dune geometries, 2) annual and seasonal patterns of erosion and deposition across dune topography, 3) spatial changes in sediment flux related to position within the field, 4) spatial changes in sediment flux across sinuous crestlines and 5) morphologic changes through dune-dune interactions. In addition to measurements, we use the LiDAR data along with wind data from two near-by weather stations to develop a simple model that predicts depositional and stratigraphic patterns on dune lee slopes. Several challenges emerged using time series LiDAR data sets at White Sands Dune Field. The topography upon which the dunes sit is variable and rises by 16 meters over the length of the dune field. In order to compare individual dune geometries across the field and between data sets a base surface was interpolated from local minima and subtracted from the dune topography. Co-registration and error calculation between datasets was done manually using permanent vegetated features within the active dune field and structures built by the

  7. Turbulence and sediment transport over sand dunes and ripples

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bennis, A.; Le Bot, S.; lafite, R.; Bonneton, P.; Ardhuin, F.

    2013-12-01

    Several bedforms are present near to the surfzone of natural beaches. Dunes and ripples are frequently observed. Understanding the turbulence over these forms is essential for the sediment transport. The turbulent flow and the suspended sand particles interact with each other. At the moment, the modelling strategy for turbulence is still a challenge. According to the spatial scales, some different methods to model the turbulence are employed, in particular the RANS (Reynolds Averaged Navier-Stokes) and the LES (Large Eddy Simulation). A hybrid method combining both RANS and LES is set up here. We have adapted this method, initially developed for atmospheric flow, to the oceanic flow. This new method is implemented inside the 3D hydrodynamic model, MARS 3D, which is forced by waves. LES is currently the best way to simulate turbulent flow but its higher cost prevents it from being used for large scale applications. So, here we use RANS near the bottom while LES is set elsewhere. It allows us minimize the computational cost and ensure a better accuracy of the results than with a fully RANS model. In the case of megaripples, the validation step was performed with two sets of field data (Sandy Duck'97 and Forsoms'13) but also with the data from Dune2D model which uses only RANS for turbulence. The main findings are: a) the vertical profiles of the velocity are similar throughout the data b) the turbulent kinetic energy, which was underestimated by Dune2D, is in line with the observations c) the concentration of the suspended sediment is simulated with a better accuracy than with Dune2D but this remains lower than the observations.

  8. 77 FR 55224 - Notice of Availability of the Proposed Imperial Sand Dunes Recreation Area Management Plan and...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2012-09-07

    ... Bureau of Land Management Notice of Availability of the Proposed Imperial Sand Dunes Recreation Area... Impact Statement (EIS), for the Imperial Sand Dunes Recreation Area (ISDRA), and by this notice is... Register. ADDRESSES: Copies of the Proposed Imperial Sand Dunes RAMP and CDCA Plan Amendment/Final EIS...

  9. 75 FR 45653 - Notice of Re-Opening of Comment Period for the Draft Imperial Sand Dunes Recreation Area...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2010-08-03

    ... Bureau of Land Management Notice of Re-Opening of Comment Period for the Draft Imperial Sand Dunes... of the comment period on the Draft Imperial Sand Dunes Recreation Area Management Plan (RAMP) and... So. 4th St., El Centro, California 92243. Copies of the Draft Imperial Sand Dunes RAMP/EIS...

  10. 75 FR 14623 - Notice of Availability of the Draft Imperial Sand Dunes Recreation Area Management Plan and Draft...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2010-03-26

    ... Bureau of Land Management Notice of Availability of the Draft Imperial Sand Dunes Recreation Area... Plan (RAMP)/Draft Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for the Imperial Sand Dunes Recreation Area... Sand Dunes RAMP/EIS are available in the El ] Centro Field Office at the above address and at the...

  11. Episodic Late Holocene dune movements on the sand-sheet area, Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve, San Luis Valley, Colorado, USA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Forman, S. L.; Spaeth, M.; Marín, L.; Pierson, J.; Gómez, J.; Bunch, F.; Valdez, A.

    2006-07-01

    The Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve (GSDNPP) in the San Luis Valley, Colorado, contains a variety of eolian landforms that reflect Holocene drought variability. The most spectacular is a dune mass banked against the Sangre de Cristo Mountains, which is fronted by an extensive sand sheet with stabilized parabolic dunes. Stratigraphic exposures of parabolic dunes and associated luminescence dating of quartz grains by single-aliquot regeneration (SAR) protocols indicate eolian deposition of unknown magnitude occurred ca. 1290-940, 715 ± 80, 320 ± 30, and 200-120 yr ago and in the 20th century. There are 11 drought intervals inferred from the tree-ring record in the past 1300 yr at GSDNPP potentially associated with dune movement, though only five eolian depositional events are currently recognized in the stratigraphic record. There is evidence for eolian transport associated with dune movement in the 13th century, which may coincide with the "Great Drought", a 26-yr-long dry interval identified in the tree ring record, and associated with migration of Anasazi people from the Four Corners areas to wetter areas in southern New Mexico. This nascent chronology indicates that the transport of eolian sand across San Luis Valley was episodic in the late Holocene with appreciable dune migration in the 8th, 10-13th, and 19th centuries, which ultimately nourished the dune mass against the Sangre de Cristo Mountains.

  12. Australian Red Dune Sand: A Potential Martian Regolith Analog

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kuhlman, K. R.; Marshall, J.; Evans, N. D.; Luttge, A.

    2001-01-01

    To demonstrate the potential scientific and technical merits of in situ microscopy on Mars, we analyzed a possible Martian regolith analog - an acolian red dune sand from the central Australian desert (near Mt. Olga). This sand was chosen for its ubiquitous red coating and the desert environment in which is it found. Grains of this sand were analyzed using a variety of microanalytical techniques. A database of detailed studies of such terrestrial analogs would assist the study of geological and astrobiological specimens in future missions to Mars. Potential instrument concepts for in situ deployment on Mars include local electrode atom probe nanoanalysis (LEAP), vertical scanning white light interferometry (VSWLI), scanning electron microscopies, energy dispersive x-ray microanalysis (EDX), atomic force microscopy (AFM) and X-ray diffraction (XRD). While in situ deployment of these techniques is many years away, ground-based studies using these analytical techniques extend our understanding of the data obtained from instruments to be flown in the near future.

  13. Inland aeolian deposits of the Iberian Peninsula: Sand dunes and clay dunes of the Duero Basin and the Manchega Plain. Palaeoclimatic considerations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bernat Rebollal, M.; Pérez-González, A.

    2008-12-01

    This paper describes the latest research on the geomorphological characteristics, formation environment and chronology of the main inland aeolian deposits from the south-eastern Duero Basin (DB) and the Manchega Plain (MP) of the Iberian Peninsula. Similarities and differences between the aeolian deposits of these two locations are summarised. Wind deflation from the Guadiana and Júcar alluvial systems created the aeolian deposits of the MP. These deposits are mainly composed of quartz sands. However, in the San Juan alluvial plain (MP) there is a large extent of clay dunes formed by exposure to prevalent winds of seasonal playa-lakes with salt and clay sediments. In the DB, wind remobilisation of the small particles from Quaternary terraces and Tertiary arkosic sediments left aeolian deposits of quartz-feldspar sands. Textural parameters of the aeolian deposits show large variations depending on the location and the original deposit. Thus, in the DB the aeolian sands derived from the deflation of fluvial sediments are better sorted and smaller in grain size than those created by the deflation of arkosic sediments. Morphologically, simple and compound parabolic dunes (U-V forms, hemicyclic, lobate and elongate), crescentic and linear dunes, climbing dunes and blowout dunes have been recognized at both sites. Barchan and dome dunes are present only in the DB while "lunette lunette-clay dunes" are found only in the MP. In both locations, the large extent of aeolian sand sheets and the predominance of simple and compound parabolic dunes indicates the active role of sparse vegetation cover in the formation of this aeolian system. In the DB, dunes were formed by southwest and west winds, while in the MP the aeolian morphologies indicate that the prevalent winds were west and northwest. The chronology of the dune deposits is being determined with luminescence (TL-OSL) dating and Mass Spectrometry Analysis ( 14C-AMS). In this way, the aeolian activity and stabilisation

  14. Definition and origin of the dune-field pattern at White Sands, New Mexico

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baitis, Elke; Kocurek, Gary; Smith, Virginia; Mohrig, David; Ewing, Ryan C.; Peyret, A.-P. B.

    2014-12-01

    A LiDAR-derived digital elevation model (DEM) of a representative portion of the White Sands Dune Field, New Mexico, allows for characterization of an unprecedented range of dune-field parameters and serves as a basis for pattern analysis. Dune-field parameters were measured and statistically analyzed for populations of dunes selected at random and occurring along transects. Populations sampled by these two different methods are comparable, but highlight the sensitivity of transect placement in a dune field that has pattern heterogeneity. Based upon coefficients of variation, pattern emerges at White Sands primarily because of a strong fabric of crestline orientation, and secondarily because of the regularity of spacing between dunes of similar shape as defined by sinuosity, height and length. Linear regression of dune parameters shows that dune geometric relationships vary primarily with crestline length, but there is little correlation between other parameters, including dune spacing and height. This result highlights the sensitivity of identifying topographic heterogeneity in a LiDAR-derived DEM, given that mean ratios conform to global averages. Stripping off the dunes in Matlab shows a terraced surface, which is interpreted to represent paleo-shorelines formed during relative still stands in the overall retreat of Lake Otero. Elevated bands of higher, more closely spaced dunes occur just leeward of the paleo-shorelines. A revised model for the White Sands Dune Field consists of the basinward progradation of successive dune-field segments. Each segment is associated with a paleo-shoreline, and consists of an upwind dune ridge, represented by the elevated bands, and a leeward dune field.

  15. An integrated model for dune morphology and sand fluxes on Mars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Runyon, K. D.; Bridges, N. T.; Ayoub, F.; Newman, C. E.; Quade, J. J.

    2017-01-01

    The transport and deposition of sand is the most prevalent agent of landscape modification on Mars today, with fluxes comparable to some sand dunes on Earth. Until now, the relationship between sand flux and dune field morphology has been poorly constrained. By tracking dune movement over ∼10 km-long dune fields in Herschel Crater and Nili Patera, representative of many dune fields on Mars, we find a downwind flux decrease that correlates with a sequence of changing morphology from barchans to barchanoids and seifs (longitudinal dunes) to isolated dome dunes and ending with sand sheets. We show empirical consistency with atmospheric Internal Boundary Layer (IBL) theory which can describe these broad flux and morphology changes in Martian dune fields. Deviations from IBL flux predictions are from wind streamline compressions up slopes, leading to a speedup effect. By establishing a dune field morphology type example and correlating it with measured and predicted flux changes, we provide an integrated morphology and flux model that can be applied to other areas of Mars and be used to infer paleo-environmental conditions from preserved sandstone.

  16. Aerolian erosion, transport, and deposition of volcaniclastic sands among the shifting sand dunes, Christmas Lake Valley, Oregon: TIMS image analysis

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Edgett, Kenneth S.; Ramsey, Michael S.; Christensen, Philip R.

    1995-01-01

    Remote sensing is a tool that, in the context of aeolian studies, offers a synoptic view of a dune field, sand sea, or entire desert region. Blount et al. (1990) presented one of the first studies demonstrating the power of multispectral images for interpreting the dynamic history of an aeolian sand sea. Blount's work on the Gran Desierto of Mexico used a Landsat TM scene and a linear spectral mixing model to show where different sand populations occur and along what paths these sands may have traveled before becoming incorporated into dunes. Interpretation of sand transport paths and sources in the Gran Desierto led to an improved understanding of the origin and Holocene history of the dunes. With the anticipated advent of the EOS-A platform and ASTER thermal infrared capability in 1998, it will become possible to look at continental sand seas and map sand transport paths using 8-12 mu m bands that are well-suited to tracking silicate sediments. A logical extension of Blount's work is to attempt a similar study using thermal infrared images. One such study has already begun by looking at feldspar, quartz, magnetite, and clay distributions in the Kelso Dunes of southern California. This paper describes the geology and application of TIMS image analysis of a less-well known Holocene dune field in south central Oregon using TIMS data obtained in 1991.

  17. On the origin and age of the Great Sand Dunes, Colorado

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Madole, Richard F.; Romig, Joe H.; Aleinikoff, John N.; VanSistine, D. Paco; Yacob, Ezra Y.

    2008-07-01

    Over the past 100 yr, several hypotheses have been proposed for the origin and age of the Great Sand Dunes. These hypotheses differ widely in the descriptions of dune morphometry, the immediate source of eolian sand, and when sand transport occurred. The primary purpose of this paper is to evaluate these hypotheses and, where warranted, to present new ideas about the origin and age of the Great Sand Dunes. To evaluate the previous hypotheses, we had to develop more detailed information about the surficial geology of the northern San Luis Valley. Thus, we mapped the surficial geology of an area extending several tens of kilometers north, south, and west of the Great Sand Dunes and examined subsurface stratigraphy in more than 200 wells and borings. In addition, we used relative-dating criteria and several radiocarbon and OSL ages to establish the chronology of surficial deposits, and we determined the U-Pb ages of detrital zircons to obtain information about the sources of the sand in the Great Sand Dunes. The first principal finding of this study is that the lower part of the closed basin north of the Rio Grande, referred to here as the sump, is the immediate source of the sand in the Great Sand Dunes, rather than the late Pleistocene flood plain of the Rio Grande (the most widely accepted hypothesis). A second principal finding is that the Great Sand Dunes are older than late Pleistocene. They postdate the draining of Lake Alamosa, which began ˜ 440 ka, and predate the time when streams draining the west flank of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains were deflected by incipient dunes that formed near the mountain front. Geomorphic and stratigraphic evidence indicate that this deflection occurred prior to the end of the next to last glaciation (Bull Lake), i.e., prior to ˜ 130 ka.

  18. On the origin and age of the Great Sand Dunes, Colorado

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Madole, R.F.; Romig, J.H.; Aleinikoff, J.N.; VanSistine, D.P.; Yacob, E.Y.

    2008-01-01

    Over the past 100??yr, several hypotheses have been proposed for the origin and age of the Great Sand Dunes. These hypotheses differ widely in the descriptions of dune morphometry, the immediate source of eolian sand, and when sand transport occurred. The primary purpose of this paper is to evaluate these hypotheses and, where warranted, to present new ideas about the origin and age of the Great Sand Dunes. To evaluate the previous hypotheses, we had to develop more detailed information about the surficial geology of the northern San Luis Valley. Thus, we mapped the surficial geology of an area extending several tens of kilometers north, south, and west of the Great Sand Dunes and examined subsurface stratigraphy in more than 200 wells and borings. In addition, we used relative-dating criteria and several radiocarbon and OSL ages to establish the chronology of surficial deposits, and we determined the U-Pb ages of detrital zircons to obtain information about the sources of the sand in the Great Sand Dunes. The first principal finding of this study is that the lower part of the closed basin north of the Rio Grande, referred to here as the sump, is the immediate source of the sand in the Great Sand Dunes, rather than the late Pleistocene flood plain of the Rio Grande (the most widely accepted hypothesis). A second principal finding is that the Great Sand Dunes are older than late Pleistocene. They postdate the draining of Lake Alamosa, which began ??? 440??ka, and predate the time when streams draining the west flank of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains were deflected by incipient dunes that formed near the mountain front. Geomorphic and stratigraphic evidence indicate that this deflection occurred prior to the end of the next to last glaciation (Bull Lake), i.e., prior to ??? 130??ka.

  19. Monitoring and analysis of sand dune movement and growth on the Navajo Nation, southwestern United States

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Redsteer, Margaret Hiza; Bogle, Rian C.; Vogel, John M.

    2011-01-01

    Recurring drought and rising temperatures have caused reactivation and renewed growth of sand dunes on the lands of the Navajo Nation on the Colorado Plateau. Migrating dunes threaten health, housing, and transportation pathways. U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) scientists are conducting research to better understand the processes of dune growth and movement. This research will provide critical data to the Native peoples of the region in their response to the changing environment.

  20. 76 FR 47123 - Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; 90-Day Finding on a Petition To List Six Sand Dune...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-08-04

    ...- southeast of Fallon, Churchill County, Nevada. Sand Mountain is a star dune (roughly star-shaped) and ranges... Heritage Program 2006, p. 43). Blowsand Mountains is a complex of star and linear dunes occurring partially... 2010, p. 15). Big Dune is a complex star dune that reaches 2,731 ft (832.4 m) in elevation and...

  1. Sand Flux Results for Aeolian Dunes at Current and Candidate Landing Sites on Mars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chojnacki, M.; Urso, A.; Yingling, W.

    2015-12-01

    It is now known unambiguously that wind-driven bedform activity is occurring on Mars today. It has also been demonstrated the rapid aeolian abrasion of sedimentary deposits that potentially host ancient habitable environments may provide the best mechanism for exposing samples containing relatively undegraded organics (Farley et al. 2014). Thus, current processes operating on the surface of Mars are highly relevant to our understanding of the past. Here, we discuss new sand flux results of active dune across Mars, including several current and candidate landing sites with Meridiani Planum, Gale crater, Valles Marineris, and Mawrth Vallis. For this task, we have utilized multi-temporal images acquired annually by the HiRISE camera (25 cm/pixel) along with co-located HiRISE Digital Terrain Models. Falling dunes in Coprates Chasma (Mars 2020 candidate landing site) measuring 6-10 meters in height were detected migrating on average 0.5 m per Earth year, yielding crest fluxes of 3.1 m3 m-1 yr-1 (units hereafter assumed). Barchans near the MSL rover at Gale crater have slightly lower fluxes of 1.2, while earlier work in Endeavour crater, the current site of the Opportunity Rover, showed dome dunes with fluxes as high as 13 (average of 6.8; Chojnacki et al. 2015). New results of Mawrth Vallis (Mars 2020 candidate) dunes suggest these high rates are not uncommon, as barchans there possess average fluxes of 11.5. Assuming ripple reptation rates are 1/10th that of crest fluxes, total flux (saltation plus reptation) would range 3.2 to 12.7 m3 m-1 yr-1 for all sites studied herein. Active dunes and the abrasion susceptibility (Sa) of local rocks are relevant to assess how sand fluxes modify the landscape. Using the methodology and assumptions (Sa for basalt, mean trajectory height etc.) described in Bridges et al. (2012), we estimated abrasion rates of local basaltic bedrock. For example, sand blasting at Mawrth Vallis is estimated to produce 2-8 μm/yr for flat ground and 15

  2. Plant functional traits and diversity in sand dune ecosystems across different biogeographic regions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mahdavi, P.; Bergmeier, E.

    2016-07-01

    Plant species of a functional group respond similarly to environmental pressures and may be expected to act similarly on ecosystem processes and habitat properties. However, feasibility and applicability of functional groups in ecosystems across very different climatic regions have not yet been studied. In our approach we specified the functional groups in sand dune ecosystems of the Mediterranean, Hyrcanian and Irano-Turanian phytogeographic regions. We examined whether functional groups are more influenced by region or rather by habitat characteristics, and identified trait syndromes associated with common habitat types in sand dunes (mobile dunes, stabilized dunes, salt marshes, semi-wet sands, disturbed habitats). A database of 14 traits, 309 species and 314 relevés was examined and trait-species, trait-plot and species-plot matrices were built. Cluster analysis revealed similar plant functional groups in sand dune ecosystems across regions of very different species composition and climate. Specifically, our study showed that plant traits in sand dune ecosystems are grouped reflecting habitat affiliation rather than region and species pool. Environmental factors and constraints such as sand mobility, soil salinity, water availability, nutrient status and disturbance are more important for the occurrence and distribution of plant functional groups than regional belonging. Each habitat is shown to be equipped with specific functional groups and can be described by specific sets of traits. In restoration ecology the completeness of functional groups and traits in a site may serve as a guideline for maintaining or restoring the habitat.

  3. Lizard assemblage from a sand dune habitat from southeastern Brazil: a niche overlap analysis.

    PubMed

    Winck, Gisele R; Hatano, Fabio; Vrcibradic, Davor; VAN Sluys, Monique; Rocha, Carlos F D

    2016-01-01

    Communities are structured by interactions of historical and ecological factors, which influence the use of different resources in time and space. We acquired data on time of activity, microhabitat use and diet of a lizard assemblage from a sand dune habitat in a coastal area, southeastern Brazil (Restinga de Jurubatiba). We analyzed the data of niche overlap among species in these three axes (temporal, spatial and trophic) using null models. We found a significant overlap within the trophic niche, whereas the overlap for the other axes did not differ from the expected. Based on this result, we discuss the factors acting on the structure of the local lizard community.

  4. Solitary wave behavior in sand dunes observed from space

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vermeesch, P.

    2011-11-01

    Although the dynamics of individual barchan dunes are well understood, their interactions are the subject of ongoing scientific interest and debate. Numerical and analog model predictions of shape-preserving binary dune collisions have been hard to test due to the long timescales over which such processes typically occur. This paper documents ten binary dune collisions in a 45-year time sequence of satellite images from the Bodélé Depression in Chad. The observations confirm that when two barchan dunes collide, a transfer of mass occurs so that one dune appears to travel through the other unscathed, like a solitary wave.

  5. The interaction of unidirectional winds with an isolated barchan sand dune

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gad-El-hak, M.; Pierce, D.; Howard, A.; Morton, J. B.

    1976-01-01

    Velocity profile measurements are determined on and around a barchan dune model inserted in the roughness layer on the tunnel floor. A theoretical investigation is made into the factors influencing the rate of sand flow around the dune. Flow visualization techniques are employed in the mapping of streamlines of flow on the dune's surface. Maps of erosion and deposition of sand are constructed for the barchan model, utilizing both flow visualization techniques and friction velocities calculated from the measured velocity profiles. The sediment budget found experimentally for the model is compared to predicted and observed results reported. The comparison shows fairly good agreement between the experimentally determined and predicted sediment budgets.

  6. Airflow and sand transport variations within a backshore parabolic dune plain complex: NE Graham Island, British Columbia, Canada

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Anderson, Jeffrey L.; Walker, Ian J.

    2006-07-01

    Onshore aeolian sand transport beyond the beach and foredune is often overlooked in the morphodynamics and sediment budgets of sandy coastal systems. This study provides detailed measurements of airflow, sand transport (via saltation and modified suspension), vegetation density, and surface elevation changes over an extensive (325 × 30 m) "swath" of a backshore foredune-parabolic dune plain complex. Near-surface (30 cm) wind speeds on the backshore ranged from 4.3 to 7.3 m s - 1 , gusting to 14.0 m s - 1 . Oblique onshore flow is steered alongshore near the incipient foredune then landward into a trough blowout where streamline compression, flow acceleration to 1.8 times the incident speed, and increasing steadiness occur. Highest saltation rates occur in steady, topographically accelerated flow within the blowout. As such, the blowout acts as a conduit to channel flow and sand through the foredune into the foredune plain. Beyond the blowout, flow expands, vegetation roughness increases, and flow decelerates. Over the foredune plain, localized flow steering and acceleration to 1.6 times the incident speed occurs followed by a drop to 40% of incident flow speed in a densely vegetated zone upwind of an active parabolic dune at 250 m from the foredune. Sediment properties reflect variations in near-surface flow and transport processes. Well-sorted, fine skewed backshore sands become more poorly sorted and coarse skewed in the blowout due to winnowing of fines. Sorting improves and sands become fine skewed over the foredune plain toward the parabolic dune due to grainfall of finer sands winnowed from the beach and foredune. During the fall-winter season, significant amounts of sand (up to 110 kg m - 2 ) are transported via modified suspension and deposited as grainfall up to 300 m landward of the foredune. No distinct trend in grainfall was found, although most fell on the depositional lobe of the blowout and at 200 m near an isolated, active parabolic dune. Grainfall

  7. A comparison of seed banks across a sand dune successional gradient at Lake Michigan dunes (Indiana, USA)

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Leicht-Young, S. A.; Pavlovic, N.B.; Grundel, R.; Frohnapple, K.J.

    2009-01-01

    In habitats where disturbance is frequent, seed banks are important for the regeneration of vegetation. Sand dune systems are dynamic habitats in which sand movement provides intermittent disturbance. As succession proceeds from bare sand to forest, the disturbance decreases. At Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore, we examined the seed banks of three habitat types across a successional gradient: foredunes, secondary dunes, and oak savanna. There were differences among the types of species that germinated from each of the habitats. The mean seed bank density increased across the successional gradient by habitat, from 376 to 433 to 968 seeds m-2, but with foredune and secondary dune seed bank densities being significantly lower than the savanna seed bank density. The number of seeds germinated was significantly correlated with soil organic carbon, demonstrating for this primary successional sequence that seed density increases with stage and age. The seed bank had much lower species richness than that of the aboveground vegetation across all habitats. Among sites within a habitat type, the similarity of species germinated from the seed banks was very low, illustrating the variability of the seed bank even in similar habitat types. These results suggest that restoration of these habitats cannot rely on seed banks alone. ?? 2008 Springer Science+Business Media B.V.

  8. Morphology and formation of the upwind margin at White Sands Dune Field

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ewing, R. C.; Jerolmack, D. J.; Martin, R. L.; Reitz, M. D.; Phillips, C. B.; Falcini, F.; Masteller, C.

    2012-12-01

    A remarkable transitional landscape occurs at the upwind margin of White Sands Dune Field. Over the course a few hundred meters the landscape changes from an flat, sand availability-limited playa, to a sand sheet with strong spatial grain-size sorting, to meter high slipfaceless proto-dunes and finally to several meter high dunes with angle-of-repose slip faces. Within one wavelength of the first dune, dunes rise to nearly 10 meters in height above Alkali Flat, the upwind playa that extends for 13 km westward from the dune field. This abrupt rise in topography may perturb the dominant southwesterly wind flow and trigger an internal boundary layer, which causes a spatial decrease in surface wind stress and decline sediment flux, thereby altering the dune dynamics and dune field morphology downwind. Though the emergence of this upwind transition may play a key role in the morphodynamics of the dune field, what are the morphodynamics of the transition? What are the feedbacks between the emerging topography and the wind within the transition? This presentation uses high-resolution aerial photos, time-series airborne LiDAR and terrestrial laser scanning to characterize the transitional morphology the upwind margin of White Sands and discusses these morphologies in the context of the interplay between wind flow and dune field topography. Alkali Flat playa is sparsely sand covered, the amount of which varies temporally. The sparse sand cover occurs as sand patches that form in the lee of bushes or within topographic lows generated by deflated gypsum crust. Adjacent and downwind of the playa is a sand sheet composed of variable wavelength, coarse grained ripples. Ten to thirty meter wide ripple patches organized into a repeating sequence of coarse-grained, > 15 cm wavelength ripples to fine-grained, < 15 cm wavelength ripples occur across the sand sheet. Downwind the ripple patches organize into low-relief protodune hummocks. The protodunes are covered by a range of ripple

  9. Timing and origin for sand dunes in the Green River Lowland of Illinois, upper Mississippi River Valley, USA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Miao, X.; Hanson, P.R.; Wang, Hongfang; Young, A.R.

    2010-01-01

    The recent increase in dune studies in North America has been heavily focused in the Great Plains, while less attention has historically been given to the dune fields east of the Mississippi River. Here we report ages and suggest a potential sediment source for sand dunes in the Green River Lowland, Illinois, which may provide a better understanding of the dynamic interactions between eolian, glacial, lacustrine and fluvial processes that shaped the landscapes of the upper Midwest. Seven coherent optically stimulated luminescence ages (OSL, or optical ages) obtained from four sites suggest that major dune construction in the Green River Lowland occurred within a narrow time window around 17,500 ago. This implies either an enhanced aridity or an episodic increase of sediment supply at 17,500 years ago, or combination of the both. Contrary to previous assertions that dune sand was sourced from the deflation of the underlying outwash sand deposited when the Lake Michigan Lobe retreated from the area, we propose that Green River Lowland dunes sand originated from the Green Bay Lobe through the Rock River. Specifically, sediment supply increased in the Rock River valley during drainage of Glacial Lake Scuppernong, which formed between ???18,000 and 17,000 years ago, when the Green Bay Lobe retreated from its terminal moraine. The lake drained catastrophically through the Rock River valley, providing glacial sediment and water to erode the preexisting sandy sediments. Throughout the remainder of the late Pleistocene, the Laurentide Ice Sheet drained into larger more northerly glacial lakes that in turn drained through other river valleys. Therefore, the dunes in the Green River Lowland formed only during the catastrophic drainage of Glacial Lake Scuppernong, but were stabilized through the remainder of the Pleistocene. This scenario explains the abrupt dune construction around 17,500 years ago, and explains the lack of later dune activity up to the Pleistocene

  10. Multi-scale Hydrologic Modeling of the White Sands Dune Field, New Mexico

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bourret, S. M.; Newton, B. T.

    2014-12-01

    The shallow groundwater flow system of White Sands dune field, located within the arid to semi-arid Tularosa Basin of Southern New Mexico, likely stabilizes the base of the largest gypsum dune field in the world. The dune is saturated throughout nearly its entire accumulation thickness, resulting in a shallow water table (< 3 ft bgs) in the inter-dunal areas. Water table elevation influences the spatial extent of the dune field and accumulation thickness. The White Sands National Monument (WHSA) is concerned that lowering the water table may lead to increased scour and migration of the dune field, which could be unfavorable to the preservation of the flora and fauna that have adapted to survive there. In response to projected increases in groundwater pumping in the regional Tularosa Basin groundwater system, changes in surface water use, and the threat of climate change, the WHSA is interested in understanding how these changes on a regional scale may impact the shallow dune field aquifer. Mathematical modeling techniques on varying spatial and temporal scales are used to characterize the relative importance of the sources of water (local vs. regional) to the dune aquifer, and to quantify the timescales on which changes may affect the water table in the dune field. A 2-dimensional, dune-scale heat and fluid flow model uses the seasonal temperature fluctuations to estimate the vertical and horizontal flow of water from the regional system to the dune field aquifer. We have also constructed a 2-dimensional, hydrologic model to characterize the regional groundwater flow regime near to the dune aquifer system, as well as across the Tularosa Basin to a depth of 6 km. Additionally, a 3-dimensional, hydrologic model of the Tularosa Basin and the White Sands dune field quantifies hydrologic characteristics, sources and sinks of groundwater in the basin and at the dune field. Computed and observed salinity, groundwater residence times, and water level data are the primary

  11. Oceanobacillus chungangensis sp. nov., isolated from a sand dune.

    PubMed

    Lee, Dong Chae; Kang, Hyeonji; Weerawongwiwat, Veeraya; Kim, Beomjoon; Choi, Young-Wan; Kim, Wonyong

    2013-10-01

    A Gram-stain-positive, spore-forming, rod-shaped, motile, strictly aerobic bacterial strain, designated CAU 1051(T), was isolated from a sand dune and its taxonomic position was investigated using a polyphasic approach. Strain CAU 1051(T) grew optimally at pH 5.0 and 30 °C. NaCl was not required for growth but up to 10.0 % (w/v) NaCl was tolerated. Phylogenetic analysis based on 16S rRNA gene sequences revealed that strain CAU 1051(T) formed a distinct lineage within the genus Oceanobacillus and was most closely related to Oceanobacillus profundus CL-MP28(T), Oceanobacillus caeni S-11(T), and Oceanobacillus picturae LMG 19492(T) (96.8 %, 95.6 % and 95.3 % similarity, respectively). DNA-DNA reassociation analysis showed that strain CAU 1051(T) displayed 28.2±0.7 % relatedness to O. profundus KCTC 13625(T). Strain CAU 1051(T) contained MK-7 as the only isoprenoid quinone and anteiso-C15 : 0 as the major fatty acid. The cell wall peptidoglycan of strain CAU 1051(T) contained meso-diaminopimelic acid. The polar lipids were composed of diphosphatidylglycerol, phosphatidylglycerol, six unidentified phospholipids, an unidentified glycolipid, and six unidentified polar lipids. The major whole-cell sugars were glucose and ribose. The DNA G+C content was 36.3 mol%. On the basis of phenotypic data and phylogenetic inference, strain CAU 1051(T) represents a novel species of the genus Oceanobacillus for which the name Oceanobacillus chungangensis sp. nov. is proposed. The type strain is CAU 1051(T) ( = KCTC 33035(T) = CCUG 63270(T)).

  12. Why do active and stabilized dunes coexist under the same climatic conditions?

    PubMed

    Yizhaq, Hezi; Ashkenazy, Yosef; Tsoar, Haim

    2007-05-04

    Sand dunes can be active (mobile) or stable, mainly as a function of vegetation cover and wind power. However, there exists as yet unexplained evidence for the coexistence of bare mobile dunes and vegetated stabilized dunes under the same climatic conditions. We propose a model for dune vegetation cover driven by wind power that exhibits bistabilty and hysteresis with respect to the wind power. For intermediate wind power, mobile and stabilized dunes can coexist, whereas for low (or high) wind power they can be fixed (or mobile). Climatic change or human intervention can turn active dunes into stable ones and vice versa; our model predicts that prolonged droughts with stronger winds can result in dune reactivation.

  13. Multifrequency and multipolarization radar scatterometry of sand dunes and comparison with spaceborne and airborne radar images

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Blom, Ronald; Elachi, Charles

    1987-01-01

    Airborne radar scatterometer data on sand dunes, acquired at multiple frequencies and polarizations, are reported. Radar backscatter from sand dunes is very sensitive to the imaging geometry. At small incidence angles the radar return is mainly due to quasi-specular reflection from dune slopes favorably oriented toward the radar. A peak return usually occurs at the incidence angle equal to the angle of repose for the dunes. The peak angle is the same at all frequencies as computed from specular reflection theory. At larger angles the return is significantly weaker. The scatterometer measurements verified observations made with airborne and spaceborne radar images acquired over a number of dune fields in the U.S., central Africa, and the Arabian peninsula. The imaging geometry constraints indicate that possible dunes on other planets, such as Venus, will probably not be detected in radar images unless the incidence angle is less than the angles of repose of such dunes and the radar look direction is approximately orthogonal to the dune trends.

  14. Insights from a Geophysical and Geomorphological Mars Analog Field Study at the Great Kobuk Sand Dunes, Northwestern Alaska

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McGinnis, R. N.; Dinwiddie, C. L.; Stillman, D.; Bjella, K.; Hooper, D. M.; Grimm, R. E.

    2010-12-01

    Terrestrial dune systems are used as natural analogs to improve understanding of the processes by which planetary dunes form and evolve. Selected terrestrial analogs are often warm-climate dune fields devoid of frozen volatiles, but cold-climate dunes offer a better analog for polar dunes on Mars. The cold-climate Great Kobuk Sand Dunes (GKSD) of Kobuk Valley National Park, Alaska, are a high-latitude, slowly migrating analog for polar, inter- and intracrater dune fields on Mars. The 67°N latitude, 62 km2 GKSD consist of moderately well sorted, fine-grained sands deposited within the Kobuk River valley ~50 km north of the Arctic Circle and ~160 km inland from Kotzebue Sound. Winds at the GKSD are influenced significantly by complex surrounding topography, an influence that is similar to many high-latitude inter- and intracrater dune fields on Mars. Average annual temperature and precipitation at the GKSD are -5°C and 430 mm. The dune field is generally resistant to atmospheric forcing (wind) for a significant portion of the year because of snowcover, similar to the effect that seasonal CO2 and H2O frost mantling have on Martian polar dunes. The dune field, which ranges in elevation from 33 to 170 m above mean sea level, consists of sand sheets as well as climbing and reversing barchanoid, transverse, longitudinal, and star dunes. Several tributaries to the Kobuk River bound and dissect the GKSD, producing cutbank exposures and alcoves that reveal internal structure. We report results from our detailed geophysical and geomorphological site characterization field study, which was conducted near peak freeze conditions from March 15 through April 2, 2010. We used multifrequency ground-penetrating radar (25, 50, 100, 250, 500, 1000 MHz) and capacitively coupled resistivity methods to image the internal structure of representative dunes, and performed ground truthing using a sampling auger, natural exposures, and Real-Time Kinematic Differential GPS. Data from twenty

  15. Debris flows on the Great Kobuk Sand Dunes, Alaska: Implications for analogous processes on Mars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hooper, Donald M.; Dinwiddie, Cynthia L.

    2014-02-01

    We observed niveo-aeolian deposits, denivation features, and small meltwater-induced debris flows that had formed at the Great Kobuk Sand Dunes, northwestern interior Alaska in late March 2010. This high-latitude, cold-climate dune field is being studied as a planetary analog to improve our understanding of factors that may trigger debris flows on the lee slopes of martian aeolian dunes. Debris flows consisted of a sand and liquid water mixture that cascaded down the lee slopes of two barchanoid dunes on days when measured ground surface temperatures were below freezing. We hypothesize that relatively dark sand on snow caused local hot spots where solar radiation could be absorbed by the sand and conducted into the underlying snow, enabling meltwater to form and sand to be mobilized. This investigation provides insights into the interactions between niveo-aeolian deposition, slope aspect and insolation, thawing, and initiation of alluvial processes. These debris flows are morphologically similar to those associated with seasonal gullies or erosion tracks visible on the slopes of mid- to high-latitude dune fields in both martian hemispheres. Localized heating and thawing at scales too small for orbital sensors to identify may yield martian debris flows at current climate conditions.

  16. Numerical study of turbulent flow over complex aeolian dune fields: the White Sands National Monument.

    PubMed

    Anderson, William; Chamecki, Marcelo

    2014-01-01

    The structure and dynamics of fully developed turbulent flows responding to aeolian dune fields are studied using large-eddy simulation with an immersed boundary method. An aspect of particular importance in these flows is the downwind migration of coherent motions associated with Kelvin-Helmholtz instabilities that originate at the dune crests. These instabilities are responsible for enhanced downward transport of high-momentum fluid via the so-called turbulent sweep mechanism. However, the presence of such structures and their role in determining the bulk characteristics of fully developed dune field sublayer aerodynamics have received relatively limited attention. Moreover, many existing studies address mostly symmetric or mildly asymmetric dune forms. The White Sands National Monument is a field of aeolian gypsum sand dunes located in the Tularosa Basin in southern New Mexico. Aeolian processes at the site result in a complex, anisotropic dune field. In the dune field sublayer, the flow statistics resemble a mixing layer: At approximately the dune crest height, vertical profiles of streamwise velocity exhibit an inflection and turbulent Reynolds stresses are maximum; below this, the streamwise and vertical velocity fluctuations are positively and negatively skewed, respectively. We evaluate the spatial structure of Kelvin-Helmholtz instabilities present in the dune field sublayer (shear length L(s) and vortex spacing Λ(x)) and show that Λ(x)=m(dune)L(s), where m(dune)≈7.2 in the different sections considered (for turbulent mixing layers, 7

  17. Laboratory simulation of debris flows over sand dunes: Insights into gully-formation (Mars)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jouannic, Gwenaël; Gargani, Julien; Conway, Susan J.; Costard, François; Balme, Matthew R.; Patel, Manish R.; Massé, Marion; Marmo, Chiara; Jomelli, Vincent; Ori, Gian G.

    2015-02-01

    Gully morphology (often summarized as comprising an alcove, channel and debris apron) is one of the key elements used to support the argument for liquid water in the recent past on Mars. Nevertheless, the processes that create different gully morphologies, on both Mars and Earth, are not fully understood. One of the puzzling morphologic attributes of Martian dune gullies is their apparent lack of an apron, or terminal deposit, which has caused debate about their formation process. Several physical processes such as runoff, debris flows, granular flows, and sliding blocks falling downslope could explain the formation of these gullies. In this work, we focus on the role of liquid in the substrate as well as in the flow and choose to experimentally test the plausibility of this hypothesis. We performed a series of analogue experiments to investigate the formation of gullies on sand dune-like substrates. We used controlled flows of water over an inclined sand-box to produce gully-like forms. Ice-rich sedimentary substrates were used, including substrates that included a thin liquid water-saturated thawed layer (an 'active layer') above the ice-saturated zone to give an analogue for a 'periglacial' environment. We quantitatively demonstrate that debris flow processes in 'periglacial' experiments are conducive to the formation of narrow and long channels with small terminal deposits with perched channels. By re-analysis of Martian elevation data for dune-gullies on Mars, we have found good evidence that such terminal deposits could exist. Our experiments revealed that increased water content in the thawed layer above the frozen bed increases flow-length due to the subsequent reduction in infiltration capacity. Water is incorporated into the flow by erosion of the wet thawed layer (sand plus water) and by drainage of the thawed layer. Using a Mars environment simulation chamber, we found that atmospheric pressure conditions seem to have a limited influence on the

  18. Sand dune patterns on Titan controlled by long-term climate cycles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ewing, Ryan C.; Hayes, Alex G.; Lucas, Antoine

    2015-01-01

    Linear sand dunes cover the equatorial latitudes of Saturn's moon Titan and are shaped by global wind patterns. These dunes are thought to reflect present-day diurnal, tidal and seasonal winds, but climate models have failed to reproduce observed dune morphologies with these wind patterns. Dunes diagnostic of a specific wind or formative timescale have remained elusive. Here we analyse radar imagery from NASA's Cassini spacecraft and identify barchan, star and reoriented dunes in sediment-limited regions of Titan's equatorial dune fields that diverge by 23° on average from the orientation of linear dunes. These morphologies imply shifts in wind direction and sediment availability. Using a numerical model, we estimate that the observed reorientation of dune crests to a change in wind direction would have taken around 3,000 Saturn years (1 Saturn year ~ 29.4 Earth years) or longer--a timescale that exceeds diurnal, seasonal or tidal cycles. We propose that shifts in winds and sediment availability are the product of long-term climate cycles associated with variations in Saturn's orbit. Orbitally controlled landscape evolution--also proposed to explain the distribution of Titan's polar lakes--implies a dune-forming climate on equatorial Titan that is analogous to Earth.

  19. Impacts of Vegetation and Development on the Morphology of Coastal Sand Dunes Using Modern Geospatial Techniques: Jockey's Ridge Case Study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Weaver, K.; Mitasova, H.; Overton, M.

    2011-12-01

    LiDAR surveys acquired in the years 2007 and 2008, combined with previous LiDAR, topographic mapping and aerial imagery collected along the Outer Banks of North Carolina were used for comprehensive geospatial analysis of the largest sand dune on the eastern coast of the United States, Jockey's Ridge. The objective of the analysis was to evaluate whether the dune's evolution has continued as hypothesized in previous studies and whether an increase of development and vegetation has contributed to the dune's stabilization and overall loss of dune height. Geospatial analysis of the dune system evolution (1974 - 2008) was performed using time series of digital elevation models at one meter resolution. Image processing was conducted in order to analyze land cover change (1932 - 2009) using unsupervised classification to extract vegetation, development and sand in and around Jockey's Ridge State Park. The dune system evolution was then characterized using feature-based and raster-based metrics, including vertical and horizontal change of dune peaks, horizontal migration of dune crests, slip face geometry transformation and volume change analysis using the core and dynamic layer concept. Based on the evolutionary data studied, the volume of sand at Jockey's Ridge is consistent throughout time, composed of a stable core and a dynamically migrating layer that is not gaining or losing sand. Although the peak elevation of the Main Dune has decreased from 43m in 1953 to 22m in 2008, the analysis has shown that the sand is redistributed within the dune field. Today, the dune field peaks are increasing in elevation, and all of the dunes within the system are stabilizing at similar heights of 20-22m along with transformation of the dunes from unvegetated, crescentic to vegetated, parabolic dunes. The overall land cover trend indicates that since the 1930s vegetation and development have gradually increased over time, influencing the morphology of the dune field by stabilizing the

  20. Effects of Sand Dune Stabilization on the Spatial Pattern of Artemisia ordosica Population in Mu Us Desert, Northwest China

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Jiachen; Zhang, Yuqing; Fan, Dongqing; Qin, Shugao; Jia, Xin; Wu, Bin; Chen, Dong; Gao, Hao; Zhu, Linfeng

    2015-01-01

    Vegetation patterns are strongly influenced by sand mobility in desert ecosystems. However, little is known about the spatial patterns of Artemisia ordosica, a dominant shrub in the Mu Us desert of Northwest China, in relation to sand fixation. The aim of this study was to investigate and contrast the effects of sand dune stabilization on the population and spatial distribution of this desert shrub. Spatial autocorrelation, semi-variance analysis, and point-pattern analysis were used jointly in this study to investigate the spatial patterns of A. ordosica populations on dunes in Yanchi County of Ningxia, China. The results showed that the spatial autocorrelation and spatial heterogeneity declined gradually, and the distance between the clustered individuals shortened following sand dune fixation. Seedlings were more aggregated than adults in all stage of dune stabilization, and both were more aggregated on shifting sand dunes separately. Spatial associations of the seedlings with the adults were mostly positive at distances of 0–5 m in shifting sand dunes, and the spatial association changed from positive to neutral in semi-fixed sand dunes. The seedlings were spaced in an almost random pattern around the adults, and their distances from the adults did not seem to affect their locations in semi-fixed sand dunes. Furthermore, spatial associations of the seedlings with the adults were negative in the fixed sand dune. These findings demonstrate that sand stabilization is an important factor affecting the spatial patterns of A. ordosica populations in the Mu Us desert. These findings suggest that, strong association between individuals may be the mechanism to explain the spatial pattern formation at preliminary stage of dune fixation. Sand dune stabilization can change the spatial pattern of shrub population by weakening the spatial association between native shrub individuals, which may affect the development direction of desert shrubs. PMID:26102584

  1. Effects of Sand Dune Stabilization on the Spatial Pattern of Artemisia ordosica Population in Mu Us Desert, Northwest China.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Jiachen; Zhang, Yuqing; Fan, Dongqing; Qin, Shugao; Jia, Xin; Wu, Bin; Chen, Dong; Gao, Hao; Zhu, Linfeng

    2015-01-01

    Vegetation patterns are strongly influenced by sand mobility in desert ecosystems. However, little is known about the spatial patterns of Artemisia ordosica, a dominant shrub in the Mu Us desert of Northwest China, in relation to sand fixation. The aim of this study was to investigate and contrast the effects of sand dune stabilization on the population and spatial distribution of this desert shrub. Spatial autocorrelation, semi-variance analysis, and point-pattern analysis were used jointly in this study to investigate the spatial patterns of A. ordosica populations on dunes in Yanchi County of Ningxia, China. The results showed that the spatial autocorrelation and spatial heterogeneity declined gradually, and the distance between the clustered individuals shortened following sand dune fixation. Seedlings were more aggregated than adults in all stage of dune stabilization, and both were more aggregated on shifting sand dunes separately. Spatial associations of the seedlings with the adults were mostly positive at distances of 0-5 m in shifting sand dunes, and the spatial association changed from positive to neutral in semi-fixed sand dunes. The seedlings were spaced in an almost random pattern around the adults, and their distances from the adults did not seem to affect their locations in semi-fixed sand dunes. Furthermore, spatial associations of the seedlings with the adults were negative in the fixed sand dune. These findings demonstrate that sand stabilization is an important factor affecting the spatial patterns of A. ordosica populations in the Mu Us desert. These findings suggest that, strong association between individuals may be the mechanism to explain the spatial pattern formation at preliminary stage of dune fixation. Sand dune stabilization can change the spatial pattern of shrub population by weakening the spatial association between native shrub individuals, which may affect the development direction of desert shrubs.

  2. Optical and radiocarbon ages of stacked paleosols and dune sands in the Nebraska Sand Hills, USA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Goble, R. J.; Mason, Joseph A.; Loope, David B.; Swinehart, James B.

    2004-05-01

    Optical ages for eolian sands from the Nebraska Sand Hills indicate periods of extensive eolian activity at ca 115±25, 840±70, 2300±240, and 3560±340 a. Activity was also noted at single sampling locations at ca 6180±370, 8430±510 and 13110±800 a. Many of these ages are similar to those noted by earlier authors. Optical ages from samples collected within paleosols indicate shorter and possibly less extensive periods of eolian activity at approximately 1220±150, 1590±110, and possibly 1950±150 a, during which the paleosol sands accumulated. What was originally interpreted as a single 1.2 m thick paleosol is shown by optical dating to consist of three or more welded soils developed within eolian sands with optical ages of ca 3800±240, 2740±240, 1560±110, and possibly 1930±140 a, each of which match eolian pulses recognized elsewhere. Scatter in some optical ages is attributable to intersection of sand-filled rodent burrows extending in outcrop 1.5 m below the contact between paleosol and overlying topset beds. A 5310±360 a optical age for one probable intersected burrow provides evidence for upward or lateral transport of older sands.

  3. Digital data from the Great Sand Dunes airborne gravity gradient survey, south-central Colorado

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Drenth, B.J.; Abraham, J.D.; Grauch, V.J.S.; Labson, V.F.; Hodges, G.

    2013-01-01

    This report contains digital data and supporting explanatory files describing data types, data formats, and survey procedures for a high-resolution airborne gravity gradient (AGG) survey at Great Sand Dunes National Park, Alamosa and Saguache Counties, south-central Colorado. In the San Luis Valley, the Great Sand Dunes survey covers a large part of Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve. The data described were collected from a high-resolution AGG survey flown in February 2012, by Fugro Airborne Surveys Corp., on contract to the U.S. Geological Survey. Scientific objectives of the AGG survey are to investigate the subsurface structural framework that may influence groundwater hydrology and seismic hazards, and to investigate AGG methods and resolution using different flight specifications. Funding was provided by an airborne geophysics training program of the U.S. Department of Defense's Task Force for Business & Stability Operations.

  4. Vulnerability and fate of a coastal sand dune complex, Rosetta-Idku, northwestern Nile Delta, Egypt

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    El Banna, Mahmoud M.

    2008-05-01

    Types, distribution, and origin of recent sand dunes between Rosetta and Idku, in the western sector of the Nile Delta, Egypt were investigated. Sand samples from the dunes, beach, and seafloor were studied for grain size distribution and mineralogical composition. It has been found that most of the dunes in the study area have been subjected to deterioration and removal due to the construction of buildings and the International Coastal Highway. The remnant constitutes a damaged belt of foredunes that extends from El Bouseily village to the west of Idku town. The dune’s origin is interpreted to be the result of coastal drifting and the subsequent transport of sediments of the former Canopic Nile branch eastward by the predominant longshore current and by aeolian processes. The blown sand grains accumulated to form a belt of coastal sand dunes of original longitudinal and crescentic forms. Urbanization of the coast has severely altered the landscape. The study area is considered vulnerable to the impacts of climate change and the expected rise in sea level. The outcome of potential sea level rise is serious; erosion problems are expected to be exacerbated and vast areas from land and property would be lost. Thus, protection and preservation the remaining dunes in the study area are vital requirements for shore protection.

  5. An environmental perspective of the post-tsunami scenario along the coast of Tamil Nadu, India: role of sand dunes and forests.

    PubMed

    Mascarenhas, Antonio; Jayakumar, Seelam

    2008-10-01

    An endeavor to feel the pulse of a coast devastated by a powerful oceanographic event is made. Results of field investigations along Tamil Nadu seaside revealed that the tsunami of December 2004 demolished dwellings within strips ranging from 6 to 132 m (average width, 41 m) from the dune, and flooded up to 862 m (average, 247 m) from the shore. The event damaged sand dunes, ripped dune vegetation, created new water bodies and shattered high value assets. Comparatively, casuarina forests performed remarkably. Uprooting of trees was exclusively restricted to a frontal strip ranging from 5 to 25 m (average width, 14 m) nearest to the shore where the maximum wave run-up was 6.5m above sea level. Sand dunes in general, and casuarina forests in particular, possess an innate capacity to dissipate powerful waves. This inference is supported by (a) negligible over wash along belts characterized by high dune complexes, (b) intact villages shielded by dense forests as well as sand dunes, and (c) maximum destruction of open beach front influenced by intense human activity. In this context, the coastal regulation zone (CRZ) Notification of 1991 offers sufficient scientific validity to be endorsed. However, post-tsunami ecosystem management initiatives lack a scientific basis. Therefore, a coastal hazards policy, that considers adaptation, dune restoration and forested buffer zones, is a sustainable long-term option for Indian coasts.

  6. 78 FR 37845 - Meeting of the Imperial Sand Dunes Recreation Area (ISDRA) Subgroup of the California Desert...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2013-06-24

    ... From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR Bureau of Land Management Meeting of the Imperial Sand Dunes Recreation Area (ISDRA) Subgroup of the... 92-463 and 94-579, that the Imperial Sand Dunes Recreation Area Subgroup of the California...

  7. Heterogeneous Wireless Sensor Network for Real Time Remote Monitoring of Sand Dynamics on Coastal Dunes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pozzebon, Alessandro; Bove, Carmine; Cappelli, Irene; Alquini, Fernanda; Bertoni, Duccio; Sarti, Giovanni

    2016-10-01

    In this paper, the architecture of a heterogeneous Wireless Sensor Network (WSN) to be deployed on coastal sand dunes is described, the aim of which is to provide real time measurements of physical parameters to better define the sediment transport in connection with Aeolian processes. The WSN integrates different typologies of sensors and is provided with both local and remote connection. In particular, three different typologies of sensors are integrated in the network: a multilayer anemometric station, a sensor developed ad-hoc to measure the sand dune level and a sand collector capable of measuring the weight of trapped sand and its quantity. Each sensor node is made up at least of a ZigBee radio module that is able to transmit the data collected by the sensor at a distance of about 100 meters. While the sand level sensor and the sand collector are provided only with this transmission module, the anemometric station also integrates a microprocessor board in charge of data processing. A Gateway node provided with a GSM connection for remote data transmission and a Zigbee radio module for Local Area communication has also been developed. This node is in charge of collecting all the data packets sent by the Sensor Nodes and transmit them to a remote server through GPRS connection. A Web server has been set up to collect these packets and store them in a database. The proposed WSN can provide both a static and a dynamic framework of sand transport processes acting on coastal dunes.

  8. Titan's sand seas of longitudinal dunes as indicators of winds and sediment transport

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Radebaugh, J.; Lorenz, R. D.; Lunine, J. I.; Wall, S. D.; Spencer, C.; Kirk, R. L.; Lopes, R. M.; Stofan, E. R.; Allison, M.; Callahan, P.; Cassini RADAR Team

    2007-12-01

    The Cassini Titan Radar Mapper has revealed nearly ten thousand longitudinal dunes on the surface of Titan, mainly within +-30 deg latitude [1,2,3]. Based on dune orientations, divergence around topography, similarity to dune fields on Earth, and other features such as bright streaks, the prevailing wind hypothesis model for longitudinal dune formation is favored, in which winds blow generally parallel to the dune long axis [e.g.5,6,7]. On Titan, these winds are dominantly Eastward [2,3], but as observed in more recent Radar swaths (2,4,5/2007) there is Northeastward deviation from this direction at higher latitudes. Vast fields of longitudinal dunes at Titan's equatorial regions are described as sand seas [2,3]. On Earth, these regions are typified not so much by the transport as by the accumulation of sand. This may occur when there is a large nearby source of sand or when there is reduced sand removal due to decreased winds or topographic obstacles [7,8,9]. Sand transport could be inhibited both upwind and downwind of the topographically complex region Xanadu, for example. Seasonally reversing wind regimes could also lead to the stagnation of sand transportation and net accumulation within sand sea regions [7,8,9]. This scenario may help reconcile global wind model predictions with directionality opposed to that predicted from observation. Sand seas on Earth are formed in arid regions and in some places cover 30-40 percent of the surface [8], a percent coverage similar to that in the equatorial regions on Titan [2,3]. Sand seas on Earth are long-lived, having taken up to tens of thousands of years to accumulate; whether the Titan dunes are more or less stable is an outstanding question. [1] Elachi et al. 2006. [2] Lorenz et al. 2006. [3] Radebaugh et al. in rev. [4] Stofan et al. 2007. [5] Fryberger and Dean 1979. [6] Tsoar 1983. [7] Lancaster 1982. [8] Lancaster 1995. [9] Fryberger and Ahlbrandt 1979.

