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Sample records for aeolian sand deposits

  1. Sand transport by wind, erosion and deposition and the origin of aeolian bedforms

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Duran Vinent, Orencio

    2014-05-01

    Aeolian processes involve the wind action on a sedimentary substrate, namely erosion, sand transport and deposition. They are responsible for the emergence of aeolian dunes and ripples. Here, we discuss the physics of aeolian sediment transport from a physical point of view. Relevant time and length scales associated to turbulent wind fluctuations are summarized using aerodynamic theory. At the microscopic scale, the main forces acting on the grains are detailed. Sand transport is then studied using two phase numerical simulations based on a discrete element method for particles coupled to a continuum Reynolds averaged description of hydrodynamics. We then introduce the concepts - e.g. saturated flux, saturation length - and the relevant framework for the development of a continuum (macroscopic) quantitative description of transport at the core of our current understanding of aeolian dunes formation. At smaller scales, aeolian ripples arise from the interaction of sediment transport and topography. At larger scales, the nonlinear nature of the interaction between dunes leads to the formation of dune fields.

  2. Aeolian sand ripples around plants.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Qian-Hua; Miao, Tian-De

    2003-05-01

    Plants in the desert may locally change the aeolian process, and hence the pattern of sand ripples traveling nearby. The effect of plants on ripples is investigated using a coupled map lattice model with nonuniform coupling coefficients. PMID:12786143

  3. Modeling grain size variations of aeolian gypsum deposits at White Sands, New Mexico, using AVIRIS imagery

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ghrefat, H.A.; Goodell, P.C.; Hubbard, B.E.; Langford, R.P.; Aldouri, R.E.

    2007-01-01

    Visible and Near-Infrared (VNIR) through Short Wavelength Infrared (SWIR) (0.4-2.5????m) AVIRIS data, along with laboratory spectral measurements and analyses of field samples, were used to characterize grain size variations in aeolian gypsum deposits across barchan-transverse, parabolic, and barchan dunes at White Sands, New Mexico, USA. All field samples contained a mineralogy of ?????100% gypsum. In order to document grain size variations at White Sands, surficial gypsum samples were collected along three Transects parallel to the prevailing downwind direction. Grain size analyses were carried out on the samples by sieving them into seven size fractions ranging from 45 to 621????m, which were subjected to spectral measurements. Absorption band depths of the size fractions were determined after applying an automated continuum-removal procedure to each spectrum. Then, the relationship between absorption band depth and gypsum size fraction was established using a linear regression. Three software processing steps were carried out to measure the grain size variations of gypsum in the Dune Area using AVIRIS data. AVIRIS mapping results, field work and laboratory analysis all show that the interdune areas have lower absorption band depth values and consist of finer grained gypsum deposits. In contrast, the dune crest areas have higher absorption band depth values and consist of coarser grained gypsum deposits. Based on laboratory estimates, a representative barchan-transverse dune (Transect 1) has a mean grain size of 1.16 ??{symbol} (449????m). The error bar results show that the error ranges from - 50 to + 50????m. Mean grain size for a representative parabolic dune (Transect 2) is 1.51 ??{symbol} (352????m), and 1.52 ??{symbol} (347????m) for a representative barchan dune (Transect 3). T-test results confirm that there are differences in the grain size distributions between barchan and parabolic dunes and between interdune and dune crest areas. The t-test results

  4. Late Quaternary aeolian sand deposition sustained by fluvial reworking and sediment supply in the Hexi Corridor - An example from northern Chinese drylands

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nottebaum, Veit; Lehmkuhl, Frank; Stauch, Georg; Lu, Huayu; Yi, Shuangwen

    2015-12-01

    Aeolian deposits are frequently used for palaeoenvironmental change studies. Their formation depends on an array of requirements: the supply of material suitable for aeolian transport and favorable conditions of sediment availability and wind strength. In order to infer palaeoenvironmental information from aeolian sand deposits these factors need to be carefully evaluated. We present a study from northern Chinese Hexi Corridor, based on 11 optically stimulated luminescence (OSL) dated sediment sections. These represent interchanging aeolian and alluvial deposits under gravel surfaces and aeolian sand in dune fields interrupted by interdunal flood deposits. Investigations in two subareas reveal contrasting geomorphologic and sedimentary histories: (1) sediment deposition during the Pleistocene-Holocene transition (~ 12 ka) followed by deflation during the Holocene and (2) frequent sediment recycling revealed by a wide spectrum of ages throughout the Holocene. The late glacial sediment pulse recorded in the western Hexi Corridor is attributed to high sediment supply, generated by efficient (peri-)glacial sediment production during glacial times in the adjacent Qilian Shan (< 5700 m asl) and a moisture increase inducing the reworking of those (glacio-)fluvial deposits during the Pleistocene-Holocene transition. The absence of a powerful reworking agent preserved these late glacial deposits in the western Hexi Corridor in contrast to moister eastern parts where Holocene sediment reworking prevailed. Geomorphological and hydrological preconditions of the subareas are discussed and reveal the controlling influence of fluvial processes on sand supply for the aeolian system. While a perennial drainage is missing in the drier western part, the Hei River drainage is fed by higher monsoonal precipitation in the central Hexi Corridor. It maintains a sediment recycling system and has ensured a sufficient sediment supply throughout the Holocene. The study promotes closer

  5. Formation of aeolian ripples and sand sorting.

    PubMed

    Manukyan, Edgar; Prigozhin, Leonid

    2009-03-01

    We present a continuous model capable of demonstrating some salient features of aeolian sand ripples: the realistic asymmetric ripple shape, coarsening of the ripple field at the nonlinear stage of ripple growth, saturation of ripple growth for homogeneous sand, typical size segregation of sand, and formation of armoring layers of coarse particles on ripple crests and windward slopes if the sand is inhomogeneous. PMID:19391931

  6. Direct numerical simulations of aeolian sand ripples

    PubMed Central

    Durán, Orencio; Claudin, Philippe; Andreotti, Bruno

    2014-01-01

    Aeolian sand beds exhibit regular patterns of ripples resulting from the interaction between topography and sediment transport. Their characteristics have been so far related to reptation transport caused by the impacts on the ground of grains entrained by the wind into saltation. By means of direct numerical simulations of grains interacting with a wind flow, we show that the instability turns out to be driven by resonant grain trajectories, whose length is close to a ripple wavelength and whose splash leads to a mass displacement toward the ripple crests. The pattern selection results from a compromise between this destabilizing mechanism and a diffusive downslope transport which stabilizes small wavelengths. The initial wavelength is set by the ratio of the sediment flux and the erosion/deposition rate, a ratio which increases linearly with the wind velocity. We show that this scaling law, in agreement with experiments, originates from an interfacial layer separating the saltation zone from the static sand bed, where momentum transfers are dominated by midair collisions. Finally, we provide quantitative support for the use of the propagation of these ripples as a proxy for remote measurements of sediment transport. PMID:25331873

  7. Direct numerical simulations of aeolian sand ripples.

    PubMed

    Durán, Orencio; Claudin, Philippe; Andreotti, Bruno

    2014-11-01

    Aeolian sand beds exhibit regular patterns of ripples resulting from the interaction between topography and sediment transport. Their characteristics have been so far related to reptation transport caused by the impacts on the ground of grains entrained by the wind into saltation. By means of direct numerical simulations of grains interacting with a wind flow, we show that the instability turns out to be driven by resonant grain trajectories, whose length is close to a ripple wavelength and whose splash leads to a mass displacement toward the ripple crests. The pattern selection results from a compromise between this destabilizing mechanism and a diffusive downslope transport which stabilizes small wavelengths. The initial wavelength is set by the ratio of the sediment flux and the erosion/deposition rate, a ratio which increases linearly with the wind velocity. We show that this scaling law, in agreement with experiments, originates from an interfacial layer separating the saltation zone from the static sand bed, where momentum transfers are dominated by midair collisions. Finally, we provide quantitative support for the use of the propagation of these ripples as a proxy for remote measurements of sediment transport. PMID:25331873

  8. A Threshold Continuum for Aeolian Sand Transport

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Swann, C.; Ewing, R. C.; Sherman, D. J.

    2015-12-01

    The threshold of motion for aeolian sand transport marks the initial entrainment of sand particles by the force of the wind. This is typically defined and modeled as a singular wind speed for a given grain size and is based on field and laboratory experimental data. However, the definition of threshold varies significantly between these empirical models, largely because the definition is based on visual-observations of initial grain movement. For example, in his seminal experiments, Bagnold defined threshold of motion when he observed that 100% of the bed was in motion. Others have used 50% and lesser values. Differences in threshold models, in turn, result is large errors in predicting the fluxes associated with sand and dust transport. Here we use a wind tunnel and novel sediment trap to capture the fractions of sand in creep, reptation and saltation at Earth and Mars pressures and show that the threshold of motion for aeolian sand transport is best defined as a continuum in which grains progress through stages defined by the proportion of grains in creep and saltation. We propose the use of scale dependent thresholds modeled by distinct probability distribution functions that differentiate the threshold based on micro to macro scale applications. For example, a geologic timescale application corresponds to a threshold when 100% of the bed in motion whereas a sub-second application corresponds to a threshold when a single particle is set in motion. We provide quantitative measurements (number and mode of particle movement) corresponding to visual observations, percent of bed in motion and degrees of transport intermittency for Earth and Mars. Understanding transport as a continuum provides a basis for revaluating sand transport thresholds on Earth, Mars and Titan.

  9. Aeolian Sand Transport with Collisional Suspension

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jenkins, James T.; Pasini, Jose Miguel; Valance, Alexandre

    2004-01-01

    Aeolian transport is an important mechanism for the transport of sand on Earth and on Mars. Dust and sand storms are common occurrences on Mars and windblown sand is responsible for many of the observed surface features, such as dune fields. A better understanding of Aeolian transport could also lead to improvements in pneumatic conveying of materials to be mined for life support on the surface of the Moon and Mars. The usual view of aeolian sand transport is that for mild winds, saltation is the dominant mechanism, with particles in the bed being dislodged by the impact of other saltating particles, but without in-flight collisions. As the wind becomes stronger, turbulent suspension keeps the particles in the air, allowing much longer trajectories, with the corresponding increase in transport rate. We show here that an important regime exists between these two extremes: for strong winds, but before turbulent suspension becomes dominant, there is a regime in which in-flight collisions dominate over turbulence as a suspension mechanism, yielding transport rates much higher than those for saltation. The theory presented is based on granular kinetic theory, and includes both turbulent suspension and particle-particle collisions. The wind strengths for which the calculated transport rates are relevant are beyond the published strengths of current wind tunnel experiments, so these theoretical results are an invitation to do experiments in the strong-wind regime. In order to make a connection between the regime of saltation and the regime of collisional suspension, it is necessary to better understand the interaction between the bed and the particles that collide with it. This interaction depends on the agitation of the particles of the bed. In mild winds, collisions with the bed are relatively infrequent and the local disturbance associated with a collision can relax before the next nearby collision. However, as the wind speed increases, collision become more frequent

  10. The contribution of micrometeorites to the iron stocks of buried podzols, developed in Late-glacial aeolian sand deposits (Brabant, The Netherlands)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    van Mourik, Jan; de Vet, Sebastiaan

    2015-04-01

    The surface geology of an extensive part of NW-Europe is dominated by coversands (Late-glacial chemical poor aeolian sand deposits). The geomorphology of coversand landscapes is dominated by ridges and planes. Podzolation is the dominant soil forming process in coversands under moderate humid climatic conditions. Umbric Podzols developed on the ridges under Quercetum-mixtum, Gleyic and Histic Podzols developed in the planes under Alnetum. Even in chemical poor coversands, iron will be released by hydrolysis from iron containing silicate minerals (such as feldspars). It is well known that the vertical iron distribution in Podzols is effected by translocation of active iron from eluvial to illuvial horizons and that iron is leaching to the aquifer. Iron stocks of Podzols, in contrasts, have not been widely studied for comparison purposes of individual soil horizons or between soils. We determined the stocks of active and immobile iron in the horizons of buried xeromorphic Podzols (soils that developed without any contact with groundwater). The results show that the total amount of iron exceeds the potential amount which can be released by hydrolysis from the parent material. Furthermore, to amount of iron that leached to the groundwater is unknown. It is evident that we must find an additional source to explain the total iron stocks in buried Podzols. It is known from analysis of ice cores that the earth atmosphere is subjected to a continuous influx of (iron rich) micrometeorites. The precipitation of micrometeorites (and other aerosols) on the earth surface is concentrated in humid climatic zones with (intensive) rain fall. We analyzed minerals, extracted from the ectorganic horizon of the Initial Podzols, developed in driftsand that stabilized around 1900 AD, overlying Palaeopodzols, buried around 1200 AD. Among blown in quartz grains, we could determine also micrometeorites, embedded in the organic skeleton of the fermentation horizon of the Initial Podzol

  11. Niveo-aeolian and Denivation Deposits on Mars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bourke, M. C.

    2004-12-01

    Hydrogen abundance data from the Gamma Ray Spectrometer on board the Mars Odyssey platform indicate that large areas of the North Polar Sand Sea have high concentrations (40-60% weight) of hydrogen molecules in the surface deposits. On Earth, cold region sand dunes often contain inter-bedded sand, snow and ice. These niveo-aeolian deposits have unique morphologies and sedimentary structures that are generally not found in warm desert dunes. An atlas of dune niveo-aeolian and denivation features was compiled from published studies of polar deserts on Earth. Features occur at a range of scales and signatures are both morphologic and stratigraphic. The atlas is used to identify similar features on Mars. Examination of high resolution Mars Orbiter Camera images of the North Polar Sand Sea and Southern Crater dune fields have identified several potential signatures of niveo-aeolian and denivation processes on Mars. These include: over steepened lee slopes, cornices, rounded slipface and/or crest, protruding ice cemented beds, alluvial meltwater channels and fans and sublimation avalanches. Other smaller-scale forms probably occur but are not detectable with current resolution data. While these findings have implications for our understanding of martian dune geomorphology, mobility and the geological evolution of the sand seas, they also highlight the potential for a significant volatile reservoir and biological habitat in sand dunes on Mars.