  9. A numerical study of turbulent flow over complex aeolian dune fields: the White Sands National Monument

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Anderson, W. W.; Chamecki, M.; Kocurek, G.; Mohrig, D. C.

    2013-12-01

    The structure and dynamics of fully-developed turbulent flows responding to aeolian dune fields are studied using large-eddy simulation with an immersed boundary method. An aspect of particular importance in these flows is the downwind migration of coherent motions associated with Kelvin-Helmholtz instabilities which originate at the dune crests. These instabilities are responsible for enhanced downward transport of high momentum fluid via the so-called turbulent sweep mechanism. However, the presence of such structures and their role in determining the bulk characteristics of fully developed dune field sublayer aerodynamics has received relatively limited attention. Moreover, many existing studies address mostly symmetric or mildly asymmetric dune forms. The White Sands National Monument is a field of aeolian gypsum sand dunes located in the Tularosa Basin in southern New Mexico. Aeolian processes at the site result in a complex, anisotropic dune field. In the dune field sublayer, the flow statistics resemble a mixing layer: at approximately the dune crest height, vertical profiles of streamwise velocity exhibit an inflection and turbulent Reynolds stresses are maximum; below this, the streamwise and vertical velocity fluctuations are positively and negatively skewed, respectively. We evaluate the spatial structure of Kelvin-Helmholtz instabilities present in the dune field sublayer -- shear length, Ls, and vortex spacing, Lambda_x -- and show that Ls = m Lambda_x, where m is approximately 8 in the different sections considered (for turbulent mixing layers, 7 < m < 10, Rogers and Moser, 1994: Phys. Fluids A, 6, 903-922). These results guide discussion on the statistics of aerodynamic drag across the dunes; probability density functions of time-series of aerodynamic drag for the dunes are shown to exhibit skewness and variance much greater than values reported for turbulent boundary layer flow over an homogeneous roughness distribution. Thus, we propose that

  10. Constraints on the age of the Great Sand Dunes, Colorado, from subsurface stratigraphy and OSL dates

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Madole, Richard F.; Mahan, Shannon; Romig, Joseph H.; Havens, Jeremy C.

    2013-01-01

    The age of the Great Sand Dunes has been debated for nearly 150 yr. Seven ages ranging from Miocene to late Holocene have been proposed for them. This paper presents new information—chiefly subsurface stratigraphic data, OSL dates, and geomorphic evidence—that indicates that the Great Sand Dunes began to form in the latter part of the middle Pleistocene. The dunes overlie a thick wedge of piedmont-slope deposits, which in turn overlies sediment of Lake Alamosa, a paleolake that began to drain about 440 ka. The wedge of piedmont-slope deposits extends westward for at least 23 km and is as much as 60 m thick at a distance of 10 km from the Sangre de Cristo Range. Ostracodes from one well indicate that the eastern shoreline of Lake Alamosa extended to within 4.3 km of where the Great Sand Dunes eventually formed. The time represented by the wedge of piedmont-slope deposits is not known exactly, but the wedge post-dates 440 ka and was in place prior to 130 ka because by then the dunes overlying it were sufficiently close and tall enough to obstruct streams draining from the Sangre de Cristo Range.

  11. The influence of barchan shape on the moisture and temperature of the dune sand and the diversity of local climate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dluzewski, M.; Zmudzka, E.; Woronko, D.; Biejat, K.

    2012-04-01

    The aim of the research was to determine the impact of the barchan shape on moisture and temperature of dune sand in near surface layer. The study was carried out in the spring 2010 on the dune field located 20 km to the north of Laâyoune (Western Sahara). This region is one of the most humid, located in tropical, desert areas, which is associated with the influx of air masses from the Atlantic. Moisture and temperature of the dune sand in near surface layer was analysed on the basis of measurements in different parts of barchans. The studies included also analysis of the physical condition of the atmosphere, meteorological elements within the analyzed dune fields, the grain size distribution and mineral composition of dune sand. Shape of barchans and their orientations were determined on the basis of the detailed topographic survey. The results show important spatial variation in moisture and temperature of dune sand in near surface layer, characterized by very small differences on grain size distribution and mineral composition. It was found that variations in moisture and temperature of dune material were mainly related to the inflow of solar energy. The advection played a lesser role. The main factors affecting the distribution of moisture and temperature of dune sand as well the air surface layer were the aspect and the slope angle of the dunes. Eastern and southern (lee side) parts of the dunes were characterized by several times less moisture than their western and northern parts (stoss side). With the direction of advection from the north-west which occurred during the field studies, there was no evidence of less moisture in the sand of the stoss sides of dunes (despite the greater wind speed intensifying the process of evaporation). It can therefore be assumed that the intensity of sand transport within a dune located in the region with the impact of oceanic air masses depends mainly on the shape and spatial orientation of barchans.

  12. The sand seas of Titan: Cassini RADAR observations of longitudinal dunes.

    PubMed

    Lorenz, R D; Wall, S; Radebaugh, J; Boubin, G; Reffet, E; Janssen, M; Stofan, E; Lopes, R; Kirk, R; Elachi, C; Lunine, J; Mitchell, K; Paganelli, F; Soderblom, L; Wood, C; Wye, L; Zebker, H; Anderson, Y; Ostro, S; Allison, M; Boehmer, R; Callahan, P; Encrenaz, P; Ori, G G; Francescetti, G; Gim, Y; Hamilton, G; Hensley, S; Johnson, W; Kelleher, K; Muhleman, D; Picardi, G; Posa, F; Roth, L; Seu, R; Shaffer, S; Stiles, B; Vetrella, S; Flamini, E; West, R

    2006-05-05

    The most recent Cassini RADAR images of Titan show widespread regions (up to 1500 kilometers by 200 kilometers) of near-parallel radar-dark linear features that appear to be seas of longitudinal dunes similar to those seen in the Namib desert on Earth. The Ku-band (2.17-centimeter wavelength) images show approximately 100-meter ridges consistent with duneforms and reveal flow interactions with underlying hills. The distribution and orientation of the dunes support a model of fluctuating surface winds of approximately 0.5 meter per second resulting from the combination of an eastward flow with a variable tidal wind. The existence of dunes also requires geological processes that create sand-sized (100- to 300-micrometer) particulates and a lack of persistent equatorial surface liquids to act as sand traps.

  13. The sand seas of titan: Cassini RADAR observations of longitudinal dunes

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Lorenz, R.D.; Wall, S.; Radebaugh, J.; Boubin, G.; Reffet, E.; Janssen, M.; Stofan, E.; Lopes, R.; Kirk, R.; Elachi, C.; Lunine, J.; Mitchell, Ken; Paganelli, F.; Soderblom, L.; Wood, C.; Wye, L.; Zebker, H.; Anderson, Y.; Ostro, S.; Allison, M.; Boehmer, R.; Callahan, P.; Encrenaz, P.; Ori, G.G.; Francescetti, G.; Gim, Y.; Hamilton, G.; Hensley, S.; Johnson, W.; Kelleher, K.; Muhleman, D.; Picardi, G.; Posa, F.; Roth, L.; Seu, R.; Shaffer, S.; Stiles, B.; Vetrella, S.; Flamini, E.; West, R.

    2006-01-01

    The most recent Cassini RADAR images of Titan show widespread regions (up to 1500 kilometers by 200 kilometers) of near-parallel radar-dark linear features that appear to be seas of longitudinal dunes similar to those seen in the Namib desert on Earth. The Ku-band (2.17-centimeter wavelength) images show ???100-meter ridges consistent with duneforms and reveal flow interactions with underlying hills. The distribution and orientation of the dunes support a model of fluctuating surface winds of ???0.5 meter per second resulting from the combination of an eastward flow with a variable tidal wind. The existence of dunes also requires geological processes that create sand-sized (100- to 300-micrometer) particulates and a lack of persistent equatorial surface liquids to act as sand traps.

  14. Sand mining impacts on long-term dune erosion in southern Monterey Bay

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Thornton, E.B.; Sallenger, Abby; Sesto, Juan Conforto; Egley, L.; McGee, Timothy; Parsons, Rost

    2006-01-01

    Southern Monterey Bay was the most intensively mined shoreline (with sand removed directly from the surf zone) in the U.S. during the period from 1906 until 1990, when the mines were closed following hypotheses that the mining caused coastal erosion. It is estimated that the yearly averaged amount of mined sand between 1940 and 1984 was 128,000 m3/yr, which is approximately 50% of the yearly average dune volume loss during this period. To assess the impact of sand mining, erosion rates along an 18 km range of shoreline during the times of intensive sand mining (1940–1990) are compared with the rates after sand mining ceased (1990–2004). Most of the shoreline is composed of unconsolidated sand with extensive sand dunes rising up to a height of 46 m, vulnerable to the erosive forces of storm waves. Erosion is defined here as a recession of the top edge of the dune. Recession was determined using stereo-photogrammetry, and LIDAR and GPS surveys. Long-term erosion rates vary from about 0.5 m/yr at Monterey to 1.5 m/yr in the middle of the range, and then decrease northward. Erosion events are episodic and occur when storm waves and high tides coincide, allowing swash to undercut the dune and resulting in permanent recession. Erosion appears to be correlated with the occurrence of El Niños. The calculated volume loss of the dune in southern Monterey Bay during the 1997–98 El Niño winter was 1,820,000 m3, which is almost seven times the historical annual mean dune erosion of 270,000 m3/yr. The alongshore variation in recession rates appears to be a function of the alongshore gradient in mean wave energy and depletions by sand mining. After cessation of sand mining in 1990, the erosion rates decreased at locations in the southern end of the bay but have not significantly changed at other locations.

  15. Measurements of Coupled Fluid and Sediment Motion Over Mobile Sand Dunes in a Laboratory Flume

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The relation between turbulent fluid motions and sediment particles over mobile sand dunes may be better understood by examining the time scales over which the quantities fluctuate. In laboratory experiments performed at the USDA-ARS-National Sedimentation Laboratory, profiles of acoustic backscatt...

  16. Time Scales in Turbulence and Sediment Concentration Over Mobile Sand Dunes

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The relationship between turbulent fluid motions and sediment particles over mobile sand dunes may be better understood by examining the time scales over which the quantities fluctuate. In laboratory experiments performed at the USDA-ARS-National Sedimentation Laboratory, profiles of acoustic backs...

  17. Soil water and temperature patterns in an arid desert dune sand

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Berndtsson, Ronny; Nodomi, Kanichi; Yasuda, Hiroshi; Persson, Thomas; Chen, Heshen; Jinno, Kenji

    1996-11-01

    Under arid natural conditions, soil water content governs and limits the number and size of perennial plant species. Thus, plant-available soil water is the main constraint for sustainable control of desert encroachment. To evaluate possibilities for re-vegetation of bare sand surfaces, soil water and temperature patterns for typical sand dunes in a desert climate were investigated. Bare and vegetated soil transects were selected for observation of soil water content and temperature. The investigated soil transects covered crest-to-crest spacings (about 60 m horizontally and 15 m vertically) in a shifting sand dune area. Observations were made at Shapotou field research station bordering the Tengger Desert in Northwestern China. The paper presents two-dimensional properties of soil water content (0.1-3.0 m depth) and temperature (0-1.0 m depth) before and after rainfall. Rainfall (15-22 mm) affected soil water distribution down to 1.5-2.0 m and temperature distribution down to 1.0 m. Soil water appeared to be transported through the apparently highly pervious and homogeneous sand along the dune slopes. High water contents and, thus, infiltration occurred mainly at the non-sloping parts, i.e. the dune crests and bottoms. Rainfall changed the temperature patterns from a mainly horizontally layered appearance before the rainfall to increasingly vertically shaped patterns.

  18. A Global Digital Database and Atlas of Quaternary Dune Fields and Sand Seas

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lancaster, N.; Halfen, A. F.

    2012-12-01

    Sand seas and dune fields are globally significant sedimentary deposits, which archive the effects of climate and sea level change on a variety of temporal and spatial scales. Dune systems provide a valuable source of information on past climate conditions, including evidence for periods of aridity and unique data on past wind regimes. Researchers have compiled vast quantities of geomorphic and chronological data from these dune systems for nearly half a century, however, these data remain disconnected, making comparisons of dune systems challenging at global and regional scales. The primary goal of this project is to develop a global digital database of chronologic information for periods of desert sand dune accumulation and stabilization, as well as, pertinent stratigraphic and geomorphic information. This database can then be used by scientists to 1) document the history of aeolian processes in arid regions with emphasis on dune systems in low and mid latitude deserts, 2) correlate periods of sand accumulation and stability with other terrestrial and marine paleoclimatic proxies and records, and 3) develop an improved understanding of the response of dune systems to climate change. The database currently resides in Microsoft Access format, which allows searching and filtering of data. The database includes 4 linked tables containing information on the site, chronological control (radiocarbon or luminescence), and the pertinent literature citations. Thus far the database contains information for 838 sites world wide, comprising 2598 luminescence and radiocarbon ages, though these numbers increase regularly as new data is added. The database is only available on request at this time, however, an online, GIS database is being developed and will be available in the near future. Data outputs from the online database will include PDF reports and Google Earth formatted data sets for quick viewing of data. Additionally, data will be available in a gridded format for

  19. Effects of beach raking and sand fences on dune dimensions and morphology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nordstrom, Karl F.; Jackson, Nancy L.; Freestone, Amy L.; Korotky, Katherine H.; Puleo, Jack A.

    2012-12-01

    Raking beaches to remove wrack (natural and human litter) to enhance recreational use, and using sand fences to build and stabilize dunes are common practices on developed shores, but their effects on the landscape are not well understood. Managers in Avalon, NJ ceased using sand fences and raking in a portion of beach in 1991, providing the opportunity to evaluate evolution of natural and managed dune systems over a 19-year period. Topographic and vegetation characteristics were evaluated on 15 transects within 5 sites in a managed area, where raking and sand fences are still used, and at 15 transects within 5 sites in a naturally evolving (unmanaged) area. Raking and deploying fences in the managed area restricted the size of the cross-shore zone in which aeolian accretion occurred but resulted in greater dune crest heights than in the unmanaged area. Crest heights of the foredune in the managed area ranged from 4.45 m to 5.27 m. Crest heights in the unmanaged area ranged from 3.02 m to 4.27 m. Dune volume and beach volume were greater on average in the unmanaged area, and the dune was wider (mean of 72 m versus 40 m) and had an additional ridge. The unmanaged area had 35% more species and contained a greater percentage of all species encountered in the study area than the managed area (88% compared to 65%). More species occurred in the swales than any other of the cross-shore habitats, and most of these species were observed in the deeper, wider swales in the unmanaged area. Removing wrack from the beach prevents incipient dunes from forming, thus reducing the number of dune crests and size of swales that create topographic variability and increase the number and types of habitats for flora and fauna. Suspension of raking can allow the dunes to build seaward while producing a greater variety and number of habitats, but seaward growth does not mean that the height of the dune will increase substantially, and fences may be needed to build an initial dune ridge for

  20. Efficiency of plant growth promoting rhizobacteria isolated from sand dunes of Chennai coastal area.

    PubMed

    Muthezhilan, R; Sindhuja, B S; Hussain, A Jaffar; Jayaprakashvel, M

    2012-08-15

    Plant Growth Promoting Rhizobacteria (PGPR) are beneficial bacteria that colonize the plant root and enhance the plant growth. The use of PGPR is steadily increasing in agriculture and offers an attractive way to replace chemical fertilizers, pesticides and supplements. In the present study, PGPR were isolated from 18 different rhizosphere soil samples of coastal sand dune plants, belonging to the genus Ipomoea sp. collected from the Chennai coastal area. For isolation of bacteria from soil samples, pour plate technique was followed. The rhizobacterial population was ranged from 4.4 x 10(6)-7.5 x 10(7) CFU g(-1). From that, 46 morphologically different bacterial strains were isolated. Among 46, 18 strains exhibited the production of Indole Acetic Acid. (IAA). When screened for phosphate solubilzing activity, six strains showed maximum activity. All these selected six strains were screened for seed germination among which these two strains (AMET1136 and AMET 1148) showed remarkable increase in the seed germination of black gram and green gram. For plant growth promotion, three types of treatments namely, seed bacterization, soil drenching and mixed (seed+soil) were carried out to check the potential of these two strains. Among that one strain which was identified as Pseudomonas sp. AMET1148 showed remarkable and significant increase in shoot length and root length of the tested plants. The study concluded that PGPR from coastal sand dund plants can be developed as plant growth promoters in agricultural crops.

  1. Behavior and identification of ephemeral sand dunes at the backshore zone using video images.

    PubMed

    Guimarães, Pedro V; Pereira, Pedro S; Calliari, Lauro J; Ellis, Jean T

    2016-09-01

    The backshore zone is transitional environment strongly affected by ocean, air and sand movements. On dissipative beaches, the formation of ephemeral dunes over the backshore zone plays significant contribution in the beach morphodynamics and sediment budget. The aim of this work is to describe a novel method to identify ephemeral dunes in the backshore region and to discuss their morphodynamic behavior. The beach morphology is identified using Argus video imagery, which reveals the behavior of morphologies at Cassino Beach, Rio Grande do Sul, Brasil. Daily images from 2005 to 2007, topographic profiles, meteorological data, and sedimentological parameters were used to determine the frequency and pervasiveness of these features on the backshore. Results indicated that coastline orientation relative to the dominant NE and E winds and the dissipative morphological beach state favored aeolian sand transport towards the backshore. Prevailing NE winds increase sand transportation to the backshore, resulting in the formation of barchans, transverse, and barchanoid-linguiod dunes. Precipitation inhibits aeolian transport and ephemeral dune formation and maintains the existing morphologies during strong SE and SW winds, provided the storm surge is not too high.

  2. 78 FR 36568 - Notice of Availability of the Record of Decision for the Approved Imperial Sand Dunes Recreation...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2013-06-18

    ... Bureau of Land Management Notice of Availability of the Record of Decision for the Approved Imperial Sand... Management (BLM) announces the availability of the Imperial Sand Dunes Recreation Area Record of Decision... receive a reply during normal business hours. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The Imperial Sand...

  3. Sand Dune Ridge Alignment Effects on Surface BRF over Libya-4 Calibration Site

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Govaerts, Yves

    2015-12-01

    The Libya-4 desert area, located in the Great Sand Sea, is one of the most important bright desert CEOS pseudo-invariant calibration sites by its size and radiometric stability. This site is intensively used for radiometer drift monitoring, sensor intercalibration and as an absolute calibration reference based on simulated radiances traceable to the SI standard. The Libya-4 morphology is composed of oriented sand dunes shaped by dominant winds. The effects of sand dune spatial organization on the surface bidirectional reflectance factor is analyzed in this paper using Raytran, a 3D radiative transfer model. The topography is characterized with the 30 m resolution ASTER digital elevation model. Four different regions-of-interest sizes, ranging from 10 km up to 100 km, are analyzed. Results show that sand dunes generate more backscattering than forward scattering at the surface. The mean surface reflectance averaged over different viewing and illumination angles is pretty much independent of the size of the selected area, though the standard deviation differs. Sun azimuth position has an effect on the surface reflectance field, which is more pronounced for high Sun zenith angles. Such 3D azimuthal effects should be taken into account to decrease the simulated radiance uncertainty over Libya-4 below 3% for wavelengths larger than 600 nm..

  4. Sand dune ridge alignment effects on surface BRF over the Libya-4 CEOS calibration site.

    PubMed

    Govaerts, Yves M

    2015-02-03

    The Libya-4 desert area, located in the Great Sand Sea, is one of the most important bright desert CEOS pseudo-invariant calibration sites by its size and radiometric stability. This site is intensively used for radiometer drift monitoring, sensor intercalibration and as an absolute calibration reference based on simulated radiances traceable to the SI standard. The Libya-4 morphology is composed of oriented sand dunes shaped by dominant winds. The effects of sand dune spatial organization on the surface bidirectional reflectance factor is analyzed in this paper using Raytran, a 3D radiative transfer model. The topography is characterized with the 30 m resolution ASTER digital elevation model. Four different regions-of-interest sizes, ranging from 10 km up to 100 km, are analyzed. Results show that sand dunes generate more backscattering than forward scattering at the surface. The mean surface reflectance averaged over different viewing and illumination angles is pretty much independent of the size of the selected area, though the standard deviation differs. Sun azimuth position has an effect on the surface reflectance field, which is more pronounced for high Sun zenith angles. Such 3D azimuthal effects should be taken into account to decrease the simulated radiance uncertainty over Libya-4 below 3% for wavelengths larger than 600 nm.

  5. Sand Dune Ridge Alignment Effects on Surface BRF over the Libya-4 CEOS Calibration Site

    PubMed Central

    Govaerts, Yves M.

    2015-01-01

    The Libya-4 desert area, located in the Great Sand Sea, is one of the most important bright desert CEOS pseudo-invariant calibration sites by its size and radiometric stability. This site is intensively used for radiometer drift monitoring, sensor intercalibration and as an absolute calibration reference based on simulated radiances traceable to the SI standard. The Libya-4 morphology is composed of oriented sand dunes shaped by dominant winds. The effects of sand dune spatial organization on the surface bidirectional reflectance factor is analyzed in this paper using Raytran, a 3D radiative transfer model. The topography is characterized with the 30 m resolution ASTER digital elevation model. Four different regions-of-interest sizes, ranging from 10 km up to 100 km, are analyzed. Results show that sand dunes generate more backscattering than forward scattering at the surface. The mean surface reflectance averaged over different viewing and illumination angles is pretty much independent of the size of the selected area, though the standard deviation differs. Sun azimuth position has an effect on the surface reflectance field, which is more pronounced for high Sun zenith angles. Such 3D azimuthal effects should be taken into account to decrease the simulated radiance uncertainty over Libya-4 below 3% for wavelengths larger than 600 nm. PMID:25654721

  6. Ground-water resources of the Clatsop Plains sand-dune area, Clatsop County, Oregon

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Frank, F.J.

    1970-01-01

    Although the average annual precipitation of the Clatsop Plains is 78.5 inches, the area is not without problems of water supply. The Clatsop Plains area ix underlain by Tertiary bedrock of low permeability that stores and yields small quantities of ground water, which may be of poor chemical quality. This Tertiary bedrock furnishes only minor ground-water discharge to maintain the base flow of streams. The flow of rivers and creeks, normally abundant during the wet season, decreases greatly during the dry summer months. The lowlands are overlain by extensive deposits of dune and beach sand. The dune sand is permeable and can absorb and store, as fresh water, a large percentage of the annual precipitation. In the central part of the dune area, the saturated thickness of the sand ranges from 95 to more than 150 feet. Most of the ground water in the sand discharges to the ocean through beach-line seeps and underflow. Much of the water now being discharged to the ocean could be recovered by pumping from properly located, designed, and constructed wells. Three test wells drilled as part of this study are capable of yielding 100 gallons per minute although they are equipped with only short lengths of well screen. It is estimated that 2,500 acre-feet of ground water per year per square mile of area may be available for withdrawal in the 10 square mile area that is most favorable for development. The water from the dune sand is soft to moderately hard, has a low chloride concentration, and is of generally good chemical quality; however, at places it is weakly acidic and contains sufficient dissolved iron to make iron removal necessary for some uses. Ground water from shallow depths beneath a few swampy low-lying areas is brown and contains excessive concentrations of iron.

  7. Parameterization of Finite-Element Cryo-Hydrologic Sand Dune Model to Constrain Debris-Flow-Initiating Subsurface Temperatures and Pore-Water Pressures, Great Kobuk Sand Dunes, Alaska

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dinwiddie, C. L.; Hooper, D. M.

    2015-05-01

    To explain how debris flows form at subfreezing air temperatures, we present meteorology-driven, numerical simulation-derived subsurface temperature and pore-water pressure profiles in the Great Kobuk Sand Dunes of Alaska, for incipient flow events.

  8. Observations regarding the movement of barchan sand dunes in the Nazca to Tanaca area of southern Peru

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Parker Gay, S.

    1999-03-01

    Significant studies of sand dunes and sand movement made in coastal southern Peru in 1959-1961 [Gay, S.P., 1962. Origen, distribución y movimiento de las arenas eólicas en el área de Yauca a Palpa. Boletin de la Sociedad Geologica del Perú 37, 37-58] have never been published in the English language and consequently have never been referred to in the standard literature. These studies contain valuable information, not developed by later workers in this field, that may be of broad general interest. For example, using airphotos of barchan dunes and plotting the rates of movement vs. dune widths, the author quantified the deduction of Bagnold [Bagnold, R.A., 1941. The Physics of Blown Sand and Desert Dunes. Methuen, London.] that the speed of barchan movement is inversely proportional to barchan size (as characterized by height or width). This led to the conclusion that all barchans in a given dune field, regardless of size, sweep out approximately equal areas in equal times. Another conclusion was that collisions between smaller, overtaking dunes and larger dunes in front of them do not result in destruction or absorption of the smaller dunes if the collision is a `sideswipe'. The dunes simply merge into a compound dune for a time, and the smaller dune then moves on intact, i.e., passes, the larger dune, whilst retaining its approximate original size and shape. Another result of the 1959-1961 studies was a map that documents the Pacific coast beaches as the source of the sand ( Fig. 1), which is then blown inland through extensive dune fields of barchans and other dune forms in great clockwise-sweeping paths, to its final resting place in huge sand masses, sometimes called `sand seas' [Lancaster, N., 1995. Geomorphology of Desert Dunes. Routledge, London], at higher elevations 20 to 60 km from the coast. A minor, but nevertheless interesting, discovery was a small heavy mineral dune located directly in the lee of a large barchan, evidently formed by the winnowing

  9. Use of coal ash for enhancing biocrust development in stabilizing sand dunes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zaady, Eli; Katra, Itzhak; Sarig, Shlomo

    2015-04-01

    In dryland environments, biocrusts are considered ecosystem engineers since they play significant roles in ecosystem processes. In the successional pathway of crust communities, the new areas are colonized after disturbance by pioneers such as filamentous cyanobacteria - Microcoleus spp. This stage is followed by colonization of green algae, mosses, and lichens. Aggregation of soil granules is caused by metabolic polysaccharides secreted by cyanobacteria and green algae, gluing the soil particles to form the crust layer. It was suggested that incorporating dust into the biocrusts encourages the growth of cyanobacteria, leading to a strengthening of the biocrusts' cohesion. Moreover, biocrusts cover a larger portion of the surface when the soil contains finer particles, and it was observed that at least 4-5% of clay and silt is required to support a measurable biocrust. While natural and undisturbed sand dunes are generally stabilized by biocrusts in the north-western Negev desert, stabilization of disturbed and movable sand dunes is one of the main problems in this desertified land, as in vast areas in the world. Daily breezes and seasonal wind storms transport sand particles to populated and agricultural areas causing damages to field crops and livelihood. Moving sand dunes consist of relatively coarse grains (250-2000 μm) with a low percent of clay and silt. This phenomenon negatively affects cyanobacterial colonization rate, even in relatively wet desert areas (100-250 mm rainfalls). In order to face the problem it was suggested to enrich the dune surface by using coal fly-ash. The research was conducted in two stages: first, examining the feasibility in Petri-dishes in laboratory conditions and in Experimental Aeolian Greenhouse conditions. The results showed that adding coal fly-ash and biocrust inoculum increased aggregate stability, penetration resistance and shear strength, as opposed to the control-sand plot. Using mobile wind-tunnel simulations, sand

  10. Turbulent Flow and Sand Dune Dynamics: Identifying Controls on Aeolian Sediment Transport

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Weaver, C. M.; Wiggs, G.

    2007-12-01

    Sediment transport models are founded on cubic power relationships between the transport rate and time averaged flow parameters. These models have achieved limited success and recent aeolian and fluvial research has focused on the modelling and measurement of sediment transport by temporally varying flow conditions. Studies have recognised turbulence as a driving force in sediment transport and have highlighted the importance of coherent flow structures in sediment transport systems. However, the exact mechanisms are still unclear. Furthermore, research in the fluvial environment has identified the significance of turbulent structures for bedform morphology and spacing. However, equivalent research in the aeolian domain is absent. This paper reports the findings of research carried out to characterise the importance of turbulent flow parameters in aeolian sediment transport and determine how turbulent energy and turbulent structures change in response to dune morphology. The relative importance of mean and turbulent wind parameters on aeolian sediment flux was examined in the Skeleton Coast, Namibia. Measurements of wind velocity (using sonic anemometers) and sand transport (using grain impact sensors) at a sampling frequency of 10 Hz were made across a flat surface and along transects on a 9 m high barchan dune. Mean wind parameters and mass sand flux were measured using cup anemometers and wedge-shaped sand traps respectively. Vertical profile data from the sonic anemometers were used to compute turbulence and turbulent stress (Reynolds stress; instantaneous horizontal and vertical fluctuations; coherent flow structures) and their relationship with respect to sand transport and evolving dune morphology. On the flat surface time-averaged parameters generally fail to characterise sand transport dynamics, particularly as the averaging interval is reduced. However, horizontal wind speed correlates well with sand transport even with short averaging times. Quadrant

  11. Immunotoxicological and neurotoxicological profile of health effects following subacute exposure to geogenic dust from sand dunes at the Nellis Dunes Recreation Area, Las Vegas, NV.

    PubMed

    Keil, Deborah; Buck, Brenda; Goossens, Dirk; Teng, Yuanxin; Leetham, Mallory; Murphy, Lacey; Pollard, James; Eggers, Margaret; McLaurin, Brett; Gerads, Russell; DeWitt, Jamie

    2016-01-15

    Exposure to geogenic particulate matter (PM) comprised of mineral particles has been linked to human health effects. However, very little data exist on health effects associated with geogenic dust exposure in natural settings. Therefore, we characterized particulate matter size, metal chemistry, and health effects of dust collected from the Nellis Dunes Recreation Area (NDRA), a popular off-road vehicle area located near Las Vegas, NV. Adult female B6C3F1 mice were exposed to several concentrations of mineral dust collected from active and vegetated sand dunes in NDRA. Dust samples (median diameter: 4.4 μm) were suspended in phosphate-buffered saline and delivered at concentrations ranging from 0.01 to 100 mg dust/kg body weight by oropharyngeal aspiration. ICP-MS analyses of total dissolution of the dust resulted in aluminum (55,090 μg/g), vanadium (70 μg/g), chromium (33 μg/g), manganese (511 μg/g), iron (21,600 μg/g), cobalt (9.4 μg/g), copper (69 μg/g), zinc (79 μg/g), arsenic (62 μg/g), strontium (620 μg/g), cesium (13 μg/g), lead 25 μg/g) and uranium (4.7 μg/g). Arsenic was present only as As(V). Mice received four exposures, once/week over 28-days to mimic a month of weekend exposures. Descriptive and functional assays to assess immunotoxicity and neurotoxicity were performed 24 h after the final exposure. The primary observation was that 0.1 to 100 mg/kg of this sand dune derived dust dose-responsively reduced antigen-specific IgM antibody responses, suggesting that dust from this area of NDRA may present a potential health risk.

  12. Oscillation-induced sand dunes in a liquid-filled rotating cylinder

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dyakova, Veronika; Kozlov, Victor; Polezhaev, Denis

    2016-12-01

    The dynamics of granular medium in a liquid-filled horizontal cylinder with a time-varying rotation rate is experimentally studied. When the cylinder is purely rotated, the granular medium develops an annular layer near the cylindrical wall. The interface between fluid and sand is smooth and axisymmetric. The time variation of the rotation rate initiates the azimuthal oscillation of the liquid in the cylinder's frame of reference and provokes the onset of quasisteady relief in the form of regular dunes. The stability of the axisymmetric sand surface and dynamics of regular dunes are examined. It is found that the ripple formation is provoked by the quasisteady instability of the Stokes boundary layer. In the range of high Reynolds numbers, the ripple formation occurs at a constant critical Shields number θc≃0.05 . The spatial period of the relief is not sensitive to the fluid viscosity and granule diameter; it is determined by the amplitude of oscillation and ratio between the oscillation frequency and mean rotation rate. Long-term experiments show that there are forward and backward azimuthal drifts of dunes. An initial analysis of the issues related to the dune migration is provided.

  13. Development of a grazing monitoring program for Great Sand Dunes National Park, Colorado

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Zeigenfuss, Linda C.; Schoenecker, Kathryn A.

    2015-08-07

    National parks in the United States face the difficult task of managing natural resources within park boundaries that are influenced to a large degree by historical land uses or by forces outside of the park’s protection and mandate. Among the many challenges faced by parks is management of wildlife populations that occupy larger landscapes than individual park units but that concentrate within park lands both seasonally and opportunistically. Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve in south-central Colorado is currently developing an Ungulate Management Plan to address management of elk and bison populations within the park. Execution of the Ungulate Management Plan will require monitoring and assessment of habitat conditions in areas that appear sensitive to ungulate use or heavily used by elk and bison. Several sources of information on the various habitats within the park and their use and response to foraging elk and bison exist from recent and on-going research in Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve as well as from studies in other regions of the Intermountain West. All of this data can be used to inform the planning process. This report provides background on vegetation types that make up the primary bison and elk ranges in Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve and on the potential effects of ungulate grazing and browsing in these specific vegetation communities (both locally and regionally). The report also provides a review of the elements necessary to develop a long-term monitoring program for Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve that addresses both the responses to ungulate herbivory seen in important habitats in the park and the amount and patterns of ungulate habitat use.

  14. Microbial Diversity in Soil, Sand Dune and Rock Substrates of the Thar Monsoon Desert, India.

    PubMed

    Rao, Subramanya; Chan, Yuki; Bugler-Lacap, Donnabella C; Bhatnagar, Ashish; Bhatnagar, Monica; Pointing, Stephen B

    2016-03-01

    A culture-independent diversity assessment of archaea, bacteria and fungi in the Thar Desert in India was made. Six locations in Ajmer, Jaisalmer, Jaipur and Jodhupur included semi-arid soils, arid soils, arid sand dunes, plus arid cryptoendolithic substrates. A real-time quantitative PCR approach revealed that bacteria dominated soils and cryptoendoliths, whilst fungi dominated sand dunes. The archaea formed a minor component of all communities. Comparison of rRNA-defined community structure revealed that substrate and climate rather than location were the most parsimonious predictors. Sequence-based identification of 1240 phylotypes revealed that most taxa were common desert microorganisms. Semi-arid soils were dominated by actinobacteria and alpha proteobacteria, arid soils by chloroflexi and alpha proteobacteria, sand dunes by ascomycete fungi and cryptoendoliths by cyanobacteria. Climatic variables that best explained this distribution were mean annual rainfall and maximum annual temperature. Substrate variables that contributed most to observed diversity patterns were conductivity, soluble salts, Ca(2+) and pH. This represents an important addition to the inventory of desert microbiota, novel insight into the abiotic drivers of community assembly, and the first report of biodiversity in a monsoon desert system.

  15. Detecting changes on coastal primary sand dunes using multi-temporal Landsat imagery

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gonçalves, Gil; Duro, Nuno; Sousa, Ercilia; Pinto, Luís.; Figueiredo, Isabel

    2014-10-01

    Due to both natural and anthropogenic causes the coastal primary sand dunes, keeps changing dynamically and continuously their shape, position and extend over time. In this paper we use a case study to show how we monitor the Portuguese coast, between the period 2000 to 2014, using free available multi-temporal Landsat imagery (ETM+ and OLI sensors). First, all the multispectral images are panshaperned to meet the 15 meters spatial resolution of the panchromatic images. Second, using the Modification of Normalized Difference Water Index (MNDWI) and kmeans clustering method we extract the raster shoreline for each image acquisition time. Third, each raster shoreline is smoothed and vectorized using a penalized least square method. Fourth, using an image composed by five synthetic bands and an unsupervised classification method we extract the primary sand dunes. Finally, the visual comparison of the thematic primary sand dunes maps shows that an effective monitoring system can be implemented easily using free available remote sensing imagery data and open source software (QGIS and Orfeo toolbox).

  16. Behaviour and transport of radionuclides in soil and vegetation of a sand dune ecosystem.

    PubMed

    Copplestone, D; Johnson, M S; Jones, S R

    2001-01-01

    A sand dune ecosystem in the vicinity of the British Nuclear Fuels reprocessing plant at Sellafield, Cumbria, UK was used to examine the spatial, temporal and depth distributions of 134Cs, 137Cs, 238Pu, 239 + 240Pu and 241Am in soil and in two species of vegetation (Festuca rubra, Ammophila arenaria). Core samples showed evidence of the accumulation of radionuclides derived mainly from sea-to-land transfer. Accumulated deposits of radioactivity (0-0.1 m) lie within the range: 1.1-3.4 Bq kg-1 (134Cs), 260-440 Bq kg-1 (137Cs), 31-40 Bq kg-1 (238Pu), 150-215 Bq kg-1 (239 + 240Pu) and 190-240 Bq kg-1 (241Am). Soil profiles showed greater activity concentrations in their deeper regions and this is attributed to leaching of radionuclides in percolating drainage water accentuated by the coarse texture, low organic matter and clay mineral content of coastal sands. Radionuclide activity concentrations in F. rubra and A. arenaria were similar, in the ranges 20-70 Bq kg-1 (137Cs), 1-5 Bq kg-1 (238Pu), 10-30 Bq kg-1 (239 + 240Pu) and 10-65 Bq kg-1 (241Am). Clear temporal and spatial variations were observed in both species of vegetation, reflecting the weather conditions antecedent to the sampling period and the influence of sea-to-land transfer. Concentration ratios (vegetation:soil) for activity concentrations in the two species were similar, in the ranges: 0.05-0.14 (137Cs), 0.025-0.097 (238Pu), 0.022-0.057 (239 + 240Pu) and 0.025-0.212 (241Am).

  17. Contribution to the physical-mechanical study of cement CRS basis of dune-sand powder and other minerals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dahmani, Saci; Kriker, Abdelouahed

    2016-07-01

    The Portland cements are increasingly used for the manufacture of cement materials (mortar or concrete). Sighting the increasing demand of the cement in the field of construction, and the wealth of our country of minerals. It is time to value these local materials in construction materials and in the manufacture of cement for the manufacture of a new type of cement or for the improvement of the cement of characteristics for several reasons either technical, or ecological or economic or to improve certain properties to the State fees or hardened. The uses of mineral additions remain associated to disadvantages on the time of solidification and the development of the mechanical resistance at the young age [8]. The objective of our work is to study the effects of the incorporation of additions minerals such the pozzolan (active addition) [3], slag of blast furnace (active addition) [4] and the sand dune powder (inert addition) on the physico-mechanical properties of compositions of mortar collaborated compositions according to different binary combinations basis of these additions. This will allow selecting of optimal dosages of these combinations the more efficient, from the point of view of mechanical resistanceas well. The results of this research work confirm that the rate of 10% of pozzolan, slag or powder of dune sand contributes positively on the development of resistance in the long term, at of this proportion time,there is a decrease in the latter except for the slag (20 - 40%) [4]Seems the more effective resistors and physical properties.

  18. Heavy metal levels in dune sands from Matanzas urban resorts and Varadero beach (Cuba): Assessment of contamination and ecological risks.

    PubMed

    Díaz Rizo, Oscar; Buzón González, Fran; Arado López, Juana O; Denis Alpízar, Otoniel

    2015-12-30

    Concentrations of chromium (Cr), nickel (Ni), copper (Cu), zinc (Zn) and lead (Pb) in dune sands from six urban and suburban Matanzas (Cuba) resorts and Varadero beach were estimated by X-ray fluorescence analysis. Ranges of metal contents in dune sands show a strong variation across the studied locations (in mg/kg(-1)): 20-2964 for Cr, 17-183 for Ni, 17-51 for Cu, 18-88 for Zn and 5-29 for Pb. The values of contamination factors and contamination degrees how that two of the studied Matanzas's resorts (Judio and Chirry) are strongly polluted. The comparison with Sediment Quality Guidelines shows that dune sands from Judio resort represent a serious risk for humans, due to polluted Cr and Ni levels, while sands from the rest of the studied resorts, including Varadero beach, do not represent any risk for public use.

  19. Erosion of North Polar Layers and Genesis of nearby Sand Dunes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2002-01-01

    The Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC) is used by the MOC science team as a tool to test hypotheses about the geology, geomorphology, and meteorology of Mars. In 1999, MOC images revealed that the layers of the martian north polar cap are divided into two distinct units: an upper, light-toned sequence of layers, and a lower, darker-toned suite of layers. The team suspected that the lower unit, because of its dark tone and apparent association with nearby dune fields, might be a source of windblown sand. However, most of the 1999 images were of very low contrast because the frequent dust storms in the region made the atmosphere extremely hazy. Very few images of the north polar cap were obtained in 2000 because it was first hidden during the long winter's night, then coated by springtime frost. By early 2001, the north polar cap was in summer and the MOC team set out to test the idea that sand is eroding out of the lower unit. This picture, obtained in February 2001, shows streamers of dark sand coming from outcrops of the lower, dark-toned unit. The streamers join a nearby dune field less than a few kilometers (less than a mile) away. Erosion of the lower layered unit liberates sand that was long ago deposited in these layers. The upper unit, by contrast, contains almost no sand. Wind erosion of the lower unit leads to creation of steep scarps as the sand is removed and the upper unit is undermined. The sand moves downwind (in this case, toward the bottom left of the image) and creates dunes. The new views of the martian north polar cap obtained in 1999 and 2001 suggest that it may not contain as much water ice as previously believed. Indeed, the amount of ice may be as little as half of what was once thought. The picture shown here is 3 km (1.9 mi) wide and illuminated from the lower left.

  20. Using Ground Penetrating Radar to Image Paleotopography and Structural Controls at Coral Pink Sand Dunes, Kane County, Utah

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rozar, E. J.; Bradford, J. H.; Ford, R. L.; Wilkins, D. E.

    2014-12-01

    The Coral Pink Sand Dunes (CPSD) are one of the largest dune fields in the Great Basin-Colorado Plateau Transition Zone. The dune field rests on Navajo Sandstone, and is bisected by the Sevier Normal Fault, which also forms the bedrock escarpment along the eastern boundary of the lower dune field (LDF). Limited ground penetrating radar (GPR) collected previously, as well as recent ground-based LiDAR data and geomorphic observations, suggest that underlying bedrock is topographically lower in the center of the LDF than on its margins. In order to image the dune-bedrock interface and any structures contained within the bedrock, including buried faults, 50-MHz and 100-MHz GPR antennae with 400-V transmitters were used to conduct over 25 transects, totaling several kilometers, across the LDF. We recorded radar reflections at depths of up to 30 m within the bedrock beneath the modern dunes. Outcrops and/or shallow boreholes along some transects provide ground truth for dune-bedrock contacts. The resulting radar profiles suggest at least two antithetic fault zones within the LDF that, in places, appear to control the location of smaller dunes. Further examination of the relationship between these fault zones and dune forms, as imaged with LiDAR, will help inform whether or not these structural controls affect variation in dune type and patterning across the LDF, and may also explain why the CPSD exist in this location.

  1. Acoustic observations of near-bed sediment concentration and flux statistics above migrating sand dunes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wilson, G. W.; Hay, A. E.

    2016-06-01

    A coherent Doppler profiler was used to measure coincident time series of velocity (u,w), sediment mass concentration (c), and sediment grain size (d), above mobile sand dunes in unidirectional flow (˜1 m/s, ˜1 m water depth). The measurements are used to extract statistical distributions of sediment concentration and flux just above the bed. Observed mass fluxes (uc,wc) were well fit by quasi-exponential distributions, at all positions along the dune profile, similar to previous observations of single-particle momenta for bed load over flat beds. Observed concentrations of moving particles were well fit by negative-binomial distributions, also similar to previous observations over flat beds. These probability distributions relate to two recent stochastic theories, previously derived and verified for uniform flow over flat beds. It is hypothesized that these theories may also be used as a local approximation in natural-scale flows with bed forms.

  2. Ground-Water Flow Direction, Water Quality, Recharge Sources, and Age, Great Sand Dunes National Monument, South-Central Colorado, 2000-2001

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Rupert, Michael G.; Plummer, L. Niel

    2004-01-01

    Great Sand Dunes National Monument is located in south-central Colorado along the eastern edge of the San Luis Valley. The Great Sand Dunes National Monument contains the tallest sand dunes in North America; some rise up to750 feet. Important ecological features of the Great Sand Dunes National Monument are palustrine wetlands associated with interdunal ponds and depressions along the western edge of the dune field. The existence and natural maintenance of the dune field and the interdunal ponds are dependent on maintaining ground-water levels at historic elevations. To address these concerns, the U.S. Geological Survey conducted a study, in collaboration with the National Park Service, of ground-water flow direction, water quality, recharge sources, and age at the Great Sand Dunes National Monument. A shallow unconfined aquifer and a deeper confined aquifer are the two principal aquifers at the Great Sand Dunes National Monument. Ground water in the unconfined aquifer is recharged from Medano and Sand Creeks near the Sangre de Cristo Mountain front, flows underneath the main dune field, and discharges to Big and Little Spring Creeks. The percentage of calcium in ground water in the unconfined aquifer decreases and the percentage of sodium increases because of ionic exchange with clay minerals as the ground water flows underneath the dune field. It takes more than 60 years for the ground water to flow from Medano and Sand Creeks to Big and Little Spring Creeks. During this time, ground water in the upper part of the unconfined aquifer is recharged by numerous precipitation events. Evaporation of precipitation during recharge prior to reaching the water table causes enrichment in deuterium (2H) and oxygen-18 (18O) relative to waters that are not evaporated. This recharge from precipitation events causes the apparent ages determined using chlorofluorocarbons and tritium to become younger, because relatively young precipitation water is mixing with older waters

  3. Resonant interaction of acoustic waves with subaqueous bedforms: Sand dunes in the South China Sea.

    PubMed

    Chiu, Linus Y S; Chang, Andrea Y Y; Reeder, D Benjamin

    2015-12-01

    The large subaqueous sand dunes in the South China Sea are expected to produce the coupling of energy between acoustic normal modes. In this letter, resonant interaction between acoustic propagating modes and subaqueous bedforms are numerically investigated as a function of bedform wavelength, acoustic frequency and bedform packet length. The results demonstrate that bedform wavelength impacts acoustic mode coupling behavior, with the principal transfer of energy occurring between acoustic modes whose eigenvalue difference is equal to the peak value in the bedform wavenumber spectrum. The observed effect of wavelength is greater than that of acoustic frequency and bedform packet length.

  4. Activation of vegetated parabolic dunes into mobile barchans under potential environmental change scenarios

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yan, Na; Baas, Andreas C. W.

    2016-04-01

    Parabolic dunes are a quintessential example of the co-evolution of soil, landform, and vegetation, and they are found around the world, on coasts, river valleys, lake shores, and margins of deserts and steppes. These areas are often sensitive to changes in natural and anthropogenic forcings and socio-economic activities. Some studies have indicated parabolic dunes can lose vegetation and transform into barchan and transverse dunes by environmental change such as decreased precipitation or lowered water table, as well as anthropogenic stress such as increased burning and grazing. These transformations and shifts between states of eco-geomorphic systems may have significant implications on land management and social-economic development. This study utilises the Extended-DECAL - parameterised by field measurements of dune topography and vegetation characteristics combined with remote sensing - to explore how increases in drought stress, wind strength, and grazing stress may lead to the activation of stabilised parabolic dunes into highly mobile barchans. The modelling results show that the mobility of an initial parabolic dune at the outset of perturbations determines to a large extent the capacity of a system to absorb the environmental change, and a slight increase in vegetation cover of an initial parabolic dune can increase the activation threshold significantly. Plants with a higher deposition tolerance increase the activation threshold for the climatic impact and sand transport rate, whereas the erosion tolerance of plants influences the patterns of resulting barchans. The change in the characteristics of eco-geomorphic interaction zones may indirectly reflect the dune stability and predict an ongoing transformation, whilst the activation angle may be potentially used as a proxy of environmental stresses. In contrast to the natural environmental changes which tend to affect relatively weak and young plants, grazing stress can exert a broader impact on all

  5. Early Successional Microhabitats Allow the Persistence of Endangered Plants in Coastal Sand Dunes

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    Many species are adapted to disturbance and occur within dynamic, mosaic landscapes that contain early and late successional microhabitats. Human modification of disturbance regimes alters the availability of microhabitats and may affect the viability of species in these ecosystems. Because restoring historical disturbance regimes is typically expensive and requires action at large spatial scales, such restoration projects must be justified by linking the persistence of species with successional microhabitats. Coastal sand dune ecosystems worldwide are characterized by their endemic biodiversity and frequent disturbance. Dune-stabilizing invasive plants alter successional dynamics and may threaten species in these ecosystems. We examined the distribution and population dynamics of two federally endangered plant species, the annual Layia carnosa and the perennial Lupinus tidestromii, within a dune ecosystem in northern California, USA. We parameterized a matrix population model for L. tidestromii and examined the magnitude by which the successional stage of the habitat (early or late) influenced population dynamics. Both species had higher frequencies and L. tidestromii had higher frequency of seedlings in early successional habitats. Lupinus tidestromii plants in early successional microhabitats had higher projected rates of population growth than those associated with stabilized, late successional habitats, due primarily to higher rates of recruitment in early successional microhabitats. These results support the idea that restoration of disturbance is critical in historically dynamic landscapes. Our results suggest that large-scale restorations are necessary to allow persistence of the endemic plant species that characterize these ecosystems. PMID:25835390

  6. Early successional microhabitats allow the persistence of endangered plants in coastal sand dunes.

    PubMed

    Pardini, Eleanor A; Vickstrom, Kyle E; Knight, Tiffany M

    2015-01-01

    Many species are adapted to disturbance and occur within dynamic, mosaic landscapes that contain early and late successional microhabitats. Human modification of disturbance regimes alters the availability of microhabitats and may affect the viability of species in these ecosystems. Because restoring historical disturbance regimes is typically expensive and requires action at large spatial scales, such restoration projects must be justified by linking the persistence of species with successional microhabitats. Coastal sand dune ecosystems worldwide are characterized by their endemic biodiversity and frequent disturbance. Dune-stabilizing invasive plants alter successional dynamics and may threaten species in these ecosystems. We examined the distribution and population dynamics of two federally endangered plant species, the annual Layia carnosa and the perennial Lupinus tidestromii, within a dune ecosystem in northern California, USA. We parameterized a matrix population model for L. tidestromii and examined the magnitude by which the successional stage of the habitat (early or late) influenced population dynamics. Both species had higher frequencies and L. tidestromii had higher frequency of seedlings in early successional habitats. Lupinus tidestromii plants in early successional microhabitats had higher projected rates of population growth than those associated with stabilized, late successional habitats, due primarily to higher rates of recruitment in early successional microhabitats. These results support the idea that restoration of disturbance is critical in historically dynamic landscapes. Our results suggest that large-scale restorations are necessary to allow persistence of the endemic plant species that characterize these ecosystems.

  7. Responses of woody species to spatial and temporal ground water changes in coastal sand dune systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Máguas, C.; Rascher, K. G.; Martins-Loução, A.; Carvalho, P.; Pinho, P.; Ramos, M.; Correia, O.; Werner, C.

    2011-12-01

    In spite of the relative importance of groundwater in costal dune systems, studies concerning the responses of vegetation to ground water (GW) availability variations, particularly in Mediterranean regions, are scarce. Thus, the main purpose of this study is to compare the responses of co-occurring species possessing different functional traits, to changes in GW levels (i.e. the lowering of GW levels) in a sand dune ecosystem. For that, five sites were established within a 1 km2 area in a meso-mediterranean sand dune ecosystem dominated by a Pinus pinaster forest. Due to natural topographic variability and anthropogenic GW exploitation, substantial variability in depth to GW between sites was found. Under these conditions it was possible to identify the degree of usage and dependence on GW of different plant species (two deep-rooted trees, a drought adapted shrub, a phreatophyte and a non-native woody invader) and how GW dependence varied seasonally and between the heterogeneous sites. Results indicated that the plant species had differential responses to changes in GW depth according to specific functional traits (i.e. rooting depth, leaf morphology, and water use strategy). Species comparison revealed that variability in pre-dawn water potential (Ψpre) and bulk leaf δ13C was related to site differences in GW use in the deep-rooted (Pinus pinaster, Myrica faya) and phreatophyte (Salix repens) species. However, such variation was more evident during spring than during summer drought. The exotic invader, Acacia longifolia, which does not possess a very deep root system, presented the largest seasonal variability in Ψpre and bulk leaf δ13C. In contrast, the response of Corema album, an endemic understory drought-adapted shrub, seemed to be independent of water availability across seasons and sites. Thus, the susceptibility to lowering of GW due to anthropogenic exploitation, in plant species from sand dunes, is variable, being particularly relevant for deep

  8. Digital Data from the Great Sand Dunes and Poncha Springs Aeromagnetic Surveys, South-Central Colorado

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Drenth, B.J.; Grauch, V.J.S.; Bankey, Viki; New Sense Geophysics, Ltd.

    2009-01-01

    This report contains digital data, image files, and text files describing data formats and survey procedures for two high-resolution aeromagnetic surveys in south-central Colorado: one in the eastern San Luis Valley, Alamosa and Saguache Counties, and the other in the southern Upper Arkansas Valley, Chaffee County. In the San Luis Valley, the Great Sand Dunes survey covers a large part of Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve and extends south along the mountain front to the foot of Mount Blanca. In the Upper Arkansas Valley, the Poncha Springs survey covers the town of Poncha Springs and vicinity. The digital files include grids, images, and flight-line data. Several derivative products from these data are also presented as grids and images, including two grids of reduced-to-pole aeromagnetic data and data continued to a reference surface. Images are presented in various formats and are intended to be used as input to geographic information systems, standard graphics software, or map plotting packages.

  9. Responses of woody species to spatial and temporal ground water changes in coastal sand dune systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Máguas, C.; Rascher, K. G.; Martins-Loução, A.; Carvalho, P.; Pinho, P.; Ramos, M.; Correia, O.; Werner, C.

    2011-02-01

    In spite of the relative importance of groundwater in coastal dune systems, the number of studies concerning the responsiveness of vegetation to ground water (GW) variability, in particularly in Mediterranean regions, is scarce. In this study, we established 5 study sites within a meso-mediterranean sand dune Pinus pinaster forest on the Atlantic coast of Portugal, taking advantage of natural topographic variability and artificial GW exploitation, which resulted in substantial variability in depth to GW between microsites. Here we identify the degree of usage and dependence on GW of different plant functional groups (two deep-rooted trees, a drought adapted shrub, a phreatophyte and a non-native woody invader) and how GW dependence varied seasonally and between the heterogeneous microsites. Our results indicated that the plant species had differential responses to changes in GW depth according to specific functional traits (i.e. rooting depth, leaf morphology, and water use strategy). The species comparison revealed that variability in pre-dawn water potential (Ψpre) and bulk leaf δ13C was related to microsite differences in GW use in deep-rooted (Pinus pinaster, Myrica faya) and phreatophyte (Salix repens) species. However, such variation was more evident during spring rather than during summer drought. The exotic invader, Acacia longifolia, which does not possess a very deep root system, presented the largest seasonal variability in Ψpre and bulk leaf δ13C. In contrast, the response of Corema album, an endemic understorey drought adapted shrub, across seasons and microsites seemed to be independent of water availability. Thus, the susceptibility to changing GW availability in sand dune plant species is variable, being particularly relevant for deep rooted species and phreatophytes, which have typically been less exposed to GW fluctuations.

  10. New Ways to Continuous Measurements of Soil Moisture in a Hyper-arid Dune Sand Environment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rödiger, T.; Königer, F.; Bonitz, F.; Siebert, C.

    2014-12-01

    Particularly in arid regions, a profound knowledge about infiltration rates eventually leading to groundwater recharge is the major parameter for any resources management. Unfortunately, in arid areas, the rate of infiltration is one of the most difficult values to derive with sufficient accuracy. In 2010 a 3D monitoring site was developed within a sand-dune belt SW of Riyadh (KSA). At the site, one 45°-sloped and 6 vertical drillings were deepened down to max. 13 m below ground and each is equipped with (i) continuous TDR sensors: Taupe- (sloped drilling) and tube- (vertical drilling) sensors as well as (ii) discrete temperature sensors to allow continuous moisture and temperature monitoring within the upper 13 m. The combination of the chosen sensors and the application of direct push by using a Geoprobe 7730DT guaranteed two major advantages: minimal invasiveness and continuous measurements of the relative dielectric permittivity along the borehole walls. Topp equation (Topp et al. 1980) was used to convert the raw signals from sensor into volumetric water content. To calibrate TDR data, the actual soil-moisture contents in the upper 8 m of the dune were derived from drilling core samples. Within the dune, the moisture fluctuates between 0-10.3 vol.-% and quickly reacts on seasonal climatic impacts in the uppermost 2 m, while moisture below persists at around 1.5 vol.-%. Only precipitation events with exceeding 6 mm/d induce increasing moisture in the uppermost 1.5 m of minimum 1.5 vol.-%. That indicates a threshold for effective precipitation of 6 mm/d below of which no remarkable infiltration occurs. During the observation, we derived from the observed precipitation events and the depth of the resulting infiltration fronts, that the infiltration process is driven by the amount of a singular precipitation event. As a consequence, recharge estimations for the so-called sand seas based on annual or monthly precipitation data are not applicable for the region.

  11. Macroinvertebrate community sample collection methods and data collected from Sand Creek and Medano Creek, Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve, Colorado, 2005–07

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ford, Morgan A.; Zuellig, Robert E.; Walters, David M.; Bruce, James F.

    2016-08-11

    This report provides a table of site descriptions, sample information, and semiquantitative aquatic macroinvertebrate data from 105 samples collected between 2005 and 2007 from 7 stream sites within the Sand Creek and Medano Creek watersheds in Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve, Saguache County, Colorado. Additionally, a short description of sample collection methods and laboratory sample processing procedures is presented. These data were collected in anticipation of assessing the potential effects of fish toxicants on macroinvertebrates.

  12. An annotated list of the mayflies, stoneflies, and caddisflies of the Sand Creek basin, Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve, Colorado, 2004 and 2005

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Zuellig, Robert E.; Kondratieff, Boris C.; Ruiter, David E.; Thorp, Richard A.

    2006-01-01

    The U.S. Geological Survey, in conjunction with the Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve and its cooperators, did an extensive inventory of certain targeted aquatic-insect groups in the Sand Creek Basin, Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve, to establish a species list for future monitoring efforts. Study sites were established to monitor these groups following disturbance events. Such potential disturbances may include, but are not limited to, chemical treatment of perennial stream reaches to remove nonnative fishes and the subsequent reintroduction of native fish species, increased public use of backcountry habitat (such as hiking and fishing), and natural disturbances such as fire. This report is an annotated list of the mayflies, stoneflies, and caddisflies found in the Sand Creek Basin, Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve, 2004 and 2005. The primary objective of the study was to qualitatively inventory target aquatic-insect groups in perennial streams, and selected unique standing-water habitats, such as springs, and wetlands associated with the Sand Creek Basin. Efforts focused on documenting the presence of aquatic-insect species within the following taxonomic groups: Ephemeroptera (mayflies), Plecoptera (stoneflies), and Trichoptera (caddisflies). These insect orders were chosen because published species accounts, geographic distribution, and identification keys exist for many Colorado species. Given the extent of available information for these groups, there existed a potential for identifying new species and documenting range extensions of known species.

  13. Interactions between nematodes and their microbial enemies in coastal sand dunes.

    PubMed

    Costa, Sofia R; Kerry, Brian R; Bardgett, Richard D; Davies, Keith G

    2012-12-01

    European foredunes are almost exclusively colonised by Ammophila arenaria, and both the natural succession and the die-out of this plant have been linked to populations of plant-parasitic nematodes (PPN). The overarching aim of this study was to investigate top-down control processes of PPN in these natural ecosystems through comparative analyses of the diversity and dynamics of PPN and their microbial enemies. Our specific aims were, first, to identify and quantify PPN microbial enemies in European sand dunes; second, to assess their life history traits, their spatial and temporal variation in these ecosystems, and third, to evaluate their control potential of PPN populations. This was done by seasonal sampling of a range of sites and making observations on both the nematode and the microbial enemy communities in rhizosphere sand. Nine different nematode microbial enemies belonging to different functional groups were detected in European sand dunes. Their high diversity in these low productivity ecosystems could both result from or lead to the lack of dominance of a particular nematode genus. The distribution of microbial enemies was spatially and temporally variable, both among and within sampling sites. Obligate parasites, either with low host-specificity or having the ability to form an environmentally resistant propagule, are favoured in these ecosystems and are more frequent and abundant than facultative parasites. Three microbial enemies correlated, either positively or negatively, with PPN population size: Catenaria spp., Hirsutella rhossiliensis and Pasteuria penetrans. Microbial-enemy supported links in the food-web may be involved in the control of PPN populations through indirect effects. The endospore-forming P. penetrans was the most successful top-down control agent, and was implicated in the direct control of Meloidogyne spp. and indirect facilitation of Pratylenchus spp. Overall, our findings suggest strong and diverse top-down control effects on

  14. Investigation of water quality in the Great Sand Dunes National Monument and Preserve, Saguache County, Colorado, February 1999 through September 2000: Qualifying for outstanding waters designation

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ferguson, Sheryl A.

    2003-01-01

    Great Sand Dunes National Monument and Preserve is located on the eastern side of the San Luis Valley in south-central Colorado. The monument covers 60.4 square miles in Saguache and Alamosa Counties and lies at the base of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains, where a unique combination of climate, topography, and hydrology has created and maintained the Nation?s tallest inland sand dunes. The Sangre de Cristo Mountains, which rise to more than 14,000 feet to the north and east of the dunes, are the source of several streams that flow around the dunes and eventually recharge the aquifer beneath the valley. Sand Creek and Medano Creeks are the largest of the streams in the monument that originate in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains; several ephemeral streams flow into Sand Creek and Medano Creek. Maintaining the high surface-water quality in the Great Sand Dunes National Monument and Preserve is identified as a critical issue by the National Park Service. Additionally, the National Park Service has indicated a desire to pursue an Outstanding Waters Designation, which offers the highest level of water-quality protection available under the Clean Water Act and Colorado regulations. This designation is designed to prevent any degradation from existing conditions (Chatman and others, 1997). Assessment is needed to evaluate whether the water quality of the streams in the monument meets the requirements for an Outstanding Waters Designation. Historically, prospecting and mining activities have occurred in the watersheds of Sand and Medano Creeks; currently, however, there is no mining activity in those watersheds. In addition, the camping and recreation that occur upstream from the monument on national preserve lands and water activities that occur in Medano Creek during the summer are a potential source of human-waste contamination. Figure 1. Location of study area, sampling sites, and indication of sites that meet or exceed instream standards. The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS

  15. Hydrological behaviour of microbiotic crusts on sand dunes of NW China: Experimental evidences and numerical simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Xin Ping; Tedeschi, Anna; Orefice, Nadia; de Mascellis, Roberto; Menenti, Massimo

    2010-05-01

    Large ecological engineering projects were established to reduce and combat the hazards of sandstorms and desertification in northern China. An experiment to evaluate the effects of dunes stabilization by vegetation was carried out at Shapotou in Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region at the southeast edge of the Tengger Desert using xerophyte shrubs (Caragana korshinskii, Hedysarum scoparium and Artemisia ordosica) planted in straw checkerboard plots in 1956, 1964, 1981, 1987, 1998, and 2002. The fixed sand surface led to the formation of biotic soil crusts. Biotic crusts formed at the soil surface in the interspaces between shrubs and contribute to stabilization of soil surfaces. Previous results on the area have showed that: i) straw checkerboards enhance the capacity of the dune system to trap dust, leading to the accumulation of soil organic matter and nutrients; ii) the longer the period of dune stabilization, the greater the soil clay content in the shallow soil profile (0-5 cm), and greater the fractal dimension of soil particle size distribution. Benefit apart, one should be aware that the formation of a crusted layer at the soil surface is generally characterized by an altered pore-size distribution, with a frequent decrease of hydraulic conductivity which can induce changes of the water regime of the whole soil profile. Accordingly, the main objective of the paper is to evaluate the equivalent (from a hydraulic point of view) geometry of the crusted layer and to verify if the specific characteristics of the crusted soil layer, although local by nature, affect the hydrological behaviour of the whole soil profile. In fact, it is expected that, due to the formation of an upper, impeding soil layer, the lower soil layers do not reach saturation. Such behaviour has important consequences on both water flow and storages in soils. The final aim will be to understand how the crust at the surface of the artificially stabilized sand dune affects the infiltration capacity

  16. The Carolina Sandhills: Quaternary eolian sand sheets and dunes along the updip margin of the Atlantic Coastal Plain province, southeastern United States

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Swezey, Christopher; Fitzwater, Bradley A.; Whittecar, G. Richard; Mahan, Shannon; Garrity, Christopher P.; Aleman Gonzalez, Wilma B.; Dobbs, Kerby M.

    2016-01-01

    The Carolina Sandhills is a physiographic region of the Atlantic Coastal Plain province in the southeastern United States. In Chesterfield County (South Carolina), the surficial sand of this region is the Pinehurst Formation, which is interpreted as eolian sand derived from the underlying Cretaceous Middendorf Formation. This sand has yielded three clusters of optically stimulated luminescence ages: (1) 75 to 37 thousand years ago (ka), coincident with growth of the Laurentide Ice Sheet; (2) 28 to 18 ka, coincident with the last glacial maximum (LGM); and (3) 12 to 6 ka, mostly coincident with the Younger Dryas through final collapse of the Laurentide Ice Sheet. Relict dune morphologies are consistent with winds from the west or northwest, coincident with modern and inferred LGM January wind directions. Sand sheets are more common than dunes because of effects of coarse grain size (mean range: 0.35–0.59 mm) and vegetation. The coarse grain size would have required LGM wind velocities of at least 4–6 m/sec, accounting for effects of colder air temperatures on eolian sand transport. The eolian interpretation of the Carolina Sandhills is consistent with other evidence for eolian activity in the southeastern United States during the last glaciation.

  17. Variable wind ripple migration at Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve, observed by timelapse imaging

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lorenz, Ralph D.; Valdez, Andrew

    2011-10-01

    Granule ripples at Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve (GSDNPP) were observed using inexpensive digital timelapse cameras over a 70-day period in winter 2010-2011. The ripples migrated during a handful of discrete events — visible ripple movement occurred on only 11 days during the observation period. The movement conditions are documented with hourly and 15-minute records from two nearby weather stations, and by a cup anemometer at the site itself. During the most prominent movement episode, when local winds averaged ~ 10 m/s, ripples of several sizes were observed simultaneously and a reciprocal relationship of ripple size and propagation speed was seen, with small (~ 10 cm) ripples moving at ~ 1.4 cm/min, and larger (~ 80 cm) ripples at ~ 0.15 cm/min. Ripple sizes and morphologies evolve throughout the observation period.

  18. Surface moisture feedback in modelled aeolian rippled sand strip and dune field patterns

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nield, J. M.

    2010-12-01

    Surface moisture plays a key role in controlling sediment availability and transport in aeolian systems which leads to the development of a diverse range of spatial patterns including transient sand strips on beaches with small temporal and spatial scales, and large-scale dune patterns dominated by wet interdune areas. By altering feedback response times between surface moisture and transport dynamics, these different patterns can be explored and modelled using a cellular automaton-based algorithm. This algorithm includes stochastic transport and mimics real-world behaviour, where surface moisture limits aeolian erosion, but a modest amount of moisture hardens the surface, increasing the elasticity of rebounding grains. Simulations allow for examination of different sediment availability scenarios which can be related to the developed internal stratigraphy of the modeled landscape. Results elucidate the controlling mechanism of surface moisture in sediment availability and highlight the importance of mutual feedback for developing diverse aeolian landscape patterns at different spatial and temporal scales.

  19. Mediterranean Coastal Sand Dune Vegetation: Influence of Natural and Anthropogenic Factors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ciccarelli, Daniela

    2014-08-01

    The aim of the present work was to assess the conservation status of coastal dune systems in Tuscany (Italy). Emphasis was given to the presence and abundance of plant communities identified as habitat in accordance with the Directive 92/43/EEC. Twenty transects perpendicular to the shoreline were randomly positioned on the whole coastal area (30 km in length) in order to sample the full spectrum of plant communities. Vegetation zonation and relationships with the most frequent disturbance factors in the study area—beach cleaning, coastline erosion, presence of paths and roads, bathing settlements and trampling—were investigated through principal coordinate analysis and canonical correspondence analysis. Natural factors, such as distance from the sea and total length, were also considered. Differences in the conservation status of the sites were found, ranging from the total disappearance of the foredune habitats to the presence of the complete psammophilous (sand-loving) plant communities. Erosion, trampling, and paths were found to be closely correlated with degradation and habitat loss. Furthermore, the overall plant species diversity of dunes was measured with NHDune, a modified version of the Shannon index; while the incidence of invasive taxa was calculated using N, a naturalness index. However, these diversity indices proved to be a weaker bioindicator of ecosystem integrity than habitat composition along transects. A possible strategy for the conservation and management of these coastal areas could be to protect the foredunes from erosion and limit trampling through the installation of footbridges or the use of appropriate fences.

  20. Mediterranean coastal sand dune vegetation: influence of natural and anthropogenic factors.

    PubMed

    Ciccarelli, Daniela

    2014-08-01

    The aim of the present work was to assess the conservation status of coastal dune systems in Tuscany (Italy). Emphasis was given to the presence and abundance of plant communities identified as habitat in accordance with the Directive 92/43/EEC. Twenty transects perpendicular to the shoreline were randomly positioned on the whole coastal area (30 km in length) in order to sample the full spectrum of plant communities. Vegetation zonation and relationships with the most frequent disturbance factors in the study area-beach cleaning, coastline erosion, presence of paths and roads, bathing settlements and trampling-were investigated through principal coordinate analysis and canonical correspondence analysis. Natural factors, such as distance from the sea and total length, were also considered. Differences in the conservation status of the sites were found, ranging from the total disappearance of the foredune habitats to the presence of the complete psammophilous (sand-loving) plant communities. Erosion, trampling, and paths were found to be closely correlated with degradation and habitat loss. Furthermore, the overall plant species diversity of dunes was measured with NHDune, a modified version of the Shannon index; while the incidence of invasive taxa was calculated using N, a naturalness index. However, these diversity indices proved to be a weaker bioindicator of ecosystem integrity than habitat composition along transects. A possible strategy for the conservation and management of these coastal areas could be to protect the foredunes from erosion and limit trampling through the installation of footbridges or the use of appropriate fences.

  1. Field observations of wind profiles and sand fluxes above the windward slope of a sand dune before and after the establishment of semi-buried straw checkerboard barriers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Chunlai; Li, Qing; Zhou, Na; Zhang, Jiaqiong; Kang, Liqiang; Shen, Yaping; Jia, Wenru

    2016-03-01

    Straw checkerboard barriers are effective and widely used measures to control near-surface sand flow. The present study measured the wind profiles and sand mass flux above the windward slope of a transverse dune before and after the establishment of semi-buried straw checkerboards. The 0.2 m high checkerboards enhanced the aerodynamic roughness length to larger than 0.02 m, which was two to three orders of magnitude higher than that of the bare sand. The modified Charnock model predicted the roughness length of the sand bed during saltation well, with Cm = 0.138 ± 0.003. For the checkerboards, z0 increased slowly to a level around 0.037 m with increasing wind velocity and the rate of increase tended to slow down in strong wind. The barriers reduced sand flux and altered its vertical distribution. The total height-integrated dimensionless mass flux of saltating particles (q0) above bare sand followed the relationship ln q0 = a + b(u∗t/u∗) + c(u∗t/u∗)2, with a peak at u∗/u∗t ≈ 2, whereas a possible peak appeared at u∗/u∗t ≈ 1.5 above 1 m × 1 m straw checkerboards. The vertical distribution of mass flux above these barriers resembled an "elephant trunk", with maximum mass flux at 0.05-0.2 m above the bed, in contrast with the continuously and rapidly decreasing mass flux with increasing height above the bare sand. The influences of the barriers on the wind and sand flow prevent dune movement and alter the evolution of dune morphology.

  2. Observations of Sand Dune Migration on the Colorado River in Grand Canyon using High-Resolution Multibeam Bathymetry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kaplinski, M. A.; Buscmobe, D.; Ashley, T.; Tusso, R.; Grams, P. E.; McElroy, B. J.; Mueller, E. R.; Hamill, D.

    2015-12-01

    Repeat, high-resolution multibeam bathymetric surveys were conducted in March and July 2015 along a reach of the Colorado River in Grand Canyon near the Diamond Creek gage (362 km downstream of Lees Ferry, AZ) to characterize the migration of sand dunes. The surveys were collected as part of a study designed to quantify the relative importance of bedload and suspended sediment transport and develop a predictive relationship for bedload transport. Concurrent measurements of suspended-sediment concentrations, bed-sediment grain size, and water velocity were also collected. The study site is approximately 350 m long and 50 m wide; water depths are 7 to 10 m during normal flows; and a field of sand dunes form along its entire length with negligible coarse material at the bed surface. Full swath coverage of the site required about 6 to 10 minutes to complete with two passes of the survey vessel. Mapping occurred continuously during several survey periods. For each survey period, time-series of bathymetric maps were constructed from each pair of survey lines. In March, surveys were collected over durations of 2, 3, 9, and 11 hours, at discharges of 339 to 382 m3/s. In July, surveys were collected over durations of 4, 4, and 13 hours, at discharges ranging from 481 to 595 ft3/s. These surveys capture the migration of sand dunes over a wide range of discharge with an unprecedented temporal resolution. The dunes in March were between 30 and 50 cm in height, 5 m in length, and migrating downstream at about 1 m per hour. In July, dunes were between 75 and 130 cm in height and 10-15 m in length, and were migrating downstream at rates of 5 to 2 m per hour. The surveys also reveal that the dune migration is spatially and temporally variable, with fast-migrating small dunes variably superimposed on slower-moving larger dunes. The dunes also refract around shoreline talus piles and other flow constrictions collectively causing a large degree of dune deformation as they migrate.

  3. A Beach and Dune Community. 4-H Marine Science. Member's Guide. Activity I. MSp 1.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Auburn Univ., AL. Cooperative Extension Service.

    The investigation in this booklet is designed to provide 4-H members with opportunities to identify common plants and animals found on beaches and sand dunes and to determine the role of the plants and animals in this community. Learners are provided with a picture of a hypothetical beach and sand dune and a list of organisms (included in the…

  4. The role of sexual vs. asexual recruitment of Artemisia wudanica in transition zone habitats between inter-dune lowlands and active dunes in Inner Mongolia, China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Yongcui; Alberto, Busso Carlos; Jiang, Deming; Ala, Musa; Li, Xuehua; Zhou, Quanlai; Lin, Jixiang; Ren, Guohua; Jia, Lian

    2016-04-01

    Artemisia wudanica is an endemic, perennial, pioneering psammophyte species in the sand dune ecosystems of western Horqin Sand Land in northern China. However, no studies have addressed how sexual and asexual reproduction modes of A. wudanica perform at the transitional zones between active dune inter-dune lowlands and active dunes. In early spring, quadrats were randomly set up in the study area to monitor surviving seedling and/or ramet density and frequency coming from sexual/asexual reproduction of A. wudanica. Iron sticks were inserted near each quadrat to determine wind erosion intensity (WE). Additionally, soil samples were collected nearby each quadrat to test for soil moisture (SM), organic matter (OM) and pH. Surviving seedlings of A. wudanica showed an inverse response in comparison with ramets to SM, OM and WE. Soil moisture showed the most positive effect, and WE the negative effect, on surviving, sexual reproduction seedlings. Contrarily, WE had the most positive effect, and SM the negative effect, on asexual reproduction ramets. This suggests that increases in SM and decreases in WE should benefit recruitment of A. wudanica seedlings. On the contrary, ramets coming from asexual reproduction showed a different response to environmental factors in transition zone habitats. While SM was not a key constraint for the survival of seedlings, they showed a better, positive response to wind erosion environments. Overall, various study environmental parameters could be improved to foster A. wudanica invasion and settlement in the plant community through different reproductive modes, thereby promoting vegetation restoration and rehabilitation.

  5. Storms, shoreface morphodynamics, sand supply, and the accretion and erosion of coastal dune barriers in the southern North Sea

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Anthony, Edward J.

    2013-10-01

    The coast of the southern North Sea is bound by dune barriers that have developed adjacent to a shallow storm- and tide-dominated shoreface comprising numerous shore-parallel to sub-shore-parallel tidal sand banks. The banks evolve under the joint control of tide-, wave- and wind-induced shore-parallel currents, which tend to ‘stretch' them, eventually leading to bank division, and to shoaling and breaking storm waves, which tend to drive them ashore. The banks, thus, modulate the delivery of storm wave energy to the coast, redirect currents alongshore and are the sand sources for the accretion of coastal dunes. Foredune accretion occurs where major sand banks have migrated shoreward over the last centuries to be finally driven ashore and weld under the impact of storm waves. Morphological changes in the bank field can impact on shoreline stability through dissipation or enhanced shoreward transmission of storm wave energy and effects on radiation stress, particularly when waves are breaking over the banks. Where banks are close to the shore, mitigation of offshore sediment transport, especially during storms, can occur because of gradients in radiation stress generated by the complex 3D bank structure. These macro-scale mechanisms involve embedded meso-scale interactions that revolve around the mobility of sand waves, mobility of beach bars and troughs and foredune mobility, and micro-scale processes of bedform mobility in the subaqueous and intertidal domains, and of swash and aeolian beach-dune sand transport. These embedded interactions and the morphodynamic feedback loops illustrate the importance of synchroneity of sand transport from shoreface to dune on this coast. Large stretches of the foredunes show either signs of stability, or mild but chronic erosion. Furthermore, a demonstrated lack of a clear relationship occurs between storminess and coastal response over the second half of the 20th century. The present situation may be indicative of conditions

  6. [Crust development and subsurface soil properties under dominant shrubs in the process of dune restoration, Horqin Sand Land].

    PubMed

    Guo, Yi-rui; Zhao, Ha-lin; Zuo, Xiao-an; Li, Yu-Lin; Huang, Yin-xin; Wang, Shao-kun

    2008-04-01

    Soil crust is a common and widespread phenomenon in desert areas all over the world due to its extraordinary ability to survive desiccation and extreme temperatures, high pH and salinity. Despite its unassuming appearance, biological soil crusts play a significant role in desert ecosystems, including involvement in the process of formation, stability and fertility of soil, preventing soil erosion by water or wind, increasing the possibility of vascular plant colonization, and being responsible for the stabilization of sand dunes. This study taking Horqin Sand Land as research region, by field sampling, crust and topsoil (0-2.5 cm and 2.5-5 cm under crust) samples in different dune habitats and shrub communities were collected, and their physicochemical properties were analyzed, including particle size distribution, bulk density, total nutrients and available nutrients, pH, EC and CaCO3 content. The result revealed that Artemisia halodendron in semi-mobile dune, Caragana microphylla in semi-fix dune, Artemisia frigida in fix dune and Salix microstachya in interdunal lowland were respectively developed physical soil crust, algae crust, lichen crust and moss crust. Crust thickness, hardness, water content, fine fraction, total and available nutrients gradually increased by semi-mobile dune < semi-fix dune < fix dune < interdunal lowland in terms of different dune habitats, and by physical soil crust < algae crust < lichen crust < moss crust in terms of different crust types. There were significant differences among crust types on nutrient content and particle size distribution (p < 0.01). Meanwhile, crust enhanced the < 0.05 mm content and nutrient content of topsoil, following an increasing trend from semi-mobile dune to interdunal lowland. As to each crust, the parameters of 0-2.5 cm subsurface soil layer were higher than that in 2.5-5 cm soil layer. The result also showed that the fine fraction and nutrient content of moss crust under Salix microstachya in

  7. Assessment of Ni, Cu, Zn and Pb levels in beach and dune sands from Havana resorts, Cuba.

    PubMed

    Díaz Rizo, Oscar; Buzón González, Fran; Arado López, Juana O

    2015-11-15

    Concentrations of nickel (Ni), copper (Cu), zinc (Zn) and lead (Pb) in beach and dune sands from thirteen Havana (Cuba) resorts were estimated by X-ray fluorescence analysis. Determined mean metal contents (in mg·kg(-1)) in beach sand samples were 28±12 for Ni, 35±12 for Cu, 31±11 for Zn and 6.0±1.8 for Pb, while for dune sands were 30±15, 38±22, 37±15 and 6.8±2.9, respectively. Metal-to-iron normalization shows moderately severe and severe enrichment by Cu. The comparison with sediment quality guidelines shows that dune sands from various resorts must be considered as heavily polluted by Cu and Ni. Almost in every resort, the Ni and Cu contents exceed their corresponding TEL values and, in some resorts, the Ni PEL value. The comparison with a Havana topsoil study indicates the possible Ni and Cu natural origin.

  8. An Assessment of Spontaneous Vegetation Recovery in Aggregate Quarries in Coastal Sand Dunes in Buenos Aires Province, Argentina

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fernández Montoni, María Victoria; Fernández Honaine, Mariana; del Río, Julio Luis

    2014-08-01

    Sand dune quarries are a location of common aggregate mining activity developed in coastal areas, especially in the southeast Buenos Aires province, Argentina. In this article, spontaneous plant development after extraction activity ceased was evaluated. Five areas (three quarried and two natural/conservation areas) were sampled for plant cover and composition as well as sediment characterization. Different indexes, principal component analysis, and cluster analyses were applied to compare the areas. The dominant families observed in four of the five areas were Asteraceae, Poaceae, and Cyperaceae, and most of the species are commonly found in sandy and humid soils and/or modified/anthropized ones. Percentages of plant cover increased with time because of the cessation of active aggregate extraction. Indexes and multivariate analyses showed that it was possible to distinguish quarried and natural areas based on composition and vegetation cover. The distribution of plant species among the four areas responded to the presence of mining activity, but it also responded to the topographical position and consequently the depth of the groundwater level. Besides these differences, the four areas shared many native species. The results might indicate that once the activity has ceased, quarried areas may spontaneously and quickly develop a plant community with some similarities to those present in the nonquarried areas. However, given that the extracting activity involves the removal of the soil, revegetation of this type of environment depends on the presence of natural areas in the surroundings, which can serve as a source of seeds and propagules for plant regeneration.

  9. First Report of Longidorus kuiperi and Rotylenchus eximius from Coastal Sand Dunes in Crete, Greece

    PubMed Central

    Tzortzakakis, Emmanuel A.; Cantalapiedra-Navarrete, Carolina; Archidona-Yuste, Antonio; Palomares-Rius, Juan E.; Castillo, Pablo

    2016-01-01

    Plant-parasitic nematode species have been reported on several occasions from coastal sand dunes, including Longidorus and Rotylenchus species (Vovlas et al., 2008; De Luca et al., 2009; Mateille et al., 2014). In April 2016, 10 soil samples of 3 to 4 kg from the rhizosphere of Tamarix smyrnensis with different vegetation around (viz. Elymus farctus, Lycium schweinfurthii, Crithmum maritimum, and Arthrocnemum sp.) were collected for diagnosis of plant-parasitic nematodes. The area of sampling was a coastal sand dune near the archeological site of Komos, southwest of Crete, Greece. Low soil populations of a needle and a spiral nematode were detected (3 and 8 individuals/1,000 cm3 of soil, respectively), which prompted us to undertake a detailed morphological and molecular comparative study with previous reported data. Nematodes were extracted from soil with the wet sieving and decanting method (Cobb, 1918). Morphological and molecular analyses of females identified these species as Longidorus kuiperi Brinkman, Loof and Barbez, 1987, and Rotylenchus eximius Siddiqi, 1964. The morphology of L. kuiperi females (six specimens studied) was characterized by having a slender body; very broad lip region (27 ± 1.5 [25 to 30] μm in width); short, hemispherical tail; body length of (7.1 ± 0.8 [6.5 to 8.5] mm); vulva position at 47% to 55% of body length; odontostyle length of (105 ± 6.5 [90 to 115] μm); males very common (but less frequent than females [45% vs 55%]); tail region with 15 to 20 supplements and bulged terminal cuticle. The morphology of R. eximius females (four specimens studied) was characterized by having a hemispherical lip region clearly set off; with four annuli; body without longitudinal striations; lateral fields areolated in the pharyngeal region only; stylet 36 to 38 μm; and broadly rounded tail. The morphology of the isolated nematodes agreed with previous descriptions of L. kuiperi (Brinkman et al., 1987; De Luca et al., 2009), and R. eximius

  10. First Report of Longidorus kuiperi and Rotylenchus eximius from Coastal Sand Dunes in Crete, Greece.

    PubMed

    Tzortzakakis, Emmanuel A; Cantalapiedra-Navarrete, Carolina; Archidona-Yuste, Antonio; Palomares-Rius, Juan E; Castillo, Pablo

    2016-09-01

    Plant-parasitic nematode species have been reported on several occasions from coastal sand dunes, including Longidorus and Rotylenchus species (Vovlas et al., 2008; De Luca et al., 2009; Mateille et al., 2014). In April 2016, 10 soil samples of 3 to 4 kg from the rhizosphere of Tamarix smyrnensis with different vegetation around (viz. Elymus farctus, Lycium schweinfurthii, Crithmum maritimum, and Arthrocnemum sp.) were collected for diagnosis of plant-parasitic nematodes. The area of sampling was a coastal sand dune near the archeological site of Komos, southwest of Crete, Greece. Low soil populations of a needle and a spiral nematode were detected (3 and 8 individuals/1,000 cm(3) of soil, respectively), which prompted us to undertake a detailed morphological and molecular comparative study with previous reported data. Nematodes were extracted from soil with the wet sieving and decanting method (Cobb, 1918). Morphological and molecular analyses of females identified these species as Longidorus kuiperi Brinkman, Loof and Barbez, 1987, and Rotylenchus eximius Siddiqi, 1964. The morphology of L. kuiperi females (six specimens studied) was characterized by having a slender body; very broad lip region (27 ± 1.5 [25 to 30] μm in width); short, hemispherical tail; body length of (7.1 ± 0.8 [6.5 to 8.5] mm); vulva position at 47% to 55% of body length; odontostyle length of (105 ± 6.5 [90 to 115] μm); males very common (but less frequent than females [45% vs 55%]); tail region with 15 to 20 supplements and bulged terminal cuticle. The morphology of R. eximius females (four specimens studied) was characterized by having a hemispherical lip region clearly set off; with four annuli; body without longitudinal striations; lateral fields areolated in the pharyngeal region only; stylet 36 to 38 μm; and broadly rounded tail. The morphology of the isolated nematodes agreed with previous descriptions of L. kuiperi (Brinkman et al., 1987; De Luca et al., 2009), and R. eximius

  11. Transient Electromagnetic Soundings Near Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve, San Luis Valley, Colorado (2006 Field Season)

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Fitterman, David V.; de Sozua Filho, Oderson A.

    2009-01-01

    Time-domain electromagnetic (TEM) soundings were made near Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve in the San Luis Valley of southern Colorado to obtain subsurface information of use to hydrologic modeling. Seventeen soundings were made to the east and north of the sand dunes. Using a small loop TEM system, maximum exploration depths of about 75 to 150 m were obtained. In general, layered earth interpretations of the data found that resistivity decreases with depth. Comparison of soundings with geologic logs from nearby wells found that zones logged as having increased clay content usually corresponded with a significant resistivity decrease in the TEM determined model. This result supports the use of TEM soundings to map the location of the top of the clay unit deposited at the bottom of the ancient Lake Alamosa that filled the San Luis Valley from Pliocene to middle Pleistocene time.

  12. Late Holocene eolian activity in the mineralogically mature Nebraska Sand Hills

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Muhs, D.R.; Stafford, Thomas W.; Swinehart, J.B.; Cowherd, S.D.; Mahan, S.A.; Bush, C.A.; Madole, R.F.; Maat, P.B.

    1997-01-01

    The age of sand dunes in the Nebraska Sand Hills has been controversial, with some investigators suggesting a full-glacial age and others suggesting that they were last active in the late Holocene. New accelerator mass spectrometry radiocarbon ages of unaltered bison bones and organic-rich sediments suggest that eolian sand deposition occurred at least twice in the past 3000 14C yr B.P. in three widely separated localities and as many as three times in the past 800 14C yr at three other localities. These late Holocene episodes of eolian activity are probably the result of droughts more intense than the 1930s "Dust Bowl" period, based on independent Great Plains climate records from lake sediments and tree rings. However, new geochemical data indicate that the Nebraska Sand Hills are mineralogically mature. Eolian sands in Nebraska have lower K-feldspar (and K2O, Rb, and Ba) contents than most possible source sediments and lower K-feldspar contents than dunes of similar age in Colorado. The most likely explanation for mineralogical maturity is reduction of sand-sized K-feldspar to silt-sized particles via ballistic impacts due to strong winds over many cycles of eolian activity. Therefore, dunes of the Nebraska Sand Hills must have had a long history, probably extending over more than one glacial-interglacial cycle, and the potential for reactivation is high, with or without a future greenhouse warming. ?? 1997 University of Washington.

  13. Quaternary palaeoenvironments in Namibia: new records from optically stimulated dating of Kalahari linear dune accumulation and northern Namib Sand Sea interdune deposits.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stone, Abigail; Thomas, David; Viles, Heather; Bailey, Richard

    2010-05-01

    In this study we consider new linear dune accumulation records from the west of the southern Kalahari linear dunefield (~24o S 18oE) and a new chronology for three sites along the former course of the Tsondab River in the northern Namib Sand Sea (23o49'15'S, 14o57'30'E, 23o48'39'S, 15o02'21'E and 23o56'11'S, 15o17'89'E) from Namibia, southern Africa. Optically stimulated luminescence dating (OSL) has been applied to both sites in order to: (i) provide a chronology for linear dune accumulation in a previously unstudied region of the southern Kalahari linear dunefield and (ii) to provide a chronological reassessment for water-lain units from the Namib Sand Sea, previously dated using radiocarbon applied to inorganic carbonate sediments. The 48 OSL ages from the linear dunes include the oldest linear dune sediment ages recorded in the southern Kalahari and also reveal that the dunefield has been partially active throughout much of the past 120 ka. These ages are considered alongside the net accumulation record for the entire southern Kalahari linear dunefield (141 optical ages) and we make some important observations about the influence of sampling strategy. We attempt to isolate a rigorous signal that does not depend on sampling strategy by removing cores and comparing the net accumulation record from different parts of the dataset. We consider the young bias resulting from the predominance of shallow sampling in the total dataset. The bracketing OSL ages (from sand units that inter-bed water-lain calcareous rich sediments) in the northern Namib Sand Sea suggest that the series of seven mud units at Narabeb (23o49'15'S, 14o57'30'E) are substantially older than the existing radiocarbon chronology from the mud units themselves. Twelve of the thirteen OSL ages fall within MIS 5. By contrast, at Ancient Tracks (23o56'11'S, 15o17'89'E) the OSL-based chronological reassessment suggests the water-lain units were 1 to 2 ka younger than the existing radiocarbon ages, with

  14. Effects of sedimentation on soil physical and chemical properties and vegetation characteristics in sand dunes at the Southern Dongting Lake region, China

    PubMed Central

    Pan, Ying; Zhang, Hao; Li, Xu; Xie, Yonghong

    2016-01-01

    Sedimentation is recognized as a major factor determining the ecosystem processes of lake beaches; however, the underlying mechanisms, especially in freshwater sand dunes, have been insufficiently studied. To this end, nine belt transects from nine freshwater sand dunes, classified into low (<23.7 m), medium (25.4–26.0 m), and high-elevation groups (>28.1 m) based on their elevations in 1972, were sampled to investigate differences in sedimentation rate and soil and vegetation characteristics in Southern Dongting Lake, China. Sedimentation rate, soil sand content, and soil pH increased, whereas soil clay, fine silt, moisture (MC), organic matter (OM), total N, and total K content, in addition to the growth and biodiversity of sand dune plants generally decreased with decreasing belt transect elevation. Regression analyses revealed that the negative effects of sedimentation on the ecosystem functions of sand dunes could be attributed to higher fine sand content in deposited sediments and stronger inhibition of plant growth. These results are consistent with previous studies performed in coastal sand dunes, which highlights the importance of sedimentation in determining ecological processes. PMID:27808154

  15. Effects of sedimentation on soil physical and chemical properties and vegetation characteristics in sand dunes at the Southern Dongting Lake region, China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pan, Ying; Zhang, Hao; Li, Xu; Xie, Yonghong

    2016-11-01

    Sedimentation is recognized as a major factor determining the ecosystem processes of lake beaches; however, the underlying mechanisms, especially in freshwater sand dunes, have been insufficiently studied. To this end, nine belt transects from nine freshwater sand dunes, classified into low (<23.7 m), medium (25.4–26.0 m), and high-elevation groups (>28.1 m) based on their elevations in 1972, were sampled to investigate differences in sedimentation rate and soil and vegetation characteristics in Southern Dongting Lake, China. Sedimentation rate, soil sand content, and soil pH increased, whereas soil clay, fine silt, moisture (MC), organic matter (OM), total N, and total K content, in addition to the growth and biodiversity of sand dune plants generally decreased with decreasing belt transect elevation. Regression analyses revealed that the negative effects of sedimentation on the ecosystem functions of sand dunes could be attributed to higher fine sand content in deposited sediments and stronger inhibition of plant growth. These results are consistent with previous studies performed in coastal sand dunes, which highlights the importance of sedimentation in determining ecological processes.

  16. Global Change and Response of Coastal Dune Plants to the Combined Effects of Increased Sand Accretion (Burial) and Nutrient Availability

    PubMed Central

    Frosini, Silvia; Lardicci, Claudio; Balestri, Elena

    2012-01-01

    Coastal dune plants are subjected to natural multiple stresses and vulnerable to global change. Some changes associated with global change could interact in their effects on vegetation. As vegetation plays a fundamental role in building and stabilizing dune systems, effective coastal habitat management requires a better understanding of the combined effects of such changes on plant populations. A manipulative experiment was conducted along a Mediterranean dune system to examine the individual and combined effects of increased sediment accretion (burial) and nitrogen enrichment associated with predicted global change on the performance of young clones of Sporobolus virginicus, a widespread dune stabilizing species. Increased burial severity resulted in the production of taller but thinner shoots, while nutrient enrichment stimulated rhizome production. Nutrient enrichment increased total plant biomass up to moderate burial levels (50% of plant height), but it had not effect at the highest burial level (100% of plant height). The effects of such factors on total biomass, shoot biomass and branching were influenced by spatial variation in natural factors at the scale of hundreds of metres. These results indicate that the effects of burial and nutrient enrichment on plant performance were not independent. Their combined effects may not be predicted by knowing the individual effects, at least under the study conditions. Under global change scenarios, increased nutrient input could alleviate nutrient stress in S. virginicus, enhancing clonal expansion and productivity, but this benefit could be offset by increased sand accretion levels equal or exceeding 100% of plant height. Depletion of stored reserves for emerging from sand could increase plant vulnerability to other stresses in the long-term. The results emphasize the need to incorporate statistical designs for detecting non-independent effects of multiple changes and adequate spatial replication in future works to

  17. Global change and response of coastal dune plants to the combined effects of increased sand accretion (burial) and nutrient availability.

    PubMed

    Frosini, Silvia; Lardicci, Claudio; Balestri, Elena

    2012-01-01

    Coastal dune plants are subjected to natural multiple stresses and vulnerable to global change. Some changes associated with global change could interact in their effects on vegetation. As vegetation plays a fundamental role in building and stabilizing dune systems, effective coastal habitat management requires a better understanding of the combined effects of such changes on plant populations. A manipulative experiment was conducted along a Mediterranean dune system to examine the individual and combined effects of increased sediment accretion (burial) and nitrogen enrichment associated with predicted global change on the performance of young clones of Sporobolus virginicus, a widespread dune stabilizing species. Increased burial severity resulted in the production of taller but thinner shoots, while nutrient enrichment stimulated rhizome production. Nutrient enrichment increased total plant biomass up to moderate burial levels (50% of plant height), but it had not effect at the highest burial level (100% of plant height). The effects of such factors on total biomass, shoot biomass and branching were influenced by spatial variation in natural factors at the scale of hundreds of metres. These results indicate that the effects of burial and nutrient enrichment on plant performance were not independent. Their combined effects may not be predicted by knowing the individual effects, at least under the study conditions. Under global change scenarios, increased nutrient input could alleviate nutrient stress in S. virginicus, enhancing clonal expansion and productivity, but this benefit could be offset by increased sand accretion levels equal or exceeding 100% of plant height. Depletion of stored reserves for emerging from sand could increase plant vulnerability to other stresses in the long-term. The results emphasize the need to incorporate statistical designs for detecting non-independent effects of multiple changes and adequate spatial replication in future works to

  18. The opposition effect and its relationship to sediment density in BRDF measurements from the Algodones Sand Dunes System

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ambeau, Brittany; Bachmann, Charles M.; Griffo, Carrie; Harms, Justin; Myers, Emily; Badura, Gregory

    2016-09-01

    Density, particle size distribution, surface moisture, and mineral content are some important geophysical properties that affect the bi-directional reflectance factor (BRF) of particulate media such as sand. According to radiative transfer theory, several of these geophysical properties are known to directly affect the overall level of reflectance, as well as the functional form of the opposition effect, for homogeneous, particulate media.1 Most sands are composite, i.e. non-homogeneous, and do not follow the standard distributions (with approximate analytical solutions) for particle size. Therefore, conventional radiative transfer models need to be modified to account for the complex nature of sand. In this work, we examine the impact of density on the functional form of the opposition effect, and we show that differences in density are expressed in a characteristic way. The measurements are collected using the laboratory and field-deployable Goniometer of the Rochester Institute of Technology-Two (GRIT-T). And, the results are based on sediment samples collected from the Algodones Sand Dunes System in southeastern California during the NASA Algodones Dunes Field Experiment conducted in March 2015.

  19. Effects of disturbance on vegetation by sand accretion and erosion across coastal dune habitats on a barrier island.

    PubMed

    Miller, Thomas E

    2015-01-12

    Coastal geomorphology and vegetation are expected to be particularly sensitive to climate change, because of disturbances caused by sea-level rise and increased storm frequency. Dunes have critical reciprocal interactions with vegetation; dunes create habitats for plants, while plants help to build dunes and promote geomorphological stability. These interactions are also greatly affected by disturbances associated with sand movement, either in accretion (dune building) or in erosion. The magnitude and intensity of disturbances are expected to vary with habitat, from the more exposed and less stable foredunes, to low-lying and flood-prone interdunes, to the protected and older backdunes. Permanent plots were established at three different spatial scales on St George Island, FL, USA, where the vegetation and dune elevation were quantified annually from 2011 to 2013. Change in elevation, either through accretion or erosion, was used as a measure of year-to-year disturbance over the 2 years of the study. At the scale of different dune habitats, foredunes were found to have the greatest disturbance, while interdunes had the least. Elevation and habitat (i.e. foredune, interdune, backdune) were significantly correlated with plant community composition. Generalized linear models conducted within each habitat show that the change in elevation (disturbance) is also significantly correlated with the plant community, but only within foredunes and interdunes. The importance of disturbance in exposed foredunes was expected and was found to be related to an increasing abundance of a dominant species (Uniola paniculata) in eroding areas. The significant effect of disturbance in the relatively stable interdunes was surprising, and may be due to the importance of flooding associated with small changes in elevation in these low-lying areas. Overall, this study documents changes in the plant community associated with elevation, and demonstrates that the foredune and interdune

  20. Using Large-Scale Roughness Elements to Control Sand and Dust Flux at the Keeler Dunes, Keeler, CA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gillies, John; McCarley-Holder, Grace

    2014-05-01

    Controlling dust emission from areas that subsequently degrade air quality and threaten human and animal health and reduce the quality of life for people residing in proximity to such sources is necessary, but also challenging. Recent research has indicated that arrays of large roughness elements (height >0.3 m) can be used effectively to modulate sand transport and the associated dust emissions. Prediction of the rate of sand flux reduction as a function of downwind distance upon entering an array of roughness elements, and the equilibrium flux reduction in the interior of the array is possible using the known geometric properties of the roughness elements, their number, and published relationships. Air quality in the town of Keeler, CA (36 deg 29' 17.92" N, 117 deg 52' 24.62" W) is degraded by levels of particulate matter <10 µm aerodynamic diameter (PM10) during periods of elevated wind speeds due to sand transport and dust emissions in the nearby Keeler Dunes. A demonstration project was designed to evaluate the effectiveness of an array of roughness elements composed of solid elements and managed vegetation to meet sand and dust flux reduction criteria. This project has two major goals: 1) to demonstrate that solid roughness elements placed on areas of the Keeler Dunes immediately arrest sand movement to specified levels (target of 85% reduction), and 2) to assess whether native plant species, planted in the sheltered area of the solid roughness elements can effectively thrive and subsequently replace the solid roughness to achieve the desired sand flux reduction control efficiency. This poster describes the results related mostly to objective one, as considerable time has to pass before sufficient data will be obtained to evaluate the success of the planted and managed vegetation to achieve a control level provided by the solid element roughness array.

  1. Mechanism of early meteoric diagenesis in carbonate dune sands, Tarama Island, Ryukyu Islands, southwestern Japan

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kumai, N.; Matsuda, H.

    2012-12-01

    Carbonate sediments are useful for the interpretation of depositional environments and environmental changes because their components and chemistry reflect depositional environments sensitively. However, primary records on their depositional environments are often modified by various types of early carbonate diagenesis immediately after their deposition. Longman (1980) pointed out that sedimentary textures and mineral compositions of carbonate sediments near a subaerial exposure surface are easily changed by dissolution and cementation associated with early meteoric diagenesis. Hudson (1977) also suggested that their primary stable carbon and oxygen isotopic compositions are altered by early meteoric diagenesis. In this way, the qualitative changes of carbonate sediments with early meteoric diagenesis are well known. On the other hand, the quantitative changes, time scale and detailed mechanisms of early meteoric diagenesis are not fully understood at present. To clarify the detailed mechanism of early meteoric diagenesis, the Upper Pleistocene carbonate dune sands in Tarama Island, the Ryukyu Islands, southwestern Japan, were analyzed. These sediments consist mainly of unconsolidated to weakly-consolidated carbonate sands, composed mainly of a variety of shallow marine bioclasts. Detailed petrographical observation and XRD and isotopic analyses were carried out. As a result of examinations of these carbonate sediments, low-Mg calcite (LMC), high-Mg calcite (HMC) and aragonite (ARG) contents of unconsolidated carbonate sands (UCS) are 20 to 47%, 0 to 44% and 33 to 54%, respectively. On the other hand, LMC, HMC and ARG contents of weakly-consolidated carbonate sands (WCS) are 64 to 95%, 0 to 18% and 5 to 18%, respectively. δ13C and δ18O values of UCS have narrow ranges of 0.51 to 1.70‰ and -1.87 to -1.46‰, respectively. On the other hand, δ13C and δ18O values of WCS have wide ranges of -4.67 to 0.62‰ and -4.82 to 2.92‰, respectively. The mineral and

  2. Two-site kinetic modeling of bacteriophages transport through columns of saturated dune sand.

    PubMed

    Schijven, Jack F; Hassanizadeh, S Majid; de Bruin, Ria H A M

    2002-08-01

    Breakthrough curves, on a semi-log scale, from tests in porous media with block-input of viruses, bacteria, protozoa and colloidal particles often exhibit a typical skewness: a rather slowly rising limb and a smooth transition of a declining limb to a very long tail. One-site kinetic models fail to fit the rising and declining limbs together with the tail satisfactorily. Inclusion of an equilibrium adsorption site does not seem to improve simulation results. This was encountered in the simulation of breakthrough curves from a recent field study on the removal of bacteriophages MS2 and PRD1 by passage through dune sand. In the present study, results of laboratory experiments for the study of this issue are presented. Breakthrough curves of salt and bacteriophages MS2, PRDI, and phiX174 in 1 D column experiments have been measured. One- and two-site kinetic models have been applied to fit and predict breakthrough curves from column experiments. The two-site model fitted all breakthrough curves very satisfactorily, accounting for the skewness of the rising limb as well as for the smooth transition of the declining limb to the tail of the breakthrough curve. The one-site model does not follow the curvature of the breakthrough tail, leading to an overestimation of the inactivation rate coefficient for attached viruses. Interaction with kinetic site 1 is characterized by relatively fast attachment and slow detachment, whereas attachment to and detachment from kinetic site 2 is fast. Inactivation of viruses and interaction with kinetic site 2 provide only a minor contribution to removal. Virus removal is mainly determined by the attachment to site 1. Bacteriophage phiX174 attached more than MS2 and PRD1, which can be explained by the greater electrostatic repulsion that MS2 and PRD1 experience compared to the less negatively charged phiX174.

  3. Comparison of stemflow for two xerophytic shrubs in re-vegetated sand dunes in N. China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, X.

    2012-04-01

    Precipitation, as the sole source of water replenishment in the semiarid area, plays a key role in sustaining the desert ecosystem. Stemflow, a spatially localized point input of precipitation at the plant stem, of two xerophytic shrubs (Caragana korshinskii Kom. and Artemisia ordosica Krasch.) was quantified at the re-vegetated sand dunes of Shapotou Desert Experimental Research Station near Lanzhou. The results indicated that stemflow, expressed as an equivalent depth based on the canopy area of the sampled shrubs, averaged 3.3% and 7.9% of the bulk precipitation for C. korshinskii and A. ordosica, respectively. This is not a high value but important to be taken into account in the determination of the water balance of the desert ecosystem. An antecedent precipitation of 2.2 and 1.3 mm was necessary for the initiation of the stemflow for C. korshinskii and A. ordosica, respectively. The relationship between funnelling ratios and rainfall suggested that there existed a rainfall depth threshold of 7 mm for the two shrubs; while large variability in funnelling ratio were found for rainfall intensity less than 4 mm h-1, but it tended to decease with increasing rain intensity when rainfall intensity was greater than 4 mm h-1. Significant positive linear relationships were found between stemflow production (l) and rainfall depth (mm) for the two shrubs. Statistical analysis showed that the volume of precipitation channelized as stemflow varies as a function of canopy area and canopy volume characteristics. There was a positive effect on redistribution of rainwater and funnelling ratio as shrub size increases for C. korshinskii , while, for A. ordosica, a negative effect on funnelling ratio was found. This study was supported by the 100-talents Program of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, and the National Natural Science Foundation of China (grant no. 31070415) and the Joint Scholar Project of Western (China) Lightening Talent Program of the Chinese Academy of Sciences.

  4. Speculation on martian north polar wind circulation and the resultant orientations of polar sand dunes

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ward, A.W.; Doyle, K.B.

    1983-01-01

    Dunes in the Martian north polar erg show two dominant orientations. When seen at frost cap minimum, dunes north of 80??N record east winds, dunes south of 80??N record west winds. Many of the transverse dunes are considered to be reversing dunes. Dunes in two fields may have reversed at least once during the lifetime of the Viking Orbiters. Poor agreement exists among published predictive models of north polar winds and the interpretations derived from the major published map of the north polar dunes. We propose that the average polar winds are: (1) strong, off-pole northwest winds in fall; (2) moderate west winds in winter; (3) latitude-dependent weak to strong off-pole northeast winds in spring; and (4) weak west winds in summer. Viking images of near-polar clouds confirm much of the hypothesis. Images discussed in other studies can be given alternative interpretations that support this hypothesis also. Over millenia, the combination of reversing west and east winds could produce the binodal distributions of dune orientations observed at the north pole. ?? 1983.

  5. A Comparison of Methods Used to Estimate the Height of Sand Dunes on Mars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bourke, M. C.; Balme, M.; Beyer, R. A.; Williams, K. K.; Zimbelman, J.

    2006-01-01

    The collection of morphometric data on small-scale landforms from other planetary bodies is difficult. We assess four methods that can be used to estimate the height of aeolian dunes on Mars. These are (1) stereography, (2) slip face length, (3) profiling photoclinometry, and (4) Mars Orbiter Laser Altimeter (MOLA). Results show that there is good agreement among the methods when conditions are ideal. However, limitations inherent to each method inhibited their accurate application to all sites. Collectively, these techniques provide data on a range of morphometric parameters, some of which were not previously available for dunes on Mars. They include dune height, width, length, surface area, volume, and longitudinal and transverse profiles. Thc utilization of these methods will facilitate a more accurate analysis of aeolian dunes on Mars and enable comparison with dunes on other planetary surfaces.

  6. Impacts of simulated climate change and fungal symbionts on survival and growth of a foundation species in sand dunes.

    PubMed

    Emery, Sarah M; Rudgers, Jennifer A

    2013-12-01

    For many ecosystems, one of the primary avenues of climate impact may be through changes to foundation species, which create habitats and sustain ecosystem services. For plants, microbial symbionts can often act as mutualists under abiotic stress and may mediate foundational plant responses to climate change. We manipulated the presence of endophytes in Ammophila breviligulata, a foundational sand dune species, to evaluate their potential to influence plant responses to climate change. We simulated projected climate change scenarios for temperature and precipitation using a growth chamber experiment. A 5 °C increase in temperature relative to current climate in northern Michigan reduced A. breviligulata survival by 45 %. Root biomass of A. breviligulata, which is critical to dune stabilization, was also strongly reduced by temperature. Plants inoculated with the endophyte had 14 % higher survival than endophyte-free plants. Contrary to our prediction, endophyte symbiosis did not alter the magnitude or direction of the effects of climate manipulations on A. breviligulata survival. However, in the absence of the endophyte, an increase in temperature increased the number of sand grains bound by roots by 80 %, while in symbiotic plants sand adherence did not significantly respond to temperature. Thus, plant-endophyte symbiosis actually negated the benefits in ecosystem function gained under a warmer climate. This study suggests that heat stress related to climate change in the Great Lakes may compromise the ability of A. breviligulata to stabilize dune ecosystems and reduce carbon storage and organic matter build-up in these early-successional systems due to reduced plant survival and root growth.