  12. Clear cutting (10-13th century) and deep stable economy (18-19th century) as responsible interventions for sand drifting and plaggic deposition in cultural landscapes on aeolian sands (SE-Netherlands).

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    van Mourik, Jan; Vera, Hein; Wallinga, Jakob

    2013-04-01

    The landscape in extensive areas in SE-Netherlands is underlain by coversand, deposited during the Late Glacial of the Weichselian. In the Preboreal, aeolian processes reduced soil formation. From the Preboreal to the Atlantic a deciduous climax forest developed. The geomorphology was a coversand landscape, composed of ridges (umbric podzols), coversand plains (gleyic podzols), coversand depressions (histic podzols) and small valleys (gleysols). The area was used by hunting people during the Late Paleolithic and Mesolithic. During the Bronze and Iron Ages the area was populated by people, living from forest grazing, shifting cultivation and trade. The natural deciduous forest gradually degraded into Calluna heath. The deforestation accelerated the soil acidification and affected the hydrology, which is reflected in drying out of ridges and wetting of depressions, promoting the development of histic podzols and even histosols. Aeolian erosion was during this period restricted to local, small scale sand drifting, related to natural hazards as forest fires and hurricanes and shifting cultivation. Sustainable crop productivity on chemically poor sandy substrates required application of organic fertilizers, composed of a mixture of organic litter and animal manure with a very low mineral compound, produced in shallow stables. At least since 1000 AD, heath management was regulated by a series of rules that aimed to protect the valuable heat lands against degradation. During the 11th, 12th and 13th centuries there was an increasing demand for wood and clear cutting transformed the majority of the forests in driftsand landscapes. The most important market was formed by the very wealthy Flemish cities. The exposed soil surface was subjected to wind erosion and sand drifting which endangered the Calluna heath, arable land and even farmhouses. As a consequence, umbric podzols, the natural climax soil under deciduous forests on coversand, degraded into larger scale driftsand

  13. Sand ripple dynamics in the case of out-of-equilibrium aeolian regimes.

    PubMed

    Misbah, C; Valance, A

    2003-12-01

    From a phenomenological hydrodynamical model, we analyze the aeolian sand ripple evolution in an out-of-equilibrium aeolian regime where erosion exceeds accretion (and vice versa). We find, in particular, that the ripple structure can be destroyed in favor of a flat sand bed. In the ripple regime we report on a new class of generic dynamics described by the Benney equation. This equation reveals either order or disorder depending on whether wave dispersion is strong or weak. In both cases, the average wavelength of the pattern is fixed in time. This markedly contrasts with the regime of equilibrium aeolian regime -reached when erosion balances deposition- where ripples undergo a coarsening process at long time (i.e., the wavelength increases indefinitely with time). PMID:15007749

  14. Measuring aeolian sand transport using acoustic sensors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Poortinga, Ate; van Rheenen, Hans; Ellis, Jean T.; Sherman, Douglas J.

    2015-03-01

    Acoustic sensors are frequently used to measure aeolian saltation. Different approaches are used to process the signals from these instruments. The goal of this paper is to describe and discuss a method to measure aeolian saltation with acoustic sensors. In a laboratory experiment, we measured the output from an advanced signal processing scheme on the circuit board of the saltiphone. We use a software implementation of this processing scheme to re-analyse data from four miniphones obtained during a field experiment. It is shown that a set of filters remove background noise outside the frequency spectrum of aeolian saltation (at 8 kHz), whereas signals within this frequency spectrum are amplified. The resulting analogue signal is a proxy of the energy. Using an AC pulse convertor, this signal can be converted into a digital and analogue count signal or an analogue energy signal, using a rectifier and integrator. Spatio-temporal correlation between field deployed miniphones increases by using longer integration times for signal processing. To quantify aeolian grain impact, it is suggested to use the analogue energy output, as this mode is able to detect changes in frequency and amplitude. The analogue and digital count signals are able to detect an increase in frequency, but are not able to detect an increase in signal amplitude. We propose a two-stage calibration scheme consisting of (1) a factory calibration, to set the frequency spectrum of the sensor and (2) a standardized drop-test conducted before and after the experiment to evaluate the response of the sensor.

  15. Nonlinear dynamics of Aeolian sand ripples.

    PubMed

    Prigozhin, L

    1999-07-01

    We study the initial instability of flat sand surface and further nonlinear dynamics of wind ripples. The proposed continuous model of ripple formation allowed us to simulate the development of a typical asymmetric ripple shape and the evolution of a sand ripple pattern. We suggest that this evolution occurs via ripple merger preceded by several soliton-like interaction of ripples. PMID:11969814

  16. Aeolian sand transport: a wind tunnel model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dong, Zhibao; Liu, Xiaoping; Wang, Hongtao; Wang, Xunming

    2003-09-01

    Wind sand transport is an important geological process on earth and some other planets. Formulating the wind sand transport model has been of continuing significance. Majority of the existing models relate sand transport rate to the wind shear velocity based on dynamic analysis. However, the wind shear velocity readapted to blown sand is difficult to determine from the measured wind profiles when sand movement occurs, especially at high wind velocity. Moreover, the effect of grain size on sand transport is open to argument. Detailed wind tunnel tests were carried out with respect to the threshold velocity, threshold shear velocity, and transport rate of differently sized, loose dry sand at different wind velocities to reformulate the transport model. The results suggest that the relationship between threshold shear velocity and grain size basically follow the Bagnold-type equation for the grain size d>0.1 mm. However, the threshold coefficient A in the equation is not constant as suggested by Bagnold, but decreases with the particle Reynolds number. The threshold velocity at the centerline height of the wind tunnel proved to be directly proportional to the square root of grain diameter. Attempts have been made to relate sand transport rate to both the wind velocity and shear velocity readapted to the blown sand movement. The reformulated transport model for loose dry sand follows the modified O'Brien-Rindlaub-type equation: Q= f1( d)(1- Ru) 2( ρ/ g) V3, or the modified Bagnold-type equation: Q= f2( d)(1- Rt) 0.25( ρ/ g) U*3. Where Q is the sand transport rate, the sand flux per unit time and per unit width, in kg m -1 s -1; ρ is the air density, 1.25 kg m -3; g is the acceleration due to gravity, 9.81 m s -2; Ru= Vt/ V; Rt= U*t/ U*; V is the wind velocity at the centerline of the wind tunnel, in m s -1; Vt is the threshold velocity measured at the same height as V, in m s -1; U* is the shear velocity with saltating flux, in m s -1; U*t is threshold shear

  17. Mars aeolian sand: Regional variations among dark-hued crater floor features

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Edgett, K. S.; Christensen, P. R.

    1994-01-01

    Different regions on Mars appear to have low-albedo intracrater deposits that have distinct regional thermophysical and/or aeolian dune characteristics. Thermal inertia derived from a carefully selected set of Viking infrared thermal mapper observations of the dark features obtained in 1977-1978 supports this conclusion. The observed similarities and differences among dark intracrater features on Mars is probably a function of the combined influences of sand availability and regional wind conditions.

  18. Aeolian sand ripples: experimental study of fully developed states.

    PubMed

    Andreotti, Bruno; Claudin, Philippe; Pouliquen, Olivier

    2006-01-20

    We report an experimental investigation of aeolian sand ripples, performed both in a wind tunnel and on stoss slopes of dunes. Starting from a flat bed, we can identify three regimes: appearance of an initial wavelength, coarsening of the pattern, and finally saturation of the ripples. We show that both initial and final wavelengths, as well as the propagative speed of the ripples, are linear functions of the wind velocity. Investigating the evolution of an initially corrugated bed, we exhibit nonlinear stable solutions for a finite range of wavelengths, which demonstrates the existence of a saturation in amplitude. These results contradict most of the models. PMID:16486644

  19. New Method for Estimation of Aeolian Sand Transport Rate Using Ceramic Sand Flux Sensor (UD-101)

    PubMed Central

    Udo, Keiko

    2009-01-01

    In this study, a new method for the estimation of aeolian sand transport rate was developed; the method employs a ceramic sand flux sensor (UD-101). UD-101 detects wind-blown sand impacting on its surface. The method was devised by considering the results of wind tunnel experiments that were performed using a vertical sediment trap and the UD-101. Field measurements to evaluate the estimation accuracy during the prevalence of unsteady winds were performed on a flat backshore. The results showed that aeolian sand transport rates estimated using the developed method were of the same order as those estimated using the existing method for high transport rates, i.e., for transport rates greater than 0.01 kg m−1 s−1. PMID:22291553

  20. The composition of Martian aeolian sands: Thermal emissivity from Viking IRTM observations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Edgett, Kenneth S.; Christensen, Philip R.

    1992-01-01

    Aeolian sands provide excellent surfaces for the remote determination of the mineralogic composition of Martian materials, because such deposits consist of relatively well-sorted, uniform particle sizes and might consist of chemically unaltered, primary mineral grains derived from bedrock. Dark features on the floors of Martian craters are controlled by aeolian processes and many consist largely of unconsolidated, windblown sand. Measurement of the thermal emissivity of geologic materials provides a way to identify mid-infrared absorption bands, the strength and positions of which vary with mineral structure and composition. The Viking Infrared Thermal Mapper (IRTM) had four surface-sensing mid-IR bands, three of which, the 7, 9, and 11 micron channels, correspond to absorption features characteristic of carbonates, sialic, and mafic minerals, respectively. In this study, the highest quality IRTM data were constrained so as to avoid the effects of atmospheric dust, clouds, surface frosts, and particle size variations (the latter using data obtained between 7 and 9 H, and they were selected for dark intracrater features such that only data taken directly from the dark feature were used, so as to avoid thermal contributions from adjacent but unrelated materials. Three-point emissivity spectra of Martian dart intracrater features were compared with laboratory emission spectra of minerals and terrestrial aeolian sands convolved using the IRTM response function to the four IRTM spectral channels.

  1. Coastal chevron deposits - sedimentology, methods and aeolian versus tsunamigenic origin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Spiske, Michaela; Garcia Garcia, Anna-Marietta; Tsukamoto, Sumiko; Schmidt, Volkmar

    2013-04-01

    The origin of v-shaped sediment bodies, so-called "chevrons", is currently controversially discussed. The term "chevron" is presently only defined in terms of the morphology of the sediment body, but not in terms of its genesis. Both an aeolian and an impact-tsunami origin are discussed. In this study, the sedimentology and origin of chevrons is investigated, examining deposits from the US west coast and the coast of Western Australia. We use internal structures obtained in trenches or by ground penetrating radar surveys, trenches, ages gained by radiocarbon and optically stimulated luminescence dating, grain size analysis and the general sediment composition. If the chevrons were deposited by a tsunami, all chevrons along one coastline should possess the same depositional ages, the grain-size distribution should be polymodal indicating various sediment sources and internal structures should be restricted mainly to normal grading. In case of an aeolian origin, the ages of the individual chevrons may vary and internal ages will reflect the migration of the sediment body. Furthermore, cross bedding should be present throughout the sediment body and soil horizons may represent inactive phases. Preliminary results indicate the presence of internal cross bedding and an unimodal grain-size distribution of the surveyed chevrons. Ages decrease in landward transport direction and to the top within vertical successions. At some locations soil layers intercalate between well sorted sands. The mean grain size of the chevron sands is 0.11-0.25 mm. A comparison of the chevron components with the mineral content of possible sediment sources (e.g., rivers, beaches, cliffs) shows that the chevrons are composed of the fine grain size fraction of the respective sources. Sediments of this grain size can easily be transported by aeolian forces under the local prevailing wind conditions. Terrestrial gastropods found within the chevrons give evidence of a long term development of these

  2. A preliminary source-to-sink sediment budget for aeolian sands

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sebe, Krisztina; Csillag, Gábor; Timár, Gábor; Jámbor, Áron

    2015-04-01

    constituted dominantly by the Upper Miocene sediments, subordinately by older clastics. The final amount of sand possibly eroded by the wind from the area was calculated by reducing this volume through estimating the portion of sand in the lacustrine succession and the ratio of aeolian and fluvial erosion. Aeolian sand volumes of the sink were calculated using borehole data from publications and original borehole documentations. This approach contains several error sources, including uncertainties in the position of the envelope surface, varying quality of borehole documentations or the distribution of sampling points. As a result, the estimated error margin of the missing volume computation is up to 50% and the provided value is rather a minimum estimation. A similar value can be valid for the sink area. The calculations showed that sand volumes of the source and sink areas are comparable, with the eroded material being about one third to a half of that of the deposited amount (somewhere below 150 km3 and between 300-400 km3, respectively). This result supports the idea that Transdanubia is an important source area of the Kiskunság blown sand field. The portion of sand in the sink not accounted for by the present estimation can be derived from two sources. Probably more blown sand had been delivered to the sink from areas even more upwind from the Transdanubian Range (Danube Basin), now not included in the calculations. The floodplain of the Danube may have also provided sediments, but mostly only in the Late Pleistocene, when the river had already occupied its modern course upwind of the Kiskunság area. Work has been supported by the OTKA projects K 106197 and NK83400.