  7. Studies of the terrestrial O2 and carbon cycles in sand dune gases and in biosphere 2

    SciTech Connect

    Severinghaus, Jeffrey Peck

    1995-01-01

    Molecular oxygen in the atmosphere is coupled tightly to the terrestrial carbon cycle by the processes of photosynthesis, respiration, and burning. This dissertation examines different aspects of this coupling in four chapters. Chapter 1 explores the feasibility of using air from sand dunes to reconstruct atmospheric O2 composition centuries ago. Such a record would reveal changes in the mass of the terrestrial biosphere, after correction for known fossil fuel combustion, and constrain the fate of anthropogenic CO2.

  8. Vegetated linear dunes - chronologically discontinuous archives of several short-term and major dune growth episodes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Roskin, Joel

    2013-04-01

    Quartz sand dunes cover massive areas defined as arid, making them a potentially important archive of past climates and environments. But, dunes, being highly dynamic and relatively uniform in sedimentological composition, often compromise this potential. Most inland dunes are of the linear type that has a sinuous planar shape. Linear dunes, also associated with active seif dunes, are elongated by oblique cross-(dune) crest deflection of sand grains due to acutely bimodal sand-transporting winds. This prevents formation of long-term and stratigraphically continuous internal dune structure (though fully exposed internal linear dune structures to support this conclusion are rarely found). Therefore, dating of the dune sand by luminescence methods is mainly restricted to the last (re)mobilization phase and cannot track earlier dune growth history. Vegetated linear dunes (VLDs), mainly found in low-latitudes, are characterized by a straight planar shape and a partial shrub cover, and have been proposed to comprise an independent dune type. The stratigraphic cross-section of the VLD includes a sequence of chronologically discontinuous sand units forming the dune core. The accumulation of the units is generally interpreted to pertain to major episodes of strong wind power when sand was available. Possible minor events of sand accumulation are presumed to have been erased by major episodes. The units, often structureless and of similar sedimentological properties can only be discerned by luminescence dating as contacts between units do not necessarily imply chronological boundaries. The VLD core is overlaid by a mantle of sand that while being intermittently morphologically and structurally configured by seasonal winds to depths of several meters, preserves the dune core stratigraphy. Therefore, in a sense, the VLD is a prominent sedimentary body archiving influential short-time and possibly extreme events. Based upon exposed dune stratigraphy, ground-penetrating radar

  9. Geology along Mosca Pass Trail, Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve, Colorado

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Lindsey, David A.; Klein, Terry L.; Valdez, Andrew; Webster, Robert J.

    2012-01-01

    Mosca Pass Trail takes the hiker on a journey into the Earth's crust. Here you can see the results of tremendous tectonic forces that bend and tear rocks apart and raise mountain ranges. The trail begins near the Sangre de Cristo fault, which separates the Sangre de Cristo Range from the San Luis Valley. The valley is part of the Rio Grande rift, a series of fault basins extending from southern New Mexico to central Colorado, wherein the Earth's crust has been pulled apart during the last 30 million years. Thousands of feet of sediment, brought by streams mostly from the Sangre de Cristo Range, fill the San Luis Valley beneath the Great Sand Dunes. The trail ends at Mosca Pass overlooking Huerfano Park. The park is part of the larger Raton Basin, formed by compression of the Earth's crust during the Laramide orogeny, which occurred 70–40 million years ago. Massive highlands, the remnants of which are preserved in the Sangre de Cristo Range, were uplifted and pushed over the western side of the Raton Basin. Streams eroded the highland as it rose and filled the Raton Basin with sediment. After the sediment was compacted and cemented to form sedimentary rock, the Huerfano River and other streams began to excavate the basin. Over an unknown but long timespan that probably lasted millions of years, relatively soft sedimentary rocks were removed by the river to form the valley we call "Huerfano Park." Between the ends of the trail, the hiker walks through an erosional "window," or opening, into red sedimentary rocks overridden by gneiss, a metamorphic rock, during the Laramide orogeny. This window gives the hiker a glimpse into the Laramide highland of 70–40 million years ago that preceded the present-day Sangre de Cristo Range. The window is the focus of this trail guide. At the east end of the trail, near Mosca Pass, another trail follows the ridgeline south to Carbonate Mountain. Immediately after reaching the first summit above tree line, this trail crosses a

  10. Temperature and humidity within a mobile barchan sand dune, implications for microbial survival

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Louge, M. Y.; Valance, A.; el-Moctar, A. Ould; Xu, J.; Hay, A. G.; Richer, R.

    2013-12-01

    Although microorganisms play an important role in biological soil crusts and plant rhizospheres in deserts, it is unclear whether temperature and moisture deep within relatively fast moving hyperarid mobile dunes present a suitable habitat for microbes. To inform this question, we report measurements of temperature and humidity from probes initially sunk below the leeward avalanche face of a mobile barchan dune in the Qatar desert, emerging windward after 15 months of deep burial. Despite large diurnal variations on the surface, temperature within this dune of 5.6 m height is predictable, as long as dune advection is properly considered. It evolves on smaller amplitude and longer timescale than the surface, lagging average seasonal atmospheric conditions by about 2 months. We contrast these deep thermal records with measurements of diurnal variations of the temperature profile just below the surface, which we calculate with a thermal model predicting the relative roles of wind‒driven convective heat transfer and net radiation flux on the dune. Observations and analyses also suggest why random precipitation on the leeward face produces a more unpredictable moisture patchwork on the windward slope. By rapidly reaching sheltered depths, small quantities of rain falling on that face escape evaporation and endure within the dune until resurfacing upwind. At depths below 10 cm, we show that moisture, rather than temperature, determines the viability of microbes and we provide initial microscopic and respiration‒based evidence of their presence below the windward slope.

  11. The growth responses of coastal dune species are determined by nutrient limitation and sand burial.

    PubMed

    Gilbert, Matthew; Pammenter, Norman; Ripley, Brad

    2008-05-01

    Past work suggests that burial and low nutrient availability limit the growth and zonal distribution of coastal dune plants. Given the importance of these two factors, there is a surprising lack of field investigations of the interactions between burial and nutrient availability. This study aims to address this issue by measuring the growth responses of four coastal dune plant species to these two factors and their interaction. Species that naturally experience either high or low rates of burial were selected and a factorial burial by nutrient addition experiment was conducted. Growth characteristics were measured in order to determine which characteristics allow a species to respond to burial. Species that naturally experience high rates of burial (Arctotheca populifolia and Scaevola plumieri) displayed increased growth when buried, and this response was nutrient-limited. Stable-dune species had either small (Myrica cordifolia, N-fixer) or negligible responses to burial (Metalasia muricata), and were not nutrient-limited. This interspecific difference in response to burial and/or fertiliser is consistent with the idea that burial maintains the observed zonation of species on coastal dunes. Species that are unable to respond to burial are prevented from occupying the mobile dunes. Species able to cope with high rates of burial had high nitrogen-use efficiencies and low dry mass costs of production, explaining their ability to respond to burial under nutrient limitation. The interaction between burial and nutrient limitation is understudied but vital to understanding the zonation of coastal dune plant species.

  12. Earth-like sand fluxes on Mars.

    PubMed

    Bridges, N T; Ayoub, F; Avouac, J-P; Leprince, S; Lucas, A; Mattson, S

    2012-05-09

    Strong and sustained winds on Mars have been considered rare, on the basis of surface meteorology measurements and global circulation models, raising the question of whether the abundant dunes and evidence for wind erosion seen on the planet are a current process. Recent studies showed sand activity, but could not determine whether entire dunes were moving--implying large sand fluxes--or whether more localized and surficial changes had occurred. Here we present measurements of the migration rate of sand ripples and dune lee fronts at the Nili Patera dune field. We show that the dunes are near steady state, with their entire volumes composed of mobile sand. The dunes have unexpectedly high sand fluxes, similar, for example, to those in Victoria Valley, Antarctica, implying that rates of landscape modification on Mars and Earth are similar.

  13. GPR imaging of a sand dune aquifer: A case study in the niayes ecoregion of Tanma, Senegal

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rejiba, F.; Bobée, C.; Maugis, P.; Camerlynck, C.

    2012-06-01

    Local agriculture in Senegal is dependent on truck farming, which is concentrated in the narrow interdunal zone of peat deposits, called "niayes". The viability of the niayes significantly depends on the sand dune aquifer, as a consequence of recent over-pumping. In the present paper, we discuss the ability of GPR to locate the water table, in a highly vegetated interdunal area which includes peat fields, as well as internal dips, which were shown to be complex. Three profiles determined in the interdunal zone have been associated with several boreholes. Analysis of the radargrams clearly shows that 1) the presence of dense vegetation is not a penalising factor; 2) phase inversion in the measured signal could be useful in distinguishing between the presence of a significant water contrast, and that of a strong stratigraphic reflector; 3) in sand dunes, the electromagnetic contrast resulting from a wetting front is likely to be of the same order as that of the water table. The outcome of this study may provide clues to the characterisation and management of water resources in niayes area.

  14. Estimation of dune migration rates north Riyadh City, KSA, using SPOT 4 panchromatic images

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Al-Mutiry, M.; Hermas, E. A.; Al-Ghamdi, K. A.; Al-Awaji, H.

    2016-12-01

    Irq Al-Rethmah is located north of Riyadh City, KSA, as elongated NW-SE sand accumulations. Its formation and development are highly controlled by the ridge-and-valley landscape dominant in the east of Saudi Arabia. The active dunes of Irq Al-Rethmah are basically represented by barchan and transverse dunes. These active dunes either superimpose the old stable dunes and sand sheets or directly occur over the alluvial plain adjacent to the western reaches of old stable dunes. The Co-registration of optically sensed images and Correlation (COSI-Corr) technology was conducted on two SPOT 4 panchromatic images acquired in 2006 and 2009 respectively to determine the migration rates and direction of the active dunes. The average annual migration rates of active dunes ranged from 1.6 to 2.25 m/yr. The migration rates decrease where the active dunes superimpose the old stable dunes and sand sheets. On the other hand, these rates increase when the active dunes are located over the alluvial plain along the western margins of Irq Al-Rethmah. The calculated vector displacement field by COSI-Corr technology suggest a southward direction of dune migration indicating that the predominant wind direction is northerly. Although the calculated rates are generally low in comparison to other measured migration rates of sand dunes in the east of Saudi Arabia, the spatial analysis implies potential hazards of active dunes against many landuse components such as roads, powerlines, and recreational facilities in the study area.

  15. Effects of biological soil crust development on the hydrological behavior of vegetation-stabilized sand dunes in arid desert ecosystems of NW China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Coppola, Antonio; Wang, Xinping; Pan, Yan-xia; Basile, Angelo; Comegna, Alessandro

    2014-05-01

    Approximately 24.5% of the Chinese area locates in arid and semi-arid area in northwest China, which has been severely affected by desertification. An experiment to evaluate the effects of dunes fixation by vegetation was carried out at Shapotou in Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region at the southeast edge of the Tengger Desert using xerophyte shrubs (Caragana korshinskii, Hedysarum scoparium and Artemisia ordosica) planted in straw checkerboard plots initiated in 1956. The artificially stabilized shrub-covered dunes have strongly enhanced the formation of biotic crusts. Knowing if and how local hydrological processes are altered by desert ecosystems restoration is basic to create vegetation-protective systems that control or cease migration of sand dunes. Accordingly, the main objective of this work was to evaluate the time dynamics of the hydraulic properties and surface infiltration behavior with the general soil formation processes. We compared the soil physical and hydraulic properties, along with infiltration characteristics of soils of vegetated and un-vegetated sand dunes. Finally, by numerically simulating water flow processes naturally occurring in the area, we investigated if the changes in the surface infiltration behavior, local by nature, have consequences on the fluxes deeper in the soil profile Key words: Microbiotic crusts, Hydraulic properties, Sand dune migration, Tension infiltrometer method, Numerical simulations

  16. Computational modeling of dissipation and regeneration of fluvial sand dunes under variable discharges

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nabi, M.; Kimura, I.; Hsu, S. M.; Giri, S.; Shimizu, Y.

    2015-07-01

    It is observed, during flood events, that bed forms initially grow in height and make the riverbed rougher. But later, under high discharge, the bed forms grow longer with the opposite effect of making the riverbed smoother. After the discharge drops to a lower value, new bed forms regenerate on top of the elongated bed forms. This mechanism leads to a significant variation in the bed roughness and the water stage and hence determines the behavior of floods and the risk of flood disasters. This work presents detailed modeling of bed forms under discharge hydrographs and simulates the conditions under which the bed is flattened out in the upper plane bed regime. The flow was simulated by large-eddy simulation, and the sediments were considered as rigid spheres and modeled in a Lagrangian framework. The bed morphodynamics were the result of entrainment and deposition of sediment particles. We examined several discharge hydrographs. In the first case, we increased the discharge linearly and then kept it constant after reaching the upper plane bed condition. The dunes were generated and grew during the rising stage of discharge. When the flow conditions reached the upper plane bed regime, high-frequency ripples were generated and helped to flatten the bed. The results also showed that in contrast with mechanisms in the dune regime, the flattening of the bed was associated with a distinct pattern of sediment transport which deposited sediment mainly in the lee side of the dunes and led to flattening of the bed. After flattening, the sediments were mainly transported in suspension mode. As long as flow conditions stayed in the upper plane bed regime, the bed remained flat with small high-frequency ripples. We also examined two other scenarios: one with an immediate falling stage of discharge after the rising stage and the other with a period of constant discharge between the rising and falling stages. Dunes were regenerated during the falling stage of discharge for both

  17. Dynamics of soil organic carbon and its fractions after revegetation on sand dunes in the Tengger Desert, Northern China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, X.; Liu, Y.; Li, X.

    2015-12-01

    Revegetation has become increasingly important for desertified land restoration in arid and semiarid regions. Little is known about the dynamics of soil organic carbon (SOC) after the establishment of shrubland on shifting sand dunes; especially the changes in SOC fractions following planting were poorly understood. 0-10 cm soil samples were collected along chronosequence plots were to: (1) quantitatively analyze the changes of SOC and its fractions over time following the establishment of shrublands on shifting sand dunes; (2) precisely assess the relative contribution of different components to total organic carbon at different times. The results showed that revegetation can promote SOC accumulation in desert regions. SOC increased from 0.33±0.11 g kg-1 in mobile sand dunes to 5.08±0.11 g kg-1 in 57-year shrublands, while the light fraction of organic C (LF-OC) ranged from 0.05±0.02 g kg-1 to 2.96±0.24 g kg-1, the dissolved organic C (DOC) increased from 5.95±0.42 mg kg-1 to 23.63±2.79 mg kg-1 and microbial biomass C (MBC) from 6.54±1.64 mg kg-1 to 135.35±19.49 mg kg-1. Their dynamics patterns can be divided into three stages, i.e. slow increase, fast increase and slow increase stages; especially, both SOC and its fractions showed no significant changes in the first 14 years, which suggested that soil restoration is a slow process in dry environments, and therefore the maintenance of soil habitat is a crucial for land management. Our results also demonstrated that revegetation can increase the ratio of labile to stable pools in desert regions. Although, the content of HF-OC significantly increased after afforestation, but its contribution to SOC decreased from 85.15% to 41.52%, implied that more SOC stocks were stabilized in labile pools with the elapse of time, this would give rise to the risk of significant SOC losses caused by potential global warming and human-induced disturbances.

  18. Stars and linear dunes on Mars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Edgett, Kenneth S.; Blumberg, Dan G.

    1994-01-01

    A field containing 11 star and incipient star dunes occurs on Mars at 8.8 deg S, 270.9 deg W. Examples of linear dunes are found in a crater at 59.4 deg S, 343 deg W. While rare, dune varieties that form in bi- and multidirectional wind regimes are not absent from the surface of Mars. The occurence of both of these dune fields offers new insight into the nature of martian wind conditions and sand supply. The linear dunes appears to have formed through modification of a formerly transverse aeolian deposit, suggesting a relatively recent change in local wind direction. The 11 dunes in the star dune locality show a progressive change from barchan to star form as each successive dune has traveled up into a valley, into a more complex wind regime. The star dunes corroborate the model of N. Lancaster (1989), for the formation of star dunes by projection of transverse dunes into a complex, topographically influenced wind regime. The star dunes have dark streaks emanating from them, providing evidence that the dunes were active at or near the time the relevant image was obtained by the Viking 1 orbiter in 1978. The star and linear dunes described here are located in different regions on the martian surface. Unlike most star and linear dunes on Earth, both martian examples are isolated occurrences; neither is part of a major sand sea. Previously published Mars general circulation model results suggest that the region in which the linear dune field occurs should be a bimodal wind regime, while the region in which the star dunes occur should be unimodal. The star dunes are probably the result of localized complication of the wind regime owing to topographic confinement of the dunes. Local topographic influence on wind regime is also evident in the linear dune field, as there are transverse dunes in close proximity to the linear dunes, and their occurrence is best explained by funneling of wind through a topographic gap in the upwind crater wall.

  19. ESTIMATING THE ECONOMIC VALUE OF NATIONAL PARKS WITH COUNT DATA MODELS USING ON-SITE, SECONDARY DATA: THE CASE OF THE GREAT SAND DUNES NATIONAL PARK AND PRESERVE

    EPA Science Inventory

    We estimate an individual travel cost model for Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve (GSD) in Colorado using on-site, secondary data. The purpose of the on-site survey was to help the National Park Service better understand the visitors of GSD; it was not intended for a t...

  20. Breeding system and its consequence on fruit set of a rare sand dune shrub Eremosparton songoricum (Fabaceae: Papilionoideae): implications for conservation

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The breeding system and its consequence on fruit set of Eremosparton songoricum (Litv.) Vass., a rare shrubby legume occurring in moving or semi-fixed sand dunes of Central Asian deserts, were examined by manipulative experiments and observational studies in natural populations during the period of ...

  1. Barchan Dunes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2004-01-01

    28 April 2004 One of the simplest forms a sand dune can take is the barchan. The term, apparently, comes from the Arabic word for crescent-shaped dunes. They form in areas with a single dominant wind direction that are also not overly-abundant in sand. The barchan dunes shown here were imaged in March 2004 by the Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC) as it passed over a crater in western Arabia Terra near 21.1oN, 17.6oW. The horns and steep slope on each dune, known as the slip face, point toward the south, indicating prevailing winds from the north (top). The picture covers an area about 3 km (1.9 mi) across and is illuminated by sunlight from the lower left.

  2. Russell Dunes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2004-01-01

    26 March 2004 Dark streaks made by dozens of spring and summer dust devils created a form of martian graffiti on the sand dunes of Russell Crater near 54.5oS, 347.4oW. Gullies have developed on some of the dune slopes, as well. This Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC) image covers an area about 3 km (1.9 mi) across. Sunlight illuminates the scene from the upper left.

  3. Dominance of an ~150-year cycle of sand-supply change in late Holocene dune-building along the eastern shore of Lake Michigan

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Loope, W.L.; Arbogast, A.F.

    2000-01-01

    Outcrops of buried soils on lake-plains and glacial headlands along Lake Michigan's eastern shore suggest that periodic dune-building has occurred there after relatively long (≥100 yr) periods of low sand supply. We located, described, and radiocarbon dated 75 such buried soils that crop out in 32 coastal dune fields beside the lake. We assume that peaks in probability distributions of calibrated 14C ages obtained from wood, charcoal, and other organic matter from buried A horizons approximate the time of soil burial by dunes. Plotted against a late Holocene lake-level curve for Lake Michigan, these peaks are closely associated with many ∼150-yr lake highstands previously inferred from beach ridge studies. Intervening periods of lower lake levels and relative sand starvation apparently permitted forestation and soil development at the sites we studied. While late Holocene lake-level change led to development and preservation of prominent foredunes along the southern and southwestern shores of Lake Michigan, the modern dune landscape of the eastern shore is dominated by perched dunes formed during ∼150-yr lake highstands over the past 1500 yr.

  4. Seasonal erosion and restoration of Mars' northern polar dunes.

    PubMed

    Hansen, C J; Bourke, M; Bridges, N T; Byrne, S; Colon, C; Diniega, S; Dundas, C; Herkenhoff, K; McEwen, A; Mellon, M; Portyankina, G; Thomas, N

    2011-02-04

    Despite radically different environmental conditions, terrestrial and martian dunes bear a strong resemblance, indicating that the basic processes of saltation and grainfall (sand avalanching down the dune slipface) operate on both worlds. Here, we show that martian dunes are subject to an additional modification process not found on Earth: springtime sublimation of Mars' CO(2) seasonal polar caps. Numerous dunes in Mars' north polar region have experienced morphological changes within a Mars year, detected in images acquired by the High-Resolution Imaging Science Experiment on the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter. Dunes show new alcoves, gullies, and dune apron extension. This is followed by remobilization of the fresh deposits by the wind, forming ripples and erasing gullies. The widespread nature of these rapid changes, and the pristine appearance of most dunes in the area, implicates active sand transport in the vast polar erg in Mars' current climate.

  5. Seasonal erosion and restoration of Mars' northern polar dunes

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hansen, C.J.; Bourke, M.; Bridges, N.T.; Byrne, S.; Colon, C.; Diniega, S.; Dundas, C.; Herkenhoff, K.; McEwen, A.; Mellon, M.; Portyankina, G.; Thomas, N.

    2011-01-01

    Despite radically different environmental conditions, terrestrial and martian dunes bear a strong resemblance, indicating that the basic processes of saltation and grainfall (sand avalanching down the dune slipface) operate on both worlds. Here, we show that martian dunes are subject to an additional modification process not found on Earth: springtime sublimation of Mars' CO 2 seasonal polar caps. Numerous dunes in Mars' north polar region have experienced morphological changes within a Mars year, detected in images acquired by the High-Resolution Imaging Science Experiment on the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter. Dunes show new alcoves, gullies, and dune apron extension. This is followed by remobilization of the fresh deposits by the wind, forming ripples and erasing gullies. The widespread nature of these rapid changes, and the pristine appearance of most dunes in the area, implicates active sand transport in the vast polar erg in Mars' current climate.

  6. Dune morphodynamics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Courrech du Pont, Sylvain

    2015-01-01

    The physics of dunes relies on the interaction between a wind flow and an erodible topography. Thus, if strong enough to transport grains, the wind shapes sandy areas into dune fields. These dunes are reminiscent of a wavy sea so that sandy deserts are called sand seas. However, the comparison stops there. Contrary to water waves, dunes propagate only under wind action and when the wind stops, they do not vanish but stand. Consequently, dunes are not only the result of the present winds, but can integrate the wind regimes over long periods. Thus, they exhibit a range of shapes and sizes with superimposed patterns. They are witnesses of past wind regimes and their shape and orientation are used to constraint climatic models on other planetary bodies where they are observed as well (e.g., Mars, Titan and Venus). Here, we discuss the morphodynamics of dunes and endeavor to identify and to explain the physical mechanisms at play in the selection of their shape, size and orientation, whilst focusing on Earth desert sand dunes.

  7. Preliminary study of Kelso Dunes using AVIRIS, TM, and AIRSAR

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Xu, Pung; Blumberg, Dan G.; Greeley, Ronald

    1995-01-01

    Remote sensing of sand dunes helps in the understanding of aeolian process and provides important information about the regional geologic history, environmental change, and desertification. Remotely sensed data combined with field studies are valuable in studying dune morphology, regional aeolian dynamics, and aeolian depositional history. In particular, active and inactive sands of the Kelso Dunes have been studied using landsat TM and AIRSAR. In this report, we describe the use of AVIRIS data to study the Kelso dunes and to compare the AVIRIS information with that from TM and AIRSAR.

  8. Temporal characteristics of coherent flow structures generated over alluvial sand dunes, Mississippi River, revealed by acoustic doppler current profiling and multibeam echo sounding

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Czuba, John A.; Oberg, Kevin A.; Best, Jim L.; Parsons, Daniel R.; Simmons, S. M.; Johnson, K.K.; Malzone, C.

    2009-01-01

    This paper investigates the flow in the lee of a large sand dune located at the confluence of the Mississippi and Missouri Rivers, USA. Stationary profiles collected from an anchored boat using an acoustic Doppler current profiler (ADCP) were georeferenced with data from a real-time kinematic differential global positioning system. A multibeam echo sounder was used to map the bathymetry of the confluence and provided a morphological context for the ADCP measurements. The flow in the lee of a low-angle dune shows good correspondence with current conceptual models of flow over dunes. As expected, quadrant 2 events (upwellings of low-momentum fluid) are associated with high backscatter intensity. Turbulent events generated in the lower lee of a dune near the bed are associated with periods of vortex shedding and wake flapping. Remnant coherent structures that advect over the lower lee of the dune in the upper portion of the water column, have mostly dissipated and contribute little to turbulence intensities. The turbulent events that occupy most of the water column in the upper lee of the dune are associated with periods of wake flapping.

  9. Caterpillar Dunes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2004-01-01

    28 June 2004 Looking somewhat like caterpillars, this April 2004 Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC) image shows some of the rounded, wind-eroded sand dune features in a crater in the southern hemisphere near 61.7oS, 160.3oW. For such rounding to occur, the dune sand might need to be somewhat cemented. The picture covers an area about 3 km (1.9 mi) wide and is illuminated by sunlight from the upper left.

  10. Diagnosis of the heating effect on the electrical resistivity of Ouargla (Algeria) dunes sand using XRD patterns and FTIR spectra

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mechri, Mohammed Laïd; Chihi, Smaïl; Mahdadi, Naouia; Beddiaf, Samiha

    2017-01-01

    XRD patterns and FTIR spectra have shown that dunes sand of Ouargla's region, in its natural state, is formed of a high percentage of quartz, gypsum and very low percentage of kaolinite and hematite, in addition to some organic compounds. The electrical resistivity of the natural sand has been measured, it was 6 × 1014 Ω cm. Six samples of the sand were heated separately at 200, 400, 600, 800, 1000 and 1200 °C. The XRD patterns and FTIR spectra of these samples were carried out. On the other hand, the electrical resistivities of these samples have been measured. The change of the electrical resistivity with heat shows a nonlinear behavior. The heated sample of sand at 200 °C has lost some water. Most of the gypsum in the 200 °C heated sample has transformed into anhydrite, and the rest has transformed into bassanite, and its electrical resistivity has fallen down to 3.5 × 1014 Ω cm. By heating at 400 °C, the gypsum has lost all its water and it has transformed entirely to anhydrite, and its electrical resistivity became 6.75 × 1012 Ω cm, it has the lowest measured resistivity. At 600 °C and 800 °C, in addition to anhydrite, the kaolinite transformed to meta-kaolin due to the continuous breaking of OH bond and formation of water vapor, and the electrical resistivity increased to (1.5-1.9) × 1014 Ω cm. Heating at 1000 °C leads to the initiation of the interaction between anhydrite and quartz, the wollastonite appears, and the meta-kaolin transforms to aluminum-silicon and cristobalite. The wollastonite is a good electrical insulator. It raises the electrical resistivity of sand to 2.6 × 1014 Ω cm. The heating at 1200 °C makes all anhydrite to interact with quartz due to the increasing of volume of wollastonite, the anhydrite disappears completely, the quartz transforms into cristobalite. The cristobalite increases due to the dissociation of aluminium-silicon into mullite and cristobalite, as well as the transformation of quartz into cristobalite at

  11. Mineralogical and gemorphological characterization of sand dunes in the eastern part of United Arab Emirates using orbital remote sensing integrated with field investigations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Howari, F. M.; Baghdady, A.; Goodell, P. C.

    2007-01-01

    In this study, Landsat 7 ETM+ data sets were used to study the geomorphology and mineralogy of different dune types in the eastern part of Abu Dhabi in United Arab Emirates. The extraction and mapping of the dominant mineral phase of the investigated sand dunes were carried out using image processing integrated with field techniques. Band ratios 6/4 and 5/7 were very useful for mineralogical distinction of (i) high mafic content areas (ratio 5/7), and (ii) carbonate and quartz content (ratio 6/4). The results of the present study show that these dunes are classified into several main classes based on composition. The first class is low dunes composed of a mixture of quartz and carbonate, the second class is carbonate-rich, the third quartz-rich and the fourth mafic mineral-rich. Morphologically, the dunes in the investigated area belong to two main types. The first is linear and is trending NE-SW. This type shows transitional change in mineralogy from carbonate-rich components to iron oxide-rich components. This mineral gradient was observed on Landsat images as spectral variations and color tones, and was confirmed from ground truth data. The second type is star dunes and appears in images as radially symmetrical to mound shape that characterize multidirectional wind systems. The results of this study show that multispectral data can be used to differentiate between different dune types and their associated mineralogy, and to reveal information on the dynamic processes shaping dunes, such as prevailing wind directions.

  12. Nigeria to step up tar sands activity

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1987-03-01

    The Nigerian government has directed its Ministry of Mines, Power and Steel to assume responsibility for the exploration and exploitation of tar sands deposits in Bendel, Ondo and Oyo States. The directive resulted from a survey report by the University of Ife's geological consultancy unit on bituminous sand deposits in the area. The statement said the government was satisfied that there were large commercial quantities of the sands in the three states. The survey had reported that Nigeria could recover between 31 and 40 billion barrels of heavy crude from the tar sand deposits. Exploration for hydrocarbons is currently going on in Anambra and Lake Chad basins as well as the Benue Trough. Apart from the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, Shell Petroleum and Gulf Oil have begun exploration activities in the Ondo area. Meanwhile, Nigeria has had to import heavy crude from Venezuela, for processing at the Kaduna refinery.

  13. Cellular automata to understand the behaviour of beach-dune systems: Application to El Fangar Spit active dune system (Ebro delta, Spain)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barrio-Parra, Fernando; Rodríguez-Santalla, Inmaculada

    2016-08-01

    Coastal dunes are sedimentary environments characterized by their high dynamism. Their evolution is determined by sedimentary exchanges between the beach-dune subsystems and the dune dynamics itself. Knowledge about these exchanges is important to prioritize management and conservation strategies of these environments. The aim of this work is the inclusion of the aeolian transport rates obtained using a calibrated cellular automaton to estimate the beach-dune sediment exchange rates in a real active dune field at El Fangar Spit (Ebro Delta, Spain). The dune dynamics model is able to estimate average aeolian sediment fluxes. These are used in combination with the observed net sediment budget to obtain a quantitative characterization of the sediment exchange interactions. The methods produce a substantial improvement in the understanding of coastal sedimentary systems that could have major implications in areas where the management and conservation of dune fields are of concern.

  14. Dune Variety

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2005-01-01

    [figure removed for brevity, see original site]

    Our topic for the weeks of April 4 and April 11 is dunes on Mars. We will look at the north polar sand sea and at isolated dune fields at lower latitudes. Sand seas on Earth are often called 'ergs,' an Arabic name for dune field. A sand sea differs from a dune field in two ways: 1) a sand sea has a large regional extent, and 2) the individual dunes are large in size and complex in form.

    Our final look at the north polar erg was taken at 80 degrees North latitude during Northern summer. This image is of lower resolution than the previous images, but covers a much larger area. The dunes have very little remaining frost cover. Note the large extent of coverage, and the different dune forms.

    Image information: VIS instrument. Latitude 80.8, Longitude 184.6 East (175.4 West). 19 meter/pixel resolution.

    Note: this THEMIS visual image has not been radiometrically nor geometrically calibrated for this preliminary release. An empirical correction has been performed to remove instrumental effects. A linear shift has been applied in the cross-track and down-track direction to approximate spacecraft and planetary motion. Fully calibrated and geometrically projected images will be released through the Planetary Data System in accordance with Project policies at a later time.

    NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory manages the 2001 Mars Odyssey mission for NASA's Office of Space Science, Washington, D.C. The Thermal Emission Imaging System (THEMIS) was developed by Arizona State University, Tempe, in collaboration with Raytheon Santa Barbara Remote Sensing. The THEMIS investigation is led by Dr. Philip Christensen at Arizona State University. Lockheed Martin Astronautics, Denver, is the prime contractor for the Odyssey project, and developed and built the orbiter. Mission operations are conducted jointly from Lockheed Martin and from JPL, a division of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena.

  15. Field Measurement of Sand Dune Bidirectional Reflectance Characteristics for Absolute Radiometric Calibration of Optical Remote Sensing Data.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Coburn, C. A.; Logie, G.; Beaver, J.; Helder, D.

    2015-12-01

    The use of Pseudo Invariant Calibration Sites (PICS) for establishing the radiometric trending of optical remote sensing systems has a long history of successful implementation. Past studies have shown that the PICS method is useful for evaluating the trend of sensors over time or cross-calibration of sensors but was not considered until recently for deriving absolute calibration. Current interest in using this approach to establish absolute radiometric calibration stems from recent research that indicates that with empirically derived models of the surface properties and careful atmospheric characterisation Top of Atmosphere (TOA) reflectance values can be predicted and used for absolute sensor radiometric calibration. Critical to the continued development of this approach is the accurate characterization of the Bidirectional Reflectance Distribution Function (BRDF) of PICS sites. This paper presents the field data collected by a high-performance portable goniometer system in order to develop a BRDF model for the Algodones Dunes in California. These BRDF data are part of a larger study that is seeking to evaluate and quantify all aspects of this dune system (from regional effects to the micro scale optical properties of the sand) in order to provide an absolute radiometric calibration PICS. This paper presents the results of a dense temporal measurement sequence (several measurements per hour with high angular resolution), to yield detailed information on the nature of the surface reflectance properties. The BRDF data were collected covering typical view geometry of space borne sensors and will be used to close the loop on the calibration to create an absolute calibration target for optical satellite absolute radiometric calibration.

  16. Carbon sequestration capacity of shifting sand dune after establishing new vegetation in the Tengger Desert, northern China.

    PubMed

    Yang, Haotian; Li, Xinrong; Wang, Zengru; Jia, Rongliang; Liu, Lichao; Chen, Yongle; Wei, Yongping; Gao, Yanhong; Li, Gang

    2014-04-15

    Reconstructing vegetation in arid and semiarid areas has become an increasingly important management strategy to realize habitat recovery, mitigate desertification and global climate change. To assess the carbon sequestration potential in areas where sand-binding vegetation has been established on shifting sand dunes by planting xeric shrubs located near the southeastern edge of the Tengger Desert in northern China, we conducted a field investigation of restored dune regions that were established at different times (20, 30, 47, and 55 years ago) in the same area. We quantified the total organic carbon (TOC) in each ecosystem by summing the individual carbon contributions from the soil (soil organic carbon; SOC), shrubs, and grasses in each system. We found that the TOC, as well as the amount of organic carbon in the soil, shrubs, and grasses, significantly increased over time in the restored areas. The average annual rate of carbon sequestration was highest in the first 20 years after restoration (3.26 × 10(-2)kg·m(-2) ·year(-1)), and reached a stable rate (2.14 × 10(-2) kg·m(-2) ·year(-1)) after 47 years. Organic carbon storage in soil represented the largest carbon pool for both restored systems and a system containing native vegetation, accounting for 67.6%-85.0% of the TOC. Carbon in grass root biomass, aboveground grass biomass, litter, aboveground shrub biomass, and shrub root biomass account for 10.0%-21.0%, 0.2%-0.6%, 0.1%-0.2%, 1.7%-12.1% and 0.9%-6.2% of the TOC, respectively. Furthermore, we found that the 55-year-old restored system has the capacity to accumulate more TOC (1.02 kg·m(-2) more) to reach the TOC level found in the natural vegetation system. These results suggest that restoring desert ecosystems may be a cost-effective and environmentally friendly way to sequester CO2 from the atmosphere and mitigate the effects of global climate change.

  17. Sand dunes development of Vistula River mouth during May 2014 flood

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lisimenka, Aliaksandr; Rudowski, Stanisław; Kałas, Maciej; Szefler, Kazimierz

    2015-04-01

    The Vistula, Poland's primary river, is the largest river of the southern Baltic Sea and is one of the least regulated amongst large rivers in Europe. The Vistula has a vast delta with the main mouth in the form of an artificial cross-cut channel of about 3000 m length, 400 m width and up to 10 m depth. The comprehensive riverbed morphology in the area is characterized by the set of both 2D and 3D sandy bedforms of various orientations (Lisimenka et al., 2013). About 95% of total Vistula water, with the long-term average annual water discharge of 1081 m3/s, outflows into the Baltic Sea through this channel, which also plays a crucial role in sediment delivery processes into the Vistula External Delta, coast and neighbouring marine waters. Results of bathymetry measurements which were carried out in the main Vistula river mouth during the 23-26 May 2014 flood are presented. Echosounding records were made using boat mounted high-resolution Reson Seabat 7101 multibeam echosounder system (MBES) operating at 240 kHz. The measurements set includes data from: (1) the central part of the river channel with a wide band width for the first and last days of the experiment; (2) the riverbed elevation along axis longitudinal profile obtained on a daily basis with a twice per day registration at the final stage of the rising limb of a flood wave. During the considered period of time, extremely high magnitudes of water level and water discharge values changed from 2590 m3/s up to 4110 m3/s were observed. Estimated based on positioning system data, water flow velocity amounted to about 2 m/s and exceeded a long-term average conditions in more than two times. Based on bedform tracking tool proposed by Van der Mark and Blom (2007), the geometric variables of individual bedforms for each elevation profiles were extracted and histograms of the dune height and length were obtained. The results revealed significant changes in bedform geometry with a counterclockwise hysteresis effect as

  18. Submarine Sand Dunes on the Continental Slope in the South China Sea and Their Impact on Internal Wave Transformation and Acoustic Propagation

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2014-09-30

    South China Sea and Their Impact on Internal Wave Transformation and Acoustic Propagation Steven R. Ramp Soliton Ocean Services, Inc. 691 Country...sea floor to form and maintain the large (>16 m) sand dunes over the Chinese continental slope NE of Dongsha Island • Study how enhanced bottom...ES) Soliton Ocean Services, Inc,691 Country Club Drive,Monterey,CA,93924 8. PERFORMING ORGANIZATION REPORT NUMBER 9. SPONSORING/MONITORING AGENCY

  19. Mars global digital dune database: MC-30

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hayward, R.K.; Fenton, L.K.; Titus, T.N.; Colaprete, A.; Christensen, P.R.

    2012-01-01

    The Mars Global Digital Dune Database (MGD3) provides data and describes the methodology used in creating the global database of moderate- to large-size dune fields on Mars. The database is being released in a series of U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Reports. The first report (Hayward and others, 2007) included dune fields from lat 65° N. to 65° S. (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2007/1158/). The second report (Hayward and others, 2010) included dune fields from lat 60° N. to 90° N. (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2010/1170/). This report encompasses ~75,000 km2 of mapped dune fields from lat 60° to 90° S. The dune fields included in this global database were initially located using Mars Odyssey Thermal Emission Imaging System (THEMIS) Infrared (IR) images. In the previous two reports, some dune fields may have been unintentionally excluded for two reasons: (1) incomplete THEMIS IR (daytime) coverage may have caused us to exclude some moderate- to large-size dune fields or (2) resolution of THEMIS IR coverage (100 m/pixel) certainly caused us to exclude smaller dune fields. In this report, mapping is more complete. The Arizona State University THEMIS daytime IR mosaic provided complete IR coverage, and it is unlikely that we missed any large dune fields in the South Pole (SP) region. In addition, the increased availability of higher resolution images resulted in the inclusion of more small (~1 km2) sand dune fields and sand patches. To maintain consistency with the previous releases, we have identified the sand features that would not have been included in earlier releases. While the moderate to large dune fields in MGD3 are likely to constitute the largest compilation of sediment on the planet, we acknowledge that our database excludes numerous small dune fields and some moderate to large dune fields as well. Please note that the absence of mapped dune fields does not mean that dune fields do not exist and is not intended to imply a lack of saltating sand in other areas

  20. Late Holocene dune mobilizations in the northwestern Negev dunefield, Israel: A response to combined anthropogenic activity and short-term intensified windiness

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Roskin, Joel; Katra, Itzhak; Blumberg, Dan G.

    2013-04-01

    dune chronostratigraphy. Because they were short lived, the dune mobilization events, corresponding windiness, and probable dustiness which were examined affected the northern Negev landscape differentially. However, they cannot be proved to have affected the environment sufficiently to influence the decline of the late Byzantine and Early Islam agricultural establishment. This study demonstrates the sensitivity of dunes in arid and semi-arid regions to a combination of local and short-term fluctuations in windiness at times of widespread grazing (anthropogenic activity). The results remind us that in similar future scenarios, sand mobilization may be similarly retriggered to varying degrees.

  1. Examining the Relationship Between Suspended Sand Load and Bedload on the Colorado River Using Concurrent Measurements of Suspended Sand and Observations of Sand Dune Migration.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ashley, T.; McElroy, B. J.; Buscombe, D.; Grams, P. E.; Kaplinski, M. A.

    2015-12-01

    Spatial variability in sediment flux is directly related to geomorphic change. Along the Colorado River, measurements of sediment flux are used to track changes in sediment storage and time the release of controlled floods aimed at building eroded sandbars. The very high uncertainty typical of measurements of sediment flux has been reduced by a program of continuous measurement of suspended-sediment concentration by acoustic surrogates. However, there is still significant uncertainty in calculations of total flux. A large fraction of that uncertainty may be caused by overly simplified treatment of bedload flux, which is currently estimated as a constant 5% of the suspended sand flux. That constant is based on estimates of bedform migration rate made with side-scan sonar. Here, we apply theory which relates bedform migration and streamwise sediment flux, to bathymetric data collected at unprecedented temporal and spatial resolution adjacent to the USGS sediment monitoring station above Diamond Creek (362 km downstream from Lees Ferry, AZ). Quantitative time series measurements of reach averaged bedform transport are calculated and compared to fluxes estimated by expressing bedload as a constant fraction of suspended load. Over the range of discharges expected during normal dam operations, bedload transport estimated from the migration of bedforms in the study reach is at least 20% of instantaneous suspended sand load measured at the gage. While bedload appears to be controlled primarily by discharge (and therefore transport capacity of the flow), suspended sand load varies inversely with the grain size of suspended material, suggesting dependence on sediment supply. Sediment transport capacity can vary significantly at a given discharge depending on local hydraulic geometry, so it is likely that there is more spatial variability in bedload transport than suspended sand transport.

  2. Camera Monitoring of Coastal Dune Erosion in a Macrotidal Environment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kim, Taerim; Kim, Dongsoo

    2015-04-01

    The recent dune erosion in the west coast of Korea is serious in terms of its speed and harmful influence on the adjacent coastal waters as well as dune forest. The west coast of Korea is in the macro-intertidal environment and aeolian sediment transport on the intertidal flat is very active during an ebb tide, especially in winter. There is strong interaction between sand beach and dune by supplying or depositing sand. Coastal dune, as one part of beach system, contributes for beach recovery as well as preventing beach erosion by exchanging sands between beach and dune. Due to high tidal range, the boundary of sand dunes is outside the high water line during spring tide and it makes people think coastal dune is safe from wave forces causing beach erosion. However it seems that high waves during spring high tide cause serious erosion in a relatively short period. This paper investigates the erosion status of the dunes located in the JangHang beach in the southwest coast of Korean Peninsula, by analyzing images from camera monitoring system, and tide and wave data observed adjacent to the study site during the passage of 4 typhoons in 2012. It shows the importance of the timing of wave and tide condition in coastal dune erosion in macrotidal environment.

  3. Abrupt sand-dune accumulation at the northeastern margin of the Tibetan Plateau challenges the wet MIS3a inferred from numerous lake-highstands.

    PubMed

    Long, Hao; Fuchs, Markus; Yang, Linhai; Cheng, Hongyi

    2016-05-13

    Over the Tibetan Plateau and adjacent regions, numerous (14)C-based lake records revealed a ubiquitous wet climatic period during 40-25 ka (late MIS 3), which is in contradiction with the global pattern of generally cold and dry climates. This paper focuses on OSL dating results of a large set of sand dunes and alluvial sediments (50 OSL ages) from the Qinwangchuan (QWC) Basin at the northeast edge of the Tibetan Plateau, with the aim to test the validity of the anomalous wet condition for the late MIS 3 interval, evidenced by numerous lake highstands. The abrupt sand dune accumulation as indication of increased aridity in the study area was OSL dated to ~40-13 ka. This dry climatic inference of the sand dune system from QWC apparently shows no wet MIS 3a event. Thus, the anomalous wet conditions revealed by high lake levels for the late MIS 3 phase may not be a universal phenomena across entire western China.

  4. Abrupt sand-dune accumulation at the northeastern margin of the Tibetan Plateau challenges the wet MIS3a inferred from numerous lake-highstands

    PubMed Central

    Long, Hao; Fuchs, Markus; Yang, Linhai; Cheng, Hongyi

    2016-01-01

    Over the Tibetan Plateau and adjacent regions, numerous 14C-based lake records revealed a ubiquitous wet climatic period during 40–25 ka (late MIS 3), which is in contradiction with the global pattern of generally cold and dry climates. This paper focuses on OSL dating results of a large set of sand dunes and alluvial sediments (50 OSL ages) from the Qinwangchuan (QWC) Basin at the northeast edge of the Tibetan Plateau, with the aim to test the validity of the anomalous wet condition for the late MIS 3 interval, evidenced by numerous lake highstands. The abrupt sand dune accumulation as indication of increased aridity in the study area was OSL dated to ~40–13 ka. This dry climatic inference of the sand dune system from QWC apparently shows no wet MIS 3a event. Thus, the anomalous wet conditions revealed by high lake levels for the late MIS 3 phase may not be a universal phenomena across entire western China. PMID:27172907

  5. Bunge Dunes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2004-01-01

    21 August 2004 This Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC) image shows low albedo (dark), windblown sand dunes on the floor of Bunge Crater, located near 33.8oS, 48.9oW. The image covers an area about 3 km (1.9 mi) across. Sunlight illuminates the scene from the upper left.

  6. Spring Dunes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2006-01-01

    22 July 2006 This Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC) image shows dunes in the north polar region of Mars. In this scene, the dunes, and the plain on which the dunes reside, are at least in part covered by a bright carbon dioxide frost. Dark spots indicate areas where the frost has begun to change, either by subliming away to expose dark sand, changing to a coarser particle size, or both. The winds responsible for the formation of these dunes blew from the lower left (southwest) toward the upper right (northeast).

    Location near: 76.3oN, 261.2oW Image width: 3 km (1.9 mi) Illumination from: lower left Season: Northern Spring

  7. Arkhangelsky Dunes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2004-01-01

    29 April 2004 These dark-toned barchan sand dunes in Arkhangelsky Crater were viewed by the Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC) in late southern summer on 17 February 2004. Hundreds of narrow, dark streaks crisscross the dunes and the interdune terrain; these were most likely formed by the disruption of fine sediment by passing dust devils. The dune field is located near 41.2oS, 25.0oW, and is illuminated by sunlight from the upper left. Dune horns and slip faces indicate that the dominant winds blow from the southwest (lower left). The picture covers an area about 3 km (1.9 mi) across.

  8. Responses of dune activity and desertification in China to global warming in the twenty-first century

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Xunming; Yang, Yi; Dong, Zhibao; Zhang, Caixia

    2009-06-01

    Most areas of arid and semiarid China are covered by aeolian sand dunes, sand sheets, and desert steppes, and the existence of the nearly 80 million people who live in this region could be seriously jeopardized if climate change increases desertification. However, the expected trends in desertification during the 21st century are poorly understood. In the present study, we selected the ECHAM4 and HadCM3 global climate models (after comparing them with the results of the GFDL-R30, CGCM2, and CSIRO-Mk2b models) and used simulations of a dune mobility index under IPCC SRES climate scenarios A1FI, A2a, A2b, A2c, B1a, B2a, and B2b to estimate future trends in dune activity and desertification in China. Although uncertainties in climate predictions mean that there is still far to go before we can develop a comprehensive dune activity estimation system, HadCM3 simulations with most greenhouse forcing scenarios showed decreased desertification in most western region of arid and semiarid China by 2039, but increased desertification thereafter, whereas ECHAM4 simulation results showed that desertification will increase during this period. Inhabitants of thecentral region will benefit from reversed desertification from 2010 to 2099, whereas inhabitants of the eastern region will suffer from increased desertification from 2010 to 2099. From 2010 to 2039, most regions will not be significantly affected by desertification, but from 2040 to 2099, the environments of the western and eastern regions will deteriorate due to the significant effects of global warming (particularly the interaction between precipitation and potential evapotranspiration), leading to decreased livestock and grain yields and possibly threatening China's food security.

  9. Population dynamics of Agriophyllum squarrosum, a pioneer annual plant endemic to mobile sand dunes, in response to global climate change.

    PubMed

    Qian, Chaoju; Yin, Hengxia; Shi, Yong; Zhao, Jiecai; Yin, Chengliang; Luo, Wanyin; Dong, Zhibao; Chen, Guoxiong; Yan, Xia; Wang, Xiao-Ru; Ma, Xiao-Fei

    2016-05-23

    Climate change plays an important role in the transition of ecosystems. Stratigraphic investigations have suggested that the Asian interior experienced frequent transitions between grassland and desert ecosystems as a consequence of global climate change. Using maternally and bi-parentally inherited markers, we investigated the population dynamics of Agriophyllum squarrosum (Chenopodiaceae), an annual pioneer plant endemic to mobile sand dunes. Phylogeographic analysis revealed that A. squarrosum could originate from Gurbantunggut desert since ~1.6 Ma, and subsequently underwent three waves of colonisation into other deserts and sandy lands corresponding to several glaciations. The rapid population expansion and distribution range shifts of A. squarrosum from monsoonal climate zones suggested that the development of the monsoonal climate significantly enhanced the population growth and gene flow of A. squarrosum. These data also suggested that desertification of the fragile grassland ecosystems in the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau was more ancient than previously suggested and will be aggravated under global warming in the future. This study provides new molecular phylogeographic insights into how pioneer annual plant species in desert ecosystems respond to global climate change, and facilitates evaluation of the ecological potential and genetic resources of future crops for non-arable dry lands to mitigate climate change.

  10. Diet of the lizard Liolaemus occipitalis in the coastal sand dunes of southern Brazil (Squamata-Liolaemidae).

    PubMed

    Verrastro, L; Ely, I

    2015-05-01

    Knowledge of a species' diet provides important information on adaptation and the relationship between the organism and its environment. The genus Liolaemus occurs in the southern region of South America and is an excellent model to investigate the adaptive processes of vertebrate ecology in ecosystems of this region of the world. Liolaemus occipitalis is an endangered species that inhabits the coastal sand dunes of southern Brazil. This species is the most abundant vertebrate in this environment, and it presents unique adaptation characteristics to the restinga environment. The present study analyzed this lizard's diet to verify similarities or differences between this species and other species of the same genus. Specimens were collected monthly from January 1996 to December 1997. The number of items, frequency of occurrence and volume of each prey taxon were determined. Arthropods were identified to the order level, and plant material was identified as flower, fruit, seed and leaves. Variations in the diet of males and females, adults and juveniles and seasons were also analyzed. The data indicate that Liolaemus occipitalis is a generalist, "sit-and-wait" or ambush predator as well as omnivorous, feeding on both arthropods and plant material. Significant ontogenetic differences were verified. Juveniles are more carnivorous, and the intake of plant material increases with size and age. Seasonal differences in diet composition were also observed. In the spring, arthropod and plant materials were more diversified and, therefore, consumed more often.

  11. Temporal dynamics of sand dune bidirectional reflectance characteristics for absolute radiometric calibration of optical remote sensing data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Coburn, Craig A.; Logie, Gordon; Beaver, Jason

    2016-09-01

    The use of Pseudo Invariant Calibration Sites (PICS) for establishing the radiometric trending of optical remote sensing systems has a long history of successful implementation. Past studies have shown that the PICS method is useful for evaluating the trend of sensors over time or cross-calibration of sensors but was not considered until recently for deriving absolute calibration. Current interest in using this approach to establish absolute radiometric calibration stems from recent research that indicates that with empirically derived models of the surface properties and careful atmospheric characterisation Top of Atmosphere (TOA) reflectance values can be predicted and used for absolute sensor radiometric calibration. Critical to the continued development of this approach is the accurate characterization of the Bidirectional Reflectance Distribution Function (BRDF) of PICS sites. This paper presents BRDF data collected by a high-performance portable goniometer system in order to develop a temporal BRDF model for the Algodones Dunes in California. The results demonstrated that the BRDF of a reasonably simple sand surface was complex with changes in anisotropy taking place in response to changing solar zenith angles. The nature of these complex interactions would present challenges to future model development.

  12. Yeasts and coliform bacteria of water accumulated in bromeliads of mangrove and sand dune ecosystems of southeast Brazil.

    PubMed

    Hagler, A N; Rosa, C A; Morais, P B; Mendonça-Hagler, L C; Franco, G M; Araujo, F V; Soares, C A

    1993-10-01

    Yeasts and coliform bacteria were isolated from water that accumulated in the central cups and adjacent leaf axilae of two bromeliads, Neoregelia cruenta of a coastal sand dune and Quesnelia quesneliana of a mangrove ecosystem near the city of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The mean total coliform counts were above 10,000 per 100 mL for waters of both plants, but the mean fecal coliform counts were only 74 per 100 mL for Q. quesneliana and mostly undetected in water from N. cruenta. Of 90 fecal coliform isolates, 51 were typical of Escherichia coli in colony morphology and indol, methyl red, Volges-Proskauer, and citrate (IMViC) tests. Seven representatives of the typical E. coli cultures were identified as this species, but the identifications of nine other coliform bacteria were mostly dubious. The yeast community of N. cruenta was typical of plant surfaces with basidiomycetous yeasts anamorphs, and the black yeast Aureobasidium pullulans was prevalent. Quesnelia quesneliana had a substantial proportion of ascomycetous yeasts and their anamorphs, including a probable new biotype of Saccharomyces unisporus. Our results suggested that the microbial communities in bromeliad waters are typically autochtonous and not contaminants.

  13. Degradation of seed mucilage by soil microflora promotes early seedling growth of a desert sand dune plant.

    PubMed

    Yang, Xuejun; Baskin, Carol C; Baskin, Jerry M; Zhang, Wenhao; Huang, Zhenying

    2012-05-01

    In contrast to the extensive understanding of seed mucilage biosynthesis, much less is known about how mucilage is biodegraded and what role it plays in the soil where seeds germinate. We studied seed mucilage biodegradation by a natural microbial community. High-performance anion-exchange chromatography (HPAEC) was used to determine monosaccharide composition in achene mucilage of Artemisia sphaerocephala. Mucilage degradation by the soil microbial community from natural habitats was examined by monosaccharide utilization tests using Biolog plates, chemical assays and phospholipid fatty acid (PLFA) analysis. Glucose (29.4%), mannose (20.3%) and arabinose (19.5%) were found to be the main components of achene mucilage. The mucilage was biodegraded to CO(2) and soluble sugars, and an increase in soil microbial biomass was observed during biodegradation. Fluorescence microscopy showed the presence of mucilage (or its derivatives) in seedling tissues after growth with fluorescein isothiocyanate (FITC)-labelled mucilage. The biodegradation also promoted early seedling growth in barren sand dunes, which was associated with a large soil microbial community that supplies substances promoting seedling establishment. We conclude that biodegradation of seed mucilage can play an ecologically important role in the life cycles of plants especially in harsh desert environments to which A. sphaerocephala is well-adapted.

  14. Population dynamics of Agriophyllum squarrosum, a pioneer annual plant endemic to mobile sand dunes, in response to global climate change

    PubMed Central

    Qian, Chaoju; Yin, Hengxia; Shi, Yong; Zhao, Jiecai; Yin, Chengliang; Luo, Wanyin; Dong, Zhibao; Chen, Guoxiong; Yan, Xia; Wang, Xiao-Ru; Ma, Xiao-Fei

    2016-01-01

    Climate change plays an important role in the transition of ecosystems. Stratigraphic investigations have suggested that the Asian interior experienced frequent transitions between grassland and desert ecosystems as a consequence of global climate change. Using maternally and bi-parentally inherited markers, we investigated the population dynamics of Agriophyllum squarrosum (Chenopodiaceae), an annual pioneer plant endemic to mobile sand dunes. Phylogeographic analysis revealed that A. squarrosum could originate from Gurbantunggut desert since ~1.6 Ma, and subsequently underwent three waves of colonisation into other deserts and sandy lands corresponding to several glaciations. The rapid population expansion and distribution range shifts of A. squarrosum from monsoonal climate zones suggested that the development of the monsoonal climate significantly enhanced the population growth and gene flow of A. squarrosum. These data also suggested that desertification of the fragile grassland ecosystems in the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau was more ancient than previously suggested and will be aggravated under global warming in the future. This study provides new molecular phylogeographic insights into how pioneer annual plant species in desert ecosystems respond to global climate change, and facilitates evaluation of the ecological potential and genetic resources of future crops for non-arable dry lands to mitigate climate change. PMID:27210568

  15. The Signature of Life in Stabilized Dune Topography

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barchyn, T. E.; Hugenholtz, C.

    2012-12-01

    Life dramatically affects aeolian dunes on Earth by modifying dune morphology and immobilizing sediment. Complete immobilization (stabilization) occurs when vegetation growth shelters the surface and eliminates sediment transport (and the capacity of the dune to clear vegetation). In unidirectional dune forms stabilization is usually preceded by a period of transition dominated by pronounced morphological change (e.g., parabolic dunes). Here, we hypothesize that stabilized topography holds previously unidentified clues detailing the kinematics and behavior of vegetation during stabilization (a 'signature'). During stabilization dune ridges advance downwind and 'bulldoze' vegetation in their path. We split dune ridges into a series of wind-parallel 'dune slices' and outline how slipface vegetation could prove to be a 'tipping point' in stabilization for each dune slice. Slipface vegetation sets off a self-reinforcing stabilization feedback, simplifying our treatment and yielding two predictable behaviors: slipfaces either clear vegetation (deposition rate > vegetation deposition tolerance), or succumb to vegetation and become immobilized (deposition rate < vegetation deposition tolerance). We model slipface deposition rates through slipface geometry and show how predictable variations in classical dune forms (i) could be responsible for incipient transformation of barchan to parabolic dunes, (ii) result in a progressive stabilization feedback fundamentally inconsistent with widely used dune activity indices, and (iii) record a quantitative signature of the relative kinematics of sediment flux and vegetation growth in stabilized slipface geometries. To explore the idea in real dune fields, we extract slipface deposition rates through slipface geometry recorded in digital terrain data for three dune fields: (i) Bigstick Sand Hills, SK, Canada, (ii) White Sands, NM, USA, and (iii) Cape Cod, MA, USA. With independent estimates of sediment flux and vegetation deposition

  16. XRD and mineralogical analysis of gypsum dunes at White Sands National Monument, New Mexico and applications to gypsum detection on Mars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lafuente, B.; Bishop, J. L.; Fenton, L. K.; King, S. J.; Blake, D.; Sarrazin, P.; Downs, R.; Horgan, B. H.

    2013-12-01

    A field portable X-ray Diffraction (XRD) instrument was used at White Sands National Monument to perform in-situ measurements followed by laboratory analyses of the gypsum-rich dunes and to determine its modal mineralogy. The field instrument is a Terra XRD (Olympus NDT) based on the technology of the CheMin (Chemistry and Mineralogy) instrument onboard the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) rover Curiosity which is providing the mineralogical and chemical composition of scooped soil samples and drilled rock powders collected at Gale Crater [1]. Using Terra at White Sands will contribute to 'ground truth' for gypsum-bearing environments on Mars. Together with data provided by VNIR spectra [2], this study clarifies our understanding of the origin and history of gypsum-rich sand dunes discovered near the northern polar region of Mars [3]. The results obtained from the field analyses performed by XRD and VNIR spectroscopy in four dunes at White Sands revealed the presence of quartz and dolomite. Their relative abundance has been estimated using the Reference Intensity Ratio (RIR) method. For this study, particulate samples of pure natural gypsum, quartz and dolomite were used to prepare calibration mixtures of gypsum-quartz and gypsum-dolomite with the 90-150μm size fractions. All single phases and mixtures were analyzed by XRD and RIR factors were calculated. Using this method, the relative abundance of quartz and dolomite has been estimated from the data collected in the field. Quartz appears to be present in low amounts (2-5 wt.%) while dolomite is present at percentages up to 80 wt.%. Samples from four dunes were collected and prepared for subsequent XRD analysis in the lab to estimate their composition and illustrate the changes in mineralogy with respect to location and grain size. Gypsum-dolomite mixtures: The dolomite XRD pattern is dominated by an intense diffraction peak at 2θ≈36 deg. which overlaps a peak of gypsum, This makes low concentrations of dolomite

  17. Dune Avalanche Scars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2004-01-01

    05 August 2004 This Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC) image shows large, low albedo (dark) sand dunes in Kaiser Crater near 47.2oS, 340.4oW. The dunes are--ever so slowly--moving east to west (right to left) as sand avalanches down the steeper, slip face slopes of each. Avalanching sand in the Kaiser dune field has left deep scars on these slopes, suggesting that the sand is not loose but is instead weakly cemented. The image covers an area approximately 3 km (1.9 mi) wide and is illuminated by sunlight from the upper left.

  18. Dunes on Saturn’s moon Titan as revealed by the Cassini Mission

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Radebaugh, Jani

    2013-12-01

    Dunes on Titan, a dominant landform comprising at least 15% of the surface, represent the end product of many physical processes acting in alien conditions. Winds in a nitrogen-rich atmosphere with Earth-like pressure transport sand that is likely to have been derived from complex organics produced in the atmosphere. These sands then accumulate into large, planet-encircling sand seas concentrated near the equator. Dunes on Titan are predominantly linear and similar in size and form to the large linear dunes of the Namib, Arabian and Saharan sand seas. They likely formed from wide bimodal winds and appear to undergo average sand transport to the east. Their singular form across the satellite indicates Titan’s dunes may be highly mature, and may reside in a condition of stability that permitted their growth and evolution over long time scales. The dunes are among the youngest surface features, as even river channels do not cut through them. However, reorganization time scales of large linear dunes on Titan are likely tens of thousands of years. Thus, Titan’s dune forms may be long-lived and yet be actively undergoing sand transport. This work is a summary of research on dunes on Titan after the Cassini Prime and Equinox Missions (2004-2010) and now during the Solstice Mission (to end in 2017). It discusses results of Cassini data analysis and modeling of conditions on Titan and it draws comparisons with observations and models of linear dune formation and evolution on Earth.

  19. Temporal and spatial variation of groundwater in quantity and quality in sand dune at coastal region, Kamisu city, central Japan.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Umei, Yohei; Tsujimura, Maki; Sakakibara, Koichi; Watanabe, Yasuto; Minema, Motomitsu

    2016-04-01

    The role of groundwater in integrated water management has become important in recent 10 years, though the surface water is the major source of drinking water in Japan. Especially, it is remarked that groundwater recharge changed due to land cover change under the anthropogenic and climatic condition factors. Therefore, we need to investigate temporal and spatial variation of groundwater in quantity and quality focusing on the change during recent 10-20 years in specific region. We performed research on groundwater level and quality in sand dune at coastal region facing Pacific Ocean, Kamisu city, Ibaraki Prefecture, which have been facing environmental issues, such as land cover change due to soil mining for construction and urbanization. We compared the present situation of groundwater with that in 2000 using existed data to clarify the change of groundwater from 2000 to 2015. The quality of water is dominantly characterized by Ca2+-HCO3- in both 2000 and 2015, and nitrate was not observed in 2015, though it was detected in some locations in 2000. This may be caused by improvement of the domestic wastewater treatment. The topography of groundwater table was in parallel with that of ground surface in 2015, same as that in 2000. However, a depletion of groundwater table was observed in higher elevation area in 2015 as compared with that in 2000, and this area corresponds to the locations where the land cover has changed due to soil mining and urbanization between 2015 and 2000. In the region of soil mining, the original soil is generally replaced by impermeable soil after mining, and this may cause a decrease of percolation and net groundwater recharge, thus the depletion of groundwater table occurred after the soil mining.

  20. Morphodynamics of star dunes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, D.; Narteau, C.; Rozier, O.; Courrech du Pont, S.

    2012-04-01

    Star dunes are among the biggest and the most impressive dunes in Earth sand seas. Nonetheless, they remain poorly studied, probably because of their apparent complexity. They are massive pyramidal dunes with interlaced arms whose slip faces are oriented in various directions. Being large, they can integrate wind properties over a wide range of time scales. Thus, they are observed for wind regimes with multiple directions, and may result from the amalgamation of dunes or from the development of arms on a well-established dune pattern. In both cases, the roles of wind directional variability and secondary flow have been emphasized but not precisely quantified. Here, we report simulations where the star dune shape results from a a combination of longitudinal dunes, which form the star dune arms. These arms may radiate and so interact with the other dunes in the field. This mass exchange, controlled by the morphodynamics of star dunes arms, must play an important role in the large-scale arrangement of star dunes networks. We first demonstrate that star dune arms orientation maximizes the flux in the direction of crests. This is opposed to the usually admit dunes orientation, which maximizes the sediment transport perpendicular to the crest. Indeed, depending on sand availability, dunes development results from the growth of a wave on a sand bed or from a net transport of sediment, which grows and extends an isolated longitudinal dune over a non-erodible soil. These two different mechanisms lead to two different modes of crests orientation. Then, we show that the propagating arms reach a stationary state characterized by constant width, height and growth rate. These are controlled by the frequency at which the wind changes direction. Arm width and height increase, whereas the propagation speed decreases with a decreasing frequency. These morphodynamics properties are helpful to assess from pattern observation the variability of wind directionality over several time

  1. Expression of terrain and surface geology in high-resolution helicopter-borne gravity gradient (AGG) data: examples from Great Sand Dunes National Park, Rio Grande Rift, Colorado

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Drenth, Benjamin J.

    2013-01-01

    Airborne gravity gradient (AGG) data are rapidly becoming standard components of geophysical mapping programs, due to their advantages in cost, access, and resolution advantages over measurements of the gravity field on the ground. Unlike conventional techniques that measure the gravity field, AGG methods measure derivatives of the gravity field. This means that effects of terrain and near-surface geology are amplified in AGG data, and that proper terrain corrections are critically important for AGG data processing. However, terrain corrections require reasonable estimates of density for the rocks and sediments that make up the terrain. A recommended philosophical approach is to use the terrain and surface geology, with their strong expression in AGG data, to the interpreter’s advantage. An example of such an approach is presented here for an area with very difficult ground access and little ground gravity data. Nettleton-style profiling is used with AGG data to estimate the densities of the sand dunefield and adjacent Precambrian rocks from the area of Great Sand Dunes National Park in southern Colorado. Processing of the AGG data using the density estimate for the dunefield allows buried structures, including a hypothesized buried basement bench, to be mapped beneath the sand dunes.

  2. Arabian Dunes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2005-01-01

    11 June 2005 This Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC) image shows a field of low-albedo (dark) barchan sand dunes in a crater located in western Arabia Terra. Small dunes like these are common in the craters of western Arabia Terra and they are often the source of finer, dark sediment that forms windstreaks further downwind. The steepest slopes on the dunes, their slipfaces, are pointed toward the southeast (lower right), indicating that the dominant winds in this location come from the opposite direction.

    Location near: 6.4oN, 346.2oW Image width: 3 km (1.9 mi Illumination from: lower left Season: Northern Autumn

  3. Mid-latitude Dunes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2005-01-01

    7 August 2005 This Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC) image shows dark sand dunes on the floor of a southern mid-latitude impact crater. Craters are commonly the site of sand dunes, as sand may become trapped in these topographic depressions. In this case, the winds responsible for the dunes generally blew from the south/southeast (bottom/lower right),

    Location near: 51.8oS, 105.5oW Image width: width: 3 km (1.9 mi) Illumination from: upper left Season: Southern Spring

  4. Quantifying spatiotemporal dynamics of root-zone soil water in a mixed forest on subtropical coastal sand dune using surface ERT and spatial TDR

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fan, Junliang; Scheuermann, Alexander; Guyot, Adrien; Baumgartl, Thomas; Lockington, David A.

    2015-04-01

    We jointly used surface electrical resistivity tomography (surface ERT) and spatial time domain reflectometry (spatial TDR) to quantify spatial patterns and seasonal dynamics of root-zone soil water under three contrasting vegetation covers in a sand dune forest of subtropical coastal Australia. We wanted to obtain a better understanding of the applicability of both techniques in these environments as well as investigate vegetation-soil water interactions. Soil temperature and topographic changes were taken into account in soil resistivity interpretation. The results demonstrated the capability of both surface ERT and spatial TDR to spatially monitor root-zone soil water dynamics, with root mean square error (RMSE) <0.018 cm3 cm-3 and absolute deviation <0.034 cm3 cm-3 between gravimetrically derived water content and those derived by the two geophysical techniques. Soil water was depleted to low levels during the dry season but quickly replenished with onset of the wet season. Soil water content profiles revealed obvious differences in water dynamics of the dune sands under different vegetation covers, with highest infiltration and deep drainage under the grassland compared with tree cover. The spatial variation in soil water content due to rainfall interception by trees, root water uptake and preferential infiltration associated with stemflow could be detected by the joint use of surface ERT and spatial TDR. We conclude that surface ERT can be an effective method for quantifying two-dimensional root-zone soil water dynamics and understanding the hydrological processes in these sand dune environments, if complemented by the one-dimensional high-resolution soil water measurements from spatial TDR.

  5. Early Holocene dune activity linked with final destruction of Glacial Lake Minong, eastern Upper Michigan, USA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Loope, Henry M.; Loope, Walter L.; Goble, Ronald J.; Fisher, Timothy G.; Jol, Harry M.; Seong, J. C.

    2010-07-01

    The early Holocene final drainage of glacial Lake Minong is documented by 21 OSL ages on quartz sand from parabolic dunes and littoral terraces and one radiocarbon age from a lake sediment core adjacent to mapped paleoshorelines in interior eastern Upper Michigan. We employ a simple model wherein lake-level decline exposes unvegetated littoral sediment to deflation, resulting in dune building. Dunes formed subsequent to lake-level decline prior to stabilization by vegetation and provide minimum ages for lake-level decline. Optical ages range from 10.3 to 7.7 ka; 15 ages on dunes adjacent to the lowest Lake Minong shoreline suggest final water-level decline ˜ 9.1 ka. The clustering of optical ages from vertically separated dunes on both sides of the Nadoway-Gros Cap Barrier around 8.8 ka and a basal radiocarbon date behind the barrier (8120 ± 40 14C yr BP [9.1 cal ka BP]) support the hypothesis that the barrier was breached and the final lake-level drop to the Houghton Low occurred coincident with (1) high meltwater flux into the Superior basin and (2) an abrupt, negative shift in oxygen isotope values in Lake Huron.

  6. The timing of linear dune activity in the Strzelecki and Tirari Deserts, Australia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fitzsimmons, Kathryn E.; Rhodes, Edward J.; Magee, John W.; Barrows, Timothy T.

    2007-10-01

    Linear dunes occupy more than one-third of the Australian continent, but the timing of their formation is poorly understood. In this study, we collected 82 samples from 26 sites across the Strzelecki and Tirari Deserts in the driest part of central Australia to provide an optically stimulated luminescence chronology for these dunefields. The dunes preserve up to four stratigraphic horizons, bounded by palaeosols, which represent evidence for multiple periods of reactivation punctuated by episodes of increased environmental stability. Dune activity took place in episodes around 73-66, 35-32, 22-18 and 14-10 ka. Intermittent partial mobilisation persisted at other times throughout the last 75 ka and dune activity appears to have intensified during the late Holocene. Dune construction occurred when sediment was available for aeolian transport; in the Strzelecki and Tirari Deserts, this coincided with cold, arid conditions during Marine Isotope Stage (MIS) 4, late MIS 3 and MIS 2, and the warm, dry climates of the late Pleistocene-Holocene transition period and late Holocene. Localised influxes of sediment on active floodplains and lake floors during the relatively more humid periods of MIS 5 also resulted in dune formation. The timing of widespread dune reactivation coincided with glaciation in southeastern Australia, along with cooler temperatures in the adjacent oceans and Antarctica.

  7. Effect of vegetation on the temporal stability of soil moisture in grass-stabilized semi-arid sand dunes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Tiejun; Wedin, David A.; Franz, Trenton E.; Hiller, Jeremy

    2015-02-01

    Soil moisture is a critical state variable affecting a variety of land surface and subsurface processes. Despite the complex interactions between soil moisture and its controlling factors, the phenomenon of temporal stability of soil moisture (TS SM) has been widely observed under natural conditions. In this study, the control of vegetation on TS SM is investigated by artificially manipulating surface vegetation (e.g., vegetated and de-vegetated plots) in a native grassland-stabilized sand dune area with similar soil texture and topography. Soil moisture data were collected at the depths of 30 cm (within the root zone) and 110 cm (below the root zone) over a period of four years. Using soil moisture data from the de-vegetated plots as a baseline, TS SM within the root zone is shown to be mainly affected by vegetation phenology at the study site. Therefore, the control of vegetation on TS SM varies on both seasonal and annual time scales. The change in the interseasonal patterns of TS SM is tightly related to plant phenology and the control of vegetation on the ranking of mean relative difference (MRD) of soil moisture significantly weakens during non-growing seasons due to diminished root water uptake. It suggests that the timing of sampling schemes (e.g., growing season vs. non-growing season) may alter TS SM patterns. On annual time scales, TS SM is affected by climatic conditions, as the control of vegetation on TS SM becomes stronger under drier conditions. In particular, vegetation tends to create larger contrasts in soil moisture levels between vegetated and de-vegetated plots in drier years. The soil moisture data also provide evidence that vegetation tends to reduce TS SM and increase spatial variability in soil moisture at the study site. The standard deviation of relative difference (SDRD) of soil moisture at the 30 cm depth (within the root zone) is considerably larger in the vegetated plots than those in the de-vegetated plots. As such, the

  8. Data Analysis and Synthesis for the ONR Undersea Sand Dunes in the South China Sea Field Experiments

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2015-09-30

    in the nonlinear internal waves and tides as they shoal • Work with the acoustics team to determine how the large bedforms and wave-induced sound ...speed fluctuations impact sound propagation and loss in the vicinity of the dune field • Attempt to ascertain the mechanism of dune formation and...internal wave experiments. More specifically: • A ten-element moored array was deployed supporting both acoustic ( sound sources and hydrophones) and

  9. Windblown Dunes and Ripples

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2003-01-01

    MGS MOC Release No. MOC2-411, 4 July 2003

    July 4, 2003, is the 6th anniversary of the Mars Pathfinder landing. One of the elements carried to the red planet by Pathfinder was the Wind Sock Experiment. This project was designed to measure wind activity by taking pictures of three aluminum 'wind socks.' While the winds at the Mars Pathfinder site did not blow particularly strong during the course of that mission, dust storms seen from orbit and Earth-based telescopes attest to the fact that wind is a major force of change on the dry, desert surface of Mars today. This Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC) narrow angle image shows dark sand dunes and lighter-toned ripples trapped among the mountainous central peak of an old impact crater in Terra Tyrrhena near 13.9oS, 246.7oW. The dune slip faces--the steepest slope on the larger dunes--indicate sand transport is from the top/upper left toward the bottom/lower right. North is toward the top/upper right; the picture is 3 km (1.9 mi) across. Sunlight illuminates the scene from the upper left. This picture was obtained in April 2003.

  10. Population dynamics of Empetrum hermaphroditum (Ericaceae) on a subarctic sand dune: Evidence of rapid colonization through efficient sexual reproduction.

    PubMed

    Boudreau, Stéphane; Ropars, Pascale; Harper, Karen Amanda

    2010-05-01

    The importance of sexual reproduction for clonal plant species has long been underestimated, perhaps as a consequence of the difficulty in identifying individuals, preventing the study of their population dynamics. Such is the case for Empetrum hermaphroditum, an ericaceous species, which dominates the ground vegetation of subarctic ecosystems. Despite abundant seed production, seedlings are rarely observed. Therefore, prevalent seedling recruitment on a subarctic dune system provided an opportunity to study the population dynamics and spatial pattern of the colonization phase of this species. We established a 6-ha grid on the dune systems that extended from the shoreline to the fixed dunes and mapped and measured all E. hermaphroditum individuals in the grid. Moreover, we sampled 112 individuals just outside the grid to identify any allometric relationship between the size and age of the individuals, which allowed us to reconstruct population expansion. The overall size structure suggests that the population is still expanding. In the last 50 yr, E. hermaphroditum advanced more than 200 m in the dune system. Expansion started in the 1960s simultaneously at different distances from the shoreline. Colonization did not proceed gradually from the fixed dune toward the shoreline but instead individuals established earlier in the troughs between the dunes, with an increasingly clumped spatial pattern as the population filled in with time.

  11. Changes in soil properties after establishment of Artemisia halodendron and Caragana microphylla on shifting sand dunes in semiarid Horqin Sandy Land, northern China.

    PubMed

    Su, Yong Zhong; Zhang, Tong Hui; Li, Yu Lin; Wang, Fang

    2005-08-01

    In the semiarid Horqin sandy land of northern China, establishment of artificial sand-fixing shrubs on desertified sandy lands is an effective measure to control desertification and improve the regional environment. Caragana microphylla Lam. and Artemisia halodendron Turcz. ex Bess. are two of the dominant native shrub species, which are adapted well to windy and sandy environments, and thus, are widely used in revegetation programs to control desertification in Horqin region. To assess the effects of artificially planting these two shrub species on restoration of desertified sandy land, soil properties and plant colonization were measured 6 years after planting shrubs on shifting sand dunes. Soil samples were taken from two depths (0-5 cm and 5-20 cm) under the shrub canopy, in the mid-row location (alley) between shrub belts, and from nonvegetated shifting sand dune (as a control). Soil fine fractions, soil water holding capacity, soil organic C and total N have significantly increased, and pH and bulk density have declined at the 0-5-cm topsoil in both C. microphylla and A. halodendron. At the 5-20 cm subsurface soil, changes in soil properties are not significant, with exception of bulk density and organic C concentration under the canopy of A. halodendron and total N concentration under the canopy of C. microphylla. Soil amelioration processes are initiated under the shrub canopies, as higher C and N concentrations were found under the canopies compared with alleys. At the same time, the establishment of shrubs facilitates the colonization and development of herbaceous species. A. halodendron proved to have better effects in fixing the sand surface, improving soil properties, and restoring plant species in comparison to C. microphylla.

  12. ASTER Dunes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2000-01-01

    This image of Saudi Arabia shows a great sea of linear dunes in part of the Rub' al Khali, or the Empty Quarter. Acquired on June 25, 2000, the image covers an area 37 kilometers (23 miles) wide and 28 kilometers (17 miles) long in three bands of the reflected visible and infrared wavelength region. The dunes are yellow due to the presence of iron oxide minerals. The inter-dune area is made up of clays and silt and appears blue due to its high reflectance in band 1. The Rub' al Khali is the world's largest continuous sand desert. It covers about 650,000 square kilometers (250,966 square miles) and lies mainly in southern Saudi Arabia, though it does extend into the United Arab Emirates, Oman, and Yemen. One of the world's driest areas, it is uninhabited except for the Bedouin nomads who cross it. The first European to travel through the desert was Bertram Thomas in 1930.

    Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer (ASTER) is one of five Earth-observing instruments launched December 18, 1999, on NASA's Terra satellite. The instrument was built by Japan's Ministry of International Trade and Industry. A joint U.S./Japan science team is responsible for validation and calibration of the instrument and the data products. Dr. Anne Kahle at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, California, is the U.S. science team leader; Moshe Pniel of JPL is the project manager. ASTER is the only high-resolution imaging sensor on Terra. The primary goal of the ASTER mission is to obtain high-resolution image data in 14 channels over the entire land surface, as well as black and white stereo images. With revisit time of between 4 and 16 days, ASTER will provide the capability for repeat coverage of changing areas on Earth's surface.

    The broad spectral coverage and high spectral resolution of ASTER will provide scientists in numerous disciplines with critical information for surface mapping and monitoring dynamic conditions and temporal change. Examples

  13. Mapping of Sand Types and Dune Morphologies in the Aeolis Dorsa Region, Western Medusae Fossae Formation, Mars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Boyd, A. S.; Burr, D. M.

    2016-06-01

    Preliminary mapping of low- and high-albedo sand deposits in the Aeolis Dorsa region, Medusae Fossae Formation (MFF), suggests sand transport from the north, consistent with sand source(s) in Elysium Mons, the Cerberus plains, or the MFF itself.

  14. Bright sand/dark dust: The identification of active sand surfaces on the Earth and Mars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Blount, H. G., II; Greeley, R.; Christensen, P. R.; Arvidson, R.

    1987-01-01

    Field studies and analysis of LANDSAT Thematic Mapper data in the Gran Desierto, Mexico may shed light on a technique to distinguish active from inactive (relict) sand surfaces. Active sand bodies in the study area are consistently brighter (by an average of 20%) at visual and near infrared wavelengths and darker at thermal infrared wavelengths than compositionally similar inactive sands. The reasons for the albedo difference between active and inactive sands are reviewed and the mixing model of Johnson et al. is examined for tracing the provenance of sands based on albedo and spectral variations. Portions of the wavelengths covered by the Mars Orbiter correspond to the Thematic Mapper data. The identification of active sands on Earth, with a priori knowledge of bulk composition and grain size distribution, may allow the remote mapping of active sand surfaces on Mars. In conjuction with thermal infrared remote sensing for composition, it may also provide a method for the remote determination of grain size distributions within sand/silt mixtures.

  15. Bright sand/dark dust: The identification of active sand surfaces on the Earth and Mars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Blount, H. G., II; Greeley, R.; Christensen, P. R.; Arvidson, R.

    1987-05-01

    Field studies and analysis of LANDSAT Thematic Mapper data in the Gran Desierto, Mexico may shed light on a technique to distinguish active from inactive (relict) sand surfaces. Active sand bodies in the study area are consistently brighter (by an average of 20%) at visual and near infrared wavelengths and darker at thermal infrared wavelengths than compositionally similar inactive sands. The reasons for the albedo difference between active and inactive sands are reviewed and the mixing model of Johnson et al. is examined for tracing the provenance of sands based on albedo and spectral variations. Portions of the wavelengths covered by the Mars Orbiter correspond to the Thematic Mapper data. The identification of active sands on Earth, with a priori knowledge of bulk composition and grain size distribution, may allow the remote mapping of active sand surfaces on Mars. In conjuction with thermal infrared remote sensing for composition, it may also provide a method for the remote determination of grain size distributions within sand/silt mixtures.

  16. Spatial Heterogeneity of Soil Nutrients after the Establishment of Caragana intermedia Plantation on Sand Dunes in Alpine Sandy Land of the Tibet Plateau

    PubMed Central

    Li, Qingxue; Jia, Zhiqing; Zhu, Yajuan; Wang, Yongsheng; Li, Hong; Yang, Defu; Zhao, Xuebin

    2015-01-01

    The Gonghe Basin region of the Tibet Plateau is severely affected by desertification. Compared with other desertified land, the main features of this region is windy, cold and short growing season, resulting in relatively difficult for vegetation restoration. In this harsh environment, identification the spatial distribution of soil nutrients and analysis its impact factors after vegetation establishment will be helpful for understanding the ecological relationship between soil and environment. Therefore, in this study, the 12-year-old C. intermedia plantation on sand dunes was selected as the experimental site. Soil samples were collected under and between shrubs on the windward slopes, dune tops and leeward slopes with different soil depth. Then analyzed soil organic matter (SOM), total nitrogen (TN), total phosphorus (TP), total potassium (TK), available nitrogen (AN), available phosphorus (AP) and available potassium (AK). The results showed that the spatial heterogeneity of soil nutrients was existed in C. intermedia plantation on sand dunes. (1) Depth was the most important impact factor, soil nutrients were decreased with greater soil depth. One of the possible reasons is that windblown fine materials and litters were accumulated on surface soil, when they were decomposed, more nutrients were aggregated on surface soil. (2) Topography also affected the distribution of soil nutrients, more soil nutrients distributed on windward slopes. The herbaceous coverage were higher and C. intermedia ground diameter were larger on windward slopes, both of them probably related to the high soil nutrients level for windward slopes. (3) Soil “fertile islands” were formed, and the “fertile islands” were more marked on lower soil nutrients level topography positions, while it decreased towards higher soil nutrients level topography positions. The enrichment ratio (E) for TN and AN were higher than other nutrients, most likely because C. intermedia is a leguminous

  17. Spatial Heterogeneity of Soil Nutrients after the Establishment of Caragana intermedia Plantation on Sand Dunes in Alpine Sandy Land of the Tibet Plateau.

    PubMed

    Li, Qingxue; Jia, Zhiqing; Zhu, Yajuan; Wang, Yongsheng; Li, Hong; Yang, Defu; Zhao, Xuebin

    2015-01-01

    The Gonghe Basin region of the Tibet Plateau is severely affected by desertification. Compared with other desertified land, the main features of this region is windy, cold and short growing season, resulting in relatively difficult for vegetation restoration. In this harsh environment, identification the spatial distribution of soil nutrients and analysis its impact factors after vegetation establishment will be helpful for understanding the ecological relationship between soil and environment. Therefore, in this study, the 12-year-old C. intermedia plantation on sand dunes was selected as the experimental site. Soil samples were collected under and between shrubs on the windward slopes, dune tops and leeward slopes with different soil depth. Then analyzed soil organic matter (SOM), total nitrogen (TN), total phosphorus (TP), total potassium (TK), available nitrogen (AN), available phosphorus (AP) and available potassium (AK). The results showed that the spatial heterogeneity of soil nutrients was existed in C. intermedia plantation on sand dunes. (1) Depth was the most important impact factor, soil nutrients were decreased with greater soil depth. One of the possible reasons is that windblown fine materials and litters were accumulated on surface soil, when they were decomposed, more nutrients were aggregated on surface soil. (2) Topography also affected the distribution of soil nutrients, more soil nutrients distributed on windward slopes. The herbaceous coverage were higher and C. intermedia ground diameter were larger on windward slopes, both of them probably related to the high soil nutrients level for windward slopes. (3) Soil "fertile islands" were formed, and the "fertile islands" were more marked on lower soil nutrients level topography positions, while it decreased towards higher soil nutrients level topography positions. The enrichment ratio (E) for TN and AN were higher than other nutrients, most likely because C. intermedia is a leguminous shrub.

  18. Two modes for dune orientation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Courrech Du Pont, Sylvain; Narteau, Clément; Gao, Xin

    2015-11-01

    Earth sand seas experience winds that blow with different strengths and from different directions in line with the seasons. In response, dune fields show a rich variety of shapes from small crescentic barchans to big star and linear dunes. Linear dunes often exhibit complex and compound patterns with different length scales and orientations, which seem difficult to relate to a single wind cycle. We present results of underwater experiments and numerical simulations where a single wind regime can lead to two different dunes orientation depending on sediment availability. Sediment availability selects the overriding mechanism for the formation of dunes: increasing in height from the destabilization of a sand bed or elongating in a finger on a non-erodible ground from a localized sand source. These mechanisms drive the dunes orientation. Therefore, dunes alignment maximizes dunes orthogonality to sand fluxes in the bed instability mode, while dunes are aligned with the sand transport direction in the fingering mode. Then, we derive a model for dunes orientation, which explains the coexistence of bedforms with different alignments and quantitatively predicts the orientation of dunes in Earth deserts. Finally, we explore the phase diagram and the stability of the fingering mode.

  19. A 10,000 year record of dune activity, dust storms, and severe drought in the central Great Plains

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Miao, Xiaodong; Mason, Joseph A.; Swinehart, James B.; Loope, David B.; Hanson, Paul R.; Goble, Ronald J.; Liu, Xiaodong

    2007-02-01

    Dune fields and loess deposits of the Great Plains of North America contain stratigraphic records of eolian activity that can be used to extend the short observational record of drought. We present a 10,000 yr reconstruction of dune activity and dust production in the central Great Plains region, based on 95 optically stimulated luminescence ages. The integration of data from both eolian sand and loess is an important new aspect of this record. Clusters of ages define episodes of extensive eolian activity, which we interpret as a response to frequent severe drought, at 1.0 0.7 ka and 2.3 4.5 ka (with peaks centered on 2.5 and 3.8 ka); sustained eolian activity occurred from 9.6 to 6.5 ka. Parts of this record may be consistent with hypotheses linking Holocene drought to sea surface temperature anomalies in the Pacific or Atlantic oceans, or to the El Niño-Southern Oscillation phenomenon, but the record as a whole is difficult to reconcile with any of these hypotheses.

  20. Dark Polar Dunes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2005-01-01

    20 January 2004 This Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC) image, acquired during northern summer in December 2004, shows dark, windblown sand dunes in the north polar region of Mars. A vast sea of sand dunes nearly surrounds the north polar cap. These landforms are located near 80.3oN, 144.1oW. Light-toned features in the image are exposures of the substrate that underlies the dune field. The image covers an area about 3 km (1.9 mi) wide and is illuminated by sunlight from the lower left.

  1. Vegetation against dune mobility.

    PubMed

    Durán, Orencio; Herrmann, Hans J

    2006-11-03

    Vegetation is the most common and most reliable stabilizer of loose soil or sand. This ancient technique is for the first time cast into a set of equations of motion describing the competition between aeolian sand transport and vegetation growth. Our set of equations is then applied to study quantitatively the transition between barchans and parabolic dunes driven by the dimensionless fixation index theta which is the ratio between the dune characteristic erosion rate and vegetation growth velocity. We find a fixation index theta(c) below which the dunes are stabilized, characterized by scaling laws.

  2. Morphodynamics of star dunes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Courrech du Pont, S.; Zhang, D.; Narteau, C.; Rozier, O.

    2011-12-01

    Star dunes are the bigger and most impressive dunes in Earth sand seas. Nonetheless, they remain poorly studied, probably because of their apparent complexity. They are massive pyramidal dunes with interlaced arms whose slip faces are oriented in various directions. Being large, they can integrate wind properties over a wide range of time scales. Thus, they are observed for wind regimes with multiple directions, and may result from the amalgamation of dunes or from the development of arms on a well-established dune pattern. In both cases, the roles of wind directional variability and secondary flow have been emphasized but not precisely quantified. As a matter of fact, although star dunes are ubiquitous in major sand seas, little is known about their formation and their evolution, essentially because of their size. We report simulations where the star dune shape results from a combination of longitudinal dunes, which form the star dune arms. These arms may radiate and so interact with the other dunes in the field. This mass exchange, controlled by the morphodynamics of star dunes arms, must play an important role in the large-scale arrangement of star dunes networks. We first demonstrate that star dune arms orientation maximizes the flux in the direction of crests. This is opposed to the usually admit dunes orientation, which maximizes the sediment transport perpendicular to the crest. Indeed, depending on sand availability, dunes development results from the growth of a wave on a sand bed or from a net transport of sediment, which grows and extends an isolated longitudinal dune over a non-erodible soil. These two different mechanisms lead to two different modes of crests orientation. Then, we show that the propagating arms reach a stationary state characterized by constant width, height and growth rate. These are controlled by the frequency at which the wind changes direction. Arm width and height increase, whereas the propagation speed decreases with a decreasing

  3. Southern high latitude dune fields on Mars: Morphology, aeolian inactivity, and climate change

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Fenton, L.K.; Hayward, R.K.

    2010-01-01

    In a study area spanning the martian surface poleward of 50?? S., 1190 dune fields have been identified, mapped, and categorized based on dune field morphology. Dune fields in the study area span ??? 116400km2, leading to a global dune field coverage estimate of ???904000km2, far less than that found on Earth. Based on distinct morphological features, the dune fields were grouped into six different classes that vary in interpreted aeolian activity level from potentially active to relatively inactive and eroding. The six dune field classes occur in specific latitude zones, with a sequence of reduced activity and degradation progressing poleward. In particular, the first signs of stabilization appear at ???60?? S., which broadly corresponds to the edge of high concentrations of water-equivalent hydrogen content (observed by the Neutron Spectrometer) that have been interpreted as ground ice. This near-surface ground ice likely acts to reduce sand availability in the present climate state on Mars, stabilizing high latitude dunes and allowing erosional processes to change their morphology. As a result, climatic changes in the content of near-surface ground ice are likely to influence the level of dune activity. Spatial variation of dune field classes with longitude is significant, suggesting that local conditions play a major role in determining dune field activity level. Dune fields on the south polar layered terrain, for example, appear either potentially active or inactive, indicating that at least two generations of dune building have occurred on this surface. Many dune fields show signs of degradation mixed with crisp-brinked dunes, also suggesting that more than one generation of dune building has occurred since they originally formed. Dune fields superposed on early and late Amazonian surfaces provide potential upper age limits of ???100My on the south polar layered deposits and ???3Ga elsewhere at high latitudes. No craters are present on any identifiable dune

  4. The environmental history and present condition of Saudi Arabia's northern sand seas

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Whitney, John W.; Faulkender, D.J.; Rubin, Meyer

    1983-01-01

    Saudi Arabia's northern sand seas are composed dominantly of stable dune systems, even though the modern climate is arid. The stable dunes are large and support a sparse semidesert vegetation. Active dunes are small and commonly confined to the crests of stable dunes; they comprise less than 5 percent of the dunes in the sand seas. Both the stability of the major dune systems and the small percentage of active dunes in the modern environment indicate a significant decrease in the average velocity and frequency of sand-moving winds since the time of stable-dune deposition. Comparison of modern wind directions with dune trends indicates that southwesterly winds responsible for dune formation in the southern and western An Nafud sand sea and in Nafud Urayq are no longer prevailing winds. Lake deposits are locally interbedded with deposits of eolian sand and in the lee of stable dunes. Radiocarbon dating of calcareous lake deposits defines at least two episodes of moisture-effective climate and minimal eolianactivity: between about 32,000 and 24,000 B.P., just before the onset of the last worldwide glacial stade of the Pleistocene, and during the Holocene between about 8,500 and 5,000 B.P. One lake deposit is more than 38,000 years old and may have been deposited during an earlier pluvial episode about 85,000 to 70,000 B.P. Pollen extracted from these lake deposits indicates that vegetation during late Pleistocene and Holocene pluvial episodes was similar to the present semidesert vegetation; however, the density of shrubs and grasses on the dunes was greater. The main dune systems overlie the 32,000 to 24,000-yearold lake deposits, whereas the Holocene lakebeds are found in modern interdunal environments, usually at the base of stable dunes. The main dune systems probably formed between 24,000 and 8,500 B.P., during the last episode of worldwide cold temperatures. Increased windiness at this time is also recorded in the world's oceans and in both polar ice caps

  5. Modelling vegetated dune landscapes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baas, A. C. W.; Nield, J. M.

    2007-03-01

    This letter presents a self-organising cellular automaton model capable of simulating the evolution of vegetated dunes with multiple types of plant response in the environment. It can successfully replicate hairpin, or long-walled, parabolic dunes with trailing ridges as well as nebkha dunes with distinctive deposition tails. Quantification of simulated landscapes with eco-geomorphic state variables and subsequent cluster analysis and PCA yields a phase diagram of different types of coastal dunes developing from blow-outs as a function of vegetation vitality. This diagram indicates the potential sensitivity of dormant dune fields to reactivation under declining vegetation vitality, e.g. due to climatic changes. Nebkha simulations with different grid resolutions demonstrate that the interaction between the (abiotic) geomorphic processes and the biological vegetation component (life) introduces a characteristic length scale on the resultant landforms that breaks the typical self-similar scaling of (un-vegetated) bare-sand dunes.

  6. Consequences of flight height and line spacing on airborne (helicopter) gravity gradient resolution in the Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve, Colorado

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Kass, M. Andy

    2013-01-01

    Line spacing and flight height are critical parameters in airborne gravity gradient surveys; the optimal trade-off between survey costs and desired resolution, however, is different for every situation. This article investigates the additional benefit of reducing the flight height and line spacing though a study of a survey conducted over the Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve, which is the highest-resolution public-domain airborne gravity gradient data set available, with overlapping high- and lower-resolution surveys. By using Fourier analysis and matched filtering, it is shown that while the lower-resolution survey delineates the target body, reducing the flight height from 80 m to 40 m and the line spacing from 100 m to 50 m improves the recoverable resolution even at basement depths.

  7. Hydrogeochemical and isotopic characterisation of groundwater in a sand-dune phreatic aquifer on the northeastern coast of the province of Buenos Aires, Argentina.

    PubMed

    Carretero, Silvina C; Dapeña, Cristina; Kruse, Eduardo E

    2013-01-01

    This contribution presents the hydrochemical and isotopic characterisation of the phreatic aquifer located in the Partido de la Costa, province of Buenos Aires, Argentina. In the sand-dune barrier geomorphological environment, groundwater is mainly a low-salinity Ca-HCO3 and Na-HCO3-type, being in general suitable for drinking, whereas in the continental plain (silty clay sediments), groundwater is a Na-Cl type with high salinity and unsuitable for human consumption. The general isotopic composition of the area ranges from-6.8 to-4.3 ‰ for δ(18)O and from-39 to-21 ‰ for δ(2)H, showing that rainwater rapidly infiltrates into the sandy substrate and reaches the water table almost without significant modification in its isotopic composition. These analyses, combined with other chemical parameters, made it possible to corroborate that in the eastern area of the phreatic aquifer, there is no contamination from marine salt water.

  8. A nuclear DNA based phylogeny of endemic sand dune ants of the genus Mycetophylax (Emery, 1913): how morphology is reflected in molecular data.

    PubMed

    Cardoso, Danon Clemes; Cristiano, Maykon Passos; Heinze, Jürgen; Tavares, Mara Garcia

    2014-01-01

    Molecular methods have substantially advanced our knowledge about ant systematics in the past few years. Here, we infer the molecular phylogeny of sand dune ants of the genus Mycetophylax, Emery 1913 (Formicidae: Myrmicinae: Attini) using 730 base pairs of DNA sequences of the two nuclear genes longwave rhodopsin and wingless. Our analyses indicate that Mycetophylax is monophyletic, as suggested by its morphological characters. M. morschi, previously considered a species of Cyphomyrmex due to a scrobe-like impressed area on the head, forms a well-supported cluster with the two other species of Mycetophylax, M. conformis and M. simplex. Our analysis yields the first comprehensive phylogeny of Mycetophylax based on molecular data and includes specimens from localities within a wide distributional range as well as all species belonging to the genus following the recent taxonomic revision.

  9. Estimating the economic value of national parks with count data models using on-site, secondary data: the case of the great sand dunes national park and preserve.

    PubMed

    Heberling, Matthew T; Templeton, Joshua J

    2009-04-01

    We estimate an individual travel cost model for Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve (GSD) in Colorado using on-site, secondary data. The purpose of the on-site survey was to help the National Park Service better understand the visitors of GSD; it was not intended for a travel cost model. Variables such as travel cost and income were estimated based on respondents' Zip Codes. Following approaches found in the literature, a negative binomial model corrected for truncation and endogenous stratification fit the data the best. We estimate a recreational benefit of U.S. $89/visitor/year or U.S. $54/visitor/24-h recreational day (in 2002 U.S. $). Based on the approach presented here, there are other data sets for national parks, preserves, and battlefields where travel cost models could be estimated and used to support National Park Service management decisions.

  10. The origin of collapse features appearing in a migrating parabolic dune along the southern coast of Lake Michigan

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Argyilan, Erin P.; Avis, Peter G.; Krekeler, Mark P. S.; Morris, Charles C.

    2015-12-01

    Dune decomposition chimneys are collapse features formed when migrating dunes encroach on a forest and buried trees subsequently decay, leaving a temporarily stable open hole. The recent appearance of holes on the stoss slope of Mount Baldy at the Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore provided an opportunity for study of such features. Mount Baldy is a large parabolic dune that is rapidly migrating onshore over a late Holocene landscape with stabilized relict parabolic dunes that supported oak (Quercus spp.) trees visible on the 1939 aerial photo. Individual holes were mapped to locations on the dune surface that would directly overlie the arm of a buried relict parabolic dune. Analyses of buried trees and surrounding sediment indicated that saprotrophic wood decay fungi continue to actively decompose trees after burial and biomineralization of a calcium-carbonate-rich cement occurs at the contact between organic material and sands. Scanning electron microscopy of the cement showed neoformed authigenic minerals and organic structures consistent in morphology with fungal hyphae. We propose that, within the dune, portions of the decayed trees progressively collapse and infill, and open holes are temporarily stabilized by the calcium-carbonate-rich cement. Further, holes can exist undetected at the surface, covered by a thin veneer of sand. Migrating dune systems are observed in many coastal and inland areas. Ongoing work must address the relative contributions of individual environmental factors on the formation of dune decomposition chimneys, including the biomineralization of cement, sand mineralogy, rate of dune movement, tree species, climate, and the composition of fungal communities.

  11. Searching for greasewood on sand dunes: A remote sensing spectral data model to predict intact pre-middle Holocene archaeological deposits in southwest Wyoming

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Heiner, Price B.

    Archaeological research in the central Green River Basin and especially the Moxa Arch area of southwest Wyoming has been an on-going effort for many years. Early research efforts focused on establishing culture histories and overall cultural chronologies of the area, as well as learning about the paleoecology and surface geology of the area. However, by the mid to late 1990's large gaps in what was known of the archaeological record in the Green River Basin were becoming apparent. One of the gaps identified was the lack of excavated intact pre-Middle Holocene cultural deposits. Additional information regarding Early Archaic and Paleoindian lifeways, subsistence patterns, and overall landscape use is required in order to further archaeological research in the Green River Basin. Unfortunately, these data cannot be obtained without locating the proper aged intact stratigraphic deposits. As such, my research goal is to locate pre-Middle Holocene intact deposits with the hope of furthering archaeological knowledge of Paleoindian and Early Archaic lifeways in the Green River Basin of southwest Wyoming. Research demonstrates that greasewood on the surface may indicate the locations of buried pre-Middle Holocene deposits. Sand dune complexes and especially sand shadows seem to display the most promising locations for intact buried cultural deposits. Finding where these two variables intersect is the purpose of my research. A remote sensing spectral data model using ArcMap 9.3 and extension software Feature Analyst are used to predict greasewood locations within sand dune complexes. One meter ground resolution color infrared imagery was used as the base GIS layer. My study analyzed these variables for the Granger, Church Butte, and Verne quadrangles in southwest Wyoming. The results of this analysis were then overlaid with previously recorded archaeological site locations to predict which archaeological sites are located in sand deposits/complexes that also have greasewood

  12. Controls of eolian dune size and spacing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lancaster, N.

    1988-11-01

    Data for the Namib and Gran Desierto sand seas suggest that the controls of dune size and spacing are complex. The relation between dune height and spacing varies with dune type and location and reflects both dune dynamics (vertical accretion vs. migration or extension) and availability of sand. There is no general relation between dune spacing and grain size. In the Namib sand sea the height of compound and complex dunes (draas) is inversely proportional to potential sand-transport rates, whereas the height of dunes superimposed on their flanks varies directly with potential sand-transport rates. These observations can be combined with data on dune spacing to demonstrate the existence of a hierarchy of eolian dunes, each element of which responds to variations in sand-transport rates at different temporal and spatial scales. Whereas the morphology of individual simple dunes and superimposed dunes on draas is related to contemporary rates and directions of sand transport, the morphology and development of draas reflects long-term and regional patterns of sand transport and deposition.

  13. Changes of Bulgarian Coastal Dune Landscape under Anthropogenic Impact

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Palazov, A.; Young, R.; Stancheva, M.; Stanchev, H.

    2012-04-01

    and erosion of the beach itself. Typically dunes are located behind sand beaches and they are part of the beach-dune systems. Such type of dune reduction could be driven by combination of many factors, both natural ones (such as severe storms, erosion, heavy rains or flooding) and human impacts (large number of installed coast-protection structures along the coast, which interrupt the sediment transport, create new sedimentary deficit and generate erosion). During the recent years most of the Bulgarian beaches have progressively eroded and their areas have significantly been decreased. ii) Dunes that have been reduced/damaged and lost due to expanded tourist and housing infrastructures/developments and due to afforestaion activities. The principal sources of human impacts on sand dunes in Bulgaria are rapid coastal urbanization over the recent years (i.e., hotel and residential constructions, roads, parking structures, and other related infrastructure), unregulated camping and "temporary" constructions on the dunes, a lax regulatory environment that tolerates the re-zoning of protected sand dunes to "agricultural" areas. At most recreational sites there were wide coastal dunes, which however have been destroyed during tourist constructions. Such are dunes at the most famous Bulgarian sea resorts of Golden Sands and Sunny Beach in the areas of Varna and Nessebar. As a consequence, major areas along the Bulgarian coast were completely urbanized by hotels and other infrastructures and large sand dune systems were damaged. iii) Dunes located at still undeveloped coastal sections: yet they are naturally preserved and unthreatened by human pressure boom. These are just a few dune sites: at the northernmost portion of the Bulgarian coast (in the area of Durankulak), at the central part in the region of the largest Bulgarian river, Kamchia River, and along the southernmost coastline (in the area of Veleka River). Although sand dunes in Bulgaria are protected areas and

  14. Dune formation under bimodal winds.

    PubMed

    Parteli, Eric J R; Durán, Orencio; Tsoar, Haim; Schwämmle, Veit; Herrmann, Hans J

    2009-12-29

    The study of dune morphology represents a valuable tool in the investigation of planetary wind systems--the primary factor controlling the dune shape is the wind directionality. However, our understanding of dune formation is still limited to the simplest situation of unidirectional winds: There is no model that solves the equations of sand transport under the most common situation of seasonally varying wind directions. Here we present the calculation of sand transport under bimodal winds using a dune model that is extended to account for more than one wind direction. Our calculations show that dunes align longitudinally to the resultant wind trend if the angle(w) between the wind directions is larger than 90 degrees. Under high sand availability, linear seif dunes are obtained, the intriguing meandering shape of which is found to be controlled by the dune height and by the time the wind lasts at each one of the two wind directions. Unusual dune shapes including the "wedge dunes" observed on Mars appear within a wide spectrum of bimodal dune morphologies under low sand availability.

  15. Stability of transverse dunes against perturbations: A theoretical study using dune skeleton model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Niiya, Hirofumi; Awazu, Akinori; Nishimori, Hiraku

    2013-06-01

    The dune skeleton model is a reduced model to describe the formation process and dynamics of characteristic types of dunes emerging under unidirectional steady wind. Using this model, we study the dependency of the morphodynamics of transverse dunes on the initial random perturbations and the lateral field size. It was found that (i) an increase of the lateral field size destabilizes the transverse dune to cause deformation of a barchan, (ii) the initial random perturbations decay with time by the power function until a certain time; thereafter, the dune shapes change into three phases according to the amount of sand and sand diffusion coefficient, and (iii) the duration time, until the transverse dune is broken, increases exponentially with increasing the amount of sand and sand diffusion coefficient. Moreover, under the condition without the sand supply from windward ground, the destabilization of transverse dune in this model qualitatively corresponds to the subaqueous dunes in water tank experiments.

  16. DIVERSITY OF ARBUSCULAR MYCORRHIZAL FUNGI ALONG A SAND DUNE STABILIZATION GRADIENT: A CASE STUDY AT PRAIA DE JOAQUINA, ILHA DE SANTA CATARINA, SOUTH BRAZIL

    EPA Science Inventory

    Species diversity of abuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) was assessed along a dunes stabilization gradient (embyonic dune, foredune and fixed dune) at Praia da Joaquina (Joaquina Beach), Ilha de Santa Catarina. These dunes served as a case study to assess whether diversity and myc...

  17. Control parameters of the martian dune field positions at planetary scale: tests by the MCD

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    allemand, pascal

    2016-04-01

    The surface of Mars is occupied by more than 500 dunes fields mainly located inside impact craters of the south hemisphere and near the north polar cap. The questions of the activity of martian dunes and of the localization of the martian dune fields are not completely solved. It has been demonstrated recently by image observation and image correlation that some of these dune fields are clearly active. The sand flux of one of them has been even estimated. But there is no global view of the degree of activity of each the dune fields. (2)The topography of impact craters in which dune fields are localized is an important factor of their position. But there is no consensus of the effect of global atmospheric circulation on dune field localization. These two questions are addressed using the results of Mars Climate Database 5.2 (MCD) (Millour, 2015; Forget et al., 1999). The wind fields of the MCD have been first validated against the observations made on active dune fields. Using a classical transport law, the Drift Potential (DP) and the Relative Drift Potential (RDP) have been computed for each dune fields. A good correlation exists between the position of dune fields and specific values of these two parameters. The activity of each dune field is estimated from these parameters and tested on some examples by image observations. Finally a map of sand flow has been computed at the scale of the planet. This map shows that sand and dust is trapped in specific regions. These regions correspond to the area of dune field concentration.

  18. Dark Barchan Dunes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2004-01-01

    13 May 2004 This Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC) image shows north polar sand dunes in the summertime. During winter and early spring, north polar dunes are covered with bright frost. When the frost sublimes away, the dunes appear darker than their surroundings. To a geologist, sand has a very specific meaning. A sand grain is defined independently of its composition; it is a particle with a size between 62.5 and 2000 microns. Two thousand microns equals 2 millimeters. The dunes are dark because they are composed of sand grains made of dark minerals and/or rock fragments. Usually, dark grains indicate the presence of unoxidized iron, for example, the dark volcanic rocks of Hawaii, Iceland, and elsewhere. This dune field is located near 71.7oN, 51.3oW. Dune slip faces indicate winds that blow from the upper left toward lower right. This picture covers an area approximately 3 km (1.9 mi) across and is illuminated by sunlight from the lower left.

  19. Recent Aeolian Dune Change on Mars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bourke, M. C.; Edgett, K. S.; Cantor, B. A.

    2007-01-01

    Previous comparisons of Martian aeolian dunes in satellite images have not detected any change in dune form or position. Here, we show dome dunes in the north polar region that shrank and then disappeared over a period of 3.04 Mars years (5.7 Earth years), while larger, neighboring dunes showed no erosion or movement. The removal of sand from these dunes indicates that not only is the threshold wind speed for saltation exceeded under present conditions on Mars, but that any sand that is available for transport is likely to be moved. Dunes that show no evidence of change could be crusted, indurated. or subject to infrequent episodes of movement.

  20. Arthropod monitoring for fine-scale habitat analysis: A case study of the El Segundo sand dunes

    SciTech Connect

    Mattoni, R.; Longcore, T.; Novotny, V.