  3. 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

  4. Aeolian sand preserved in Silver Lake: a new signal of Holocene high stands of Lake Michigan

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Fisher, Timothy G.; Loope, Walter L.

    2005-01-01

    Aeolian sand within lake sediment from Silver Lake, Michigan can be used as a proxy for the timing of high lake levels of Lake Michigan.We demonstrate that the sand record from Silver Lake plotted as percent weight is in-phase with the elevation curve of Lake Michigan since the mid-Holocene Nipissing Phase. Because fluctuations in Lake Michigan's lake level are recorded in beach ridges, and are a response to climate change, the aeolian sand record within Silver Lake is also a proxy for climate change. It appears that increases in dune activity and lake sand are controlled by similar climatic shifts that drive fluctuations in lake level of Lake Michigan. High lake levels destabilize coastal bluffs that drive dune sand instability, and along with greater wintertime storminess, increase niveo-aeolian transport of sand across lake ice. The sand is introduced into the lake each spring as the ice cover melts.

  5. Energy regimes for aeolian sand grain surface textures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marshall, J. R.; Bull, P. A.; Morgan, R. M.

    2012-05-01

    An experimental study of aeolian sand grain surface texture development was undertaken with an air-driven grain-recirculating desktop apparatus. Scanning electron microscope analysis of resulting textures indicated that different texture types can be associated with distinct zones in a grain-shape/grain speed matrix. In particular, for subrounded and rounded grains, low and high energy transport can be unequivocally distinguished by the occurrence of upturned plates and Hertzian frustra respectively. Textural development does not have a simple relationship to grain velocity, but appears to relate to the energy expended per unit area within the contact zone generated by elastic deformation during impact. Hertzian theory was adapted to irregular sand grain shapes and close agreement was found between experimental results and theoretical predictions for textural development. Results of this study improve our ability to reconstruct palaeoaeolian environments and therefore our ability to determine grain provenance; in particular, the latter is shown to have direct relevance to forensic inquiries and terrorism investigations.

  6. Aeolian cliff-top deposits and buried soils in the White River Badlands, South Dakota, USA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Rawling, J. E., III; Fredlund, G.G.; Mahan, S.

    2003-01-01

    Aeolian deposits in the North American Great Plains are important sources of Holocene palaeo-environmental records. Although there are extensive studies on loess and dune records in the region, little is known about records in aeolian cliff-top deposits. These are common on table (mesa) edges in the White River Badlands. These sediments typically have loam and sandy-loam textures with dominantly very fine sand, 0.5-1% organic carbon and 0.5-5% CaCO3. Some of these aeolian deposits are atypically coarse and contain granules and fine pebbles. Buried soils within these deposits are weakly developed with A-C and A-AC-C profiles. Beneath these are buried soils with varying degrees of pedogenic development formed in fluvial, aeolian or colluvial deposits. Thickness and number of buried soils vary. However, late-Holocene soils from several localities have ages of approximately 1300, 2500 and 3700 14C yrs BP. The 1300 14C yr BP soil is cumulic, with a thicker and lighter A horizon. Soils beneath the cliff-top deposits are early-Holocene (typically 7900 but as old as 10000 14C yrs BP) at higher elevation (???950 m) tables, and late-Holocene (2900 14C yrs BP) at lower (???830 m) tables. These age estimates are based on total organic matter 14C ages from the top 5 cm of buried soils, and agreement is good between an infrared stimulated luminescence age and bracketing 14C ages. Our studies show that cliff-top aeolian deposits have a history similar to that of other aeolian deposits on the Great Plains, and they are another source of palaeoenvironmental data.

  7. 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.

  8. Predicting aeolian sand transport rates: A reevaluation of models

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sherman, Douglas J.; Li, Bailiang

    2012-01-01

    Eight aeolian sand-transport models are evaluated using a field data set and a new approach to estimating shear velocity. The models are those of Bagnold (1937), Kawamura (1951), Zingg (1953), Owen (1964), Kadib (1965), Hsu (1971), Lettau and Lettau (1978) and Sørensen (2004). All of these models predict transport as a function of shear velocity to the third power. Shear velocities are estimated using wind profile data (log-linear slope) with the von Kármán constant and with the apparent von Kármán parameter and the results of the different approaches are evaluated based on comparison of regression statistics and RMS error. The models were not adjusted to account for sediment moisture content or local surface slope effects. All of the models have about the same statistical explanatory power, so evaluations were made by comparing slopes and intercepts of best fit (least-squares) lines and RMSE. From this basis, we conclude that predictions made with the Bagnold (1937) model best match our observations, with the models of Kadib (1965) and Hsu (1971) performing nearly as well. The Lettau and Lettau (1978) and Kawamura (1951) model predictions match observations least.

  9. Selective deposition response to aeolian-fluvial sediment supply in the desert braided channel of the upper Yellow River, China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, H.; Jia, X.; Li, Y.; Peng, W.

    2015-09-01

    Rivers flow across aeolian dunes and develop braided stream channels. Both aeolian and fluvial sediment supplies regulate sediment transport and deposition in such cross-dune braided rivers. Here we show a significant selective deposition in response to both aeolian and fluvial sediment supplies in the Ulan Buh desert braided channel. The Ulan Buh desert is the main coarse sediment source for this desert braided channel, and the mean percentage of the coarser (> 0.08 mm) grains on the aeolian dunes surface is 95.34 %. The lateral selective deposition process is developed by the interaction between the flows and the aeolian-fluvial sediment supplies, causing the coarser sediments (> 0.08 mm) from aeolian sand supply and bank erosion to accumulate in the channel centre and the finer fluvial sediments (< 0.08 mm) to be deposited on the bar and floodplain surfaces, forming a coarser-grained thalweg bed bounded by finer-grained floodplain surfaces. This lateral selective deposition reduces the downstream sediment transport and is a primary reason for the formation of an "above-ground" river in the braided reach of the upper Yellow River in response to aeolian and fluvial sediment supplies.

  10. Element geochemical analysis of the contribution of aeolian sand to suspended sediment in desert stream flash floods.

    PubMed

    Jia, Xiaopeng; Wang, Haibing

    2014-01-01

    The interaction of wind and water in semiarid and arid areas usually leads to low-frequency flash flood events in desert rivers, which have adverse effects on river systems and ecology. In arid zones, many aeolian dune-fields terminate in stream channels and deliver aeolian sand to the channels. Although aeolian processes are common to many desert rivers, whether the aeolian processes contribute to fluvial sediment loss is still unknown. Here, we identified the aeolian-fluvial cycling process responsible for the high rate of suspended sediment transport in the Sudalaer desert stream in the Ordos plateau of China. On the basis of element geochemistry data analysis, we found that aeolian sand was similar to suspended sediment in element composition, which suggests that aeolian sand contributes to suspended sediment in flash floods. Scatter plots of some elements further confirm that aeolian sand is the major source of the suspended sediment. Factor analysis and the relation between some elements and suspended sediment concentration prove that the greater the aeolian process, the higher the suspended sediment concentration and the greater the contribution of aeolian sand to suspended sediment yield. We conclude that aeolian sand is the greatest contributor to flash floods in the Sudalaer desert stream. PMID:25089295

  11. Element Geochemical Analysis of the Contribution of Aeolian Sand to Suspended Sediment in Desert Stream Flash Floods

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Haibing

    2014-01-01

    The interaction of wind and water in semiarid and arid areas usually leads to low-frequency flash flood events in desert rivers, which have adverse effects on river systems and ecology. In arid zones, many aeolian dune-fields terminate in stream channels and deliver aeolian sand to the channels. Although aeolian processes are common to many desert rivers, whether the aeolian processes contribute to fluvial sediment loss is still unknown. Here, we identified the aeolian-fluvial cycling process responsible for the high rate of suspended sediment transport in the Sudalaer desert stream in the Ordos plateau of China. On the basis of element geochemistry data analysis, we found that aeolian sand was similar to suspended sediment in element composition, which suggests that aeolian sand contributes to suspended sediment in flash floods. Scatter plots of some elements further confirm that aeolian sand is the major source of the suspended sediment. Factor analysis and the relation between some elements and suspended sediment concentration prove that the greater the aeolian process, the higher the suspended sediment concentration and the greater the contribution of aeolian sand to suspended sediment yield. We conclude that aeolian sand is the greatest contributor to flash floods in the Sudalaer desert stream. PMID:25089295

  12. Anatomy and controlling factors of a Late Cretaceous Aeolian sand sheet: The Marília and the Adamantina formations, NW Bauru Basin, Brazil

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Basilici, Giorgio; Führ Dal'Bó, Patrick Francisco

    2010-04-01

    Few previous studies have given significant consideration to the palaeosols in aeolian sand sheet sedimentary successions and, mainly, to their palaeoenvironmental and stratigraphic meaning in interaction with the deposits. These themes are considered in this study that deals with the depositional architecture and the factors controlling the construction, accumulation and preservation of an ancient aeolian sand sheet, that forms part of the Adamantina and Marília formations, in the Bauru Basin (Late Cretaceous, Brazil). In the NW portion of the Bauru Basin, these two units, ca 220 m thick, consist of sandstone, and secondarily of sandy conglomerate and mudstone, and are characterised by vertically alternated palaeosols and deposits. Facies analyses of the deposits and macroscopic characterisation of the palaeosols in 45 outcrops were integrated with laboratory analyses that consisted in descriptions of slabs of rock samples, petrographic analyses, clay mineralogy determination, geochemical analyses of the major oxides, and micromorphological characterisation of the palaeosols. Three architectural elements were recognised: palaeosols, wind-ripple-dominated aeolian sand sheet deposits, and ephemeral river deposits. The palaeosols constitute 66% of the entire sedimentary succession, and consist principally of Aridisols and, subordinately, of Alfisols, Vertisols, and Entisols. The wind-ripple-dominated aeolian sand sheet deposits (25%) are composed of sandstone, organised in translatent climbing wind-ripple strata, and secondarily of sandstone and mudstone deposited by infrequent floods. The ephemeral river deposits (9%) consist of sandy conglomerates 4 m thick and ca 2 km wide. Wind-ripple-dominated aeolian sand sheet deposits formed during relatively dry climate period on an unstable topographic surface of an aeolian sand sheet, where aeolian deposition or erosion prevailed. Palaeosols and ephemeral river deposits formed in a more humid climate period on a stable

  13. Intricately Rippled Sand Deposits

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2006-01-01

    [figure removed for brevity, see original site] Click on the image for Intricately Rippled Sand Deposits (QTVR)

    NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Spirit welcomed the beginning of 2006 on Earth by taking this striking panorama of intricately rippled sand deposits in Gusev Crater on Mars. This is an approximate true-color rendering of the 'El Dorado' ripple field provided by Spirit over the New Year's holiday weekend. The view spans about 160 degrees in azimuth from left to right and consists of images acquired by Spirit's panoramic camera on Spirit's 708th and 710th Martian days, or sols, (Dec. 30, 2005 and Jan. 1, 2006). Spirit used the Pancam's 750-nanometer, 530-nanometer and 430-nanometer filters to capture the colors on Mars. Scientists have eliminated seams between individual frames in the sky portion of the mosaic to better simulate the vista a person standing on Mars would see. Spirit spent several days acquiring images, spectral data, and compositional and mineralogical information about these large sand deposits before continuing downhill toward 'Home Plate.'

  14. Remote sensing and spatial analysis of aeolian sand dunes: A review and outlook

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hugenholtz, Chris H.; Levin, Noam; Barchyn, Thomas E.; Baddock, Matthew C.