    2000-04-01

    Arthropod communities from several habitats on and adjacent to the El Segundo dunes (Los Angeles County, CA) were sampled using pitfall and yellow pan traps to evaluate their possible use as indicators of restoration success. Communities were ordinated and clustered using correspondence analysis, detrended correspondence analysis, two-way indicator species analysis, and Ward's method of agglomerative clustering. The results showed high repeatability among replicates within any sampling arena that permits discrimination of (1) degraded and relatively undisturbed habitat, (2) different dune habitat types, and (3) annual change. Canonical correspondence analysis showed a significant effect of disturbance history on community composition that explained 5--20% of the variation. Replicates of pitfall and yellow pan traps on single sites clustered together reliably when species abundance was considered, whereas clusters using only species incidence did not group replicates as consistently. The broad taxonomic approach seems appropriate for habitat evaluation and monitoring of restoration projects as an alternative to assessments geared to single species or even single families.

  1. Northern polar dunes: a spring activity analog to that seen in southern polar terrains

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Portyankina, Ganna; Thomas, Nicolas; Pommerol, Antoine; Aye, Klaus-Michael

    The High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (HiRISE) on the Mars Reconnaissance Or-biter (MRO) is presently (February 2010) observing its second northern spring on Mars. Com-plimentary spectral information from CRISM is available to gain insight into the composition and physical state of the surface. In the north polar areas, there are active regions. Here, dark dunes extend almost circumferen-tially around the permanent polar cap. This area exhibits phenomena similar to those observed in south polar areas in southern spring. Among these phenomena are cracks in a translucent ice layer which are considered to be manifestations of ice damage by increasing pressure at the interface between the ice layer and substrate underlying it [1]. Bright and dark fans, attributed to cold jet activity, are also observed on top of dunes [2]. The presence of these features indi-cates that dunes are covered by a conformal ice layer and that this layer is at least partially transparent to solar radiation. CO2 ice sublimation and processes connected to it appear to produce a variety of observable features. Yet another distinctive feature observed in this area (and rarely present in the south) is the presence of dark slope streaks on dunes. They originate from the crests of dunes and run down following the gravitational potential. They lengthen as the season progresses. Their origin has been discussed to be possible liquid brine flows [3, 4]. In the present work we report on indications that these slope streaks are instead dry mass wasting process. Due to geometry of solar illumination at local latitude the energy input on the crest is higher than in the valley between dunes. The ice cover thins most quickly in areas closest to the crest. In addition, applying stress distribution calculations to the conformal ice layer on realistic dune geometry, we show that the crest of the dune is the weakest point for the ice bending stress. The rupture of the ice layer therefore happens close to

  2. Syrtis Major Dune Field

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2004-01-01

    20 December 2003

    This Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC) image shows barchan sand dunes west of the Meroe Patera volcanic caldera in central Syrtis Major. The winds that shape these dunes blow from the right/upper right (northeast). The surface across which the dunes have traveled is probably composed of volcanic rocks; the dunes, too, may have volcanic materials, such as sand-sized grains of tephra-volcanic ash-in them. This October 2003 view is located near 7.4oN, 292.3oW, and covers an area 3 km (1.9 mi) wide. Sunlight illuminates the scene from the lower left.

  3. Dune formation under bimodal winds

    PubMed Central

    Parteli, Eric J. R.; Durán, Orencio; Tsoar, Haim; Schwämmle, Veit; Herrmann, Hans J.

    2009-01-01

    The study of dune morphology represents a valuable tool in the investigation of planetary wind systems—the primary factor controlling the dune shape is the wind directionality. However, our understanding of dune formation is still limited to the simplest situation of unidirectional winds: There is no model that solves the equations of sand transport under the most common situation of seasonally varying wind directions. Here we present the calculation of sand transport under bimodal winds using a dune model that is extended to account for more than one wind direction. Our calculations show that dunes align longitudinally to the resultant wind trend if the angle θw between the wind directions is larger than 90°. Under high sand availability, linear seif dunes are obtained, the intriguing meandering shape of which is found to be controlled by the dune height and by the time the wind lasts at each one of the two wind directions. Unusual dune shapes including the “wedge dunes” observed on Mars appear within a wide spectrum of bimodal dune morphologies under low sand availability. PMID:20018703

  4. Reestablishing Naturally Functioning Dunes on Developed Coasts.

    PubMed

    Nordstrom; Lampe; Vandemark

    2000-01-01

    / The potential for reestablishing dune habitat is investigated in municipalities in New Jersey, USA, where natural coastal landforms and biota have been eliminated or reduced in extent. Dunes are classified using width, relationship to natural and cultural features, and changes through time, and they are assessed for their value as naturally functioning landforms in developed municipalities. The relationship between size and longevity that exists under natural conditions is altered by human activity. Small dunes on privately owned lots can survive as long as larger dunes in natural areas that are located farther inland, and foredunes repaired using sand fences and earth-moving equipment can survive where they could not under natural conditions.Common beach management practices reduce the ecological values of coastal dunes. Mechanical beach cleaning eliminates incipient dunes, habitat for nesting birds, seed sources for pioneer dune colonizers and food for fauna, and artificially small, stabilized foredunes reduce the variability in microenvironments necessary for biodiversity. Recent initiatives for reducing coastal hazards, protecting nesting birds, and encouraging nature-based tourism provide incentive for the development of a restoration program for beaches and dunes that is compatible with human use. Suggested changes in management practice include restricting or rerouting pedestrian traffic, altering beach-cleaning procedures, using symbolic fences to allow for aeolian transport while preventing trampling of dunes, and eliminating or severely restricting exotic species. Landforms will be more natural in function and appearance but will be more dynamic, smaller and in a different position from those in natural areas. Research needs are specified for ecological, geomorphological, and attitudinal studies to support and inform restoration planning.

  5. Solitary Dunes under Bimodal Winds

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reffet, Erwan; Courrech du Pont, S.; Hersen, P.; Fulchignoni, M.; Douady, S.

    2009-01-01

    The high resolution and coverage achieved on Mars' surface have detailed lots of sand dunes of various types [1]. Many are reported as barchan or barchanoid dunes and present a diversity of shape ascribed to compound wind regimes, collisions or cementation. This diversity reminds us that aeolian structures are fairly complex. Although dunes have been extensively observed and documented, the conditions of their formation and evolution are still difficult to study because of the long time required for their development and their large length-scale. We developed a laboratory approach using underwater experiments to study the morphology of dunes. This method has been used successfully to reproduce various types of dunes downsized to a few centimeters. Barchan dunes are formed using a unidirectional wind-equivalent regime on a pile of ceramic sand-sized grains [2]. Changing the wind regime to a more complex one reveals other structures. In the case of multiple wind directions star dunes can be observed. A bimodal wind regime, e.g. switching between two distinct directions, over an homogeneous layer of sand leads to transverse, longitudinal or complex compound sandbeds depending on the angle between these wind directions [3]. Here, we apply bimodal wind regimes to isolated patches of sand in order to observe the variation of morphology of the resulting dunes. We present the barchanoid dunes obtained for various angles of bimodal wind and show the transition to the "chestnut” dunes type. We also investigate sudden variations in wind direction over a barchan dune. Therefore, we illustrate how the (not so) simple barchan shape can be affected by a more complex wind regime and give a new insight in understanding dunes on Mars. [1] http://www.mars-dunes.org/ . [2] Hersen et al. PRL, 2003. [3] Reffet et al. pldu.work 2008.

  6. Isolated Northern Dunes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2005-01-01

    [figure removed for brevity, see original site]

    Our topic for the weeks of April 4 and April 11 is dunes on Mars. We will look at the north polar sand sea and at isolated dune fields at lower latitudes. Sand seas on Earth are often called 'ergs,' an Arabic name for dune field. A sand sea differs from a dune field in two ways: 1) a sand sea has a large regional extent, and 2) the individual dunes are large in size and complex in form.

    This VIS image was taken at 81 degrees North latitude during Northern spring. In this region, the dunes are isolated from each other. The dunes are just starting to emerge from the winter frost covering appearing dark with bright crests. These dunes are located on top of ice.

    Image information: VIS instrument. Latitude 82.1, Longitude 191.3 East (168.7 West). 19 meter/pixel resolution.

    Note: this THEMIS visual image has not been radiometrically nor geometrically calibrated for this preliminary release. An empirical correction has been performed to remove instrumental effects. A linear shift has been applied in the cross-track and down-track direction to approximate spacecraft and planetary motion. Fully calibrated and geometrically projected images will be released through the Planetary Data System in accordance with Project policies at a later time.

    NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory manages the 2001 Mars Odyssey mission for NASA's Office of Space Science, Washington, D.C. The Thermal Emission Imaging System (THEMIS) was developed by Arizona State University, Tempe, in collaboration with Raytheon Santa Barbara Remote Sensing. The THEMIS investigation is led by Dr. Philip Christensen at Arizona State University. Lockheed Martin Astronautics, Denver, is the prime contractor for the Odyssey project, and developed and built the orbiter. Mission operations are conducted jointly from Lockheed Martin and from JPL, a division of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena.

  7. Predicting vegetation-stabilized dune field morphology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barchyn, Thomas E.; Hugenholtz, Chris H.

    2012-09-01

    The morphology of vegetation-stabilized dune fields on the North American Great Plains (NAGP) mostly comprises parabolic dunes; stabilized barchan and transverse dunes are rare, with the exception of transverse and barchan mega-dunes in the Nebraska Sand Hills. We present a hypothesis from a numerical dune field model explaining the vegetation-stabilized morphology of dunes under unidirectional wind. Simulations with a range of initial dune morphologies (closely-spaced transverse to disperse barchans) indicate that stabilized morphology is determined by the ratio of slipface deposition rate to deposition tolerance of vegetation. Slipface deposition rate is related to dune height, flux, and celerity. With a fixed depositional tolerance, large, slow-moving dunes have low slipface deposition rates and ‘freeze’ in place once vegetation is introduced. Relatively small, fast dunes have high slipface deposition rates and evolve into parabolic dunes, often colliding during stabilization. Our hypothesis could explain differences in stabilized morphology across the NAGP and elsewhere.

  8. Direct and indirect effects of petroleum production activities on the western fence lizard (Sceloporus occidentalis) as a surrogate for the dunes sagebrush lizard (Sceloporus arenicolus).

    PubMed

    Weir, Scott M; Knox, Ami; Talent, Larry G; Anderson, Todd A; Salice, Christopher J

    2016-05-01

    The dunes sagebrush lizard (Sceloporus arenicolus) is a habitat specialist of conservation concern limited to shin oak sand dune systems of New Mexico and Texas (USA). Because much of the dunes sagebrush lizard's habitat occurs in areas of high oil and gas production, there may be direct and indirect effects of these activities. The congeneric Western fence lizard (Sceloporus occidentalis) was used as a surrogate species to determine direct effects of 2 contaminants associated with oil and gas drilling activities in the Permian Basin (NM and TX, USA): herbicide formulations (Krovar and Quest) and hydrogen sulfide gas (H2S). Lizards were exposed to 2 concentrations of H2 S (30 ppm or 90 ppm) and herbicide formulations (1× or 2× label application rate) representing high-end exposure scenarios. Sublethal behavioral endpoints were evaluated, including sprint speed and time to prey detection and capture. Neither H2S nor herbicide formulations caused significant behavioral effects compared to controls. To understand potential indirect effects of oil and gas drilling on the prey base, terrestrial invertebrate biomass and order diversity were quantified at impacted sites to compare with nonimpacted sites. A significant decrease in biomass was found at impacted sites, but no significant effects on diversity. The results suggest little risk from direct toxic effects, but the potential for indirect effects should be further explored.

  9. Origin of late Quaternary dune fields on the Southern High Plains of Texas and New Mexico

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Muhs, D.R.; Holliday, V.T.

    2001-01-01

    Mostly stabilized late Holocene eolian sands on the Southern High Plains of the United States were studied to determine their origins and to assess whether present dune stability depends more strongly on sediment supply, sediment availability, or transport limitations. Geomorphic, sedimentological, and geochemical trends indicate that late Holocene dunes formed under westerly paleowinds, broadly similar to those of today. Mineralogical and geochemical data indicate that the most likely source for the sands is not the Pecos River valley, but the Pleistocene Blackwater Draw Formation, an older, extensive eolian deposit in the region. These observations suggest that new sand is supplied whenever vegetation cover is diminished to the extent that the Blackwater Draw Formation can be eroded, in agreement with modern observations of wind erosion in the region. We conclude, therefore, that Southern High Plains dunes are stabilized primarily due to a vegetation cover. The dunes are thus sediment-availability limited. This conclusion is consistent with the observation that, in the warmest, driest part of the region (where vegetation cover is minimal), dunes are currently active over a large area. Geochemical data indicate that Southern High Plains dunes are the most mineralogically mature (quartz rich) sands yet studied in the Great Plains, which suggests a long history of eolian activity, either in the dune fields or during deposition of the Blackwater Draw Formation.

  10. Vegetation controls on the maximum size of coastal dunes

    PubMed Central

    Durán, Orencio; Moore, Laura J.

    2013-01-01

    Coastal dunes, in particular foredunes, support a resilient ecosystem and reduce coastal vulnerability to storms. In contrast to dry desert dunes, coastal dunes arise from interactions between biological and physical processes. Ecologists have traditionally addressed coastal ecosystems by assuming that they adapt to preexisting dune topography, whereas geomorphologists have studied the properties of foredunes primarily in connection to physical, not biological, factors. Here, we study foredune development using an ecomorphodynamic model that resolves the coevolution of topography and vegetation in response to both physical and ecological factors. We find that foredune growth is eventually limited by a negative feedback between wind flow and topography. As a consequence, steady-state foredunes are scale invariant, which allows us to derive scaling relations for maximum foredune height and formation time. These relations suggest that plant zonation (in particular for strand “dune-building” species) is the primary factor controlling the maximum size of foredunes and therefore the amount of sand stored in a coastal dune system. We also find that aeolian sand supply to the dunes determines the timescale of foredune formation. These results offer a potential explanation for the empirical relation between beach type and foredune size, in which large (small) foredunes are found on dissipative (reflective) beaches. Higher waves associated with dissipative beaches increase the disturbance of strand species, which shifts foredune formation landward and thus leads to larger foredunes. In this scenario, plants play a much more active role in modifying their habitat and altering coastal vulnerability than previously thought. PMID:24101481

  11. Vegetation controls on the maximum size of coastal dunes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Durán, Orencio; Moore, Laura J.

    2013-10-01

    Coastal dunes, in particular foredunes, support a resilient ecosystem and reduce coastal vulnerability to storms. In contrast to dry desert dunes, coastal dunes arise from interactions between biological and physical processes. Ecologists have traditionally addressed coastal ecosystems by assuming that they adapt to preexisting dune topography, whereas geomorphologists have studied the properties of foredunes primarily in connection to physical, not biological, factors. Here, we study foredune development using an ecomorphodynamic model that resolves the coevolution of topography and vegetation in response to both physical and ecological factors. We find that foredune growth is eventually limited by a negative feedback between wind flow and topography. As a consequence, steady-state foredunes are scale invariant, which allows us to derive scaling relations for maximum foredune height and formation time. These relations suggest that plant zonation (in particular for strand "dune-building" species) is the primary factor controlling the maximum size of foredunes and therefore the amount of sand stored in a coastal dune system. We also find that aeolian sand supply to the dunes determines the timescale of foredune formation. These results offer a potential explanation for the empirical relation between beach type and foredune size, in which large (small) foredunes are found on dissipative (reflective) beaches. Higher waves associated with dissipative beaches increase the disturbance of strand species, which shifts foredune formation landward and thus leads to larger foredunes. In this scenario, plants play a much more active role in modifying their habitat and altering coastal vulnerability than previously thought.

  12. Vegetation controls on the maximum size of coastal dunes.

    PubMed

    Durán, Orencio; Moore, Laura J

    2013-10-22

    Coastal dunes, in particular foredunes, support a resilient ecosystem and reduce coastal vulnerability to storms. In contrast to dry desert dunes, coastal dunes arise from interactions between biological and physical processes. Ecologists have traditionally addressed coastal ecosystems by assuming that they adapt to preexisting dune topography, whereas geomorphologists have studied the properties of foredunes primarily in connection to physical, not biological, factors. Here, we study foredune development using an ecomorphodynamic model that resolves the coevolution of topography and vegetation in response to both physical and ecological factors. We find that foredune growth is eventually limited by a negative feedback between wind flow and topography. As a consequence, steady-state foredunes are scale invariant, which allows us to derive scaling relations for maximum foredune height and formation time. These relations suggest that plant zonation (in particular for strand "dune-building" species) is the primary factor controlling the maximum size of foredunes and therefore the amount of sand stored in a coastal dune system. We also find that aeolian sand supply to the dunes determines the timescale of foredune formation. These results offer a potential explanation for the empirical relation between beach type and foredune size, in which large (small) foredunes are found on dissipative (reflective) beaches. Higher waves associated with dissipative beaches increase the disturbance of strand species, which shifts foredune formation landward and thus leads to larger foredunes. In this scenario, plants play a much more active role in modifying their habitat and altering coastal vulnerability than previously thought.

  13. Parabolic dunes and their transformations under environmental and climatic changes: Towards a conceptual framework for understanding and prediction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yan, Na; Baas, Andreas C. W.

    2015-01-01

    The formation and evolution of parabolic aeolian dunes depend on vegetation, and as such are particularly sensitive to changes in environmental controls (e.g., temperature, precipitation, and wind regime) as well as to human disturbances (e.g., grazing, agriculture, and recreation). Parabolic dunes can develop from the stabilisation of highly mobile barchan dunes and transverse dunes as well as from blowouts, as a consequence of colonisation and establishment of vegetation when aeolian sand transport is reduced and/or when water stress is relieved (by increasing precipitation, for instance). Conversely, existing parabolic dunes can be activated and may be transformed into barchan dunes and/or transverse dunes when vegetation suffers environmental or anthropogenic stresses. Predicted increases in temperature and drought severity in various regions raise concerns that dune activation and transformations may intensify, and this intensification would have far-reaching implications for environmental, social, and economic sustainability. To date, a broad examination of the development of parabolic dunes and their related transformations across a variety of climate gradients has been absent. This paper reviews existing literature, compares data on the morphology and development of parabolic dunes in a comprehensive global inventory, and scrutinises the mechanisms of different dune transformations and the eco-geomorphic interactions involved. This knowledge is then integrated into a conceptual framework to facilitate understanding and prediction of potential aeolian dune transformations induced by changes in environmental controls and human activities. This conceptual framework can aid judicious land management policies for better adaptations to climatic changes.

  14. The influence of contemporary and historic landscape features on the genetic structure of the sand dune endemic, Cirsium pitcheri (Asteraceae)

    PubMed Central

    Fant, J B; Havens, K; Keller, J M; Radosavljevic, A; Yates, E D

    2014-01-01

    Narrow endemics are at risk from climate change because of their restricted habitat preferences, lower colonization ability and dispersal distances. Landscape genetics combines new tools and analyses that allow us to test how both past and present landscape features have facilitated or hindered previous range expansion and local migration patterns, and thereby identifying potential limitations to future range shifts. We have compared current and historic habitat corridors in Cirsium pitcheri, an endemic of the linear dune ecosystem of the Great Lakes, to determine the relative contributions of contemporary migration and post-glacial range expansion on genetic structure. We used seven microsatellite loci to characterize the genetic structure for 24 populations of Cirsium pitcheri, spanning the center to periphery of the range. We tested genetic distance against different measures of geographic distance and landscape permeability, based on contemporary and historic landscape features. We found moderate genetic structure (Fst=0.14), and a north–south pattern to the distribution of genetic diversity and inbreeding, with northern populations having the highest diversity and lowest levels of inbreeding. High allelic diversity, small average pairwise distances and mixed genetic clusters identified in Structure suggest that populations in the center of the range represent the point of entry to the Lake Michigan and a refugium of diversity for this species. A strong association between genetic distances and lake-level changes suggests that historic lake fluctuations best explain the broad geographic patterns, and sandy habitat best explains local patterns of movement. PMID:24398882

  15. The influence of contemporary and historic landscape features on the genetic structure of the sand dune endemic, Cirsium pitcheri (Asteraceae).

    PubMed

    Fant, J B; Havens, K; Keller, J M; Radosavljevic, A; Yates, E D

    2014-05-01

    Narrow endemics are at risk from climate change because of their restricted habitat preferences, lower colonization ability and dispersal distances. Landscape genetics combines new tools and analyses that allow us to test how both past and present landscape features have facilitated or hindered previous range expansion and local migration patterns, and thereby identifying potential limitations to future range shifts. We have compared current and historic habitat corridors in Cirsium pitcheri, an endemic of the linear dune ecosystem of the Great Lakes, to determine the relative contributions of contemporary migration and post-glacial range expansion on genetic structure. We used seven microsatellite loci to characterize the genetic structure for 24 populations of Cirsium pitcheri, spanning the center to periphery of the range. We tested genetic distance against different measures of geographic distance and landscape permeability, based on contemporary and historic landscape features. We found moderate genetic structure (Fst=0.14), and a north-south pattern to the distribution of genetic diversity and inbreeding, with northern populations having the highest diversity and lowest levels of inbreeding. High allelic diversity, small average pairwise distances and mixed genetic clusters identified in Structure suggest that populations in the center of the range represent the point of entry to the Lake Michigan and a refugium of diversity for this species. A strong association between genetic distances and lake-level changes suggests that historic lake fluctuations best explain the broad geographic patterns, and sandy habitat best explains local patterns of movement.

  16. Holden Crater Dune Field

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2005-01-01

    [figure removed for brevity, see original site]

    Our topic for the weeks of April 4 and April 11 is dunes on Mars. We will look at the north polar sand sea and at isolated dune fields at lower latitudes. Sand seas on Earth are often called 'ergs,' an Arabic name for dune field. A sand sea differs from a dune field in two ways: 1) a sand sea has a large regional extent, and 2) the individual dunes are large in size and complex in form.

    A common location for dune fields on Mars is in the basin of large craters. This dune field is located in Holden Crater at 25 degrees South atitude.

    Image information: VIS instrument. Latitude -25.5, Longitude 326.8 East (33.2 West). 19 meter/pixel resolution.

    Note: this THEMIS visual image has not been radiometrically nor geometrically calibrated for this preliminary release. An empirical correction has been performed to remove instrumental effects. A linear shift has been applied in the cross-track and down-track direction to approximate spacecraft and planetary motion. Fully calibrated and geometrically projected images will be released through the Planetary Data System in accordance with Project policies at a later time.

    NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory manages the 2001 Mars Odyssey mission for NASA's Office of Space Science, Washington, D.C. The Thermal Emission Imaging System (THEMIS) was developed by Arizona State University, Tempe, in collaboration with Raytheon Santa Barbara Remote Sensing. The THEMIS investigation is led by Dr. Philip Christensen at Arizona State University. Lockheed Martin Astronautics, Denver, is the prime contractor for the Odyssey project, and developed and built the orbiter. Mission operations are conducted jointly from Lockheed Martin and from JPL, a division of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena.

  17. Crater Floor Dune Field

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2005-01-01

    [figure removed for brevity, see original site]

    Our topic for the weeks of April 4 and April 11 is dunes on Mars. We will look at the north polar sand sea and at isolated dune fields at lower latitudes. Sand seas on Earth are often called 'ergs,' an Arabic name for dune field. A sand sea differs from a dune field in two ways: 1) a sand sea has a large regional extent, and 2) the individual dunes are large in size and complex in form.

    Our final dune image shows a small dune field inside an unnamed crater south of Nili Fossae.

    Image information: VIS instrument. Latitude 20.6, Longitude 79 East (281 West). 19 meter/pixel resolution.

    Note: this THEMIS visual image has not been radiometrically nor geometrically calibrated for this preliminary release. An empirical correction has been performed to remove instrumental effects. A linear shift has been applied in the cross-track and down-track direction to approximate spacecraft and planetary motion. Fully calibrated and geometrically projected images will be released through the Planetary Data System in accordance with Project policies at a later time.

    NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory manages the 2001 Mars Odyssey mission for NASA's Office of Space Science, Washington, D.C. The Thermal Emission Imaging System (THEMIS) was developed by Arizona State University, Tempe, in collaboration with Raytheon Santa Barbara Remote Sensing. The THEMIS investigation is led by Dr. Philip Christensen at Arizona State University. Lockheed Martin Astronautics, Denver, is the prime contractor for the Odyssey project, and developed and built the orbiter. Mission operations are conducted jointly from Lockheed Martin and from JPL, a division of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena.

  18. The effects of extreme rainfall events on carbon release from Biological Soil Crusts covered soil in fixed sand dunes in the Tengger Desert, northern China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhao, Yang; Li, Xinrong; Pan, Yanxia; Hui, Rong

    2016-04-01

    How soil cover types and extreme rainfall event influence carbon (C) release in temperate desert ecosystems has largely been unexplored. We assessed the effects of extreme rainfall (quantity and intensity) events on the carbon release from soils covered by different types of biological soil crusts (BSCs) in fixed sand dunes in the Tengger Desert, Shapotou regionof northern China. We removed intact crusts down to 10 cm and measured them in PVC mesocosms. A Li-6400-09 Soil Chamber was used to measure the respiration rates of the BSCs immediately after the rainfall stopped, and continued until the respiration rates of the BSCs returned to the pre-rainfall basal rate. Our results showed that almost immediately after extreme rainfall events the respiration rates of algae crust and mixed crust were significantly inhibited, but moss crust was not significantly affected. The respiration rates of algae crust, mixed crust, and moss crust in extreme rainfall quantity and intensity events were, respectively, 0.12 and 0.41 μmolCO2/(m2•s), 0.10 and 0.45 μmolCO2/(m2•s), 0.83 and 1.69 μmolCO2/(m2•s). Our study indicated that moss crust in the advanced succession stage can well adapt to extreme rainfall events in the short term. Keywords: carbon release; extreme rainfall events; biological soil crust

  19. Digital signal processing and interpretation of full waveform sonic log for well BP-3-USGS, Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve, Alamosa County, Colorado

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Burke, Lauri

    2011-01-01

    Along the Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve boundary (fig. 1), 10 monitoring wells were drilled by the National Park Service in order to monitor water flow in an unconfined aquifer spanning the park boundary. Adjacent to the National Park Service monitoring well named Boundary Piezometer Well No. 3, or BP-3, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) drilled the BP-3-USGS well. This well was drilled from September 14 through 17, 2009, to a total depth of 99.4 meters (m) in order to acquire additional subsurface information. The BP-3-USGS well is located at lat 37 degrees 43'18.06' and long -105 degrees 43'39.30' at a surface elevation of 2,301 m. Approximately 23 m of core was recovered beginning at a depth of 18 m. Drill cuttings were also recovered. The wireline geophysical logs acquired in the well include natural gamma ray, borehole caliper, temperature, full waveform sonic, density, neutron, resistivity, and induction logs. The BP-3-USGS well is now plugged and abandoned. This report details the full waveform digital signal processing methodology and the formation compressional-wave velocities determined for the BP-3-USGS well. These velocity results are compared to several velocities that are commonly encountered in the subsurface. The density log is also discussed in context of these formation velocities.

  20. Effect of mineral additives (natural pozzolana and sand of dunes) by substitution of cement on the performance and durability of mortars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Saidi, M.; Safi, B.

    2016-04-01

    The objective of our work consists of the study of the substitution effects of clinker by mineral additions such as: natural pozzolana (PZ) and the sand of dunes (SD) finely crushed on the mechanical properties and the durability of the mortars worked out according to various combinations containing these additions. The results from this research confirm that the substitution of 20% to 30% of cement APC (Artificial Portland Cement) by additions in binary cement (APC + PZ) or ternary (APC + PZ + SD) contributes positively to the mechanical strength of mortars and resistance to the chemical attacks in various corrosive conditions such as: hydrochloric acid, sulfuric acid and nitric acid. The mechanical strength of the different variants is comparable to those of the APC. The test results of the weight loss and phenolphthalein shows that the chemical resistance of variants (PZ20) and (PZ20 with SD5) are larger compared to the reference mortar APC and other variants. This study shows that adding value by substituting a part of clinker. This substitution can save 20% to 30% of clinker used for the manufacture of cement; this will have a beneficial effect for cement and economically (less energy spent for the clinker burning). This study contributes to the protection of the environment as to produce one ton of clinker generates about one ton of CO2 is harmful to the atmosphere. Based on our results we will reduce from 20% to 30% CO2 gas responsible for the greenhouse effect.

  1. Evidence for community structure and habitat partitioning in coastal dune stiletto flies at the Guadalupe-Nipomo dunes system, California

    PubMed Central

    Holston, Kevin C.

    2005-01-01

    This study provides empirical evidence for habitat selection by North American species of stiletto flies (Diptera: Therevidae), based on local distributions of adults and immatures, and the first hypothesis of community assemblages proposed for a stiletto fly community. Sites at three localities within the Guadalupe-Nipomo dune system were sampled for stiletto flies in 1997 and 2001 by sifting sand, malaise trapping, and hand netting. Nine species were collected from four ecological zones and three intermediate ecological zones: Acrosathe novella (Coquillett), Brachylinga baccata (Loew), Nebritus powelli (Webb and Irwin), Ozodiceromyia sp., Pherocera sp., Tabudamima melanophleba (Loew), Thereva comata Loew, Thereva elizabethae Holston and Irwin, and Thereva fucata Loew. Species associations of adults and larvae with habitats and ecological zones were consistent among sites, suggesting that local distributions of coastal dune stiletto fly species are influenced by differences in habitat selection. In habitats dominated by the arroyo willow,Salix lasiolepsis, stiletto fly larvae of three species were collected in local sympatry, demonstrating that S. lasiolepsis stands along stabilized dune ridges can provide an intermediate ecological zone linking active dune and riparian habitat in the Guadalupe-Nipomo dune system. Sites dominated by European beach grass, Ammophilia arenaria, blue gum, Eucalyptus globulus, and Monterey cypress, Cupressus macrocarpa, are considered unsuitable for stiletto flies, which emphasizes the importance of terrestrial habitats with native vegetation for stiletto fly species. The local distributions of stiletto fly species at the Guadalupe-Nipomo dune system allow the community to be divided into three assemblages; active dune, pioneer scrub, and scrub-riparian. These assemblages may be applicable to other coastal dune stiletto fly communities, and may have particular relevance to stiletto fly species collected in European coastal dunes. The

  2. Evidence for community structure and habitat partitioning in coastal dune stiletto flies at the Guadalupe-Nipomo dunes system, California.

    PubMed

    Holston, Kevin C

    2005-12-22

    This study provides empirical evidence for habitat selection by North American species of stiletto flies (Diptera: Therevidae), based on local distributions of adults and immatures, and the first hypothesis of community assemblages proposed for a stiletto fly community. Sites at three localities within the Guadalupe-Nipomo dune system were sampled for stiletto flies in 1997 and 2001 by sifting sand, malaise trapping, and hand netting. Nine species were collected from four ecological zones and three intermediate ecological zones: Acrosathe novella (Coquillett), Brachylinga baccata (Loew), Nebritus powelli (Webb and Irwin), Ozodiceromyia sp., Pherocera sp., Tabudamima melanophleba (Loew), Thereva comata Loew, Thereva elizabethae Holston and Irwin, and Thereva fucata Loew. Species associations of adults and larvae with habitats and ecological zones were consistent among sites, suggesting that local distributions of coastal dune stiletto fly species are influenced by differences in habitat selection. In habitats dominated by the arroyo willow,Salix lasiolepsis, stiletto fly larvae of three species were collected in local sympatry, demonstrating that S. lasiolepsis stands along stabilized dune ridges can provide an intermediate ecological zone linking active dune and riparian habitat in the Guadalupe-Nipomo dune system. Sites dominated by European beach grass, Ammophilia arenaria, blue gum, Eucalyptus globulus, and Monterey cypress, Cupressus macrocarpa, are considered unsuitable for stiletto flies, which emphasizes the importance of terrestrial habitats with native vegetation for stiletto fly species. The local distributions of stiletto fly species at the Guadalupe-Nipomo dune system allow the community to be divided into three assemblages; active dune, pioneer scrub, and scrub-riparian. These assemblages may be applicable to other coastal dune stiletto fly communities, and may have particular relevance to stiletto fly species collected in European coastal dunes. The

  3. Transverse dune trailing ridges and vegetation succession

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hesp, Patrick A.; ‘Marisa' Martinez, M. L.

    2008-07-01

    We describe the evolution of, and vegetation succession on, a previously undescribed landform: transverse dune trailing ridges at El Farallón transgressive dunefield in the state of Veracruz, Mexico. Three-dimensional clinometer/compass and tape topographic surveys were conducted in conjunction with 1 m 2 contiguous percent cover and presence/absence vegetation survey transects at eight locations across two adjacent trailing ridges. At the study site, and elsewhere, the transverse dune trailing ridges are formed by vegetation colonization of the lateral margins of active transverse, barchanoidal transverse, and aklé or network dunes. For simplicity, all trailing ridges formed from these dune types are referred to as transverse dune trailing ridges. Because there are several transverse dunes in the dunefield, multiple trailing ridges can be formed at one time. Two adjacent trailing ridges were examined. The shortest length ridge was 70 m long, and evolving from a 2.5 m-high transverse dune, while the longer ridge was 140 m long, and evolving from an 8 m-high dune. Trailing ridge length is a proxy measure of ridge age, since the longer the ridge, the greater the length of time since initial formation. With increasing age or distance upwind, species diversity increased, as well as species horizontal extent and percent cover. In turn, the degree of bare sand decreased. Overall, the data indicate a successional trend in the vegetation presence and cover with increasing age upwind. Those species most tolerant to burial ( Croton and Palafoxia) begin the process of trailing ridge formation. Ipomoea and Canavalia are less tolerant to burial and also are typically the next colonizing species. Trachypogon does not tolerate sand burial or deposition very well and only appears after significant stabilization has taken place. The ridges display a moderately defined successional sequence in plant colonization and percentage cover with time (and upwind distance). They are

  4. 2005 annual progress report: Elk and bison grazing ecology in the Great Sand Dunes complex of lands

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Schoenecker, Kate A.; Lubow, Bruce C.; Zeigenfuss, Linda C.; Mao, Julie

    2006-01-01

    To address the questions and needs of local resource managers, a multi-agency research project was initiated in 2005 to study the ecology, forage relations, and habitat relations of elk and bison in the Great Sand Dunes–Sangre de Cristo–Baca complex of lands. Meetings and discussions of what this research should include were started in 2001 with representatives from NPS, USFWS, TNC, the Colorado Division of Wildlife (CDOW), and USDA-FS/BLM. The final study plan was successfully funded in 2004 with research scheduled to start in 2005. The research was designed to encompass three major study elements: (1) animal movements and population dynamics, (2) vegetation and nutrient effects from ungulate herbivory, and (3) development of ecological models, using empirical data collected from the first two components, that will include estimates of elk carrying capacity and management scenarios for resource managers.

  5. Marching Dunes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2003-01-01

    [figure removed for brevity, see original site]

    Released 15 September 2003

    The Ruza impact crater observed in this THEMIS image taken north of Argyre Planitia shows very interesting gullies and migrating sand dunes. The gullies appear to be more mature and subdued than some previously described gullies and are possibly being covered by a mantle of material. The barchan sand dunes observed in the northern edge of the impact crater are likely migrating up the crater wall as indicated by the crescent shape that points in the wind direction.

    Image information: VIS instrument. Latitude -34.2, Longitude 307.2 East (52.8 West). 19 meter/pixel resolution.

    Note: this THEMIS visual image has not been radiometrically nor geometrically calibrated for this preliminary release. An empirical correction has been performed to remove instrumental effects. A linear shift has been applied in the cross-track and down-track direction to approximate spacecraft and planetary motion. Fully calibrated and geometrically projected images will be released through the Planetary Data System in accordance with Project policies at a later time.

    NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory manages the 2001 Mars Odyssey mission for NASA's Office of Space Science, Washington, D.C. The Thermal Emission Imaging System (THEMIS) was developed by Arizona State University, Tempe, in collaboration with Raytheon Santa Barbara Remote Sensing. The THEMIS investigation is led by Dr. Philip Christensen at Arizona State University. Lockheed Martin Astronautics, Denver, is the prime contractor for the Odyssey project, and developed and built the orbiter. Mission operations are conducted jointly from Lockheed Martin and from JPL, a division of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena.

  6. VNIR reflectance spectra of gypsum mixtures for comparison with White Sands National Monument, New Mexico (WSNM) dune samples as an analog study of the Olympia Undae region of Mars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    King, S. J.; Bishop, J. L.; Fenton, L. K.; Lafuente, B.; Garcia, G. C.; Horgan, B. H.

    2013-12-01

    Dunes at WSNM are being used as an analog study area for gypsum-rich dunes near the northern polar region of Mars. Samples were collected from 4 dunes at WSNM for this study. In order to determine abundances of the gypsum, quartz and dolomite present in the dune sand, size separates (<45, 45-90, 90-150, 150-250, >250 μm) were prepared for gypsum, quartz and dolomite, mixtures were prepared using the 90-150 μm size fraction, and all samples were characterized in the lab. Analyses of the VNIR spectral data are presented here (Figs. 1-2) and analyses of the XRD data are presented in a companion abstract [1]. The majority of the dune sand is dominated by gypsum, while the coarse grains at some ripples are largely dolomite. Mid-IR spectra will be evaluated as well. Gypsum/Dolomite Mixtures (Fig. 1) There is a clear progression of albedo and band strength in these mixture spectra as one mineral is increased and the other decreased. The mixture spectra are dominated by the gypsum bands for mixtures that are gypsum rich (≥50wt.% gypsum) including a triplet at 1.446-1.535 μm, plus bands at 1.749, 1.945, 2.217 and 2.267 μm. When mixtures become predominantly dolomite (10/90 & 20/80 mixtures), the gypsum bands are significantly weaker, while the dolomite band at 2.322 becomes much more visible. Gypsum/Quartz Mixtures (Fig. 2) The gypsum/quartz mixture spectra are dominated to an even greater extent by gypsum, resulting in readily observable gypsum features for spectra of samples with only 10 wt.% gypsum. [1] Lafuente et al. (2013) AGU, submitted.

  7. Late Quaternary aeolian and fluvial interactions on the Cooper Creek Fan and the association between linear and source-bordering dunes, Strzelecki Desert, Australia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cohen, T. J.; Nanson, G. C.; Larsen, J. R.; Jones, B. G.; Price, D. M.; Coleman, M.; Pietsch, T. J.

    2010-02-01

    The Innamincka Dome and associated low-gradient fan in the Strzelecki Desert is the product of Cenozoic crustal warping that has aided formation of an extensive array of palaeochannels, source-bordering transverse dunes and superimposed linear dunes. These dunes have impeded the course of Cooper Creek and provided a repository of evidence for Quaternary climate change as well as the interactive processes between transverse and linear dune formation. At Turra, Gidgealpa and sites nearby are extensive fluvial and aeolian sand bodies that date from marine isotope stages (MIS) 8-3 and the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM) and are now surrounded or buried by overbank mud. The sandy alluvium was deposited on the downstream slope of the dome by large channels transporting abundant bedload, subsequently blown northward to form transverse dunes from what were probably seasonally-exposed bars in a palaeo-Cooper system. Thermoluminescence (TL) and optically stimulated luminescence (OSL) ages demonstrate that the base of the dune complex is at least MIS 7 in age (˜250 ka) but that it has been subsequently reworked by wind with additional sand blown from the river. Source-bordering dunes formed during a period of enhanced river flow and sand supply from ˜120 to 100 ka, with another short episode of the same at ˜85-80 ka and from ˜68 to 53. The LGM was associated with enhanced flows and the supply of dune sediment, from 28 to 18 ka. Pronounced river flow and dune activity occurred in the early to mid Holocene, but there is no evidence of dunes being supplied from Cooper Creek since the LGM. The dunes forming the oldest basal sand units appear to be largely transverse in form and are aligned roughly parallel to adjacent east-west trending palaeochannels. Linear dunes have formed from and over these, and yield basal ages ranging from MIS 5 or MIS 4 but continuing to accrete and rework through to the Holocene. The study results in one of the few detailed chronological investigations

  8. Frost-covered dunes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1999-01-01

    MOC image of dunes in Chasma Boreale, a giant trough in the north polar cap. This September 1998 view shows dark sand emergent from beneath a veneer of bright frost left over from the northern winter that ended in July 1998.

  9. Valles Marineris dune sediment provenance and pathways

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chojnacki, Matthew; Burr, Devon M.; Moersch, Jeffrey E.; Wray, James J.

    2014-04-01

    Although low-albedo sand is a prevalent component of the martian surface, sources and pathways of the sands are uncertain. As one of the principal present-day martian sediment sinks, the Valles Marineris (VM) rift system hosts a diversity of dune field populations associated with a variety of landforms that serve as potential sediment sources, including spur-and-gully walls, interior layered deposits (ILDs), and landslides. Here, we test the hypothesis that VM dune fields are largely derived from a variety of local and regional (intra-rift) sediment sources. Results show several dune fields are superposed on ancient wall massifs and ILDs that are topographically isolated from extra-rift sand sources. Spectral analysis of dune sand reveals compositional heterogeneity at the basinal-, dune field-, and dune-scales, arguing for discrete, relatively unmixed sediment sources. In Coprates and Melas chasmata, mapping is consistent with the principle sand source for dunes being Noachian-aged upper and lower wall materials composed of primary (igneous) minerals and glasses, some of which show evidence for alteration. In contrast, dune fields in Capri, Juventae, and Ganges chasmata show evidence for partial sediment derivation from adjacent Early Hesperian-aged hydrated sulfate-bearing ILD units. This finding indicates that these ILDs act as secondary sand sources. Dunes containing “soft” secondary minerals (e.g., monohydrated sulfate) are unlikely to have been derived from distant sources due to the physical weathering of sand grains during transport. Isolated extra-rift dune fields, sand sheets, and sand patches are located on the plateaus surrounding VM and the adjoining areas, but do not form interconnected networks of sand pathways into the rift. If past wind regimes (with respect to directionality and seasonality) were consistent with more recent regimes inferred from morphological analysis (i.e., dune slip faces, wind streaks), and were sufficient in strength and

  10. Vegetated dune morphodynamics during recent stabilization of the Mu Us dune field, north-central China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xu, Zhiwei; Mason, Joseph A.; Lu, Huayu

    2015-01-01

    The response of dune fields to changing environmental conditions can be better understood by investigating how changing vegetation cover affects dune morphodynamics. Significant increases in vegetation and widespread dune stabilization over the years 2000-2012 are evident in high-resolution satellite imagery of the Mu Us dune field in north-central China, possibly a lagged response to changing wind strength and temperature since the 1970s. These trends provide an opportunity to study how dune morphology changes with increasing vegetation stabilization. Vegetation expansion occurs mainly by expansion of pre-existing patches in interdunes. As vegetation spreads from interdunes onto surrounding dunes, it modifies their shapes in competition with wind-driven sand movement, primarily in three ways: 1) vegetation anchoring horns of barchans transforms them to parabolic dunes; 2) vegetation colonizes stoss faces of barchan and transverse dunes, resulting in lower dune height and an elongated stoss face, with shortening of barchan horns; and 3) on transverse dunes, the lee face is fixed by plants that survive sand burial. Along each of these pathways of stabilization, dune morphology tends to change from more barchanoid to more parabolic forms, but that transformation is not always completed before full stabilization. Artificial stabilization leads to an extreme case of "frozen" barchans or transverse dunes with original shapes preserved by rapid establishment of vegetation. Observations in the Mu Us dune field emphasize the point that vegetation growth and aeolian sand transport not only respond to external factors such as climate but also interact with each other. For example, some barchans lose sand mass during vegetation fixation, and actually migrate faster as they become smaller, and vegetation growth on a barchan's lower stoss face may alter sand transport over the dune in a way that favors more rapid stabilization. Conceptual models were generalized for the

  11. A complex origin for the Kelso Dunes, Mojave National Preserve, California, USA: A case study using a simple geochemical method with global applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Muhs, Daniel R.; Lancaster, Nicholas; Skipp, Gary L.

    2017-01-01

    The Kelso Dune field in southern California is intriguing because although it is of limited areal extent ( 100 km2), it has a wide variety of dune forms and contains many active dunes ( 40 km2), which is unusual in the Mojave Desert. Studies over the past eight decades have concluded that the dunes are derived primarily from a single source, Mojave River alluvium, under a dominant, westerly-to-northwesterly wind regime. The majority of these studies did not, however, present data to support the Mojave River as the only source. We conducted mineralogical and geochemical studies of most of the 14 geomorphically defined dune groups of the Kelso Dune field as well as potential sand sources, alluvial sediments from the surrounding mountain ranges. Results indicate that sands in the nine western dune groups have K/Rb and K/Ba (primarily from K-feldspar) compositions that are indistinguishable from Mojave River alluvium (westerly/northwesterly winds) and Budweiser Wash alluvium (southwesterly winds), permitting an interpretation of two sources. In contrast, sands from the five eastern dune groups have K/Rb and K/Ba values that indicate significant inputs from alluvial fan deposits of the Providence Mountains. This requires either rare winds from the east or southeast or, more likely, aeolian reworking of distal Providence Mountain fan sediments by winds from the west, at a rate greater than input from the Mojave River or other western sources. The results indicate that even a small dune field can have a complex origin, either from seasonally varying winds or complex alluvial-fan-dune interaction. Application of K/Rb and K/Ba in K-feldspar as a provenance indicator could be used in many of the world's ergs or sand seas, where dune origins are still not well understood or are controversial. Four examples are given from Africa and the Middle East where such an approach could yield useful new information about dune sand provenance.

  12. Nili Patera Dune Field

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2005-01-01

    [figure removed for brevity, see original site]

    Our topic for the weeks of April 4 and April 11 is dunes on Mars. We will look at the north polar sand sea and at isolated dune fields at lower latitudes. Sand seas on Earth are often called 'ergs,' an Arabic name for dune field. A sand sea differs from a dune field in two ways: 1) a sand sea has a large regional extent, and 2) the individual dunes are large in size and complex in form.

    This VIS image shows a dune field within Nili Patera, the northern caldera of a large volcanic complex in Syrtis Major.

    Image information: VIS instrument. Latitude 9, Longitude 67 East (293 West). 19 meter/pixel resolution.

    Note: this THEMIS visual image has not been radiometrically nor geometrically calibrated for this preliminary release. An empirical correction has been performed to remove instrumental effects. A linear shift has been applied in the cross-track and down-track direction to approximate spacecraft and planetary motion. Fully calibrated and geometrically projected images will be released through the Planetary Data System in accordance with Project policies at a later time.

    NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory manages the 2001 Mars Odyssey mission for NASA's Office of Space Science, Washington, D.C. The Thermal Emission Imaging System (THEMIS) was developed by Arizona State University, Tempe, in collaboration with Raytheon Santa Barbara Remote Sensing. The THEMIS investigation is led by Dr. Philip Christensen at Arizona State University. Lockheed Martin Astronautics, Denver, is the prime contractor for the Odyssey project, and developed and built the orbiter. Mission operations are conducted jointly from Lockheed Martin and from JPL, a division of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena.

  13. Intermediate complex morphophysiological dormancy in seeds of the cold desert sand dune geophyte Eremurus anisopterus (Xanthorrhoeaceae; Liliaceae s.l.)

    PubMed Central

    Mamut, Jannathan; Tan, Dun Yan; Baskin, Carol C.; Baskin, Jerry M.

    2014-01-01

    Background and Aims Little is known about morphological (MD) or morphophysiological (MPD) dormancy in cold desert species and in particular those in Liliaceae sensu lato, an important floristic element in the cold deserts of Central Asia with underdeveloped embyos. The primary aim of this study was to determine if seeds of the cold desert liliaceous perennial ephemeral Eremurus anisopterus has MD or MPD, and, if it is MPD, then at what level. Methods Embryo growth and germination was monitored in seeds subjected to natural and simulated natural temperature regimes and the effects of after-ripening and GA3 on dormancy break were tested. In addition, the temperature requirements for embryo growth and dormancy break were investigated. Key Results At the time of seed dispersal in summer, the embryo length:seed length (E:S) ratio was 0·73, but it increased to 0·87 before germination. Fresh seeds did not germinate during 1 month of incubation in either light or darkness over a range of temperatures. Thus, seeds have MPD, and, after >12 weeks incubation at 5/2 °C, both embryo growth and germination occurred, showing that they have a complex level of MPD. Since both after-ripening and GA3 increase the germination percentage, seeds have intermediate complex MPD. Conclusions Embryos in after-ripened seeds of E. anisopterus can grow at low temperatures in late autumn, but if the soil is dry in autumn then growth is delayed until snowmelt wets the soil in early spring. The ecological advantage of embryo growth phenology is that seeds can germinate at a time (spring) when sand moisture conditions in the desert are suitable for seedling establishment. PMID:25180288

  14. Sand and Water Play: Simple, Creative Activities for Young Children.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    West, Sherrie; Cox, Amy

    Based on the view that creative play and hands-on experiences are essential to the development of well-balanced children and that their teachers have the responsibility to create an environment that can stimulate children's senses and curiosity, this book provides activities incorporating the use of sand and water tables into the classroom on a…

  15. Mars Global Digital Dune Database; MC-1

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hayward, R.K.; Fenton, L.K.; Tanaka, K.L.; Titus, T.N.; Colaprete, A.; Christensen, P.R.

    2010-01-01

    The Mars Global Digital Dune Database presents data and describes the methodology used in creating the global database of moderate- to large-size dune fields on Mars. The database is being released in a series of U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) Open-File Reports. The first release (Hayward and others, 2007) included dune fields from 65 degrees N to 65 degrees S (http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2007/1158/). The current release encompasses ~ 845,000 km2 of mapped dune fields from 65 degrees N to 90 degrees N latitude. Dune fields between 65 degrees S and 90 degrees S will be released in a future USGS Open-File Report. Although we have attempted to include all dune fields, some have likely been excluded for two reasons: (1) incomplete THEMIS IR (daytime) coverage may have caused us to exclude some moderate- to large-size dune fields or (2) resolution of THEMIS IR coverage (100m/pixel) certainly caused us to exclude smaller dune fields. The smallest dune fields in the database are ~ 1 km2 in area. While the moderate to large dune fields are likely to constitute the largest compilation of sediment on the planet, smaller stores of sediment of dunes are likely to be found elsewhere via higher resolution data. Thus, it should be noted that our database excludes all small dune fields and some moderate to large dune fields as well. Therefore, the absence of mapped dune fields does not mean that such dune fields do not exist and is not intended to imply a lack of saltating sand in other areas. Where availability and quality of THEMIS visible (VIS), Mars Orbiter Camera narrow angle (MOC NA), or Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO) Context Camera (CTX) images allowed, we classified dunes and included some dune slipface measurements, which were derived from gross dune morphology and represent the prevailing wind direction at the last time of significant dune modification. It was beyond the scope of this report to look at the detail needed to discern subtle dune modification. It was also

  16. Dunes Reveal Unprecedented Circulation Patterns During Great Plains Droughts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Oglesby, R. J.; Rowe, C. M.; Loope, D. B.; Sridhar, V.; Swinehart, J. B.; Mason, J. A.

    2006-12-01

    The Nebraska Sand Hills consist of sand dunes that currently are immobile, because growing season rainfall is sufficient for prairie grass growth, which in turn stabilizes the dunes. These dunes have undergone numerous periods of activation and mobility in the past, presumably because prolonged drought conditions removed the vegetation cover. In particular, dune reactivation occurred during the Medieval Warm Period (MWP) 800-1000 years ago. Analysis of dune morphology also provides one of the very few means of directly determining wind direction for pre-instrumental periods. Modern day winds over the Sand Hills (and central Great Plains as a whole) are dominantly from the northwest in winter, and from the southeast in late spring and summer. These southeast winds transport considerable moisture from the Gulf of Mexico and Caribbean, and hence play a key role in the May through July rainy season that occurs at present. Analysis of the dunes that activated during the MWP shows that the dominant winds must have been from the northwest and from the southwest. Assuming that the northwest winds reflected a winter pattern similar to that at present, the spring and summer wind regime and associated circulation patterns must have been very different. Southwesterly winds do occur at present, but only aloft, where they transport hot dry air from the Mexican plateau. We infer that during the MWP these southwesterlies must have reached the surface, sharply reducing moisture transport and yielding hot dry conditions relative to the present. Analysis of NCEP reanalyses from 1949-2002, as well as daily wind data from selected weather stations in and around the Sand Hills, yields no present-day analog, not even individual years, during which southwesterlies dominated during May through June. This implies that circulation patterns responsible for inducing and/or enhancing long-term drought over the central US may be very different than anything experienced during the recent times of

  17. Layer Outcrops and Dunes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2003-01-01

    MGS MOC Release No. MOC2-561, 1 December 2003

    This October 2003 Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC) picture shows dark, windblown sand dunes amid outcrops of light-toned, sedimentary rock in a crater in western Arabia Terra. The darkest material in the scene is windblown sand; the steep slopes--the slip faces--of the dunes face toward the southwest (lower left), indicating that wind transport of sand has been from the northeast (upper right). The layered mounds are the remains of sedimentary rock that were once more extensive across this crater floor. The image is located near 8.9oN, 1.2oW, and covers an area 3 km (1.9 mi) wide. Sunlight illuminates the scene from the lower left.

  18. Breeding and solitary wave behavior of dunes.

    PubMed

    Durán, O; Schwämmle, V; Herrmann, H

    2005-08-01

    Beautiful dune patterns can be found in deserts and along coasts due to the instability of a plain sheet of sand under the action of the wind. Barchan dunes are highly mobile aeolian dunes found in areas of low sand availability and unidirectional wind fields. Up to now modelization mainly focused on single dunes or dune patterns without regarding the mechanisms of dune interactions. We study the case when a small dune bumps into a bigger one. Recently Schwämmle and Herrmann [Nature (London) 426, 610 (2003)] and Katsuki [(e-print cond-mat 0403312)] have shown that under certain circumstances dunes can behave like solitary waves. This means that they can "cross" each other which has been questioned by many researchers before. In other cases we observe coalescence--i.e., both dunes merge into one--breeding--i.e., the creation of three baby dunes at the center and horns of a Barchan dune--or budding--i.e., the small dune, after "crossing" the big one, is unstable and splits into two new dunes.

  19. Namibian Analogs To Titan Dunes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wall, Stephen D.; Lopes, R.; Kirk, R.; Stofan, E.; Farr, T.; Van der Ploeg, P.; Lorenz, R.; Radebaugh, J.

    2009-09-01

    Titan's equatorial dunes, observed in Cassini SAR, have been described as longitudinal, similar to longitudinal dunes in the Namib sand sea in southern Africa. Their "Y” junctions and the way they divert around topography are used as evidence of equatorial wind flow direction. In two instances of such diversion they exhibit overlying or crosshatched patterns in two distinct directions that have been interpreted as a transition to transverse dunes. Here we describe field observations of the Namibian dunes and these comparisons, we present images of the dunes from terrestrial SAR missions, and we discuss implications to both the Titan dunes and the wind regime that created them. Selected portions of the Namibian dunes resemble Titan's dunes in peak-to-peak distance and length. They are morphologically similar to Titan, and specific superficial analogs are common, but they also differ. For example, when Titan dunes encounter topography they either terminate abruptly, "climb” the upslope, or divert around; only the latter behavior is seen in remote sensing images of Namibia. Namib linear dunes do transition to transverse as they divert, but at considerably smaller wavelength, while at Titan the wavelengths are of the same scale. Crosshatching of similar-wavelength dunes does occur in Namibia, but not near obstacles. Many additional aeolian features that are seen at Namibia such as star dunes, serpentine ridges and scours have not been detected on Titan, although they might be below the Cassini SAR's 300-m resolution. These similarities and differences allow us to explore mechanisms of Titan dune formation, in some cases giving us clues as to what larger scale evidence to look for in SAR images. Viewed at similar resolution, they provide interesting comparisons with the Titan dunes, both in likeness and differences. A part of this work was carried out at JPL under contract with NASA.