    2012-03-01

    For more than four decades remote sensing images have been used to document and understand the evolution of aeolian sand dunes. Early studies focused on mapping and classifying dunes. Recent advances in sensor technology and software have allowed investigators to move towards quantitative investigation of dune form evolution and pattern development. These advances have taken place alongside progress in numerical models, which are capable of simulating the multitude of dune patterns observed in nature. The potential to integrate remote sensing (RS), spatial analysis (SA), and modeling to predict the future changes of real-world dune systems is steadily becoming a reality. Here we present a comprehensive review of significant recent advances involving RS and SA. Our objective is to demonstrate the capacity of these technologies to provide new insight on three important research domains: (1) dune activity, (2) dune patterns and hierarchies, and (3) extra-terrestrial dunes. We outline how several recent advances have capitalized on the improved spatial and spectral resolution of RS data, the availability of topographic data, and new SA methods and software. We also discuss some of the key research challenges and opportunities in the application of RS and SA dune field, including: the integration of RS data with field-based measurements of vegetation cover, structure, and aeolian transport rate in order to develop predictive models of dune field activity; expanding the observational evidence of dune form evolution at temporal and spatial scales that can be used to validate and refine simulation models; the development and application of objective and reproducible SA methods for characterizing dune field pattern; and, expanding efforts to quantify three-dimensional topographic changes of dune fields in order to develop improved understanding of spatio-temporal patterns of erosion and deposition. Overall, our review indicates a progressive evolution in the way sand dunes

  15. 2008 Weather and Aeolian Sand-Transport Data from the Colorado River Corridor, Grand Canyon, Arizona

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Draut, Amy E.; Sondossi, Hoda A.; Hazel, Joseph E., Jr.; Andrews, Timothy; Fairley, Helen C.; Brown, Christopher R.; Vanaman, Karen M.

    2009-01-01

    This report presents measurements of weather parameters and aeolian (windblown) sand transport made in 2008 near selected archaeological sites in the Colorado River corridor through Grand Canyon, Ariz. The quantitative methods and data discussed here form a basis for monitoring ecosystem processes that affect archeological-site stability. Combined with forthcoming work to evaluate landscape evolution at nearby archaeological sites, these data can be used to document the relationship between physical processes, including weather and aeolian sand transport, and their effects on the physical integrity of archaeological sites. Data collected in 2008 reveal event- and seasonal-scale variations in rainfall, wind, temperature, humidity, and barometric pressure. Broad seasonal changes in aeolian sediment flux are also apparent at most study sites. The continuation of monitoring that began in 2007, and installation of equipment at several new sites in early 2008, allowed evaluation of the effects of the March 2008 high-flow experiment (HFE) on aeolian sand transport. At two of the nine sites studied, spring and summer winds reworked 2008 HFE sandbars to form new aeolian dunes, at which sand moved inland toward larger, well-established dune fields. At the other seven study sites, neither dune formation nor enhanced sand transport after the HFE were observed. At several of those sites, dominant wind directions in spring 2008 were not oriented such that much HFE sand would have moved inland; at other sites, lack of increased inland sand flux is attributable to lack of sandbar enlargement near the study sites or to inhibition of sand movement by vegetation or local topography.

  16. Aeolian Sand Transport in the Planetary Context: Respective Roles of Aerodynamic and Bed-Dilatancy Thresholds

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Marshall, J. R.; Borucki, J.; Bratton, C.

    1999-01-01

    The traditional view of aeolian sand transport generally estimates flux from the perspective of aerodynamic forces creating the airborne grain population, although it has been recognized that "reptation" causes a significant part of the total airborne flux; reptation involves both ballistic injection of grains into the air stream by the impact of saltating grains as well as the "nudging" of surface grains into a creeping motion. Whilst aerodynamic forces may initiate sand motion, it is proposed here that within a fully-matured grain cloud, flux is actually governed by two thresholds: an aerodynamic threshold, and a bed-dilatancy threshold. It is the latter which controls the reptation population, and its significance increases proportionally with transport energy. Because we only have experience with terrestrial sand transport, extrapolations of aeolian theory to Mars and Venus have adjusted only the aerodynamic factor, taking gravitational forces and atmospheric density as the prime variables in the aerodynamic equations, but neglecting reptation. The basis for our perspective on the importance of reptation and bed dilatancy is a set of experiments that were designed to simulate sand transport across the surface of a martian dune. Using a modified sporting crossbow in which a sand-impelling sabot replaced the bolt-firing mechanism, individual grains of sand were fired at loose sand targets with glancing angles typical of saltation impact; grains were projected at about 80 m/s to simulate velocities commensurate with those predicted for extreme martian aeolian conditions. The sabot impelling method permitted study of individual impacts without the masking effect of bed mobilization encountered in wind-tunnel studies. At these martian impact velocities, grains produced small craters formed by the ejection of several hundred grains from the bed. Unexpectedly, the craters were not elongated, despite glancing impact; the craters were very close to circular in planform

  17. 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.

  18. Simulation of aeolian sand saltation with rotational motion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huang, Ning; Wang, Cong; Pan, Xiying

    2010-11-01

    In this work, we propose a theoretical model based on the distribution functions of initial liftoff velocity and angular velocity of sand grains to describe a sand saltation process in which both wind field-sand grain coupling and the Magnus force experienced by saltating sand grains have been incorporated. The computation results showed that the Magnus force had significant effects on sand grain saltation. In particular, when the Magnus force was incorporated, the calculated sand transport fluxes and sand transport rate per unit width were closer to the experimental value than when this force was excluded. The sand transport flux is enhanced because the Magnus force owing to particle rotation causes the particles to have higher and longer trajectories, so the particles can get more speed and energy from the wind, which leads to a larger sand transport flux. In addition, it was found that when taking the Magnus force into account, the probability density of the impact velocity and angular velocity of saltating sand grains followed an exponential distribution and a unimodal asymmetric distribution, respectively. Moreover, the sand energy flux increased with the height above the sand surface until the energy flux reached its maximum and then decreased. Furthermore, the energy flux near the ground surface decreased as the grain diameter increased, but beyond a specific height the energy flux increased with the grain diameter. Finally, for the same sand grain diameter, the energy flux increased with the friction velocity.

  19. 2007 Weather and Aeolian Sand-Transport Data from the Colorado River Corridor, Grand Canyon, Arizona

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Draut, Amy E.; Andrews, Timothy; Fairley, Helen C.; Brown, Christopher R.

    2009-01-01

    Weather data constitute an integral part of ecosystem monitoring in the Colorado River corridor and are particularly valuable for understanding processes of landscape change that contribute to the stability of archeological sites. Data collected in 2007 are reported from nine weather stations in the Colorado River corridor through Grand Canyon, Ariz. The stations were deployed in February and March 2007 to measure wind speed and direction, rainfall, air temperature, relative humidity, and barometric pressure. Sand traps near each weather station collect windblown sand, from which daily aeolian sand-transport rates are calculated. The data reported here were collected as part of an ongoing study to test and evaluate methods for quantifying processes that affect the physical integrity of archeological sites along the river corridor; as such, these data can be used to identify rainfall events capable of causing gully incision and to predict likely transport pathways for aeolian sand, two landscape processes integral to the preservation of archeological sites. Weather data also have widespread applications to other studies of physical, cultural, and biological resources in Grand Canyon. Aeolian sand-transport data reported here, collected in the year before the March 2008 High-Flow Experiment (HFE) at Glen Canyon Dam, represent baseline data against which the effects of the 2008 HFE on windblown sand will be compared in future reports.

  20. Aeolian Sand Transport in the Planetary Context: Respective Roles of Aerodynamic and Bed-Dilatancy Thresholds

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Marshall, J. R.; Borucki, J.; Bratton, C.

    1999-01-01

    The traditional view of aeolian sand transport generally estimates flux from the perspective of aerodynamic forces creating the airborne grain population, although it has been recognized that "reptation" causes a significant part of the total airborne flux; reptation involves both ballistic injection of grains into the air stream by the impact of saltating grains as well as the "nudging" of surface grains into a creeping motion. Whilst aerodynamic forces may initiate sand motion, it is proposed here that within a fully-matured grain cloud, flux is actually governed by two thresholds: an aerodynamic threshold, and a bed-dilatancy threshold. It is the latter which controls the reptation population, and its significance increases proportionally with transport energy. Because we only have experience with terrestrial sand transport, extrapolations of aeolian theory to Mars and Venus have adjusted only the aerodynamic factor, taking gravitational forces and atmospheric density as the prime variables in the aerodynamic equations, but neglecting reptation. The basis for our perspective on the importance of reptation and bed dilatancy is a set of experiments that were designed to simulate sand transport across the surface of a martian dune. Using a modified sporting crossbow in which a sand-impelling sabot replaced the bolt-firing mechanism, individual grains of sand were fired at loose sand targets with glancing angles typical of saltation impact; grains were projected at about 80 m/s to simulate velocities commensurate with those predicted for extreme martian aeolian conditions. The sabot impelling method permitted study of individual impacts without the masking effect of bed mobilization encountered in wind-tunnel studies. At these martian impact velocities, grains produced small craters formed by the ejection of several hundred grains from the bed. Unexpectedly, the craters were not elongated, despite glancing impact; the craters were very close to circular in planform

  1. Aeolian Sand Transport in the Planetary Context: Respective Roles of Aerodynamic and Bed-Dilatancy Thresholds

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marshall, J. R.; Borucki, J.; Bratton, C.

    1999-09-01

    The traditional view of aeolian sand transport generally estimates flux from the perspective of aerodynamic forces creating the airborne grain population, although it has been recognized that "reptation" causes a significant part of the total airborne flux; reptation involves both ballistic injection of grains into the air stream by the impact of saltating grains as well as the "nudging" of surface grains into a creeping motion. Whilst aerodynamic forces may initiate sand motion, it is proposed here that within a fully-matured grain cloud, flux is actually governed by two thresholds: an aerodynamic threshold, and a bed-dilatancy threshold. It is the latter which controls the reptation population, and its significance increases proportionally with transport energy. Because we only have experience with terrestrial sand transport, extrapolations of aeolian theory to Mars and Venus have adjusted only the aerodynamic factor, taking gravitational forces and atmospheric density as the prime variables in the aerodynamic equations, but neglecting reptation. The basis for our perspective on the importance of reptation and bed dilatancy is a set of experiments that were designed to simulate sand transport across the surface of a martian dune. Using a modified sporting crossbow in which a sand-impelling sabot replaced the bolt-firing mechanism, individual grains of sand were fired at loose sand targets with glancing angles typical of saltation impact; grains were projected at about 80 m/s to simulate velocities commensurate with those predicted for extreme martian aeolian conditions. The sabot impelling method permitted study of individual impacts without the masking effect of bed mobilization encountered in wind-tunnel studies. At these martian impact velocities, grains produced small craters formed by the ejection of several hundred grains from the bed. Unexpectedly, the craters were not elongated, despite glancing impact; the craters were very close to circular in planform

  2. Aeolian environments and sand damage along the Qinghai-Tibet Railway, China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Kecun; Qu, Jiaunjun; Han, Qingjie; An, Zhishan

    2016-04-01

    The Qinghai-Tibet Railway (QTR), with a total length of 1956 km, is the word's longest high-altitude railway. Located in the Tibet Plateau, the QTR is frequently damaged by windblown sand because of strong winds and abundant sand. Based on the detailed wind data, in situ observation of wind blown sand and field wind tunnel simulations along the QTR, the aeolian sand environment, involving sand-laden wind, drift potential, sand transport and their spatial variation were investigated. Sand-laden wind presents unidirectional characteristics along the QTR and its prevailing direction is westerly. The annual drift potential along the QTR reaches 970.54 Vector Units (VU), which belongs to a high-energy wind environment. In cold-high environments, sand transport rate increases with increasing wind velocity, but decreases exponentially with increasing height in the wind stream. As the altitude increases, the threshold velocity for sand movement linearly increases with altitude, and the sand transport per unit width decreases gradually. The results can be used to guide the design of sand-control structures both in the study area and in other areas that experience threats from windblown sand.

  3. Geochemical and geomorphological evidence for the provenance of aeolian deposits in the Badain Jaran Desert, northwestern China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hu, Fangen; Yang, Xiaoping

    2016-01-01

    Identifying provenance of aeolian deposits in the mid-latitude deserts of Asia is essential for understanding formation and changes of Earth surface processes due to palaeoclimatic fluctuations. While some earlier studies focused on the interpretation of palaeoenvironments on the basis of aeolian deposits mainly in the desert margins and inter-dune lacustrine sediments, research on provenance of desert sands in the vast Asian mid-latitude deserts is still rare. In this paper, we present new geochemical data which provide insight to the provenance of dune sands in the Badain Jaran Desert, northwestern China, an important part of this desert belt. We sampled aeolian and lacustrine sediments in various parts of the Badain Jaran Desert, and examined their major, trace and rare earth elements (REE) in bulk samples, coarse and fine fractions, respectively. In addition, we took and analyzed samples from a rarely known dune field with red sands, northeast of the Badain Jaran. Our results show that the sands from the Badain Jaran Desert are generally different from those in the red sand dune field in terms of REE pattern and geochemical characteristics, suggesting different sediment origins. Geochemical composition of the aeolian sand samples indicates these sediments should be mainly derived from mixed source rocks of granite, granitoids and granodiorite. Comparing the immobile trace elements and REE ratios of the samples from the Badain Jaran Desert, red sand dune field with rocks of granite, granitoids in their potential source areas, we conclude that: (1) The aeolian deposits in the Badain Jaran Desert are predominantly derived from the Qilian Mountains, northeastern Tibetan Plateau initially via fluvial processes; (2) The Altay Mountains and Mongolian Gobi are the ultimate source areas for the red sand dune field; (3) The Altai Mountains and Mongolian Gobi in the northwest, that could produce massive amounts of materials via intensive deflation and alluvial process

  4. 2009 weather and aeolian sand-transport data from the Colorado River corridor, Grand Canyon, Arizona

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Draut, Amy E.; Sondossi, Hoda A.; Dealy, Timothy P.; Hazel, Joseph E., Jr.; Fairley, Helen C.; Brown, Christopher R.

    2010-01-01

    This report presents measurements of weather parameters and aeolian sand transport made in 2009 near selected archeological sites in the Colorado River corridor through Grand Canyon, Ariz. The quantitative methods and data discussed here form a basis for monitoring ecosystem processes that affect archeological-site stability. Combined with forthcoming work to evaluate landscape evolution at nearby archeological sites, these data can be used to document the relation between physical processes, including weather and aeolian sand transport, and their effects on the physical integrity of archeological sites. Data collected in 2009 reveal event- and seasonal-scale variations in rainfall, wind, temperature, humidity, and barometric pressure. Broad seasonal changes in aeolian sediment flux are also apparent at most study sites. Differences in weather patterns between 2008 and 2009 included an earlier spring windy season, greater spring precipitation even though 2009 annual rainfall totals were in general substantially lower than in 2008, and earlier onset of the reduced diurnal barometric-pressure fluctuations commonly associated with summer monsoon conditions. Weather patterns in middle to late 2009 were apparently affected by a transition of the ENSO cycle from a neutral phase to the El Ni?o phase. The continuation of monitoring that began in 2007, and installation of additional equipment at several new sites in early 2008, allowed evaluation of the effects of the March 2008 high-flow experiment (HFE) on aeolian sand transport. As reported earlier, at 2 of the 9 sites studied, spring and summer winds in 2008 reworked the HFE sandbars to form new aeolian dunes, where sand moved inland toward larger, well-established dune fields. Observations in 2009 showed that farther inland migration of the dune at one of those two sites is likely inhibited by vegetation. At the other location, the new aeolian dune form was found to have moved 10 m inland toward older, well

  5. Discrete Element Method simulations of the saturation of aeolian sand transport

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pähtz, Thomas; Omeradžić, Amir; Carneiro, Marcus V.; Araújo, Nuno A. M.; Herrmann, Hans J.

    2015-03-01

    The saturation length of aeolian sand transport (Ls), characterizing the distance needed by wind-blown sand to adapt to changes in the wind shear, is essential for accurate modeling of the morphodynamics of Earth's sandy landscapes and for explaining the formation and shape of sand dunes. In the last decade, it has become a widely accepted hypothesis that Ls is proportional to the characteristic distance needed by transported particles to reach the wind speed (the "drag length"). Here we challenge this hypothesis. From extensive numerical Discrete Element Method simulations, we find that, for medium and strong winds, Ls∝Vs2/g, where Vs is the saturated value of the average speed of sand particles traveling above the surface and g is the gravitational constant. We show that this proportionality is consistent with a recent analytical model, in which the drag length is just one of four similarly important length scales relevant for sand transport saturation.

  6. Explaining the surprisingly poor correlation between turbulent surface wind and aeolian sand flux

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Martin, R. L.; Barchyn, T. E.; Hugenholtz, C.; Jerolmack, D. J.; Kok, J. F.

    2012-12-01

    Existing models of aeolian sand transport, derived theoretically and from wind-tunnel experiments, often disagree substantially with field observations. Despite advancements in anemometry and sediment flux detection technologies, even very high-resolution observations of aeolian sand transport show only weak correlation with concurrent surface wind speeds and model predictions. Unlike in experiments and numerical models, winds in natural environments exhibit turbulent fluctuations over a broad range of length scales extending from individual grains to the top of the atmospheric boundary layer and over a similarly large range of time scales. Here, we present simultaneous high-resolution (10 Hz) measurements of surface wind and saltation sand transport over a ~5 m tall barchan dune (median grain diameter = 0.35 mm) collected at White Sands Dune Field, New Mexico, USA. Studying aeolian transport in the field offered a natural experiment for understanding how the rate of aeolian saltation responds to turbulent changes in wind and frequent crossings of the threshold for particle motion. In agreement with past observations, our data indicate that: (1) saltation flux lags wind fluctuations by about 1 second, (2) the threshold for initiation of particle motion ("entrainment") exceeds the threshold for cessation ("distrainment") by about 20%, (3) concurrent instantaneous wind and sediment flux measurements are poorly correlated. Based on our data, we show how lagged transport and threshold hysteresis are related to inertia in the transport system arising from ballistic particle trajectories and non-instantaneous momentum transfers among grains and wind. We argue that this nonlinear and lagged response of saltation to turbulent wind fluctuations accounts for the poor correlation between wind and transport as well as the poor performance of existing saltation models.

  7. Facies architecture and stratigraphic evolution of aeolian dune and interdune deposits, Permian Caldeirão Member (Santa Brígida Formation), Brazil

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jones, Fábio Herbert; Scherer, Claiton Marlon dos Santos; Kuchle, Juliano

    2016-05-01

    The Permian Caldeirão Member (Santa Brígida Formation), located in the Tucano Central Basin, northeast region of Brazil, is characterized by a sandstone succession of aeolian origin that comprises the preserved deposits of dunes and interdunes. Grainflow and translatent wind-ripple strata, and frequent presence of reactivation surface, compose the cross-bedding of crescent aeolian dune deposits. The aeolian cross-strata show a mean dip toward the ENE. In places, interlayered with dune cross-beds, occur interdune units composed of facies indicative of dry, damp and wet condition of the substrate, suggesting spatial and/or temporal variations in the moisture content of the interdune accumulation surface. The presence of NNW current ripple cross-lamination in wet interdune areas indicates streamflows confined to interdune corridors and oriented perpendicular to aeolian transport direction. Lenses of damp and wet interdune strata exhibit mainly interdigitated and transitional relationships with the toe-sets of overlying aeolian dune units in sections parallel to aeolian transport, indicating that dune migration was contemporaneous with accumulation in adjacent interdunes. Lateral variations in the preserved thickness of the interdune units and the associated rare occurrence of abrupt and erosive contacts between interdune and overlying dune sets, suggest temporal variations in the angle of dune and interdune climb that may be related to high-frequency changes in water table position. Four stratigraphic intervals in the Caldeirão Member can be identified, two intervals showing cross-bedding of aeolian dunes without wet interdune areas and two intervals exhibiting aeolian dunes separated by wet interdune areas, marking the transition between dry aeolian systems (Intervals I and III) and wet aeolian systems (Intervals II and IV). The temporal alternations between dry and wet aeolian systems reflect changes in the availability of dry sand and/or the rate in the water

  8. Regional aeolian dynamics and sand mixing in the Gran Desierto: Evidence from Landsat thematic mapper images

    SciTech Connect

    Blount, G.; Greeley, R.; Christensen, P.R. ); Smith, M.O.; Adams, J.B. )

    1990-09-10

    Spatial variations in sand composition were mapped on a regional scale in a terrestrial sand sea, the Gran Desierto of Sonora, Mexico. Mesoscale mapping on a satellite image base allowed quantitative interpretation of the dynamic development of sand sheets and dunes. The results were used to interpret the Quaternary geologic history of the tectonically active region at the mouth of the Colorado River. Landsat thematic mapper multispectral images were used to predict the abundance of different mineralogies of sand grains in a mixed aeolian terrain. A spectral mixing model separated the effects of vegetation and topographically induced shading and shadow from the effects produced by different mineral and rock types. Compositions determined remotely agreed well with samples from selected areas within the spectral limitations of the thematic mapper. A simple discrimination capability for active versus inactive sand surfaces is demonstrated based upon differences in the percentage of low-albedo accessory grains occurring on dormant aeolian surfaces. A technique for discriminating between low-albedo materials and macroscopic shade is implemented by combing thermal images with the results of the spectral mixing model. The image analysis revealed important compositional variations over large areas that were not readily apparent in the field.

  9. 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

  10. Granulometric profiling of aeolian dust deposits by automated image analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Varga, György; Újvári, Gábor; Kovács, János; Jakab, Gergely; Kiss, Klaudia; Szalai, Zoltán

    2016-04-01

    Determination of granulometric parameters is of growing interest in the Earth sciences. Particle size data of sedimentary deposits provide insights into the physicochemical environment of transport, accumulation and post-depositional alterations of sedimentary particles, and are important proxies applied in paleoclimatic reconstructions. It is especially true for aeolian dust deposits with a fairly narrow grain size range as a consequence of the extremely selective nature of wind sediment transport. Therefore, various aspects of aeolian sedimentation (wind strength, distance to source(s), possible secondary source regions and modes of sedimentation and transport) can be reconstructed only from precise grain size data. As terrestrial wind-blown deposits are among the most important archives of past environmental changes, proper explanation of the proxy data is a mandatory issue. Automated imaging provides a unique technique to gather direct information on granulometric characteristics of sedimentary particles. Granulometric data obtained from automatic image analysis of Malvern Morphologi G3-ID is a rarely applied new technique for particle size and shape analyses in sedimentary geology. Size and shape data of several hundred thousand (or even million) individual particles were automatically recorded in this study from 15 loess and paleosoil samples from the captured high-resolution images. Several size (e.g. circle-equivalent diameter, major axis, length, width, area) and shape parameters (e.g. elongation, circularity, convexity) were calculated by the instrument software. At the same time, the mean light intensity after transmission through each particle is automatically collected by the system as a proxy of optical properties of the material. Intensity values are dependent on chemical composition and/or thickness of the particles. The results of the automated imaging were compared to particle size data determined by three different laser diffraction instruments

  11. Have the northwest Negev dunefield sands reddened since their deposition?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Roskin, Joel; Tsoar, Haim; Blumberg, Dan G.; Porat, Naomi; Rozensten, Ofer

    2010-05-01

    older sand source but not to reddening in situ with time. Remotely sensed RI calculated from Landsat TM 5 (30 m pixel) RGB bands of bare Sinai sands also portrays the spatial RI difference between the central and southern sands. To summarize, we find no direct connection between dune sand deposition age and sand grain coating redness in the Negev dunes. It seems that stable aeolian sand and dune sections in the Negev have not reddened since their deposition. Sand grain coating redness was probably inherited during an earlier diagenetic stage in an environment different than today's. References Ben-Dor, E., Levin, N., Singer, A., Karnieli, A., Braun, O. & Kidron, G.J., 2006. Quantitative mapping of the soil rubification process on sand dunes using an airborne hyperspectral sensor. Geoderma, 131:1-21. Tsoar, H., Wenkart, R. & Blumberg, D.G., 2008. Formation and geomorphology of the north-western Negev sand dunes. In (Breckle, S.W., Yair, A.& Veste, M.) eds., Arid dunes ecosystems: The Nizzana sands in the Negev Desert. Springer pub. 475 pp.

  12. 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

  13. Geochemistry of metalliferous, hydrothermal deposits in the Aeolian arc (Tyrrhenian Sea)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Savelli, C.; Marani, M.; Gamberi, F.

    1999-03-01

    In shallow-water areas of the submerged volcanic complex around the island of Panarea (Aeolian archipelago), hydrothermal precipitation of both low-temperature Fe-oxyhydroxide-rich red muds and crusts, and high-temperature, sediment-hosted massive sulfides was discovered during an integrated, high-resolution survey. Iron-rich crusts were also found on the bathymetric high of Secca del Capo, north of Salina island. The exhalative iron-rich sediments occur in small (closed) depressions or in proximity to faults and scarps at water depths ranging from 55 to 285 m. The principal chemical characteristics of these deposits are high, but variable, Fe content ranging from 12.2 to 45%, and low contents of the transition elements Mn, Cu, Zn, Ni and Co. The low contents of Cu, Ni and Co suggest a hydrothermal origin. The Fe-oxyhydroxide deposits are enriched in light rare earth element (REE) (35-110×chondrite) compared to heavy REE (10-25×chondrite). Their REE patterns are similar to those of associated calc-alkaline volcanics: negative slope of light REE and a horizontal distribution of the heavy ones. This contrasts with the pattern for iron and manganese oxides of hydrogenous origin, which have tilted trends of heavy REE paralleling that of seawater. The mineralogy of the polymetallic sulfide deposits consists of galena, sphalerite, pyrite and barite in the form of silt-sand grains and decimeter-sized fragments disseminated in clay, 30 cm below the seabed, at a waterdepth of 80 m. The chemistry of the Aeolian iron-rich, low-temperature deposits and of the high-temperature, Ba-rich Pb and Zn sulfides suggests that they are genetically analogous to, respectively, the kuroko-type iron formation (`tetsusekiei') and the black ore exposed in the Miocene Hokuroku district of Japan.