  20. Late Quaternary stratigraphy and geochronology of the western Killpecker Dunes, Wyoming, USA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Mayer, J.H.; Mahan, S.A.

    2004-01-01

    New stratigraphic and geochronologic data from the Killpecker Dunes in southwestern Wyoming facilitate a more precise understanding of the dune field's history. Prior investigations suggested that evidence for late Pleistocene eolian activity in the dune field was lacking. However, luminescence ages from eolian sand of ???15,000 yr, as well as Folsom (12,950-11,950 cal yr B.P.) and Agate Basin (12,600-10,700 cal yr) artifacts overlying eolian sand, indicate the dune field existed at least during the latest Pleistocene, with initial eolian sedimentation probably occurring under a dry periglacial climate. The period between ???13,000 and 8900 cal yr B.P. was characterized by relatively slow eolian sedimentation concomitant with soil formation. Erosion occurred between ???8182 and 6600 cal yr B.P. on the upwind region of the dune field, followed by relative stability and soil formation between ???5900 and 2700 cal yr B.P. The first of at least two latest Holocene episodes of eolian sedimentation occurred between ???2000 and 1500 yr, followed by a brief (???500 yr) episode of soil formation; a second episode of sedimentation, occurring by at least ???700 yr, may coincide with a hypothesized Medieval warm period. Recent stabilization of the western Killpecker Dunes likely occurred during the Little Ice Age (???350-100 yr B.P.). The eolian chronology of the western Killpecker Dunes correlates reasonably well with those of other major dune fields in the Wyoming Basin, suggesting that dune field reactivation resulted primarily due to departures toward aridity during the late Quaternary. Similar to dune fields on the central Great Plains, dune fields in the Wyoming Basin have been active under a periglacial climate during the late Pleistocene, as well as under near-modern conditions during the latest Holocene. ?? 2003 University of Washington. All rights reserved.

  1. Dune formation on the present Mars.

    PubMed

    Parteli, Eric J R; Herrmann, Hans J

    2007-10-01

    We apply a model for sand dunes to calculate formation of dunes on Mars under the present Martian atmospheric conditions. We find that different dune shapes as those imaged by Mars Global Surveyor could have been formed by the action of sand-moving winds occurring on today's Mars. Our calculations show, however, that Martian dunes could be only formed due to the higher efficiency of Martian winds in carrying grains into saltation. The model equations are solved to study saltation transport under different atmospheric conditions valid for Mars. We obtain an estimate for the wind speed and migration velocity of barchan dunes at different places on Mars. From comparison with the shape of bimodal sand dunes, we find an estimate for the time scale of the changes in Martian wind regimes.

  2. The Mediterranean Coastal Dunes in Egypt: An Endangered Landscape

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Batanouny, K. H.

    1999-08-01

    The Mediterranean coast in Egypt extends almost 900 km, the major part of which is bordered by sand dunes of different natures and types. Along the coastline between Alexandria and El-Alamein, a distance of some 100 km, the sand dunes represent a particular landscape with special characteristics and features, and consequently plants with particular attributes. In this area, the belt of sand dunes has developed immediately south of the shore and these dunes may rise up to 10 m in height and extend about 0·5-1·5 km inland from the shore. These dunes are famous as a habitat for the fig (Ficus carica L.) cultivation depending on the irregular rainfall. They also represent a landing station and a cross-road for birds such as quail migrating from Europe in the north. In the past, summer resort areas were confined to limited areas with few people, these same areas support the growth of some important plant species, for example, sand binders, medicinal and range plants. For more than two decades, there has been considerable socio-economic change and an open-door policy in the economy of the country has been adopted. One of the consequences of this change is that a great part of the coastal dune belt west of Alexandria till El-Alamein, has been subjected to destruction, due to the continuous construction of summer resort villages. These were built at a distance of about 100 m of the shoreline, extending 400-600 m inland and a breadth of 400 m or more along the shoreline. The area already covered by the dunes is now almost occupied by new buildings, gardens and other infrastructure. The consequences of these human activities are numerous and include impacts on the soil, water resources, the flora and the fauna, migrating birds, trends of the indigenous people, and the cultural environment. The present paper gives a concise environmental setting of the dune belt before the advent of the new activities, and the socio-economic and political attitudes which threaten the dunes

  3. Mean residence time in barchan dunes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, D.; Yang, X.; Rozier, O.; Narteau, C.

    2013-12-01

    A barchan dune migrates when the sediment trapped on its lee side is remobilized by the flow. Then, sand grains may undergo many dune turnover cycles before their ejection along the horns, but the amount of time a sand grain contributes to the dune morphodynamics remains unknown. To estimate such a residence time, we analyze sediment particle motions in steady-state barchan dunes by tracking individual cells of a 3D cellular automaton dune model. The overall sediment flux may be decomposed into advective and dispersive fluxes to estimate the relative contribution of the underlying physical processes to the barchan dune shape. The net lateral sediment transport from the center to the horns indicates that dispersion on the stoss slope is more efficient than avalanches on the lee slope. The combined effect of these two antagonistic dispersive processes restricts the lateral mixing of sediment particles in the central region of barchan dunes. Then, for different flow strengths and dune sizes, we find that the mean residence time of sediment particles in barchan dunes is equal to the surface of the central longitudinal dune slices divided by the input sand flux. We infer that this central slice contains most of the relevant information about barchan dune morphodynamics. Finally, we initiate a discussion about sediment transport and memory in presence of bed forms using the advantages of the particle tracking technique.

  4. Geochemical evidence for a complex origin for the Kelso dunes, Mojave National Preserve, California USA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Muhs, Daniel; Lancaster, Nicholas; Skipp, Gary L.

    2017-01-01

    The Kelso Dune field in southern California is intriguing because although it is of limited areal extent (~ 100 km2), it has a wide variety of dune forms and contains many active dunes (~ 40 km2), which is unusual in the Mojave Desert. Studies over the past eight decades have concluded that the dunes are derived primarily from a single source, Mojave River alluvium, under a dominant, westerly-to-northwesterly wind regime. The majority of these studies did not, however, present data to support the Mojave River as the only source. We conducted mineralogical and geochemical studies of most of the 14 geomorphically defined dune groups of the Kelso Dune field as well as potential sand sources, alluvial sediments from the surrounding mountain ranges. Results indicate that sands in the nine western dune groups have K/Rb and K/Ba (primarily from K-feldspar) compositions that are indistinguishable from Mojave River alluvium (westerly/northwesterly winds) and Budweiser Wash alluvium (southwesterly winds), permitting an interpretation of two sources. In contrast, sands from the five eastern dune groups have K/Rb and K/Ba values that indicate significant inputs from alluvial fan deposits of the Providence Mountains. This requires either rare winds from the east or southeast or, more likely, aeolian reworking of distal Providence Mountain fan sediments by winds from the west, at a rate greater than input from the Mojave River or other western sources. The results indicate that even a small dune field can have a complex origin, either from seasonally varying winds or complex alluvial-fan-dune interaction. Application of K/Rb and K/Ba in K-feldspar as a provenance indicator could be used in many of the world's ergs or sand seas, where dune origins are still not well understood or are controversial. Four examples are given from Africa and the Middle East where such an approach could yield useful new information about dune sand provenance.

  5. Sand transport on Mars: Preliminary results from models

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Greeley, R.; Anderson, F. S.; Blumberg, D.; Lo, E.; Xu, P.; Pollack, J.

    1993-01-01

    Most studies of active aeolian processes on Mars have focused on dust, i.e., particles approximately 1 micron in diameter that are transported in suspension by wind. The presence of sand dunes on Mars indicates that larger grains (approximately greater than 60 microns, transported primarily in saltation) are also present. Although indirect evidence suggests that some dunes may be active, definitive evidence is lacking. Nonetheless, numerous studies demonstrate that sand is substantially easier to transport by wind than dust, and it is reasonable to infer that sand transportation in saltation occurs under present Martian conditions. In order to assess potential source regions, transportation pathways, and sites of deposition for sand on Mars, an iterative sand transport algorithm was developed that is based on the Mars General Circulation Model of Pollack et al. The results of the dust transport model are then compared with observed surface features, such as dune field locations observed on images, and surficial deposits as inferred from Viking IRTM observations. Preliminary results suggest that the north polar dune fields in the vicinity of 270 degrees W, 70 degrees N originated from weathered polar layered plains centered at 280 degrees W, 85 degrees N, and that Thaumasia Fossae, southern Hellas Planitia, and the area west of Hellespontus Montes are sand depositional sites. Examples of transportation 'corridors' include a westward pathway in the latitudinal band 35 degrees N to 45 degrees N, and a pathway southward from Solis Planum to Thaumasia Fossae, among others.

  6. Russell Dune Gullies

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2005-01-01

    5 November 2005 This Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC) image shows gullies and dust devil streaks on the slopes of a large dune in Russell Crater. Gullies on martian dunes typically occur only in the Noachis Terra region, and almost exclusively form on southward-facing slopes. They might be the result of downslope movement of sand mixed with a fluid such as carbon dioxide gas or water that had been trapped as ice in the dune.

    Location near: 54.6oS, 347.2oW Image width: width: 3 km (1.9 mi) Illumination from: upper left Season: Southern Spring

  7. Dunes with Frost

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2004-01-01

    31 May 2004 Springtime for the martian northern hemisphere brings defrosting spots and patterns to the north polar dune fields. This Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC) image shows an example located near 76.7oN, 250.4oW. In summer, these dunes would be darker than their surroundings. However, while they are still covered by frost, they are not any darker than the substrate across which the sand is slowly traveling. Dune movement in this case is dominated by winds that blow from the southwest (lower left) toward the northeast (upper right). The picure covers an area about 3 km (1.9 mi) across and is illuminated by sunlight from the lower left.

  8. Aligned Defrosting Dunes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2004-01-01

    17 August 2004 This July 2004 Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC) image shows a group of aligned barchan sand dunes in the martian north polar region. At the time, the dunes were covered with seasonal frost, but the frost had begun to sublime away, leaving dark spots and dark outlines around the dunes. The surrounding plains exhibit small, diffuse spots that are also the result of subliming seasonal frost. This northern spring image, acquired on a descending ground track (as MGS was moving north to south on the 'night' side of Mars) is located near 78.8oN, 34.8oW. The image covers an area about 3 km (1.9 mi) across and sunlight illuminates the scene from the upper left.

  9. Dunes of the North

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2005-01-01

    30 March 2005 This Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC) image shows linear and barchan sand dunes in Chasma Boreale, a broad erosional trough in the martian north polar region. Winds responsible for these dunes generally blow from upper right toward the lower left. Martian dunes tend to be darker than their counterparts on Earth because they are composed of darker, iron-bearing minerals and rock fragments.

    Location near: 84.2oN, 37.9oW Image width: 3 km (1.9 mi) Illumination from: lower left Season: Northern Summer

  10. Bifurcation analysis of the transition of dune shapes under a unidirectional wind.

    PubMed

    Niiya, Hirofumi; Awazu, Akinori; Nishimori, Hiraku

    2012-04-13

    A bifurcation analysis of dune shape transition is made. By use of a reduced model of dune morphodynamics, the Dune Skeleton model, we elucidate the transition mechanism between different shapes of dunes under unidirectional wind. It was found that the decrease in the total amount of sand in the system and/or the lateral sand flow shifts the stable state from a straight transverse dune to a wavy transverse dune through a pitchfork bifurcation. A further decrease causes wavy transverse dunes to shift into barchans through a Hopf bifurcation. These bifurcation structures reveal the transition mechanism of dune shapes under unidirectional wind.

  11. Springtime Dunes, 2004

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2004-01-01

    12 April 2004 Today is April 12, 2004, the 43rd anniversary of the first human flight into space (Yuri Gagarin, 1961) and the 23rd anniversary of the first NASA Space Shuttle flight (Columbia, 1981). Meanwhile, on Mars, spring is in full swing in the martian northern hemisphere. With spring comes the annual defrosting of the north polar dunes. This Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC) image, acquired on April 7, 2004, shows a field of small barchan (crescent-shaped) dunes covered with the remains of wintertime frost. The dark spots around the base of each dune mark the first signs of the spring thaw. The sand in these dunes is dark, like the black sand beaches of Hawaii or the dark, sandy soil of the rover, Opportunity, landing site, but in winter and spring their dark tone is obscured by bright carbon dioxide frost. This picture is located near 75.9oN, 45.3oW, and covers an area about 3 km (1.9 mi) across. Sunlight illuminates the scene from the lower left.

  12. 75 FR 3915 - Environmental Documents Prepared in Support of Sand and Gravel Activities on the Outer...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2010-01-25

    ... Minerals Management Service Environmental Documents Prepared in Support of Sand and Gravel Activities on... for three sand and gravel activities proposed on the Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) and described in... noncompetitive basis, the rights to OCS sand, gravel, or shell resources for shore protection, beach or...

  13. Movement of Whole Martian Dunes Difficult to Detect or Confirm

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2000-01-01

    Dunes on Earth move downwind at different speeds depending upon the local wind conditions, the amount of loose sand available to be transported by wind, the shape and volume of the dunes, and overgrowths of vegetation. Typically, smaller dunes move faster than larger dunes. On Earth, some of the fastest-moving dunes that have been measured (e.g., in the deserts of Peru) move 10 to 30 meters (33 to 100 feet) per year. Small dunes usually have an almost crescent-shape to them, and are known to geologists as barchan dunes.

    To look for evidence of dune movement on Mars, the Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC) has been used to re-visit some areas of known barchan dunes--because these types move the fastest--that were observed by the Mariner 9 orbiter in 1972 and the Viking 1 and 2 orbiters between 1976 and 1980. The picture above, left, shows a MOC high-resolution image taken December 25, 1999. The classic, crescentic shape of the dark barchan dunes can be seen in this picture. The steep slopes, also known as the dune slip faces, on these dunes are facing toward the southwest (north is up in both pictures). Thus, the shape of the dunes indicates that they are moving toward the southwest.

    The picture above right shows the MOC image from December 1999 superimposed on a Viking 1 image taken May 27, 1978. During the 11 1/2 Mars years that passed between these two dates, it turns out that no difference can be detected in the position of the dunes seen in the MOC image and the Viking image. The earlier Viking image had a resolution of about 17 meters (56 ft) per pixel, while the MOC image had a resolution of about 3.8 meters (12 ft) per pixel. Although it looks like the dunes didn't move between the Viking and MOC images, this observation is limited by the resolution of the Viking image. It is entirely possible that the dunes have moved as much as 17-20 meters (16-66 ft) and one would not be able to tell by comparing the images. As it is, movement

  14. Effect of silica sand on activation energy for diffusion of sodium ions in montmorillonite and silica sand mixture.

    PubMed

    Liu, Jinhong; Yamada, Hiromichi; Kozaki, Tamotsu; Sato, Seichi; Ohashi, Hiroshi

    2003-03-01

    The effect of silica sand on the diffusion of sodium ions in mixtures of montmorillonite and silica sand was studied by measuring the apparent diffusion coefficients, activation energies for diffusion, and the basal spacing of the mixed samples. These diffusion experiments suggest that the apparent diffusion coefficients of sodium ions in the mixed samples were almost the same as those of pure montmorillonite samples having the same partial dry densities of montmorillonite. The activation energy dependence for diffusion of sodium ions on the partial dry density was different between the mixed samples and the pure montmorillonite samples. The activation energy increased by adding silica sand at the partial dry density of 1.0 Mg m(-3), and decreased by adding silica sand at the partial dry densities higher than 1.2 Mg m(-3). A change in the XRD profile was observed after adding silica sand at the partial dry density of 1.6 Mg m(-3). Here, a three-water-layer hydrate state of montmorillonite was found in the mixed sample whereas only a two-water-layer hydrate state was observed in the pure montmorillonite sample. These experimental results suggest that silica sand changed the montmorillonite microstructure in the mixed samples, which then altered the sodium-ion diffusion process.

  15. Remobilization of southern African desert dune systems by twenty-first century global warming.

    PubMed

    Thomas, David S G; Knight, Melanie; Wiggs, Giles F S

    2005-06-30

    Although desert dunes cover 5 per cent of the global land surface and 30 per cent of Africa, the potential impacts of twenty-first century global warming on desert dune systems are not well understood. The inactive Sahel and southern African dune systems, which developed in multiple arid phases since the last interglacial period, are used today by pastoral and agricultural systems that could be disrupted if climate change alters twenty-first century dune dynamics. Empirical data and model simulations have established that the interplay between dune surface erodibility (determined by vegetation cover and moisture availability) and atmospheric erosivity (determined by wind energy) is critical for dunefield dynamics. This relationship between erodibility and erosivity is susceptible to climate-change impacts. Here we use simulations with three global climate models and a range of emission scenarios to assess the potential future activity of three Kalahari dunefields. We determine monthly values of dune activity by modifying and improving an established dune mobility index so that it can account for global climate model data outputs. We find that, regardless of the emission scenario used, significantly enhanced dune activity is simulated in the southern dunefield by 2039, and in the eastern and northern dunefields by 2069. By 2099 all dunefields are highly dynamic, from northern South Africa to Angola and Zambia. Our results suggest that dunefields are likely to be reactivated (the sand will become significantly exposed and move) as a consequence of twenty-first century climate warming.

  16. Ripples or Dunes?

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2004-01-01

    This approximate true-color image taken by the Mars Exploration Rover Spirit's panoramic camera shows the windblown waves of soil that characterize the rocky surface of Gusev Crater, Mars. Scientists were puzzled about whether these geologic features were 'ripples' or 'dunes.' Ripples are shaped by gentle winds that deposit coarse grains on the tops or crests of the waves. Dunes are carved by faster winds and contain a more uniform distribution of material. Images taken of these features by the rover's microscopic imager on the 41st martian sol, or day, of the rover's mission revealed their identity to be ripples. This information helps scientists better understand the winds that shape the landscape of Mars. This image was taken early in Spirit's mission.

    [figure removed for brevity, see original site] Click on image for larger view [Image credit: NASA/JPL/ASU]

    This diagram illustrates how windblown sediments travel. There are three basic types of particles that undergo different motions depending on their size. These particles are dust, sand and coarse sand, and their sizes approximate flour, sugar, and ball bearings, respectively. Sand particles move along the 'saltation' path, hitting the surface downwind. When the sand hits the surface, it sends dust into the atmosphere and gives coarse sand a little shove. Mars Exploration Rover scientists are studying the distribution of material on the surface of Mars to better understand how winds shaped the landscape.

  17. 'Endurance Crater's' Dazzling Dunes (false-color)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2004-01-01

    As NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity creeps farther into 'Endurance Crater,' the dune field on the crater floor appears even more dramatic. This false-color image taken by the rover's panoramic camera shows that the dune crests have accumulated more dust than the flanks of the dunes and the flat surfaces between them. Also evident is a 'blue' tint on the flat surfaces as compared to the dune flanks. This results from the presence of the hematite-containing spherules ('blueberries') that accumulate on the flat surfaces.

    Sinuous tendrils of sand less than 1 meter (3.3 feet) high extend from the main dune field toward the rover. Scientists hope to send the rover down to one of these tendrils in an effort to learn more about the characteristics of the dunes. Dunes are a common feature across the surface of Mars, and knowledge gleaned from investigating the Endurance dunes close-up may apply to similar dunes elsewhere.

    Before the rover heads down to the dunes, rover drivers must first establish whether the slippery slope that leads to them is firm enough to ensure a successful drive back out of the crater. Otherwise, such hazards might make the dune field a true sand trap.

  18. Sands-on Learning.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Vandervoort, Frances S.

    1989-01-01

    Provides information for the development of a lesson which teaches students about sand, discusses facts about sands, sand studies, life in the sands, and sand activities. Includes diagrams showing the range in sand grain shape, formation of sand ripples, and sand samples from around the world. (RT)

  19. Terrestrial analogs of the hellespontus dunes, Mars

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Breed, C.S.

    1977-01-01

    Geomorphic features in the Hellespontus region, Mars, were compared with dunes of the crescentic ridge type in numerous terrestrial sand seas quantitatively by dimensional analysis of dune lengths, widths, and wavelengths. Mean values for the Hellespontus dunes are close to mean values derived from measurements of all sampled terrestrial sand seas. Terrestrial analogs of form and areal distribution of the Hellespontus dunes are shown by comparison of scale ratios derived from the measurements. Dunes of similar form occur in South West Africa, in Pakistan, in the southeastern Arabian peninsula, in the Sahara, in eastern USSR and northern China, and in western North America. Terrestrial analogs closest to form and areal distribution of the Hellespontus dunes are in the Kara Kum Desert, Turkmen SSR, and in the Ala Shan (Gobi) Desert, China. ?? 1977.

  20. Discrimination of inland and coastal dunes in Eastern Saudi Arabia desert system: An approach from particle size and textural parameter variations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Koeshidayatullah, Ardiansyah; Chan, Septriandi Asmaidi; Al-Ghamdi, Majed; Akif, Tariq; Al-Ramadan, Khalid

    2016-05-01

    Different particle size parameters have been investigated in this study in order to distinguish the characteristics of different dune morphologies in the Eastern Saudi Arabia. Sand samples were collected from various environments including: the stoss, lee, crest and interdune sides of the inland dunes and foreshore; berm; backshore and backdune of the coastal dunes. Statistical parameters reveal that the majority of inland dune samples are dominated by well sorted fine sand whereas coastal dune samples are mainly dominated by very coarse to medium sand, ranging from well sorted to moderately sorted with a low percentage of silt and clay. The presence of relatively coarser grains in the coastal dunes might be explained by continuous wind deflation along the coast together with wave and tidal activities that concentrate coarser grains. Cross-plots from four statistical parameters and supported by the ANOVA test clearly distinguish the particle variations between these dunes. The log-probability analysis suggest that the main transport mechanism in inland and coastal dunes is dominated by the saltation population, comprising up to 80 percent of the distribution. However, the coastal dunes suspension population is mostly belonging to coarser grained material, whereas the inland dunes population is finer. In comparison with particle size characteristics of dunes in the region, the current study shows a close relationship to mean particle size in Iraq, but is relatively finer compared to the Kuwait dunes. This similarity and difference in particle size variation is mostly controlled by the proximity to the coast and also the wind energy and variation in the wind direction.

  1. Sand rubification with time? The case of the Sinai - Negev erg

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Roskin, J.; Rozenstein, O.; Tsoar, H.; Blumberg, D. G.; Porat, N.

    2012-04-01

    The redness index (RI) (RI = R2/(B*G3) of aeolian sand has been shown to be a promising qualitative spectroscopic method to define sand grain redness intensity, which reflects the extent of iron-oxide quartz grain coatings(1,2). Using the RI, this study investigates the relationship between redness intensity and optically stimulated luminescence (OSL) based depositional ages of sand samples taken from exposed and fully-drilled vegetated linear dunes in the northwestern Negev dunefield, Israel at the downwind end of the Sinai Negev erg. Sand redness intensity did not vary greatly along the Negev sand transport paths and dune sections dated to be active during the Late Pleistocene, late Holocene, and modern times. No correlation was found between RI intensity (i.e., redness) and the depositional age of the sand. The relatively uniform RI values and sedimentological properties along most of the dunes suggest that sand grain coating development, and consequent rubification, have probably been minimal since the Late Pleistocene. Although it is possible that RI developed rapidly following deposition in a wetter Late Pleistocene climate, the drier and less stormy Holocene does not seem conducive to sand-grain rubification. Based on analyses of northern Sinai sand samples, remote sensing, and previous studies, we suggest that the attributes of the sand grain RI have been inherited from upwind sources. We propose that the sand grain coatings are early diagenetic features that have been similarly red since their suggested aeolian departure from the middle and upper Nile Delta.

  2. Origin of the late quaternary dune fields of northeastern Colorado

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Muhs, D.R.; Stafford, T.W.; Cowherd, S.D.; Mahan, S.A.; Kihl, R.; Maat, P.B.; Bush, C.A.; Nehring, J.

    1996-01-01

    Stabilized eolian deposits, mostly parabolic dunes and sand sheets, cover much of the landscape of northeastern Colorado and adjacent parts of southwestern Nebraska in four geographically distinct dune fields. Stratigraphic and soil-geomorphic relations and accelerator radiocarbon dating indicate that at least three episodes of eolian sand movement occurred between 27 ka and 11 ka, possibly between 11 ka and 4 ka, and within the past 1.5 ka. Thus, eolian sand deposition took place under both glacial and interglacial climatic conditions. In the youngest episodes of eolian sand movement, Holocene parabolic dunes partially buried Pleistocene sand sheet deposits. Late Holocene sands in the Fort Morgan and Wray dune fields, to the south of the South Platte River, have trace element ratios that are indistinguishable from modern South Platte River sands, but different from Ogallala Formation bedrock, which has previously been cited as the main source of dune sand on the Great Plains. Sands in the Greeley dune field, to the north of the South Platte River, have trace element concentrations that indicate a probable Laramie Formation source. Measurements of parabolic dunes indicate paleowinds from the northwest in all dune fields, in good agreement with resultant drift directions calculated for nearby weather stations. Thus, paleowinds were probably not significantly different from present-day winds, and are consistent with a South Platte River source for the Fort Morgan and Wray dune fields, and a Laramie Formation source for the Greeley dune field. Sand accumulated downwind of the South Platte River to form the Fort Morgan dune field. In addition, sand was also transported farther downwind over the upland formed by the calcrete caprock of the Ogallala Formation, and deposited in die lee of the upland on the southeast side. Because of high wind energy, the upland itself served as a zone of sand transport, but little or no sand accumulation took place on this surface. These

  3. Relevant length scale of barchan dunes.

    PubMed

    Hersen, Pascal; Douady, Stéphane; Andreotti, Bruno

    2002-12-23

    A new experiment can create small scale barchan dunes under water: some sand is put on a tray moving periodically and asymmetrically in a water tank, and barchans rapidly form. We measure basic morphological and dynamical properties of these dunes and compare them to field data. These favorable results demonstrate experimentally the relevance of the so-called "saturation length" for the control of the dunes physics.

  4. Predicting vegetation-stabilized dune morphology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barchyn, T.; Hugenholtz, C.

    2012-04-01

    The morphology of vegetation-stabilized dune fields on the North American Great Plains mostly comprises parabolic dunes; stabilized barchan and transverse dunes are rare. One notable exception is the Nebraska Sand Hills (NSH), where massive grass-covered barchan and transverse dunes bear proof of former desert-like conditions. We present a hypothesis from a numerical dune field model to explain the vegetation-stabilized morphology of dunes. The model incorporates a growth curve that preferentially grows vegetation in regions of sediment deposition with a sharp drop in growth at the peak depositional tolerance of vegetation, qualitatively matching biological response to erosion and deposition. Simulations on a range of pre-stabilization dune morphologies, from large closely-spaced transverse dunes to small dispersed barchans, indicate that the stabilized morphology is largely determined by the ratio of slipface deposition rate to peak depositional tolerance of vegetation. Conceptually, slipface deposition rate is related to dune height and celerity. By keeping depositional tolerance constant (representing a constant vegetation type and climate) the model shows that large slow-moving dunes have low slipface deposition rates and essentially 'freeze' in place once vegetation is introduced, retaining their pre-vegetation morphology. Small fast-moving dunes have higher slipface deposition rates and evolve into parabolic dunes. We hypothesize that, when barchan and transverse dunes are subjected to a stabilizing climate shift that increases vegetation growth rate, they retain their pre-stabilization morphology if deposition rates are below the depositional tolerance of stabilizing vegetation, otherwise they become parabolic dunes. This could explain why NSH dunes are stabilized in barchan and transverse morphologies while elsewhere on the Great Plains dune fields are dominated by smaller parabolic dunes.

  5. Stratigraphic Architecture of Aeolian Dune Interactions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brothers, S. C.; Kocurek, G.

    2015-12-01

    Dune interactions, which consist of collisions and detachments, are a known driver of changing dune morphology and provide the dynamics for field-scale patterning. Although interactions are ubiquitous in modern dune fields, the stratigraphic record of interactions has not been explored. This raises the possibility that an entire class of signature architectures of bounding surfaces and cross-strata has gone misidentified or unrecognized. A unique data set for the crescentic dunes of the White Sands Dune Field, New Mexico, allows for the coupling of dune interactions with their resultant stratigraphic architecture. Dune interactions are documented by a decadal time-series of aerial photos and LiDAR-derived digital elevation models. Plan-view cross-strata in interdune areas provide a record tying past dune positions and morphologies to the current dunes. Three-dimensional stratigraphic architecture is revealed by imaging of dune interiors with ground-penetrating radar. The architecture of a dune defect merging with a target dune downwind consists of lateral truncation of the target dune set by an interaction bounding surface. Defect cross-strata tangentially approach and downlap onto the surface. Downwind, the interaction surface curves, and defect and adjacent target dune sets merge into a continuous set. Predictable angular relationships reflect field-scale patterns of dune migration direction and approach angle of migrating defects. The discovery of interaction architectures emphasizes that although dunes appear as continuous forms on the surface, they consist of discrete segments, each with a distinct morphodynamic history. Bedform interactions result in the morphologic recombination of dune bodies, which is manifested stratigraphically within the sets of cross-strata.

  6. Size of Suspended Sediment Over Dunes

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Samples of suspended sediment were collected at four elevations simultaneously over two-dimensional mobile dunes in 0.5 mm sand in a laboratory flume channel. A constant sampling position relative to the dunes was maintained by adjusting the translation rate of the sampling carriage to be the same ...

  7. Size of Suspended Sediment over Dunes

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Samples of suspended sediment were collected at four elevations simultaneously over two-dimensional mobile dunes in two mixtures of 0.5 mm sand in a laboratory flume channel. A constant sampling position relative to the dunes was maintained by adjusting the translation rate of the sampling carriage...

  8. Submarine Sand Dunes on the Continental Slope in the South China Sea and Their Impact on Internal Wave Transformation and Acoustic Propagation

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2013-09-30

    acoustical, and optical oceanographers to work on interdisciplinary problems. I collaborate frequently with numerical modelers to improve predictive skill...continental slope APPROACH The approach is to characterize the space and time scales of the dune field via repeated multibeam bottom surveys

  9. Quaternary eolian dunes in the Savannah River valley, Jasper County, South Carolina, USA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Swezey, Christopher S.; Schultz, Arthur P.; González, Wilma Alemán; Bernhardt, Christopher E.; Doar, William R.; Garrity, Christopher P.; Mahan, Shannon A.; McGeehin, John P.

    2013-09-01

    Sand hills in the Savannah River valley in Jasper County (South Carolina, USA) are interpreted as the remnants of parabolic eolian dunes composed of sand derived from the Savannah River and stabilized by vegetation under prevailing climate conditions. Optically stimulated luminescence ages reveal that most of the dunes were active ca. 40 to 19 ka ago, coincident with the last glacial maximum (LGM) through early deglaciation. Modern surface winds are not sufficient for sustained eolian sand transport. When the dunes were active, winds blew at velocities of at least 4 m/s from west to east, and some vegetation was present. The ratio of annual precipitation to potential evapotranspiration (P:PE) was less than the modern ratio of 1.23 and may have been < 0.30, caused by stronger winds (which would have resulted in greater evaporation) and/or reduced precipitation. The Savannah River dunes are part of a larger assemblage of eolian dunes that were active in the eastern United States during and immediately after the LGM, suggesting that eolian sediment behavior in this region has been controlled by regional forcing mechanisms during the Quaternary.

  10. Dune and ripple migration along Curiosity's traverse in Gale Crater on Mars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Silvestro, S.; Vaz, D.; Ewing, R. C.; Fenton, L. K.; Michaels, T. I.; Ayoub, F.; Bridges, N. T.

    2013-12-01

    The NASA Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) rover, Curiosity, has safely landed near a 35-km-long dark dune field in Gale Crater on Mars. This dune field lies along Curiosity's traverse to Aeolis Mons (Mt. Sharp). Here we present new evidence of aeolian activity and further estimate wind directions within the dune field through analysis of ripple migration with the COSI-Corr technique, which provides precise measurements of ripple displacement at the sub-pixel scale.The area analyzed is located ~10 km southwest of rover Curiosity's current position and ~4 km SW of its selected path through Aeolis Mons (Mt. Sharp) (Fig. 1a). Here barchan dunes with elongated horns and seif dunes coexist with more typical barchan and dome dunes (Fig. 1a, b), with slopes sculpted by two intersecting ripple crestline orientations trending at 45° and 330°. The range of dune types and ripple orientations indicate the dune field morphology is influenced by at least two winds from the NW and the NE. The direction of migration is toward the SW, suggesting the most recent sand transporting winds were from the NE (Fig. 1c). These results match previous predictions and can be used to forecast the wind conditions close to the entry point to Mt. Sharp. Fig. 1: a-b) Study area c) Ripple migration direction computed using the COSI-Corr technique

  11. Standards Development Activities at White Sands Test Facility

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Baker, D. L.; Beeson, H. D.; Saulsberry, R. L.; Julien, H. L.; Woods, S. S.

    2003-01-01

    The development of standards and standard activities at the JSC White Sands Test Facility (WSTF) has been expanded to include the transfer of technology and standards to voluntary consensus organizations in five technical areas of importance to NASA. This effort is in direct response to the National Technology Transfer Act designed to accelerate transfer of technology to industry and promote government-industry partnerships. Technology transfer is especially important for WSTF, whose longterm mission has been to develop and provide vital propellant safety and hazards information to aerospace designers, operations personnel, and safety personnel. Meeting this mission is being accomplished through the preparation of consensus guidelines and standards, propellant hazards analysis protocols, and safety courses for the propellant use of hydrogen, oxygen, and hypergols, as well as the design and inspection of spacecraft pressure vessels and the use of pyrovalves in spacecraft propulsion systems. The overall WSTF technology transfer program is described and the current status of technology transfer activities are summarized.

  12. They're Alive! Present-Day Evolution of Martian Dunes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Diniega, S.; Bridges, N.; Hansen, C.

    2011-01-01

    The sharp brinks and margins, smooth and steep lee slopes, and lack of superimposed landforms (such as small impact craters) on many Martian sand dunes suggests that these features are geologically young clean brinks and smooth/steep lee slopes (HiRISE image PSP_010413_1920; 20 deg N,79 deg E; image widthis about 500m).Within the last decade, and often primarily through the detailed inspection of high-resolution (HiRISE) images, we have finally found clear evidence that many dunes of Mars are active -- through both aeolian and seasonal (frost) processes. However, it is yet unclear if active dune formation does occur or if we are observing surficial modification of dunes which formed under different climate conditions.

  13. Palaeoclimate interpretations of Late Pleistocene vegetated linear dune mobilization episodes: evidence from the northwestern Negev dunefield, Israel

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Roskin, J.; Tsoar, H.; Porat, N.; Blumberg, D. G.

    2012-04-01

    The northern Sinai - northwestern (NW) Negev erg stretches east out of the Nile Delta that is believed to be the erg's sand source. The vegetated linear dune (VLD) field of the NW Negev Desert, situated at the downwind eastern end of the erg, constitutes an ideal setting for dating and interpreting its Late Quaternary dune encroachment episodes. This study builds upon the results of Roskin et al. (Age, origin and climatic controls on vegetated linear dunes in the northwestern Negev Desert (Israel), Quaternary Science Reviews 30 (2011), 1649-1674) that presented the stratigraphy of 35 sections and 97 optically stimulated luminescence (OSL) ages from the NW Negev dunefield. Here we analyze Late Pleistocene dune mobilizations and stabilizations and interpret their palaeoclimatic controls in light of regional and global dune ages, sediment records and proxies. While initial dune encroachment into, and stabilization in, the NW Negev took place during the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM) at ~23-18 ka, spatial and statistical analyses of the OSL dataset suggest that since the LGM, Negev dune activity was concentrated in two significant mobilization-stabilization episodes: a main episode at ~16-13.7 ka and a minor one at ~12.4-11.6 ka when the dunes reached their maximum spatial extent and stabilized. These episodes include rapid dune encroachment and accretion events and coincide with the Heinrich 1 and Younger Dryas cold events, respectively. The Late Pleistocene sand-transporting winds were characterized by a westerly direction that resulted in west-east VLD elongation. Dune mobilizations may have occurred in response to wintertime East Mediterranean cyclonic systems that brought storms of rainfall and strong winds. The rapid dune mobilization events and their concurrence with the Heinrich 1 and Younger Dryas cold events suggest a more global control. Despite the rainfall, the elongating VLDs were probably sparsely vegetated because of the high wind power; their stabilization

  14. Impacts of climate change on the formation and stability of late Quaternary sand sheets and falling dunes, Black Mesa region, southern Colorado Plateau, USA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ellwein, Amy L.; Mahan, Shannon; McFadden, Leslie D.

    2015-01-01

    Widely used predictive models of eolian system dynamics are typically based entirely on climatic variables and do not account for landscape complexity and geomorphic history. Climate-only assumptions fail to give accurate predictions of the dynamics of this and many other dune fields. A growing body of work suggests that eolian deposits in wind-driven semiarid climates may be more strongly related to increases in sediment supply than to increases in aridity.

  15. Russell Dune Gullies

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2003-01-01

    MGS MOC Release No. MOC2-343, 27 April 2003

    This Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC) image shows the mysterious dune gullies of Russell Crater. The terrain shown here is one very large sand dune; the surface slopes from upper right toward lower left. Gullies start on the slope at the upper right and indicate flow toward the lower left. These might have formed by the presence of a fluid-either liquid or gas-mixed with sand that avalanched down the dune slope. Or not. Their origin is unknown, although it is known that they tend to occur only on slopes facing southward. The MOC team has re-imaged these gullies several times in the past three Mars years, but no new gullies have formed. The picture covers an area about 3 km (1.9 mi) wide near 54.5oS, 347.3oW. Sunlight illuminates the scene from the upper left.

  16. Threshold for sand mobility on Mars calibrated from seasonal variations of sand flux.

    PubMed

    Ayoub, F; Avouac, J-P; Newman, C E; Richardson, M I; Lucas, A; Leprince, S; Bridges, N T

    2014-09-30

    Coupling between surface winds and saltation is a fundamental factor governing geological activity and climate on Mars. Saltation of sand is crucial for both erosion of the surface and dust lifting into the atmosphere. Wind tunnel experiments along with measurements from surface meteorology stations and modelling of wind speeds suggest that winds should only rarely move sand on Mars. However, evidence for currently active dune migration has recently accumulated. Crucially, the frequency of sand-moving events and the implied threshold wind stresses for saltation have remained unknown. Here we present detailed measurements of Nili Patera dune field based on High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment images, demonstrating that sand motion occurs daily throughout much of the year and that the resulting sand flux is strongly seasonal. Analysis of the seasonal sand flux variation suggests an effective threshold for sand motion for application to large-scale model wind fields (1-100 km scale) of τ(s)=0.01±0.0015 N m(-2).

  17. Modeling emergent large-scale structures of barchan dune fields

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Worman, S. L.; Murray, A. B.; Littlewood, R.; Andreotti, B.; Claudin, P.

    2013-10-01

    In nature, barchan dunes typically exist as members of larger fields that display striking, enigmatic structures that cannot be readily explained by examining the dynamics at the scale of single dunes, or by appealing to patterns in external forcing. To explore the possibility that observed structures emerge spontaneously as a collective result of many dunes interacting with each other, we built a numerical model that treats barchans as discrete entities that interact with one another according to simplified rules derived from theoretical and numerical work and from field observations: (1) Dunes exchange sand through the fluxes that leak from the downwind side of each dune and are captured on their upstream sides; (2) when dunes become sufficiently large, small dunes are born on their downwind sides (`calving'); and (3) when dunes collide directly enough, they merge. Results show that these relatively simple interactions provide potential explanations for a range of field-scale phenomena including isolated patches of dunes and heterogeneous arrangements of similarly sized dunes in denser fields. The results also suggest that (1) dune field characteristics depend on the sand flux fed into the upwind boundary, although (2) moving downwind, the system approaches a common attracting state in which the memory of the upwind conditions vanishes. This work supports the hypothesis that calving exerts a first-order control on field-scale phenomena; it prevents individual dunes from growing without bound, as single-dune analyses suggest, and allows the formation of roughly realistic, persistent dune field patterns.

  18. Modeling emergent large-scale structures of barchan dune fields

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Worman, S. L.; Murray, A.; Littlewood, R. C.; Andreotti, B.; Claudin, P.

    2013-12-01

    In nature, barchan dunes typically exist as members of larger fields that display striking, enigmatic structures that cannot be readily explained by examining the dynamics at the scale of single dunes, or by appealing to patterns in external forcing. To explore the possibility that observed structures emerge spontaneously as a collective result of many dunes interacting with each other, we built a numerical model that treats barchans as discrete entities that interact with one another according to simplified rules derived from theoretical and numerical work, and from field observations: Dunes exchange sand through the fluxes that leak from the downwind side of each dune and are captured on their upstream sides; when dunes become sufficiently large, small dunes are born on their downwind sides ('calving'); and when dunes collide directly enough, they merge. Results show that these relatively simple interactions provide potential explanations for a range of field-scale phenomena including isolated patches of dunes and heterogeneous arrangements of similarly sized dunes in denser fields. The results also suggest that (1) dune field characteristics depend on the sand flux fed into the upwind boundary, although (2) moving downwind, the system approaches a common attracting state in which the memory of the upwind conditions vanishes. This work supports the hypothesis that calving exerts a first order control on field-scale phenomena; it prevents individual dunes from growing without bound, as single-dune analyses suggest, and allows the formation of roughly realistic, persistent dune field patterns.

  19. Mineralogy of Eolian Sands at Gale Crater

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Achilles, C. N.; Vaniman, D. T.; Blake, D. F.; Bristow, T. F.; Rampe, E. B.; Ming, D. W.; Chipera, S. J.; Morris, R. V.; Morrison, S. M.; Downs, R. T.; Fendrich, K. V.; Ehlmann, B. L.; Yen, A. S.; Sarrazin, P. C.; Treiman, A. H.; Craig, P. I.; Lapotre, M. G. A.; Edgett, K. S.; Gellert, R.; Crisp, J. A.; Morookian, J. M.; Grotzinger, J. P.; Des Marais, D. J.; Farmer, J. D.

    2016-01-01

    The Mars Science Laboratory rover Curiosity has been exploring outcrop and regolith in Gale crater since August 6, 2012. During this exploration, the mission has collected 10 samples for mineralogical analysis by X-ray diffraction (XRD), using the CheMin instrument. The CheMin (Chemistry and Mineralogy) instrument on the Mars Science Laboratory rover Curiosity uses a CCD detector and a Co-anode tube source to acquire both mineralogy (from the pat-tern of Co diffraction) and chemical information (from energies of fluoresced X-rays). A detailed description of CheMin is provided in [1]. As part of the rover checkout after landing, the first sample selected for analysis was an eolian sand deposit (the Rocknest "sand shadow"). This sample was selected in part to characterize unconsolidated eolian regolith, but primarily to prove performance of the scoop collection system on the rover. The focus of the mission after Rocknest was on the consolidated sediments of Gale crater, so all of the nine subsequent samples were collected by drilling into bedrock com-posed of lithified sedimentary materials, including mudstone and sandstone. No scoop samples have been collected since Rocknest, but at the time this abstract was written the mission stands poised to use the scoop again, to collect active dune sands from the Bagnold dune field. Several abstracts at this conference outline the Bagnold dune campaign and summarize preliminary results from analyses on approach to the Namib dune sampling site. In this abstract we review the mineralogy of Rocknest, contrast that with the mineralogy of local sediments, and anticipate what will be learned by XRD analysis of Bagnold dune sands.

  20. Minimal size of a barchan dune.

    PubMed

    Parteli, E J R; Durán, O; Herrmann, H J

    2007-01-01

    Barchans are dunes of high mobility which have a crescent shape and propagate under conditions of unidirectional wind. However, sand dunes only appear above a critical size, which scales with the saturation distance of the sand flux [P. Hersen, S. Douady, and B. Andreotti, Phys. Rev. Lett. 89, 264301 (2002); B. Andreotti, P. Claudin, and S. Douady, Eur. Phys. J. B 28, 321 (2002); G. Sauermann, K. Kroy, and H. J. Herrmann, Phys. Rev. E 64, 31305 (2001)]. It has been suggested by P. Hersen, S. Douady, and B. Andreotti, Phys. Rev. Lett. 89, 264301 (2002)] that this flux fetch distance is itself constant. Indeed, this could not explain the protosize of barchan dunes, which often occur in coastal areas of high litoral drift, and the scale of dunes on Mars. In the present work, we show from three-dimensional calculations of sand transport that the size and the shape of the minimal barchan dune depend on the wind friction speed and the sand flux on the area between dunes in a field. Our results explain the common appearance of barchans a few tens of centimeter high which are observed along coasts. Furthermore, we find that the rate at which grains enter saltation on Mars is one order of magnitude higher than on Earth, and is relevant to correctly obtain the minimal dune size on Mars.

  1. Northern Sand Sea

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2005-01-01

    [figure removed for brevity, see original site]

    Our topic for the weeks of April 4 and April 11 is dunes on Mars. We will look at the north polar sand sea and at isolated dune fields at lower latitudes. Sand seas on Earth are often called 'ergs,' an Arabic name for dune field. A sand sea differs from a dune field in two ways: 1) a sand sea has a large regional extent, and 2) the individual dunes are large in size and complex in form.

    This VIS image was taken at 82 degrees North latitude during Northern spring. The image is completely dominated by dunes. In sand seas, it is very common for a single type of dune to occur, and for a single predominate wind to control the alignment of the dunes.

    Image information: VIS instrument. Latitude 82.2, Longitude 152.5 East (207.5 West). 19 meter/pixel resolution.

    Note: this THEMIS visual image has not been radiometrically nor geometrically calibrated for this preliminary release. An empirical correction has been performed to remove instrumental effects. A linear shift has been applied in the cross-track and down-track direction to approximate spacecraft and planetary motion. Fully calibrated and geometrically projected images will be released through the Planetary Data System in accordance with Project policies at a later time.

    NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory manages the 2001 Mars Odyssey mission for NASA's Office of Space Science, Washington, D.C. The Thermal Emission Imaging System (THEMIS) was developed by Arizona State University, Tempe, in collaboration with Raytheon Santa Barbara Remote Sensing. The THEMIS investigation is led by Dr. Philip Christensen at Arizona State University. Lockheed Martin Astronautics, Denver, is the prime contractor for the Odyssey project, and developed and built the orbiter. Mission operations are conducted jointly from Lockheed Martin and from JPL, a division of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena.

  2. The investigation of active Martian dune fields using very high resolution photogrammetric measurements

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kim, Jungrack; Kim, Younghwi; Park, Minseong

    2016-10-01

    At the present time, arguments continue regarding the migration speeds of Martian dune fields and their correlation with atmospheric circulation. However, precisely measuring the spatial translation of Martian dunes has succeeded only a very few times—for example, in the Nili Patera study (Bridges et al. 2012) using change-detection algorithms and orbital imagery. Therefore, in this study, we developed a generic procedure to precisely measure the migration of dune fields with recently introduced 25-cm resolution orbital imagery specifically using a high-accuracy photogrammetric processor. The processor was designed to trace estimated dune migration, albeit slight, over the Martian surface by 1) the introduction of very high resolution ortho images and stereo analysis based on hierarchical geodetic control for better initial point settings; 2) positioning error removal throughout the sensor model refinement with a non-rigorous bundle block adjustment, which makes possible the co-alignment of all images in a time series; and 3) improved sub-pixel co-registration algorithms using optical flow with a refinement stage conducted on a pyramidal grid processor and a blunder classifier. Moreover, volumetric changes of Martian dunes were additionally traced by means of stereo analysis and photoclinometry. The established algorithms have been tested using high-resolution HIRISE time-series images over several Martian dune fields. Dune migrations were iteratively processed both spatially and volumetrically, and the results were integrated to be compared to the Martian climate model. Migrations over well-known crater dune fields appeared to be almost static for the considerable temporal periods and were weakly correlated with wind directions estimated by the Mars Climate Database (Millour et al. 2015). As a result, a number of measurements over dune fields in the Mars Global Dune Database (Hayward et al. 2014) covering polar areas and mid-latitude will be demonstrated

  3. Limited change in dune mobility in response to a large decrease in wind power in semi-arid northern China since the 1970s

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Mason, J.A.; Swinehart, J.B.; Lu, H.; Miao, X.; Cha, P.; Zhou, Y.

    2008-01-01

    The climatic controls on dune mobility, especially the relative importance of wind strength, remain incompletely understood. This is a key research problem in semi-arid northern China, both for interpreting past dune activity as evidence of paleoclimate and for predicting future environmental change. Potential eolian sand transport, which is approximately proportional to wind power above the threshold for sand entrainment, has decreased across much of northern China since the 1970s. Over the same period, effective moisture (ratio of precipitation to potential evapotranspiration) has not changed significantly. This "natural experiment" provides insight on the relative importance of wind power as a control on dune mobility in three dunefields of northern China (Mu Us, Otindag, and Horqin), although poorly understood and potentially large effects of human land use complicate interpretation. Dune forms in these three regions are consistent with sand transport vectors inferred from weather station data, suggesting that wind directions have remained stable and the stations adequately represent winds that shaped the dunes. The predicted effect of weaker winds since the 1970s would be dune stabilization, with lower sand transport rates allowing vegetation cover to expand. Large portions of all three dunefields remained stabilized by vegetation in the 1970s despite high wind power. Since the 1970s, trends in remotely sensed vegetation greenness and change in mobile dune area inferred from sequential Landsat images do indicate widespread dune stabilization in the eastern Mu Us region. On the other hand, expansion of active dunes took place farther west in the Mu Us dunefield and especially in the central Otindag dunefield, with little overall change in two parts of the Horqin dunes. Better ground truth is needed to validate the remote sensing analyses, but results presented here place limits on the relative importance of wind strength as a control on dune mobility in the

  4. The impact of physical disturbance and increased sand burial on clonal growth and spatial colonization of Sporobolus virginicus in a coastal dune system.

    PubMed

    Balestri, Elena; Lardicci, Claudio

    2013-01-01

    Dune plants are subjected to disturbance and environmental stresses, but little is known about the possible combined effects of such factors on growth and spatial colonization. We investigated how clones of Sporobolusvirginicus, a widespread dune species, responded to the independent and interactive effects of breakage of rhizomes, breakage position and burial regime. Horizontal rhizomes were severed at three different internode positions relative to the apex to span the range of damage by disturbance naturally observed or left intact, and apical portions exposed to two burial scenarios (ambient vs. increased frequency) for three months in the field. The performance of both parts of severed rhizomes, the apical portion and the remaining basal portion connected to clone containing four consecutive ramets, was compared with that of equivalent parts in intact rhizomes. Apical portions severed proximal to the third internode did not survive and their removal did not enhance branching on their respective basal portions. Severing the sixth or twelfth internode did not affect survival and rhizome extension of apical portions, but suppressed ramet production and reduced total biomass and specific shoot length. Their removal enhanced branching and ramet production on basal portions and changed the original rhizome growth trajectory. However, the gain in number of ramets in basal portions never compensated for the reduction in ramet number in apical portions. Recurrent burial increased biomass allocation to root tissues. Burial also stimulated rhizome extension only in intact rhizomes, indicating that disturbance interacts with, and counteracts, the positive burial effect. These results suggest that disturbance and recurrent burial in combination reduces the regeneration success and spread capacity of S. virginucus. Since global change leads to increasingly severe or frequent storms, the impact of disturbance and burial on clones could be greater in future and possibly

  5. The Impact of Physical Disturbance and Increased Sand Burial on Clonal Growth and Spatial Colonization of Sporobolus virginicus in a Coastal Dune System

    PubMed Central

    Balestri, Elena; Lardicci, Claudio

    2013-01-01

    Dune plants are subjected to disturbance and environmental stresses, but little is known about the possible combined effects of such factors on growth and spatial colonization. We investigated how clones of Sporobolusvirginicus, a widespread dune species, responded to the independent and interactive effects of breakage of rhizomes, breakage position and burial regime. Horizontal rhizomes were severed at three different internode positions relative to the apex to span the range of damage by disturbance naturally observed or left intact, and apical portions exposed to two burial scenarios (ambient vs. increased frequency) for three months in the field. The performance of both parts of severed rhizomes, the apical portion and the remaining basal portion connected to clone containing four consecutive ramets, was compared with that of equivalent parts in intact rhizomes. Apical portions severed proximal to the third internode did not survive and their removal did not enhance branching on their respective basal portions. Severing the sixth or twelfth internode did not affect survival and rhizome extension of apical portions, but suppressed ramet production and reduced total biomass and specific shoot length. Their removal enhanced branching and ramet production on basal portions and changed the original rhizome growth trajectory. However, the gain in number of ramets in basal portions never compensated for the reduction in ramet number in apical portions. Recurrent burial increased biomass allocation to root tissues. Burial also stimulated rhizome extension only in intact rhizomes, indicating that disturbance interacts with, and counteracts, the positive burial effect. These results suggest that disturbance and recurrent burial in combination reduces the regeneration success and spread capacity of S. virginucus. Since global change leads to increasingly severe or frequent storms, the impact of disturbance and burial on clones could be greater in future and possibly

  6. Particle-size fractionation of aeolian sand along a climatic and geomorphic gradient of the Sinai-Negev erg

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Roskin, Joel; Katra, Itzhak; Blumberg, Dan G.

    2015-04-01

    This study examines changes in the aeolian sand fractions along the west-east aeolian transport path of the northern Sinai Peninsula - northwestern (NW) Negev erg of Egypt and Israel. This erg originates from the Nile Delta and is composed of currently active linear (seif) dunes in northern Sinai (its western part), and currently stabilized vegetated linear dunes (VLDs) in the NW Negev dunefield (its eastern part). Sand samples from the Nile Delta, northern Sinai and NW Negev were analyzed for particle-size distribution and sand grain morphology in accordance to their Eastern Mediterranean INQUA Dunes Atlas luminescence and radiocarbon chronologies. Linear seif dunes differ from VLDs in their vegetation cover, linearity, and dynamics. Although both are continuous landforms with similar orientations and sand-grain roundness values, the linear dunes of Sinai are coarser-grained than the Negev VLDs. The VLDs have a significantly higher proportion of very fine sand (125-50 μm) content and a varying but lower sand fining ratio defined as the ratio of fine sand percentage to very fine sand percentage. Very fine sands are suggested to have been winnowed by saltation and low suspension from source deposits and sand sheets. Detailed semi-quantitative examinations of sand grains by a SEM of a Negev VLD shows that most grains do not exhibit features that can be attributed to aeolian abrasion by sand grain-grain collisions. From these observations we infer that fractionation of sand was a major process leading to downwind fining along the studied aeolian transport path. We suggest that the very fine sand fraction of Nile Delta and Sinai sands has been transported downwind since the late middle Pleistocene. In the late Pleistocene, sand reached the NW Negev in the form of VLDs due to last-glacial period windiness of intensities unprecedented today and probably larger sediment supply. Generally current and inferred past decreasing wind velocities and increasing precipitation

  7. Ganges Chasma Sand Sheet

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2005-01-01

    [figure removed for brevity, see original site]

    Our topic for the weeks of April 4 and April 11 is dunes on Mars. We will look at the north polar sand sea and at isolated dune fields at lower latitudes. Sand seas on Earth are often called 'ergs,' an Arabic name for dune field. A sand sea differs from a dune field in two ways: 1) a sand sea has a large regional extent, and 2) the individual dunes are large in size and complex in form.