  14. Gully annealing by fluvially-sourced Aeolian sand: remote sensing investigations of connectivity along the Fluvial-Aeolian-hillslope continuum on the Colorado River

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sankey, Joel B.; East, Amy E.; Collins, Brian D.; Caster, Joshua

    2015-01-01

    Processes contributing to development of ephemeral gully channels are of great importance to landscapes worldwide, and particularly in dryland regions where soil loss and land degradation from gully erosion pose long-term, land-management problems. Whereas gully formation has been relatively well studied, much less is known of the processes that anneal gullies and impede their growth. This work investigates gully annealing by aeolian sediment, along the Colorado River downstream of Glen Canyon Dam in Glen, Marble, and Grand Canyons, Arizona, USA (Figure 1). In this segment of the Colorado River, gully erosion potentially affects the stability and preservation of archaeological sites that are located within valley margins. Gully erosion occurs as a function of ephemeral, rainfall-induced overland flow associated with intense episodes of seasonal precipitation. Measurements of sediment transport and topographic change have demonstrated that fluvial sand in some locations is transported inland and upslope by aeolian processes to areas affected by gully erosion, and aeolian sediment activity can be locally effective at counteracting gully erosion (Draut, 2012; Collins and others, 2009, 2012; Sankey and Draut, 2014). The degree to which specific locations are affected by upslope wind redistribution of sand from active channel sandbars to higher elevation valley margins is termed “connectivity”. Connectivity is controlled spatially throughout the river by (1) the presence of upwind sources of fluvial sand within the contemporary active river channel (e.g., sandbars), and (2) bio-physical barriers that include vegetation and topography that might impede aeolian sediment transport. The primary hypothesis of this work is that high degrees of connectivity lead to less gullying potential.

  15. Optical dating of tufa via in situ aeolian sand grains: A case example from the Southern High Plains, USA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Rich, J.; Stokes, S.; Wood, W.; Bailey, R.

    2003-01-01

    Precipitated carbonates (commonly termed tufas or travertines) maybe of considerable utility for palaeoenvironmental reconstruction. Their potential, however, for such reconstruction is commonly limited by difficulties associated with their absolute age control. Attempts to date such deposits via uranium series techniques have been complicated by their chemically open behaviour. Here we describe an alternative approach to date tufa deposits associated with ephemeral saline lake basins from the Southern High Plains, USA. We have optically dated sand grains of a mixed aeolian/fluvial (spring fed) origin as the integrating dosimeter. We assume that the grains are fully resetting prior to their incorporation into the tufa deposits and employ a time-dependent disequilibrium dosimetric model to account for the build-up of uranium series daughter products. The approach was applied to a set of four samples with known stratigraphic association. We obtained stratigraphically sensible optical ages ranging from 78??8 to 56??4ka. These data are consistent with existing palaeoenvironmental models of regional recharge. ?? 2003 Elsevier Science Ltd. All rights reserved.

  16. Sedimentology of coastal chevron deposits - tsunamigenic versus aeolian origin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Garcia Garcia, A.; Spiske, M.; Tsukamoto, S.; Schmidt, V.

    2012-12-01

    The genesis of v-shaped coastal chevrons is currently controversially discussed. So far, chevrons are only described regarding their morphology, but not in terms of their origin. Two possible origins of chevrons are proposed: both aeolian transport and tsunami inundation are discussed as depositing processes. We present initial results of a detailed sedimentological survey of Holocene coastal chevrons from the American and Australian west coasts. The chevrons were measured and levelled using a differential GPS system. Large scale internal structures were recorded by ground penetrating radar imaging. Trenches were dug for sampling and analyzing small scale internal structures. The sediment samples were used for the analysis of grain-size distributions, mineral composition and content of marine microorganisms. Additional samples were taken for optically stimulated luminescence (OSL) and radiocarbon dating. Furthermore, we took reference samples from beaches, cliffs and rivers, which could act as potential sediment sources for the surveyed chevrons. Tsunami deposits are commonly polymodal, exhibit a grain-size decrease and tend to show better sorting in landward direction. Such trends are not present in the surveyed chevrons. Most samples are well to moderately well sorted and unimodal. The OSL ages decrease in transport direction and indicate a long term generation process, such as dune migration, rather than a short term event like a tsunami. This fact is additionally underlined by land snails found in different stratigraphic levels within the Australian chevrons. Furthermore, the occurrence of intercalated soil horizons implies a change of stable and active migration phases. The initial results of this study point out to an aoelian origin of coastal chevrons and do not support the previously supposed thesis of a tsunamigenic origin.

  17. 2010 weather and aeolian sand-transport data from the Colorado River corridor, Grand Canyon, Arizona

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Dealy, Timothy P.; East, Amy E.; Fairley, Helen C.

    2014-01-01

    Measurements of weather parameters and aeolian sand transport were made in 2010 near selected archeological sites in the Colorado River corridor through Grand Canyon, Arizona. Data collected in 2010 indicate event- and seasonal-scale variations in rainfall, wind, temperature, humidity, and barometric pressure. Differences in weather patterns between 2009 and 2010 included a slightly later spring windy season, greater spring precipitation and annual rainfall totals, and a later onset and length of the reduced diurnal barometric-pressure fluctuations commonly associated with summer monsoon conditions. The increase in spring precipitation was consistent with the 2010 spring El Niño conditions compared to the 2009 spring La Niña conditions, whereas the subsequent transition to an El Niño-Southern Oscillation neutral phase appeared to delay the reduction in diurnal barometric fluctuations.

  18. Aeolian sands and buried soils in the Mecklenburg Lake District, NE Germany: Holocene land-use history and pedo-geomorphic response

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Küster, Mathias; Fülling, Alexander; Kaiser, Knut; Ulrich, Jens

    2014-04-01

    The present study is a pedo-geomorphic approach to reconstructing Holocene aeolian sand dynamics in the Mecklenburg Lake District (NE Germany). Stratigraphical, sedimentological and soil research supplemented by morphogenetic interpretations of the genesis of dunes and aeolian sands are discussed. A complex Late Holocene aeolian stratigraphy within a drift sand area was developed at the shore of Lake Müritz. The results were confirmed using palynological records, archaeological data and regional history. Accelerated aeolian activity was triggered by the intensification of settlement and land-use activities during the 13th and in the 15th to 16th century AD. After a period of stability beginning with population decline during the ‘Thirty Years War' and continuing through the 18th century, a final aeolian phase due to the establishment of glassworks was identified during the 19th century AD. We assume a direct link between Holocene aeolian dynamics and human activities. Prehistoric Holocene drift sands on terrestrial sites have not been documented in the Mecklenburg Lake District so far. This might be explained either by erosion and incorporation of older aeolian sediments during younger aeolian phases and/or a lower regional land-use intensity in older periods of the Holocene. The investigated drift sands are stratigraphically and sedimentologically characterised by a high degree of heterogeneity, reflecting the spatial and temporal variability of Holocene human impact.

  19. Quantifying the effects of European beach grass on aeolian sand transport over the last century: Bodega Marine Reserve, California

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cesmat, R.; Werner, S.; Smith, M. E.; Riedel, T.; Best, R.; Olyarnik, S.

    2012-12-01

    Introduction of European beach grass (Ammophila arenaria) to coastal dune systems of western North America induced significant changes to the transport and storage of sediment, and consequently the nesting habitat of the western snowy plover (Charadrius alexandrinus nivosus). At the Bodega Marine Reserve and Sonoma Coast State Park, Ammophila was introduced within the ~0.5 km2 dune area in the 1920's to limit the flux of sand through Bodega Harbor and agricultural land. To assess the potential impact of restoration efforts (Ammophila removal) on aeolian sediment flux, we measured sediment flux as a function of wind speeds and ground cover, and used these measurements to parameterize a spatial model for historical sand deposition Fine- to coarse-grained lithic to sub-lithic sand is delivered to the Bodega dune system from Salmon Creek beach, the down-shore terminus of a littoral system fed by the 3846 km2 Russian River catchment, several small (<100 km2) coastal catchments, and seacliff erosion. Littoral sediment traverses the 1.8 km wide dune system from NW to SE via aeolian transport. Ammophila colonization occurred initially adjacent to the shoreface, inducing deposition of a ~10 meter-high foredune and has subsequently encroached the ~0.5 km2 region between the foredune and Bodega Harbor. Comparison of historical topographic maps via raster subtraction indicates rapid construction of both the foredune and a ~15 meter-high transverse dune (Gaffney ridge) at the edge of the planted region. An average accumulation rate of ~4,000 m3/yr is indicated within the study swath by the preserved sediment volumes. Within the modern dune system, unvegetated areas exhibit 2-3 meter wavelength, ~1/2 meter amplitude mega-ripples, and the uppermost 2-10 cm consists of coarse-sand to granule-sized armor layer. In contrast, grain-sizes in vegetated areas are largely vertically homogenous. Open areas are typically 2-8 meters lower than adjacent vegetated areas, and show evidence for

  20. Assessing the Martian Surface Distribution of Aeolian Sand using a Mars General Circulation Model

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Anderson, F. S.; Greeley, R.; Xu, P.; Lo, E.; Blumberg, D. G.; Haberle, R. M.; Murphy, J. R.

    1999-01-01

    A sand transport model using White's sand flux equation and the Mars beneral circulation model was developed to understand the erosional sources, transport pathways, and depositional sinks of windblown sand on Mars. An initially uniform distribution of sand (4 mm over the entire surface) is reeionally transported based on wind stress, saltation threshold, and percentage of topogaphic trapping. Results are consistsnt with the , observed polar and Hellespontus dunes and Christensen's madeled block size distribution, butonly for an extremely law saltation threshold (0.024 N/sq m): Low thresholds generally result in transport of sand-sized particles originating in the northern mid latitudes to the north pole, and transport from the northern lower latitudes to the southern hemisphere. Our results indicate that the polar dune fields could form in 50,000 years, consistent with the active polar dunes and lack of longitudinal dunes observed on the surface of Mars.

  1. Regional aeolian dynamics and sand mixing in the Gran Desierto - Evidence from Landsat Thematic Mapper images

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Blount, Grady; Greeley, Ronald; Christensen, Phillip R.; Smith, Milton O.; Adams, John B.

    1990-01-01

    Mesoscale mapping of spatial variations in sand composition of the Gran Desierto (Sonora, Mexico) was carried out on multispectral Landsat TM images of this region, making it possible to examine the dynamic development of sand sheets and dunes. Compositions determined from remote imagery were found to agree well with samples from selected areas. The sand populations delineated were used to describe the sediment source areas, transport paths, and deposition sites. The image analysis revealed important compositional variations aver large areas that were not readily apparent in the field data.

  2. Aeolian dust deposition during the Eocene-Oligocene in central to eastern Asia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vandenberghe, Jef; Abels, Hemmo; van Cappelle, Marijn

    2015-04-01

    Aeolian dust deposition during the Eocene-Oligocene in central to eastern Asia Jef Vandenberghe1, Hemmo Abels2 and Marijn van Cappelle3 1Dept. of Earth Sciences, Vrije Universiteit, 1081 HV Amsterdam, The Netherlands 2Dept. of Earth Sciences, Universiteit Utrecht, 3584 CD, Utrecht, The Netherlands 3Dept. of Earth Science and Engineering, Imperial College London, London, SW7 2AZ, U.K. The deposition of loess is generally attributed to a monsoonal climate system. Recently it has been shown that such a system existed already at the end of the Eocene on the northeastern Tibetan Plateau (Licht et al., 2014). One of the main arguments to prove the supply of loess by monsoonal winds is the use of grain size properties. The lower part of the Shuiwan section (Eocene) consists of metre-scale alternations of mudstone and gypsum beds; the upper part (Oligocene) is mainly mudstone (Dupont-Nivet et al., 2007; Abels et al., 2010). Sediments are categorized in six grain-size types based on the grain-size distribution and the mode of the silt grain sizes as measured using laser diffraction. Sediments of type 1, the only type with a unimodal grain-size distribution, consist exclusively of clay-sized particles (modal value of 2-2.5 µm). Types 2-6 have a multimodal composition. They contain an additional silt-sized fraction with a modal size of c. 16 µm in type 2; c. 26 µm in type 3 and c. 31 µm in type 4. Type 5 is a mixture of previous types, and type 6 contains in addition a slight amount of sand. Similar bimodal grain-size distributions occur in the Neogene Red Clay and in the Pleistocene loess of the Chinese Loess Plateau. All three silt fractions (with modal sizes 16, 26 and 31 µm) represent typical loess sediments, transported by dust storms in suspension at different altitudes. Their exact grain size depends on wind velocity, source material and transport distance. The 'clay component' may have settled from high suspension clouds in the air down to dry ground or to

  3. Aeolian Sediments on the northeastern Tibetan Plateau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stauch, G.; Lehmkuhl, F.

    2013-12-01

    The timing and spatial distribution of aeolian sediments on the northeastern Tibetan Plateau have gained increasing interest during the last decades. The formation of the aeolian deposits is often related to cold and dry climate conditions. However, further important parameters are the local geomorphological setting and sediment availability in the source areas of the sediments. Aeolian sediments including loess, sandy loess and sands are widespread in the catchment of the Donggi Cona on the northeastern Tibetan Plateau at around 4000 m asl. Detailed geomorphological mapping of the deposits and geochemical analyses of the sediments revealed varying sources throughout the Holocene. The timing of the sediment deposition is based on 43 OSL (optical stimulated luminescence) ages. Several phases of enhanced aeolian deposition took place during the Holocene. The accumulation of aeolian sands lasted from 10.5 until 7 ka. The main source area of these sands was a large alluvial fan. Parallel to the formation of the dunes loess was deposited on the adjacent slopes from 10.5 until 7.5 ka. These sediments most probably originate in the nearby Qaidam Basin. In contrast to the general linkage of aeolian sediments to dryer climate conditions formation of these aeolian deposits is related to wetter conditions due to a strengthening of the Asian Summer Monsoons. The wetter climate enhanced the trapping and continuous fixation of the aeolian sediments by vegetation. With the further strengthening of the Monsoon fluvial processes eroded the aeolian deposits at least until 6 ka. From about 3 ka to the present a reactivation of aeolian sands and the formation of new dunes took place. This reactivation is related to drier conditions on the north-eastern Tibetan Plateau. Additionally, an increased human influence might have enhanced the aeolian activity. Similar phases of enhanced aeolian activity have been documented in more than 170 available OSL ages from loess and aeolian sands in

  4. Theoretical and measured aeolian sand transport on a barrier island, Louisiana, USA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Dingler, J.R.; Hsu, S.A.; Reiss, T.E.

    1992-01-01

    Over the past 100 yr, the Isles Dernieres, a low lying barrier island chain along the coast of central Louisiana, has undergone more than 1km of northward beach face retreat within the loss of 70% of its surface area. The erosion results from a long term relative sea level rise coupled with day to day wind and wave action that ultimately favours erosion over deposition. The theoretical estimate of 1.28 m3 m-1 for the rate of sand transport by the northerly wind compares well with the measured backshore erosion rate of 1.26m3 m-1, which was determined by comparing beach profiles from the start and end of the period of northerly winds. The theoretical estimate of 0.04m3 m-1 for the rate of sand transport by the southerly wind, however, is notably less than the measured rate of 0.45m3 m-1. -from Authors

  5. 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.

  6. Aeolian dust deposition rates in Northern French forests and inputs to their biogeochemical cycles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lequy, Émeline; Legout, Arnaud; Conil, Sébastien; Turpault, Marie-Pierre

    2013-12-01

    This study describes the Aeolian dust deposition (ADD) in 4 sites of Northern France. Between December 2009 and March 2012, we sampled (i) Aeolian dust every four weeks, and (ii) 6 episodes of forecasted high atmospheric dust load mainly from the Saharan desert, the largest source of Aeolian dust in the world. These samples were treated with oxygen peroxide to remove organic matter so as to only compare the mineral fraction of the samples in the 4 sampling sites and to analyze their mineralogy. The solid samples contained the hardly soluble part of Aeolian dust (H-ADD). Its deposition was of 1.9 ± 0.3 g m-2 year-1 with a seasonal pattern of high deposition from spring to early autumn and a low deposition in winter. H-ADD deposition during the forecasted episodes of high atmospheric load did not systematically exceed the deposition rate during the rest of the sampling period. This indicates that such episodes little contributed to the annual H-ADD rate. The mineralogy revealed a heterogeneous set of minerals dominated by silicates with a common basis of major types (quartz, feldspars, mica, chlorite, kaolinite and interlayered clay minerals in every sample) with randomly trace minerals (Fe-oxides, sulfates, amphibole, talc, gibbsite and carbonates). The chemistry of H-ADD led to a dominant input of Si (up to 4.4 kg ha-1 year-1), while the nutrients inputs of Ca, K, Mg and P from ADD and the atmospheric organics (APD) in openfield were together of 1.5 ± 0.5 kg ha-1 year-1 with a high contribution of soluble minerals and organic matter of ca. 40% for Mg and K, and of ca. 80% for Ca and P. Nutrient inputs from APD are especially an interesting source of P for forests developed on acidic soils.

  7. The origin of bimodal grain-size distribution for aeolian deposits

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lin, Yongchong; Mu, Guijin; Xu, Lishuai; Zhao, Xue

    2016-03-01

    Atmospheric dust deposition is a common phenomenon in arid and semi-arid regions. Bimodal grain size distribution (BGSD) (including the fine component and coarse component) of aeolian deposits has been widely reported. But the origin of this pattern is still debated. Here, we focused on the sedimentary process of modern dust deposition, and analyzed the grain size distribution of modern dust deposition, foliar dust, and aggregation of the aeolian dust collected in Cele Oasis, southern margin of Tarim Basin. The results show that BGSD also appear in a dust deposition. The content of fine components (<20 μm size fraction) change with temporal and spatial variation. Fine component from dust storm is significant less than that from subsequent floating dust. Fine component also varies with altitude. These indicate that modern dust deposition have experienced changing aerodynamic environment and be reworked during transportation and deposition, which is likely the main cause for BGSD. The dusts from different sources once being well-mixed in airflow are hard to form multiple peaks respectively corresponding with different sources. In addition, the dust deposition would appear BGSD whether aggregation or not. Modern dust deposition is the continuation of ancient dust deposition. They both may have the same cause of formation. Therefore, the origin of BGSD should provide a theoretical thinking for reconstructing the palaeo-environmental changes with the indicator of grain size.

  8. Vertical structure of aeolian turbulence in a boundary layer with sand transport

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Zoe S.; Baas, Andreas C. W.

    2016-04-01

    originating from the top of the boundary layer, indicating a downwards direction of eddy motion. While directionality of turbulence cannot be definitively determined, our results indicate that the top-down turbulence model is a suitable explanation, further supported by the presence of 'incomplete' eddies which originate at higher elevations but fail to extend to the surface. This provides the first evidence in support of a top down turbulence model as observed in aeolian geomorphology, and we present preliminary findings on its relationship to sand transport activity. Lee, Z.S., Baas, A.C.W. (2016) Variable and conflicting shear stress estimates inside a boundary layer with sediment transport. Earth Surface Processes and Landforms; DOI: 10.1002/esp.3829

  9. Late Quaternary geoarchaeology and geochronology of stratified aeolian deposits, Tar River, North Carolina

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moore, Christopher R.

    Recent geoarchaeological work on relict aeolian deposits in the North Carolina Coastal Plain has shown the potential for understanding prehistoric hunter-gatherer adaptations to changing environmental conditions likely related to Holocene climate change. Archaeological surveys and testing along the Tar River has revealed numerous sites with stratified Early Archaic through Woodland occupations. Geophysical, archeostratigraphic and sedimentological analysis along with chronometric dating (OSL and 14C) of source-bordering aeolian sediments along the Tar River in North Carolina indicate dune drapes (˜1 meter thick) accreted throughout much of the Holocene. Aeolian burial events along the Tar River appear to reflect Holocene millennial-scale climatic cyclicity (e.g., Bond Events) and its related effects on the fluvial system. These events likely influenced both hunter-gatherer adaptation and site preservation along the Tar River. Combined radiocarbon and OSL ages from lower paleo-braidplain sites, indicate incision of the lower paleo-braidplain and initiation of dune deposition just before or during the Younger Dryas stadial. The presence of stratified archaeological remains in these sediments preserves a record of both prehistoric human adaptations to local conditions and changes in depositional processes marking large-scale climatic change in the southeastern United States.

  10. The north-eastern aeolian 'European Sand Belt' as potential record of environmental changes: A case study from Eastern Latvia and Southern Estonia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kalińska-Nartiša, Edyta; Thiel, Christine; Nartišs, Māris; Buylaert, Jan-Pieter; Murray, Andrew S.

    2016-09-01

    The Latvian and Estonian inland dunes belong to the north-eastern part of the 'European Sand Belt' (ESB). These dunes are widely distributed over broad glaciolacustrine plains and Late Glacial alluvial deltas, considered to be potential sources for the aeolian material. Little is known about these aeolian sediments and their substratum; here we present a detailed sedimentary structural and textural characterisation together with a luminescence-based chronology. Through a comparison between grain-size, rounding of quartz grains and surface characteristics in medium/coarse (0.5-0.8 mm) sand, and the light mineral content, we found an alternation of aeolian and periglacial components. Further, short-lasting aeolian abrasion and/or transportation periods, and a significant contribution of a nearby sediment source are suggested. Luminescence dating points to aeolian sand accumulation and dune formation between ∼16 ka and ∼9 ka. However, we also observed some presumably watertable controlled environmental conditions at ∼13 ka; this corresponds with the occurrence of an ice-dammed/proglacial lake.

  11. Effects of river regulation on aeolian landscapes, Colorado River, southwestern USA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Draut, Amy E.

    2012-01-01

    Connectivity between fluvial and aeolian sedimentary systems plays an important role in the physical and biological environment of dryland regions. This study examines the coupling between fluvial sand deposits and aeolian dune fields in bedrock canyons of the arid to semiarid Colorado River corridor, southwestern USA. By quantifying significant differences between aeolian landscapes with and without modern fluvial sediment sources, this work demonstrates for the first time that the flow- and sediment-limiting effects of dam operations affect sedimentary processes and ecosystems in aeolian landscapes above the fluvial high water line. Dune fields decoupled from fluvial sand supply have more ground cover (biologic crust and vegetation) and less aeolian sand transport than do dune fields that remain coupled to modern fluvial sand supply. The proportion of active aeolian sand area also is substantially lower in a heavily regulated river reach (Marble–Grand Canyon, Arizona) than in a much less regulated reach with otherwise similar environmental conditions (Cataract Canyon, Utah). The interconnections shown here among river flow and sediment, aeolian sand transport, and biologic communities in aeolian dunes demonstrate a newly recognized means by which anthropogenic influence alters dryland environments. Because fluvial–aeolian coupling is common globally, it is likely that similar sediment-transport connectivity and interaction with upland ecosystems are important in other dryland regions to a greater degree than has been recognized previously.

  12. Effects of river regulation on aeolian landscapes, Colorado River, southwestern USA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Draut, Amy E.

    2012-06-01

    Connectivity between fluvial and aeolian sedimentary systems plays an important role in the physical and biological environment of dryland regions. This study examines the coupling between fluvial sand deposits and aeolian dune fields in bedrock canyons of the arid to semiarid Colorado River corridor, southwestern USA. By quantifying significant differences between aeolian landscapes with and without modern fluvial sediment sources, this work demonstrates for the first time that the flow- and sediment-limiting effects of dam operations affect sedimentary processes and ecosystems in aeolian landscapes above the fluvial high water line. Dune fields decoupled from fluvial sand supply have more ground cover (biologic crust and vegetation) and less aeolian sand transport than do dune fields that remain coupled to modern fluvial sand supply. The proportion of active aeolian sand area also is substantially lower in a heavily regulated river reach (Marble-Grand Canyon, Arizona) than in a much less regulated reach with otherwise similar environmental conditions (Cataract Canyon, Utah). The interconnections shown here among river flow and sediment, aeolian sand transport, and biologic communities in aeolian dunes demonstrate a newly recognized means by which anthropogenic influence alters dryland environments. Because fluvial-aeolian coupling is common globally, it is likely that similar sediment-transport connectivity and interaction with upland ecosystems are important in other dryland regions to a greater degree than has been recognized previously.