    Today's sand sheet is located in the Ganges Chasma portion of Valles Marineris. As with yesterday's image, note that the dune forms are seen only at the margin and that the interior of the sand sheet at this resolution appears to completely lack dune forms.

    Image information: VIS instrument. Latitude -6.4, Longitude 310.7 East (49.3 West). 19 meter/pixel resolution.

    Note: this THEMIS visual image has not been radiometrically nor geometrically calibrated for this preliminary release. An empirical correction has been performed to remove instrumental effects. A linear shift has been applied in the cross-track and down-track direction to approximate spacecraft and planetary motion. Fully calibrated and geometrically projected images will be released through the Planetary Data System in accordance with Project policies at a later time.

    NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory manages the 2001 Mars Odyssey mission for NASA's Office of Space Science, Washington, D.C. The Thermal Emission Imaging System (THEMIS) was developed by Arizona State University, Tempe, in collaboration with Raytheon Santa Barbara Remote Sensing. The THEMIS investigation is led by Dr. Philip Christensen at Arizona State University. Lockheed Martin Astronautics, Denver, is the prime contractor for the Odyssey project, and developed and built the orbiter. Mission operations are conducted jointly from Lockheed Martin and from JPL, a division of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena.

  8. Environmental dynamics of a star dune

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Weimin; Qu, Jianjun; Tan, Lihai; Jing, Zhefan; Bian, Kai; Niu, Qinghe

    2016-11-01

    Star dunes, the largest aeolian bedforms in the sand seas of the world, are usually distributed within specific geographical areas that have multi-directional wind regimes. However, relatively few studies have focused on the environmental factors that impart such great volumes of sand to these dunes. Specifically, verification of the developmental processes of star dunes through long-term monitoring is scarce. In this study, by observing 3-D airflow fields and long-term dune dynamics, we demonstrate how topographic barriers, which generate vertical airflow and local air circulation, control the development of a star dune on Mingsha Mountain in Dunhuang, China. Results show that airflow stagnation and deflection caused by topography is one of the major mechanisms for the formation of star dunes. In our study, topographic barriers contribute to the development of intensive vertical airflow dominated by easterly winds. This intensive vertical airflow is one of the main driving mechanisms of the upward growth of mega-dunes. Vertical airflow is the strongest developed airflow reported in available data on aeolian geomorphology. In addition, star dunes are usually distributed in areas where the local air circulation is strong. The results of long-term dune dynamics verify that local air circulation, which forms three wind directions with the regional wind regime, contributes to the maintenance and development of star dunes. Our study indicates that complex mega-dunes are products of topographic barriers, which facilitate their recognition in aeolian geomorphology. We introduce a new evolution pattern of star dunes under the influence of local environment and topographic barriers.

  9. Sedimentary Rocks and Dunes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2004-01-01

    25 November 2004 This Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC) image shows buttes composed of light-toned, sedimentary rock exposed by erosion within a crater occurring immediately west of Schiaparelli Basin near 4.0oS, 347.9oW. Surrounding these buttes is a field of dark sand dunes and lighter-toned, very large windblown ripples. The sedimentary rocks might indicate that the crater interior was once the site of a lake. The image covers an area about 3 km (1.9 mi) wide. Sunlight illuminates the scene from the lower left.

  10. 78 FR 26308 - Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Proposed Threatened Status for Coral Pink Sand...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2013-05-06

    ... Threatened Status for Coral Pink Sand Dunes Tiger Beetle and Designation of Critical Habitat AGENCY: Fish and..., proposed listing decision and proposed designation of critical habitat for Coral Pink Sand Dunes tiger... Agreement and Strategy for the Coral Pink Sand Dunes tiger beetle, and an amended required...

  11. Infiltration and instability in dune erosion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Palmsten, Margaret L.; Holman, Robert A.

    2011-10-01

    Forecasting dune erosion prior to a storm or over longer periods requires knowledge of the fluid forces on the dune sediments. To improve our predictive capability for this process, we propose a new model in which dune slumping occurs when water, which infiltrates horizontally into the dune, increases the overburden sufficiently to destabilize the dune. Horizontal infiltration is driven by suction of water from swash into the dune via capillary action and is a surprisingly strong process with rapid time scales. Because the elevated pore water concentrations increase the apparent cohesion of the wetted sediments, we also propose that the entire volume of wetted sand slumps as a unit when the dune becomes unstable and erosion can be modeled based on the force balance on a sliding block. Several versions of this model were tested, including a numerical infiltration model, a simplified infiltration equation, and an equation based on offshore wave forcing, rather than known forcing at the dune. The model was tested using data from a large-scale laboratory experiment with a storm hydrograph to investigate the time dependence of dune erosion. Predicting slope stability using a numerical infiltration model with known forcing explained 72% of the observed variance in erosion rate, while a simplified stability and infiltration model explained 58%. Error statistics suggest that we captured the majority of the physics controlling dune erosion in this laboratory experiment and that the simplified model will be useful as a forecasting tool.

  12. The role of dune interactions and wind fluctuations in the selection of dune sizes within barchan fields

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Duran Vinent, O.; Parteli, E. J.; Herrmann, H. J.

    2012-12-01

    Sand dunes dominate desert morphology. They naturally emerge under strong winds and sufficient sand supply from the interaction between sand transport, topography and hydrodynamics. The fact that dunes are mobile landforms gives a dynamical character to desert geomorphology with potential implications for the surrounding ecosystems. As dune mobility is closely related to dune morphology, in particular its size, the study of the long-term evolution of desert areas requires a better understanding of (1) the factors behind dune size selection and (2) the multi-scale nature of dune morphology. Recently it has been shown that dune size is bounded both at small and large scales by sand transport and hydrodynamics, respectively. The smallest dune size is limited to several meters in length by the existence of the so called "saturation length", i.e. the characteristic length of transport transients. The maximum dune size, in the order of hundreds of meters, is in turn limited by the stabilizing effect of the upper limit of the atmospheric boundary layer. Dune dynamics at both scales is also qualitatively different as elementary dunes emerge from a linear instability, and are thus ubiquitous, while giant dunes seem to result from the coalescence of smaller ones. In consequence, a typical dune field should consist in a roughly continuous hierarchy of dune sizes, with many elementary dunes and very few giant dunes. However, in several cases this is not the correct picture as dune sizes are quite uniform and seems to cluster around an intermediate value that is well above the minimum but much smaller than the maximum one. This points to an alternative selection mechanism different from the simple dune merging. Here, we argue that the combination of dune collisions and wind fluctuations, at least within barchan fields, is able to stop the continuous merging process and select a characteristic dune size in function of local conditions. To that end we use a morphodynamic dune

  13. Titan's Longitudinal Dunes in the Lab.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reffet, Erwan; Courrech du Pont, S.; Hersen, P.; Douady, S.; Radebaugh, J.; Lorenz, R.; Lunine, J.; Boubin, G.; Fulchignoni, M.

    2007-10-01

    Cassini Radar observations of Titan's surface have revealed various landscapes. In particular, flybys probing Titan's equator unveiled linear features [1], which are morphologically similar to longitudinal dunes [2,3]. They appear pervasive in the range +-30° in latitude and could cover up to 20% of Titan's surface [4]. Their characteristics in term of width, length and spacing [1,4,5], or height and slope [6] are comparable to dunes of the Namib Desert [2]. On Earth, longitudinal dunes are the most commonly encountered dune and are observed in regions where the wind regime is composed of two main directions, the dunes orientation giving the mean sand transport. While terrestrial dunes are mostly formed by quartz sand grains, Titan's dunes are likely to be composed of hydrocarbon particulates [7]. Despite their different compositions, their morphological resemblances suggest similar processes of formation. Thus studying the formation of such structures could help to constrain models of Titan's winds [8]. However, formation of longitudinal dunes or even more generally longitudinal bedforms [9] have rarely been observed or reproduced in controlled conditions. Underwater experiments, in which sand transport timescale and lengthscale are decreased, have been used to successfully reproduce the dynamics of barchan dunes [10]. We show here how it is possible to explore the morphogenesis of longitudinal dunes using such a method combined with a numerical model. References: [1] Boubin et al. DPS 2005. [2] Lorenz et al. LPSC 2006. [3] Lorenz et al. Science 2006. [4] Radebaugh et al. Icarus (in revision). [5] Radebaugh et al. LPSC 2006. [6] Kirk et al. LPSC 2005. [7] Soderblom et al. P&SS (in press). [8] Tokano et al. Icarus 2002. [9] Rubin et al. Science 1987. [10] Hersen et al. PRL, 2003.

  14. Seasonally Active Slipface Avalanches in the North Polar Sand Sea of Mars: Evidence for a Wind-Related Origin

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Horgan, Briony H. N.; Bell, James F., III

    2012-01-01

    Meter-scale MRO/HiRISE camera images of dune slipfaces in the north polar sand sea of Mars reveal the presence of deep alcoves above depositional fans. These features are apparently active under current climatic conditions, because they form between observations taken in subsequent Mars years. Recently, other workers have hypothesized that the alcoves form due to destabilization and mass-wasting during sublimation of CO2 frost in the spring. While there is evidence for springtime modification of these features, our analysis of early springtime images reveals that over 80% of the new alcoves are visible underneath the CO2 frost. Thus, we present an alternative hypothesis that formation of new alcoves and fans occurs prior to CO2 deposition. We propose that fans and alcoves form primarily by aeolian processes in the mid- to late summer, through a sequence of aeolian deposition on the slipface, over-steepening, failure, and dry granular flow. An aeolian origin is supported by the orientations of the alcoves, which are consistent with recent wind directions. Furthermore, morphologically similar but much smaller alcoves form on terrestrial dune slipfaces, and the size differences between the terrestrial and Martian features may reflect cohesion in the near-subsurface of the Martian features. The size and preservation of the largest alcoves on the Martian slipfaces also support the presence of an indurated surface layer; thus, new alcoves might be sites of early spring CO2 sublimation and secondary mass-wasting because they act as a window to looser, less indurated materials that warm up more quickly in the spring.

  15. The persistence of large-scale blowouts in largely vegetated coastal dune fields

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Delgado-Fernandez, Irene; Smyth, Thomas; Jackson, Derek; Davidson-Arnott, Robin; Smith, Alexander

    2016-04-01

    Coastal dunes move through natural phases of stability and instability during their evolution, displaying various temporal and spatial patterns across the dune field. Recent observations, however, have shown exceptionally rapid rates of stability through increased vegetative growth. This progressive vegetation colonisation and consequent loss of bare sand on coastal dune systems has been noted worldwide. Percentage reductions in bare sand of as much as 80% within just a few decades can been seen in examples from South Africa, Canada and Brazil as well as coastal dune sites across NW Europe. Despite these dramatic trends towards dune stabilisation, it is not uncommon to find particular examples of large-scale active blowouts and parabolic dunes within largely vegetated coastal dunes. While turbulence and airflow dynamics within features such as blowouts and other dune forms has been studied in detail within recent years, there is a lack of knowledge about what maintains dune mobility at these specific points in otherwise largely stabilized dune fields. This work explores the particular example of the 'Devil's Hole' blowout, Sefton Dunes, NW England. Approximately 300 m long by 100 m wide, its basin is below the water-table which leads to frequent flooding. Sefton Dunes in general have seen a dramatic loss of bare sand since the 1940s. However, and coinciding with this period of dune stabilisation, the 'Devil's Hole' has not only remained active but also grown in size at a rate of 4.5 m year-1 along its main axis. An exploration of factors controlling the maintenance of open bare sand areas at this particular location is examined using a variety of techniques including Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) airflow modelling and in situ empirical measurements of (short-term experiments) of wind turbulence and sand transport. Field measurements of wind parameters and transport processes were collected over a 2 week period during October 2015. Twenty three 3D ultrasonic

  16. Windblown Dunes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2004-01-01

    18 June 2004 This Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC) image shows barchan and linear dunes that seem to have grown from the coalescence of barchans in a crater in the Noachis Terra region. The winds responsible for these dunes blow from the lower left (southwest). The image occurs near 46.0oS, 323.6oW, and covers an area about 3 km (1.9 mi) wide. Sunlight illuminates the scene from the upper left.

  17. Daily cycles in coastal dunes

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hunter, R.E.; Richmond, B.M.

    1988-01-01

    Daily cycles of summer sea breezes produce distinctive cyclic foreset deposits in dune sands of the Texas and Oregon coasts. In both areas the winds are strong enough to transport sand only during part of the day, reach a peak during the afternoon, and vary little in direction during the period of sand transport. Cyclicity in the foreset deposits is made evident by variations in the type of sedimentary structure, the texture, and the heavy-mineral content of the sand. Some of the cyclic deposits are made up entirely of one basic type of structure, in which the character of the structure varies cyclically; for example, the angle of climb in a climbing-wind-ripple structure may vary cyclically. Other cyclic deposits are characterized by alternations of two or more structural types. Variations in the concentration of fine-grained heavy minerals, which account for the most striking cyclicity, arise mainly because of segregation on wind-rippled depositional surfaces: where the ripples climb at low angles, the coarsegrained light minerals, which accumulate preferentially on ripple crests, tend to be excluded from the local deposit. Daily cyclic deposits are thickest and best developed on small dunes and are least recognizable near the bases of large dunes. ?? 1988.

  18. Morphodynamics of superimposed bedforms in a cellular automaton dune model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, D.; Narteau, C.; Rozier, O.

    2009-12-01

    We analyse the morphodynamics of dunes produced under unidirectional flow conditions by a 3-D model that combines a cellular automaton for sediment transport and a lattice gas cellular automaton. In this model, the dependency of the erosion rate on the bed shear stress and the rebounds dynamics of fluid particles on sedimentary cells ensure permanent feedback mechanisms between turbulent flow and the layer of erodible sediment. We observe that the same instability is responsible for the initiation of dune patterns on flat sand beds and on the windward slopes of dunes. On crescentic barchan dunes, we measure the propagattion speed of the superimposed bedforms and show that they are responsable for the ejection of smaller barchans along horns. On transverse dunes, these secondary bedforms favors the appearance of defects and increases the number of terminations. When isolated dunes reach a quasi-stationary equilibrium state, we find that their shapes vary with respect to the volume of sediment and the strength of the flow. These results are in perfect agreement with sub-aquatic dunes measured in laboratory experiments conducted under similar conditions. We also show that the increase in flow strength at the top of dunes is proportional to dune aspect ratios. Then, the propagation speed of different generation of dunes can be rescaled by the sediment flux at the crest to verify that this speed is inversly proportional to dune height. Despite more fluctuations, all these geometric and hydrodynamic relationships hold for a population of dunes with complex dune-dune interactions.

  19. The Enigmatic Longevity of Granular Materials on Mars: The Case for Geologically Episodic Dune Formation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Marshall, J.

    1999-01-01

    Martian sand dunes are concentrated in vast sand seas in the circumpolar belt of the planet's northern hemisphere, but they are also pervasive over the whole planet. Their occurrence is to be expected on a super-arid planetary surface subjected to boundary layer drag from a continually active atmosphere. Whilst their occurrence is to be expected, their survival is enigmatic. But the enigma only arises if the martian system is considered similar to Earth's --where sand is moved highly frequently, more or less on a seasonal basis. Experimentally it is readily demonstrated that active sand will soon wear down to small grains and eventually diminish to below the critical sand size required to sustain dune formation. According to conventional wisdom, sand moves at higher speeds on Mars than on Earth, and if it were to move as frequently as it does on Earth, then the dune-forming sand population should have long since disappeared, given the great longevity of the martian aeolian system (Sagan coined the term "kamikaze" grains to express this disappearance). No supply of sand could keep pace with this depletion, especially in light of the fact that Mars does not have very active weathering, nor significant crustal differentiation. On Earth, plate tectonics, magmatic activity, and general crustal differentiation over geological time have produced great concentrations of quartz crystals in the continental crustal masses. Not only are these quartz grains chemically and mechanically resilient, they are about the right size for being transported by either wind or water. Add to this, the geologically recent contribution of glacial grinding, and it is easy to see why there are dune field on Earth. So what are the martian dunes composed of, and how does the material survive the eons of attrition? In addition to experimental demonstrations of sand comminution in laboratory aeolian simulations, the problem can be approached from first principles. Sagan showed that by simple

  20. Central Asian sand seas climate change as inferred from OSL dating

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Maman, Shimrit; Tsoar, Haim; Blumberg, Dan; Porat, Naomi

    2014-05-01

    , wetter, and less windy climate that persists until today and resulted in dune stabilization around the Mid-Holocene. This study, solidifies our results regarding the Kyzylkum and Karakum sand seas dynamics, ages, and emphasizes the importance of regional climatic control on aeolian activity.

  1. [Influence of stir-baked with sand on active ingredients, diarrhea and hepatoprotection of Herpetospermum caudigerum].

    PubMed

    Li, Juan-juan; Shen, Gang; Yin, Rong-li; Shen, Cheng-ying; Cheng, Ling; Qiu, Ling; Han, Jin; Yuan, Hai-long

    2015-01-01

    To study the influence of stir-baked with sand on active ingredients, diarrhea and hepatoprotection of Herpetospermum caudigerum, the contents of herperione and herpetin in H. caudigerum before and after stir-baking with sand were analyzed by HPLC. The effect of stir-baked with sand on diarrhea of H. caudigerum TL was evaluated using the mean stool rate (MSR) and mean diarrheal index ( MDI) and the influence of stir-baked with sand on hepatoprotective effect of H. caudigerum TL was examined using a mouse model of CCl4-induced liver injury based on the analysis of serum ALT and AST activities. The results of HPLC analysis showed the content of herperione in H. caudigerum after stir-baking with sand decreased by 40.9% (P < 0.01) and the content of herpetin had no change. Pharmacodynamic results showed that the MSR and MDI of high-dose and middle-dose group of H. caudigerum TL after stir-baking with sand were significantly lower than that of high-dose and middle-dose group of H. caudigerum TL without stir-baking with sand; The high-dose and middle-dose of H. caudigerum TL with/without stir-baking with sand significantly alleviated liver injury as indicated by the decreased levels of serum ALT and AST, but the ALT and AST levels of high-dose and middle-dose group of H. caudigerum TL after stir-baking with sand were higher than that of H. caudigerum TL without stir-baking with sand. The results revealed that the stir-baking with sand could effectively relieve diarrhea effect of H. caudigerum TL, while it also reduces the hepatoprotection of H. caudigerum TL.

  2. How Altitude and Latitude Control Dune Morphometry on Titan

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Le Gall, A.; Hayes, A.; Ewing, R.; Janssen, M. A.; Radebaugh, J.; Savage, C.; Encrenaz, P.

    2011-01-01

    Dune fields are one of the dominant landforms and represent the largest known organic reservoir on Titan. SAR-derived topography show that Titan's dune terrains tend to occupy the lowest altitude areas in equatorial regions occurring at mean elevations between approx.-400 and 0 m. In elevated dune terrains, there is a definite trend towards a smaller dune to interdune ratio, interpreted as due to limited sediment availability. A similar linear correlation is observed with latitude, suggesting that the quantity of windblown sand in the dune fields tends to decrease as one moves farther north. These findings place important constraints on Titan's geology and climate.

  3. Analyses Of A Large Climbing Dune In The Ka'u Desert Of Hawaii: Implications For Understanding Dark Dunes On Mars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Craddock, R. A.; Tirsch, D.; Nanson, G.; Tooth, S.; Langhans, M.

    2010-12-01

    Dark, fine-grained sediment is distributed over much of the surface of Mars. Frequently this sediment accumulates as dunes on the floors of craters or against topographic obstacles. Analyses of the mineralogy of these materials from OMEGA spectral data has established that they are dominantly mafic in composition and are most likely derived from the weathering of basaltic deposits. While common features on Mars, dunes consisting of basaltic sediments are rare on Earth. The objectives of our study are to 1) determine the emplacement history of basaltic dunes located in the Ka’u Desert of Hawaii in order to assess the extent to which sediments have been transported and reworked, 2) determine the changes in physical and chemical characteristics of basaltic sediments derived from the Keanakako’i tephra deposit as they are transported by eolian processes, and to 3) acquire the visible to near-infrared spectra of terrestrial basaltic sediments in order to better interpret remote sensing data from Mars. The first step in the process was to analyze a large climbing dune located along the Kalanaokuaiki Pali fault scarp at 19° 20’ 39” N, 155° 18’ 26” W. This dune is ~6-7 m high and ~500 m long. Its surface is dominated by coarse-grained basaltic sand composed primarily of lithic and vitric fragments, olivine, feldspar, and pyroxene. Augering reveals that this basaltic sand occurs to depths of ~3 meters although a thin (<15 cm) clay-rich interbed also occurs. Cross-bedding is well developed throughout most of this deposit, suggesting that it has aggraded over time from eolian activity. Below ~3 m depths the dune is composed of vitric-rich sand. Our preliminary analyses show that many of these particles are fragile (e.g., consisting of glass rods), which may indicate that these vitric materials were emplaced in situ following large phreatic eruptions at Kilauea. Both main units within the dune correspond to the general stratigraphy recognized in the Keanakako

  4. Laboratory singing sand avalanches.

    PubMed

    Dagois-Bohy, Simon; Ngo, Sandrine; du Pont, Sylvain Courrech; Douady, Stéphane

    2010-02-01

    Some desert sand dunes have the peculiar ability to emit a loud sound up to 110 dB, with a well-defined frequency: this phenomenon, known since early travelers (Darwin, Marco Polo, etc.), has been called the song of dunes. But only in late 19th century scientific observations were made, showing three important characteristics of singing dunes: first, not all dunes sing, but all the singing dunes are composed of dry and well-sorted sand; second, this sound occurs spontaneously during avalanches on a slip face; third this is not the only way to produce sound with this sand. More recent field observations have shown that during avalanches, the sound frequency does not depend on the dune size or shape, but on the grain diameter only, and scales as the square root of g/d--with g the gravity and d the diameter of the grains--explaining why all the singing dunes in the same vicinity sing at the same frequency. We have been able to reproduce these singing avalanches in laboratory on a hard plate, which made possible to study them more accurately than on the field. Signals of accelerometers at the flowing surface of the avalanche are compared to signals of microphones placed above, and it evidences a very strong vibration of the flowing layer at the same frequency as on the field, responsible for the emission of sound. Moreover, other characteristics of the booming dunes are reproduced and analyzed, such as a threshold under which no sound is produced, or beats in the sound that appears when the flow is too large. Finally, the size of the coherence zones emitting sound has been measured and discussed.

  5. Corridors of barchan dunes: Stability and size selection.

    PubMed

    Hersen, P; Andersen, K H; Elbelrhiti, H; Andreotti, B; Claudin, P; Douady, S

    2004-01-01

    Barchans are crescentic dunes propagating on a solid ground. They form dune fields in the shape of elongated corridors in which the size and spacing between dunes are rather well selected. We show that even very realistic models for solitary dunes do not reproduce these corridors. Instead, two instabilities take place. First, barchans receive a sand flux at their back proportional to their width while the sand escapes only from their horns. Large dunes proportionally capture more sand than they lose, while the situation is reversed for small ones: therefore, solitary dunes cannot remain in a steady state. Second, the propagation speed of dunes decreases with the size of the dune: this leads, through the collision process, to a coarsening of barchan fields. We show that these phenomena are not specific to the model, but result from general and robust mechanisms. The length scales needed for these instabilities to develop are derived and discussed. They turn out to be much smaller than the dune field length. As a conclusion, there should exist further, yet unknown, mechanisms regulating and selecting the size of dunes.

  6. Holocene development of parabolic dunes in the central St. Lawrence Lowland, Québec

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Filion, Louise

    1987-09-01

    Stabilized parabolic dunes in the central St. Lawrence Lowland are oriented NE-SW, in the postulated direction of dune-building winds coming from anticyclonic air circulation induced by the retreating Laurentide Ice Sheet about 10,000 yr ago. The eolian chronology reconstructed from several sections in mixed dune-peatland environments indicates that postglacial plant colonization, characterized by a fortuitous assemblage of arctic-subarctic and boreal elements, preceded dune formation during Champlain Sea regression around 10,000 yr B.P. Confined peatlands and small forests were buried by eolian sands between 10,000 and 7500 yr B.P. under dry and temperate conditions. This eolian episode lasted about 2500 14C yr and ended when cyclonic air circulation similar to the present humid climatic regime was established following the breakup and disappearance of the Laurentide Ice Sheet over Hudson Bay and peripheral areas. Dune stabilization, through paludification of well-drained eolian sands about 7500 yr B.P., suggests a major shift in climate toward wetter conditions that have been characteristic during most of the Holocene in eastern North America. Minor eolian erosion induced by wildfire was recorded during late Holocene time (about 1250 yr B.P.). Anthropogenic perturbation (logging and agriculture practice) was also responsible for recent very local eolian activity.

  7. Recovery of symbiotic nitrogen fixing acacia rhizobia from Merzouga Desert sand dunes in South East Morocco--Identification of a probable new species of Ensifer adapted to stressed environments.

    PubMed

    Sakrouhi, Ilham; Belfquih, Meryem; Sbabou, Laïla; Moulin, Patricia; Bena, Gilles; Filali-Maltouf, Abdelkarim; Le Quéré, Antoine

    2016-03-01

    Bacteria capable of nodulating Acacia tortilis and A. gummifera could be recovered from sand dunes collected in the Moroccan Merzouga desert. The trapping approach enabled the recovery of 17 desert rhizobia that all clustered within the Ensifer (Sinorhizobium) genus. Four isolates of the dominant genotype comprising 15 strains as well as 2 divergent strains were further characterized by MLSA. Phylogenetic analyzes indicated that the dominant genetic type was belonging to a new and yet undefined species within the Ensifer genus. Interestingly, housekeeping gene phylogenies showed that this possibly new species is also present in another desert but in India. Phylogenetic analyses of nifH and nodC sequences showed high sequence conservation among the Moroccan strains belonging to the dominant genotype but high divergence with sequences from Indian isolates suggesting acquisition of symbiotic genes through Horizontal Gene Transfer. These desert rhizobia were capable of growing in media containing high salt concentrations, under high pH and most of the strains showed growth at 45°C. Only recovered from desert type of Biome, yet, this new taxon appears particularly adapted to such harsh environment.

  8. Mean sediment residence time in barchan dunes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, D.; Yang, X.; Rozier, O.; Narteau, C.

    2014-03-01

    When a barchan dune migrates, the sediment trapped on its lee side is later mobilized when exposed on the stoss side. Then sand grains may undergo many dune turnover cycles before their ejection along the horns, but the amount of time a sand grain contributes to the dune morphodynamics remains unknown. To estimate such a residence time, we analyze sediment particle motions in steady state barchans by tracking individual cells of a 3-D cellular automaton dune model. The overall sediment flux may be decomposed into advective and dispersive fluxes to estimate the relative contribution of the underlying physical processes to the barchan shape. The net lateral sediment transport from the center to the horns indicates that dispersion on the stoss slope is more efficient than the convergent sediment fluxes associated with avalanches on the lee slope. The combined effect of these two antagonistic dispersive processes restricts the lateral mixing of sediment particles in the central region of barchans. Then, for different flow strengths and dune sizes, we find that the mean residence time of sediment particles in barchans is equal to the surface of the central longitudinal dune slices divided by the input sand flux. We infer that this central slice contains most of the relevant information about barchan morphodynamics. Finally, we initiate a discussion about sediment transport and memory in the presence of bed forms using the advantages of the particle tracking technique.

  9. Orographic forcing of dune forming winds on Titan

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Larson, E. J.; Toon, O. B.; Friedson, A. J.

    2013-12-01

    Cassini has observed hundreds of dune fields on Titan, nearly all of which lie in the tropics and suggest westerly (from west to east) winds dominate at the surface [1,2]. Most GCMs however have obtained easterly surface winds in the tropics, seemingly contradicting the wind direction suggested by the dunes. This has led to an active debate in the community about the origin of the dune forming winds on Titan and their direction and modality. This discussion is mostly driven by a study of Earth dunes seen as analogous to Titan [1,2,3]. One can find examples of dunes on Earth that fit several wind regimes. To date only one GCM, that of Tokano [4,5], has presented detailed analysis of its near surface winds and their dune forming capabilities. Despite the bulk of the wind being easterly, this GCM produces faster westerlies at equinox, thus transporting sand to the east. Our model, the Titan CAM [6], is unable to reproduce the fast westerlies, although it is possible we are not outputting frequently enough to catch them. Our GCM has been updated to include realistic topography released by the Cassini radar team. Preliminary results suggest our tropical wind regime now has net westerly winds in the tropics, albeit weak. References: [1], Lorenz, R. et al. 2006. Science, 312, 724-727. [2], Radebaugh, J. et al. 2008. Icarus, 194, 690-703. [3] Rubin, D. and Hesp, P. 2009. Nature Geoscience 2, 653-658. [4] Tokano, T. 2008. Icarus 194, 243-262. [5] Tokano, T. 2010. Aeolian Research 2, 113-127. [6] Friedson, J. et al. 2009. Planetary Space Science, 57, 1931-1949.

  10. Morphodynamics of superimposed bedforms in a cellular automaton dune model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Deguo; Narteau, Clement; Rozier, Olivier

    2010-05-01

    In a lattice gas cellular automaton designed to study sediment transport, we analyze the morphodynamics of bedforms produced under unidirectional flow conditions. In this model, the same instability is responsible for the formation of dunes on flat sand beds and the initiation of superimposed bedforms on dune slopes. In transverse dune-fields, secondary bedforms increase crestline sinuosity and number of defects (end of crestlines). On the other hand, avalanches and lateral grain motions tend to eliminate these defects to produce more regular crestlines. Lateral fluxes of sediment are also essential for stabilizing the shape of isolated barchan dunes. We measure the propagation speed of superimposed bedforms on steady-state barchan dunes, and show how they contribute to the formation and detachment of smaller barchans along horns. The model predicts that barchan dunes are not scale invariant and that their shape varies with respect to the strength of the flow. In addition, we show that the increase in bed shear stress between the ground and the crest is proportional to the dune aspect ratio. Finally, we present a general methodology for estimating the sediment flux over the brink from dune aspect ratio and flow velocity. Using these fluxes, we rescale the propagation speed of different generations of bedforms to verify that dunes and secondary bedforms are dynamically identical. Despite more fluctuations than in the case of isolated barchan dunes, all these geometric and dynamical relationships hold for a population of dunes with complex dune-dune interactions.

  11. Jenkins Dune

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1997-01-01

    This image is of a landform informally called Jenkins Dune and is thought to be a small barchan dune. This feature is less than 1 foot (0.3 m) tall and perhaps 2-3 meters wide. Inferred wind direction is from the left to the right. Near the crest of the feature is a demarcation that may represent the exposure of a crust on the sediments; similar features were seen on sediments on the rock Big Joe at the Viking landing site.

    Mars Pathfinder is the second in NASA's Discovery program of low-cost spacecraft with highly focused science goals. The Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, CA, developed and manages the Mars Pathfinder mission for NASA's Office of Space Science, Washington, D.C. JPL is a division of the California Institute of Technology (Caltech).

  12. Defrosting of Russell Crater Dunes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2007-01-01

    These two images (at right) were acquired by the Compact Reconnaissance Imaging Spectrometer for Mars (CRISM) 39 days apart at 19:10 UTC (2:10 PM EST) on December 28, 2006 (upper right) and at 20:06 UTC (3:06 PM EST) on February 5, 2007 (lower right). These CRISM data were acquired in 544 colors covering the wavelength range from 0.36-3.92 micrometers, and show features as small as 20 meters (about 65 feet) across. Both images are false color composites of bands at 2.5, 1.5, and 1.25 micrometers, and are nearly centered at the same location, 54.875oS, 12.919oE (upper right) and 54.895oS, 12.943oE (lower right). Each image is approximately 11 kilometers (7 miles) across at its narrowest. These are part of a series of images capturing the evolution of carbon dioxide frost on the surface of the dunes in Russell Crater.

    Russell Crater is one of many craters in the southern highland region of Mars that contain large areas of sand dunes. The sand in these dunes has accumulated over a very long time period -- perhaps millions of years -- as wind blows over the highland terrain, picking up sand in some places and depositing in others. The topography of the craters forces the wind to blow up and over the crater rims, and the wind often isn't strong enough to keep the tiny grains suspended. This makes the sand fall to the ground and gradually pile up, and over time the surface breezes shape the sand into ripples and dunes. A similar process is at work at the Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve in Colorado, USA.

    The above left image shows a THEMIS daytime infrared mosaic of Russell Crater and the location of its (approximately) 30-kilometer wide dune field in the northeastern quadrant of the crater floor. Superposed on this view and shown enlarged at the upper right is CRISM image FRT000039DF. This CRISM image was acquired during the late Martian southern winter (solar longitude = 157.7o), and the bright blue in this false color composite indicates the

  13. Frosty Dunes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2006-01-01

    12 April 2006 Today, the MOC Team celebrates the 45th anniversary of the first human flight into space, that of Yuri Gagarin on 12 April 1961, and the 25th anniversary of the first NASA Space Shuttle flight on 12 April 1981, by briefly pondering the wonders of our Solar System and the opportunities of the age in which we live. Although humans have not ventured to the Moon in more than 30 years, and have not yet gone to Mars, we can all go there through the eyes of our robotic explorers.

    Mars, perhaps the most Earth-like (yet so very different!) planet in our star's system, is tilted on its axis by about 25o-not all that different than Earth's 23.5o. Thus, Mars, like Earth, experiences a changing of seasons as the planet revolves around the Sun. At high latitudes in each hemisphere during autumn and winter, carbon dioxide frost accumulates on the surface.

    This Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC) image shows dunes covered and delineated by seasonal frost in the north polar region of Mars. The winds responsible for the formation of these dunes blew primarily from the northwest (upper left), with additional influences from the north and northeast. During the late spring and summer seasons, these dunes would look much darker than their surroundings, but in this late winter image, the dunes and the plains on which they occur are all covered with carbon dioxide frost.

    Location near: 78.4oN, 76.7oW Image width: 3 km (1.9 mi) Illumination from: lower left Season: Northern Winter

  14. Conceptual models of the evolution of transgressive dune field systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hesp, Patrick A.

    2013-10-01

    This paper examines the evolutionary paths of some transgressive dune fields that have formed on different coasts of the world, and presents some initial conceptual models of system dynamics for transgressive dune sheets and dune fields. Various evolutionary pathways are conceptualized based on a visual examination of dune fields from around the world. On coasts with high sediment supply, dune sheets and dune fields tend to accumulate as large scale barrier systems with little colonization of vegetation in arid-hyper to arid climate regimes, and as multiple, active discrete phases of dune field and deflation plain couplets in temperate to tropical environments. Active dune fields tend to be singular entities on coasts with low to moderate sediment supply. Landscape complexity and vegetation richness and diversity increases as dune fields evolve from simple active sheets and dunes to single and multiple deflation plains and basins, precipitation ridges, nebkha fields and a host of other dune types associated with vegetation (e.g. trailing ridges, slacks, remnant knobs, gegenwalle ridges and dune track ridges, 'tree islands' and 'bush pockets'). Three principal scenarios of transgressive dune sheet and dune field development are discussed, including dune sheets or dune fields evolving directly from the backshore, development following foredune and/or dune field erosion, and development from the breakdown or merging of parabolic dunes. Various stages of evolution are outlined for each scenario. Knowledge of evolutionary patterns and stages in coastal dune fields is very limited and caution is urged in attempts to reverse, change and/or modify dune fields to 'restore' some perceived loss of ecosystem or dune functioning.

  15. Conceptual models of the evolution of transgressive dune field systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    A. Hesp, Patrick

    2013-10-01

    This paper examines the evolutionary paths of some transgressive dune fields that have formed on different coasts of the world, and presents some initial conceptual models of system dynamics for transgressive dune sheets and dune fields. Various evolutionary pathways are conceptualized based on a visual examination of dune fields from around the world. On coasts with high sediment supply, dune sheets and dune fields tend to accumulate as large scale barrier systems with little colonization of vegetation in arid-hyper to arid climate regimes, and as multiple, active discrete phases of dune field and deflation plain couplets in temperate to tropical environments. Active dune fields tend to be singular entities on coasts with low to moderate sediment supply. Landscape complexity and vegetation richness and diversity increases as dune fields evolve from simple active sheets and dunes to single and multiple deflation plains and basins, precipitation ridges, nebkha fields and a host of other dune types associated with vegetation (e.g. trailing ridges, slacks, remnant knobs, gegenwalle ridges and dune track ridges, ‘tree islands' and ‘bush pockets'). Three principal scenarios of transgressive dune sheet and dune field development are discussed, including dune sheets or dune fields evolving directly from the backshore, development following foredune and/or dune field erosion, and development from the breakdown or merging of parabolic dunes. Various stages of evolution are outlined for each scenario. Knowledge of evolutionary patterns and stages in coastal dune fields is very limited and caution is urged in attempts to reverse, change and/or modify dune fields to ‘restore' some perceived loss of ecosystem or dune functioning.

  16. The Geodiversity in Drift Sand Landscapes of The Netherlands

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    van den Ancker, Hanneke; Jungerius, Pieter Dirk; Riksen, Michel

    2015-04-01

    The authors carried out detailed field studies of more than twelve drift sand landscapes in The Netherlands. The objective of these studies was to restore Natura-2000 values by restoring the wind activity. Active drift sands occur almost exclusively in The Netherlands, Natura 2000 habitat 2330 'Inland dunes with open Corynephorus and Agrostis grasslands', for which reason our country is largely responsible for this European landscape. Active drift sands had almost disappeared for two reasons: first, the stabilization of the drift sands by air pollution, mainly nitrogen, which stimulates the growth of algae and grasses that initiate soil formation, and second, by the growth of forests surrounding the sands, which decreases the wind force. The restoration studies revealed differences in the geodiversity between and within the drift sand areas. Whereas the drift sands on geological and soil maps show as almost homogenous areas, they have in fact highly variable geo-conditions of which examples will be given. These geodiversity aspects concern differences in geomorphological structure, origin, sediments and age of the drift sands. Differences in wind and water erosion, trampling and soil formation add to the geodiversity within the drift sand areas. Especially in the primary stages of succession the differences in geodiversity are relevant for the Natura-2000 values. We discerned three main types of active sands. Firstly, the impressive drift sands with large parabolic dune structures, often consisting of series of interlocking parabolic dunes. They developed from the northeast towards the southwest, against the direction of the dominant wind, and must have taken centuries to develop. Small parts of these systems are still active, other parts show different degrees of soil formation. Their origin is still unclear but probably dates from medieval times (Heidinga, 1985, Jungerius & Riksen, 2008). Second are the drift sand areas with irregular hills from 0.5 to about 2

  17. Why do sand furrow distributions vary in the North Polar latitudes on Mars?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bourke, Mary; McGaley-Towle, Zoe

    2014-05-01

    Sand dunes on Mars display geomorphic evidence of an active and dynamic sediment flux. Barchan dunes migrate, ripples move and the slipface morphology changes annually. Aeolian sediment transport is seasonally constrained and linked to cryogenic processes. Sand furrows are geomorphic features that are eroded into the surface of dunes. They form during sublimation of the seasonal carbon dioxide deposit which moves gas and sand through vents in the ice (cryo-venting) (Bourke, 2013). They are visible on the surface of dunes using the highest resolution images available for Mars. Previous work has noted that the distribution of furrows varies spatially both on individual dunes and at different Polar locations. Here we report on the preliminary findings of a mapping project that seeks to confirm this previous qualitative observation. In addition, we aim to explain the observed spatial and temporal variation in sand furrows on North Polar dunes. Ten polar sites that reflect a latitudinal range of 9.5º are being analysed. The HiRISE images were acquired between 16/2/2012 and 31/05/2012, over a period of 105 Earth days or 102 Sols. We have completed mapping of 1711 sand furrows in an 84 km2 area of sand dunes, i.e. at four of the ten sites. The data confirm that there is variability in the distribution of sand furrows in the Polar Region. While data from all ten sites will be required to fully test the assertion of a latitudinal control, it is worth noting that the two most northerly sites have a significantly higher density of furrows compared to the two lower latitude sites. As the seasonal ice thickness is known to increases pole-ward on Mars, our data suggest that effective furrow formation may be linked to ice deposit thickness. In particular, it suggests that a threshold in ice thickness must be crossed in order for effective cryo-venting to occur. Bourke, M.C., 2013. Sand Furrows: A new surface feature on Martian dunes, EGU, EGU2013-11859, Vienna.

  18. Impact of phlebotomine sand flies on United States military operations at Tallil Air Base, Iraq: 5. Impact of weather on sand fly activity.

    PubMed

    Colacicco-Mayhugh, Michelle G; Grieco, John P; Putnam, John L; Burkett, Douglas A; Coleman, Russell E

    2011-05-01

    In this study, we examined the effect of weather and moon illumination on sand fly activity, as measured by light trap collections made between 2 May 2003 and 25 October 2004 at Tallil Air Base, Iraq. Wind speed, temperature, dew point, percentage of sky cover, and moon illumination were entered into principal components analysis. The resulting principal components were entered into stepwise regression to develop a model of the impact of the weather on sand fly collections. Wind speed, percentage of sky cover, and moon illumination each had a strong inverse relationship with the number of sand flies collected, whereas temperature displayed a direct relationship to sand fly collections. Our data indicate that sand fly light trap catches at Tallil Air Base are highest on warm, clear nights with low wind speed and minimal illumination from the moon.

  19. Mars Global Digital Dune Database (MGD3): Global dune distribution and wind pattern observations

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hayward, Rosalyn K.; Fenton, Lori; Titus, Timothy N.

    2014-01-01

    The Mars Global Digital Dune Database (MGD3) is complete and now extends from 90°N to 90°S latitude. The recently released south pole (SP) portion (MC-30) of MGD3 adds ∼60,000 km2 of medium to large-size dark dune fields and ∼15,000 km2 of sand deposits and smaller dune fields to the previously released equatorial (EQ, ∼70,000 km2), and north pole (NP, ∼845,000 km2) portions of the database, bringing the global total to ∼975,000 km2. Nearly all NP dunes are part of large sand seas, while the majority of EQ and SP dune fields are individual dune fields located in craters. Despite the differences between Mars and Earth, their dune and dune field morphologies are strikingly similar. Bullseye dune fields, named for their concentric ring pattern, are the exception, possibly owing their distinctive appearance to winds that are unique to the crater environment. Ground-based wind directions are derived from slipface (SF) orientation and dune centroid azimuth (DCA), a measure of the relative location of a dune field inside a crater. SF and DCA often preserve evidence of different wind directions, suggesting the importance of local, topographically influenced winds. In general however, ground-based wind directions are broadly consistent with expected global patterns, such as polar easterlies. Intriguingly, between 40°S and 80°S latitude both SF and DCA preserve their strongest, though different, dominant wind direction, with transport toward the west and east for SF-derived winds and toward the north and west for DCA-derived winds.

  20. A high spatio-temporal methodology for monitoring dunes morphology based on precise GPS-NRTK profiles: Test-case of Dune of Mónsul on the south-east Spanish coastline

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Garrido, M. S.; Giménez, E.; Ramos, M. I.; Gil, A. J.

    2013-03-01

    The effects of erosion and accretion of sand dune systems are often underestimated due to the coarse spatial and temporal resolution data set. This paper shows a specific methodology to monitor, at local scale and high repeatability, the crescentic dune of Mónsul in Almería (SE Spain). Precise spatial information based on high resolution profiles has been obtained periodically by repeated GPS surveys. The dune morphology and associated changes due to erosion and accretion are investigated using the GPS methodology in RTK (Real Time Kinematic) mode. This technique introduces significant improvements compared to other techniques for monitoring small areas such as better repeatability, accuracy, reliability, etc. The availability of the Andalusian Positioning Network, an active network over the region, allowed us to monitor the dune throughout GPS profiles capturing its evolution for the period of April-September, 2010. Three GPS campaigns spaced over time were performed. The framework is established by the active network, avoiding the placement of a local control network in this protected area. The main objective of this study is to perform a control methodology based on NRTK (network RTK) positioning supported by a regional active network, with special emphasis on checking and filtering the surveyed data. The numerical and graphical results presented show a balance between the values of erosion and accretion of sand on the dune.

  1. Overview of Initial Results From Studies of the Bagnold Dune Field on Mars by the Curiosity Rover

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bridges, Nathan; Ehlmann, Bethany; Ewing, Ryan; Newman, Claire; Sullivan, Robert; Conrad, Pamela; Cousin, Agnes; Edgett, Kenneth; Fisk, Martin; Fraeman, Abigail; Johnson, Jeffrey; Lamb, Michael; Lapotre, Mathieu; Le Mouélic, Stéphane; Martinez, German; Meslin, Pierre-Yves; Thompson, Lucy; van Beek, Jason; Vasavada, Ashwin; Wiens, Roger

    2016-04-01

    The Curiosity Rover is currently studying the Bagnold Dunes in Gale Crater. Here we provide a general overview of results and note that other EGU presentations will focus on specific aspects. The in situ activities have not yet occurred as of this writing, but other analyses have been performed approaching and within the dunefield. ChemCam passive spectra of Bagnold Dune sands are consistent with the presence of olivine. Two APXS spots on the High Dune stoss slope margin, and two others in an engineering test sand patch, show less inferred dust, greater Si, and higher Fe/Mn than other "soils" in Gale Crater. ChemCam analyses of more than 300 soils along the Curiosity traverse show that both fine and coarse soils have increasing iron and alkali content as the Bagnold Dunes are approached, a trend that may reflect admixtures of local rocks (alkalis + iron) to the fines, but also a contribution of Bagnold-like sand (iron) that increases toward the dunefield. MAHLI images of sands on the lower east stoss slope of High Dune show medium and coarse sand in ripple forms, and very fine and fine sand in ripple troughs. Most grains are dark gray, but some are also brick-red/brown, white, green translucent, yellow, brown„ colorless translucent, or vitreous spheres HiRISE orbital images show that the Bagnold Dunes migrate on the order of decimeters or more per Earth year. Prior to entering the dune field, wind disruption of dump piles and grain movement was observed over multi-sol time spans, demonstrating that winds are of sufficient strength to mobilize unconsolidated material, either through direct aerodynamic force or via the action of smaller impacting grains. Within the dune field, we are, as of this writing, engaged in change detection experiments with Mastcam and ChemCam's RMI camera. Data we have so far, spanning 8 sols from the same location, shows no changes. Mastcam and RMI images of the stoss sides of Namib, Noctivaga, and High Dune show that the "ripples" seen

  2. Big, Dark Dunes Northeast of Syrtis Major

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1999-01-01

    Big sand dunes! Mars is home to some very large, windblown dunes. The dunes shown here rise to almost 100 meters (275 feet) at their crests. Unlike dunes on Earth, the larger dunes of Mars are composed of dark, rather than light grains. This is probably related to the composition of the sand, since different materials will have different brightnesses. For example, beaches on the island of Oahu in Hawaii are light colored because they consist of ground-up particles of seashells, while beaches in the southern shores of the island of Hawaii (the 'Big Island' in the Hawaiian island chain) are dark because they consist of sand derived from dark lava rock.

    The dunes in this picture taken by the Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC) are located on the floor of an old, 72 km-(45 mi)-diameter crater located northeast of Syrtis Major. The sand is being blown from the upper right toward the lower left. The surface that the dunes have been travelling across is pitted and cratered. The substrate is also hard and bright--i.e., it is composed of a material of different composition than the sand in the dunes. The dark streaks on the dune surfaces area puzzle...at first glance one might conclude they are the result of holiday visitors with off-road vehicles. However, the streaks more likely result from passing dust devils or wind gusts that disturb the sand surface just enough to leave a streak. The image shown here covers an area approximately 2.6 km (1.6 mi) wide, and is illuminated from the lower right.

    Malin Space Science Systems and the California Institute of Technology built the MOC using spare hardware from the Mars Observer mission. MSSS operates the camera from its facilities in San Diego, CA. The Jet Propulsion Laboratory's Mars Surveyor Operations Project operates the Mars Global Surveyor spacecraft with its industrial partner, Lockheed Martin Astronautics, from facilities in Pasadena, CA and Denver, CO.

  3. From Sand to Rock: a teaching activity to introduce beach dynamics.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gravina, Teresita

    2015-04-01

    The Italian coastline is about 7,500 km long; approximately 53% of the coastlines are low or deltaic coastlines, while 3,240 km were mainly composed of sand or gravel beaches. Most of the Italian coastal environment suffers from intense and growing urbanization, tourism and industry pressure, which could partly explain that 42% of Italian beaches experience erosion. Terracina is situated Lazio (Central Italy), a region strongly impacted by coastal erosion, and for this reason we organized a teaching activity, carried out with fourth year high school classes, in order to help students to understand sand beach dynamics, acquisition of geology issues and land conservation and preservation skills. We decided to focus our activity on the mineralogical composition of beach sand in order to relate beach formations with the geological evolution of the territory. Sand beach minerals were used as tracers in order to support students to understand dynamics that influence beach formations. In addition to mineral characteristic recognition, this activity allows us to introduce the beach balance concept and the phenomena that regulate sediment balance, in order to allow students to consider beaches as a resource which needs to be preserved. Sand mineralogical composition data is treated in a worksheet to elaborate simple statistical analysis in order to recognize the mineral composition of Terracina beach sand's rock sources. This exercise allows students to find relationships between regional geology and beach sand's composition. Finally, statistical evidence could be compared with geological maps of the area in order to find the probable provenance of sand's rock source and rocks recognition thanks to related morphologies. Our main purpose was to help students to understand that beaches are dynamic systems subject to anthropogenic pressure and for this reason they needed to be preserved. Proposed teaching activities involve topics related to students' living territory and to

  4. Field measurement and analysis of climatic factors affecting dune mobility near Grand Falls on the Navajo Nation, southwestern United States

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bogle, Rian; Redsteer, Margaret Hiza; Vogel, John

    2015-01-01

    Aeolian sand covers extensive areas of the Navajo Nation in the southwestern United States. Much of this sand is currently stabilized by vegetation, although many drier parts of these Native lands also have active and partly active dunes. Current prolonged drought conditions that started in the mid-1990s are producing significant changes in dune mobility. Reactivation of regional aeolian deposits due to drought or increasing aridity from rising temperatures resulting from climate change could have serious consequences for human and animal populations, agriculture, grazing, and infrastructure. To understand and document the current and future potential for mobility, seasonally repeated surveys were used to track the location of multiple active barchan dunes. By utilizing Real-Time Kinematic GPS field surveys and simultaneously collecting in-situ meteorological data, it is possible to examine climatic parameters and seasonal variations that affect dune mobility and their relative influences. Through analysis of the recorded data, we examined the fit of various climate parameters, and demonstrate that under the current prolonged drought, wind power is the dominant factor controlling dune mobility.

  5. Persistence, dissipation, and activity of Escherichia coli O157:H7 within sand and seawater environments.

    PubMed

    Williams, A Prysor; Avery, Lisa M; Killham, Ken; Jones, David L

    2007-04-01

    Runoff from agricultural land into watercourses may transport and deposit animal-derived waste contaminated with Escherichia coli O157:H7 onto beaches, which may in turn lead to human infection. To simulate contamination, freshwater mixed with cattle slurry containing E. coli O157:H7 was added to sand from three recreational beaches. The sand was then maintained in a dry state (nontidal) or subjected to a repeated seawater tidal simulation. The pathogen could still be recovered from all sands by day 5. Although survival of the pathogen did not statistically vary between sands of different origin under nontidal conditions, significant differences in numbers occurred between sands when subject to tidal simulation. In the tidal simulations, a considerable proportion of the E. coli O157:H7 rapidly dissipated from sand into the seawater. In a separate experiment, the activity of bioluminescent (lux-marked) E. coli O157:H7 cells was monitored in various mixtures of contaminated runoff water and seawater over 5 days. Pathogen activity declined with increasing seawater concentration; however, cells remained viable in all treatments over the 5-day period. The addition of nutrients to water rapidly increased pathogen activity in all treatments. Our findings highlight the resilience of E. coli O157:H7 in aquatic and marine environments.

  6. Understanding the fate of organic micropollutants in sand and granular activated carbon biofiltration systems.

    PubMed

    Paredes, L; Fernandez-Fontaina, E; Lema, J M; Omil, F; Carballa, M

    2016-05-01

    In this study, sand and granular activated carbon (GAC) biofilters were comparatively assessed as post-treatment technologies of secondary effluents, including the fate of 18 organic micropollutants (OMPs). To determine the contribution of adsorption and biotransformation in OMP removal, four reactors were operated (two biofilters (with biological activity) and two filters (without biological activity)). In addition, the influence of empty bed contact time (EBCT), ranging from 0.012 to 3.2d, and type of secondary effluent (anaerobic and aerobic) were evaluated. Organic matter, ammonium and nitrate were removed in both biofilters, being their adsorption higher on GAC than on sand. According to the behaviour exhibited, OMPs were classified in three different categories: I) biotransformation and high adsorption on GAC and sand (galaxolide, tonalide, celestolide and triclosan), II) biotransformation, high adsorption on GAC but low or null adsorption on sand (ibuprofen, naproxen, fluoxetine, erythromycin, roxythromycim, sulfamethoxazole, trimethoprim, bisphenol A, estrone, 17β-estradiol and 17α-ethinylestradiol), and, III) only adsorption on GAC (carbamazepine, diazepam and diclofenac). No influence of EBCT (in the range tested) and type of secondary effluent was observed in GAC reactors, whereas saturation and kinetic limitation of biotransformation were observed in sand reactors. Taking into account that most of the organic micropollutants studied (around 60%) fell into category II, biotransformation is crucial for the elimination of OMPs in sand biofilters.

  7. Multiple origins of linear dunes on Earth and Titan

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Rubin, David M.; Hesp, Patrick A.

    2009-01-01

    Dunes with relatively long and parallel crests are classified as linear dunes. On Earth, they form in at least two environmental settings: where winds of bimodal direction blow across loose sand, and also where single-direction winds blow over sediment that is locally stabilized, be it through vegetation, sediment cohesion or topographic shelter from the winds. Linear dunes have also been identified on Titan, where they are thought to form in loose sand. Here we present evidence that in the Qaidam Basin, China, linear dunes are found downwind of transverse dunes owing to higher cohesiveness in the downwind sediments, which contain larger amounts of salt and mud. We also present a compilation of other settings where sediment stabilization has been reported to produce linear dunes. We suggest that in this dune-forming process, loose sediment accumulates on the dunes and is stabilized; the stable dune then functions as a topographic shelter, which induces the deposition of sediments downwind. We conclude that a model in which Titan's dunes formed similarly in cohesive sediments cannot be ruled out by the existing data.