  13. Aeolian processes on Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Greeley, Ronald

    1989-01-01

    This review assesses the potential aeolian regime on Venus as derived from spacecraft observations, laboratory simulations, and theoretical considerations. The two requirements for aeolian processes (a supply of small, loose particles and winds of sufficient strength to move them) appear to be met on Venus. Venera 9, 10, 13, and 14 images show particles considered to be sand and silt size on the surface. In addition, dust spurts (grains 5 to 50 microns in diameter) observed via lander images and inferred from the Pioneer-Venus nephalometer experiments suggest that the particles are loose and subject to movement. Although data on near surface winds are limited, measurements of 0.3 to 1.2 m/sec from the Venera lander and Pioneer-Venus probes appear to be well within the range required for sand and dust entrainment. Aeolian activity involves the interaction of the atmosphere, lithosphere, and loose particles. Thus, there is the potential for various physical and chemical weathering processes that can effect not only rates of erosion, but changes in the composition of all three components. The Venus Simulator is an apparatus used to simulate weathering under venusian conditions at full pressure (to 112 bars) and temperature (to 800 K). In one series of tests, the physical modifications of windblown particles and rock targets were assessed and it was shown that particles become abraded even when moved by gentle winds. However, little abrasion occurs on the target faces. Thus, compositional signatures for target rocks may be more indicative of the windblown particles than of the bedrock. From these and other considerations, aeolian modifications of the venusian surface may be expected to occur as weathering, erosion, transportation, and deposition of surficial materials. Depending upon global and local wind regimes, there may be distinctive sources and sinks of windblown materials. Radar imaging, especially as potentially supplied via the Magellan mission, may enable the

  14. Concentration and grain-size distribution of aeolian sands in peat bogs as an indicator of past storminess in coastal areas of Estonia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vandel, Egert; Vaasma, Tiit; Tõnisson, Hannes; Sugita, Shinya; Vilumaa, Kadri; Anderson, Agnes; Terasmaa, Jaanus; Kangur, Mihkel; Pensa, Margus; Küttim, Martin; Umbleja, Liisa; Puusepp, Liisa

    2016-04-01

    Storminess in the Baltic Sea region has significantly increased over the last 50 years. As we do not have meteorological data beyond 20th century, therefore the long-term changes in storminess (e.g., frequency and magnitude of the storms) and its impact on the coastal evolution are mostly unknown. This study aims to reconstruct the extreme storm events along the coast of Estonia in late Holocene, inferred from changes in grain-size distribution and concentration of aeolian sands preserved in peat deposits. Four cores in total were collected from bogs of coastal Estonia; three from west Estonian archipelago (Hiiumaa Island and Saaremaa Island); one from the northern coast of the mainland (Juminda Peninsula). Core from Saaremaa (166 cm) covers the last 2700 years, cores from Hiiumaa (171 cm and 330 cm) cover ca 4000 years, and core from Juminda (465 cm) covers ca 8500 years. All AMS dates (77) are converted to cal yrs BP. Analyses of LOI and grain size are carried out at every centimetre in order to obtain data for mineral matter content and concentration of sand particles. The Juminda core shows a consistently low content of mineral matter (LOI < 2%) without clear peaks over the last 8000 years. The LOI results at both Hiiumaa sites show that mineral matter content gradually decreases from 4000 to 1500 cal yrs BP and then becomes the lowest in the period of 1500-1000 cal yrs BP; since then, it becomes higher (up to 10%) with fluctuations and has a clear peak around 700 cal yrs BP. At Saaremaa, the overall trend of mineral matter content is similar to that at the Hiiumaa sites: gradual decline from 2700 to 1500 cal yrs BP, lowest in 1500-1000 cal yrs BP, and relatively high over the last millennium. Concentration of mineral particles reveal clear peaks of aeolian sands at each site. At northern Hiiumaa, concentration has peaks around 3500, 3000 and 2500 cal yrs BP and is relatively high over the last 700 years. At Saaremaa, concentration has peaked at 2100, 1600 and

  15. Environmental history recorded in aeolian deposits under stone pavements, Mojave Desert, USA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dietze, Michael; Dietze, Elisabeth; Lomax, Johanna; Fuchs, Markus; Kleber, Arno; Wells, Stephen G.

    2016-01-01

    Reconstructing the evolution of arid landscapes is challenged by limited availability of appropriate environmental archives. A widespread surface feature - stone pavement - traps aeolian fines and forms a special accretionary archive. Seven stone pavement-covered sections on basalt flows in the eastern Mojave Desert are condensed into a composite section, comprising five sedimentological units supported by an OSL-based chronology. Three of the units are of accretionary nature and each is covered by a stone pavement. They were deposited > 50.9-36.6 ka, < 36.6-14.2 ka and < 14.2 ka, and they are intimately coupled with the history of nearby Lake Mojave, which advances the current understanding of regional aeolian activity. End-member modeling analysis of grain-size distributions yielded seven sediment transport regimes. The accretionary system operates in two modes: A) episodic formation of a stone pavement by lateral processes once a vesicular horizon has formed on a barren surface; and B) accretion of dust and eventual burial of the clast layer. These findings improve current concepts about stone pavement evolution and their environmental proxy function in arid landscapes. Stone pavement-covered accretionary deposits are a new key archive that allows quantifying the relative importance of dust accretion, slope processes, soil formation and vegetation cover.

  16. Aeolian Morphodynamics of Loess Landscapes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mason, J. A.; Hanson, P. R.; Sweeney, M.; Loope, H. M.; Miao, X.; Lu, H.

    2012-12-01

    Striking aeolian landforms characterize loess landscapes of the Great Plains and Upper Mississippi Valley, USA, shaped in Late Pleistocene environments with many characteristics of modern deserts including large active dunefields. Similar aeolian morphodynamics are evident in northern China and the Columbia Basin, USA, and are clearly important for interpreting the paleoenvironmental record of loess. Four zones spanning the upwind margin of thick loess can be defined from landforms and surficial deposits. From upwind to downwind, they are: A) A largely loess-free landscape, with patchy to continuous aeolian sand mantling bedrock. B) Patchy loess deposits, often streamlined and potentially wind-aligned, intermingled with dunes and sand sheets; interbedding of loess and sand may be common. C) Thick, coarse loess with an abrupt upwind edge, with troughs, yardang-like ridges, and/or wind-aligned scarps recording large-scale wind erosion. D) Thinner, finer loess with little evidence of post-depositional wind erosion. The degree of development and spatial scale of these zones varies among the loess regions we studied. To explain this zonation we emphasize controls on re-entrainment of loess by the wind after initial deposition, across gradients of climate and vegetation. The role of saltating sand in dust entrainment through abrasion of fine materials is well known. Using the Portable In situ Wind Erosion Laboratory (PI-SWERL), we recently demonstrated that unvegetated Great Plains loess can also be directly entrained under wind conditions common in the region today (Sweeney et al., 2011, GSA Abstracts with Programs, Vol. 43, No. 5, p. 251). Rainfall-induced crusts largely prevent direct entrainment in fine loess, but appear less effective in coarse loess. We propose that in zone A, any loess deposited was both abraded by saltating sand and directly re-entrained, so none accumulated. Sparse vegetation in this zone was primarily an effect of climate, but the resulting

  17. Aeolian Transport of Invertebrates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gill, T. E.; Walsh, E. J.; Wallace, R. L.; Rojo, L.; Rivas, J. A.

    2012-12-01

    Playas and other ephemeral desert wetlands are preferential terrestrial landforms for dust emission. These sites also are habitat for a diverse assemblage of minute invertebrates. When wetlands desiccate, these invertebrates survive as resting stages (propagules). Thus, playas serve as isolated, ephemeral, biogeographical islands for aquatic invertebrates, but it is unclear how propagules disperse across distances as far as hundreds of kilometers to colonize hydrologically disconnected basins. Aeolian transport (anemochory) may provide the mechanism, especially since many invertebrate propagules are long-lived, aerodynamically shaped, possess low-density, and their size (30-600 μm) falls within the same texture as aeolian dust and sand grains. We are collecting and culturing wind-transported sediment to document its ability to serve in the dispersal of aridland invertebrate propagules. Deposited aeolian sediment was collected from marble-type traps placed on the roof of the Biological Sciences Building at the University of Texas, El Paso, during 19 individual regional-scale Chihuahuan Desert blowing dust/sand events between April 2010 and May 2012. Known source areas for these dust events include playas and ephemeral streams ~40- 150 km upwind. The mean dry grain size of the deposited sediment for each event ranged from 66 to 141 μm. Clean-water rinses of material from each event or standard rehydrations for culturing invertebrates were monitored microscopically for the appearance of organisms. Invertebrates hatched from the sediment of 13 events. Ciliates were detected in each of those samples: gastrotrichs appeared in three samples, nematodes and bdelloid rotifers in two samples, and clam shrimp in one. We have also rehydrated aeolian sediments, collected in standard dust traps, from many dust-emitting playas in Southwest North America and hatched viable organisms including all those previously mentioned as well as branchiopods, fairy shrimp, copepods

  18. Aeolian processes over gravel beds: Field wind tunnel simulation and its application atop the Mogao Grottoes, China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Weimin; Tan, Lihai; Zhang, Guobin; Qiu, Fei; Zhan, Hongtao

    2014-12-01

    The aeolian processes of erosion, transport and deposition are threatening the Mogao Grottoes, a world culture heritage site. A field wind tunnel experiment was conducted atop the Mogao Grottoes using weighing sensors to quantify aeolian processes over protective gravel beds. Results reveal that aeolian erosion and deposition over gravel beds are basically influenced by gravel coverage and wind speed. Erosion is a main aeolian process over gravel beds and its strength level is mainly determined by gravel coverage: strong (<30%), medium (30-50%) and slight (>50%). Aeolian deposition only occurs when gravel coverage is equal to or greater than 30% and wind speeds are between 8 and 12 m s-1, and this process continues until the occurrence of the equilibrium coverage. In addition, the change in conditions of external sand supply affects the transition between aeolian deposition and erosion over gravel beds, and the quantity of sand transport at the height of 0-24 mm is an important indicator of aeolian deposition and erosion over gravel beds. Our results also demonstrate that making the best use of wind regime atop the Mogao Grottoes and constructing an artificial gobi surface in staggered arrays, with 30% coverage and 30-mm-high gravels and in 40 mm spacing can trap westerly invading sand flow and enable the stronger easterly wind to return the deposited sand on the gravel surface back to the Mingsha Mountain so as to minimize the damage of the blown sand flux to the Mogao Grottoes.

  19. 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

  20. Aeolian deposition change in the Peruvian central continental shelf during the last millennium and its relationship with atmospheric conditions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Briceño, F. J., Sr.; Sifeddine, A.

    2015-12-01

    We present a record of laminated sediment cores retrieved in the Pisco region (14 °S) characterized by local aeolian inputs. This record covers the Medieval Climate Anomaly (MCA) to Little Ice Age (LIA) and the Current Warm Period (CWP) at centennial to sub-decadal resolution. The aim of the study is to reconstruct the patterns of aeolian sedimentation as well as the most important processes that control the input of this material to understand how these components reflect atmospheric climate variability during the last millennium. Assuming that the mineral fraction of the sediment is composed of several lognormally distributed particle populations, we applied an iterative least-square fitting routine to determine the number and the characteristics of the individual particles populations. This allows inferring the spatial and temporal variation of particles populations and thus transport mechanisms involved. Two components with grain size modes at 54±11 μm and 90±11 μm related with local aeolian erosion over the Pisco region were found. Our results showed active aeolian erosion during the second half of the MCA and rapid decrease from the MCA to the LIA. During the LIA the aeolian deposition exhibited a decreasing activity. During the CWP the aeolian deposition increased progressively. Comparison with others South American records indicates that those changes are linked to change in the meridional position of the Intertropical convergence zone (ITCZ) and South Pacific Subtropical High (SPSH) at the centennial time resolution. Finally the CWP period showed an increase in the aeolian deposition and thus in the wind intensity over the past two centuries. This likely represents the result of the modern position of the ITCZ-SPSH system and the associated intensification of the local and regional winds. Nevertheless, the aeolian deposition and in consequence the wind intensity and variability of the last 100 yr are stronger than during the second sequence of the MCA

  1. Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungal community divergence within a common host plant in two different soils in a subarctic Aeolian sand area.

    PubMed

    Francini, Gaia; Männistö, Minna; Alaoja, Vilhelmiina; Kytöviita, Minna-Maarit

    2014-10-01

    There is rising awareness that different arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) fungi have different autoecology and occupy different soil niches and that the benefits they provide to the host plant are dependent on plant-AM fungus combination. However, the role and community composition of AM fungi in succession are not well known and the northern latitudes remain poorly investigated ecosystems. We studied AM fungal communities in the roots of the grass Deschampsia flexuosa in two different, closely located, successional stages in a northern Aeolian sand area. The AM fungal taxa richness in planta was estimated by cloning and sequencing small subunit ribosomal RNA genes. AM colonization, shoot δ (13)C signature, and %N and %C were measured. Soil microbial community structure and AM fungal mycelium abundance were estimated using phospholipid (PLFA) and neutral lipid (NLFA) analyses. The two successional stages were characterized by distinct plant, microbial, and fungal communities. AM fungal species richness was very low in both the early and late successional stages. AM frequency in D. flexuosa roots was higher in the early successional stage than in the late one. The AM fungal taxa retrieved belonged to the genera generally adapted to Arctic or extreme environments. AM fungi seemed to be important in the early stage of the succession, suggesting that AM fungi may help plants to better cope with the harsh environmental conditions, especially in an early successional stage with more extreme environmental fluctuations. PMID:24687606

  2. Turbulent flow structures and aeolian sediment transport over a barchan sand dune

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wiggs, G. F. S.; Weaver, C. M.

    2012-03-01

    The turbulent structure of airflow over a barchan sand dune is determined using quadrant analysis of wind velocity data derived from sonic anemometers. Results indicate an increased frequency of ejection and sweep events in the toe region of the dune, characteristic of the turbulent bursting process. In contrast, at the crest there was a significant increase in the occurrence of outward interactions. Combined with high frequency saltation data our analyses show that turbulent structures characterised by a positive streamwise fluctuating velocity (+u‧ sweeps at the toe and outward interactions at the crest) have a dominant influence on sand transport on the dune, together accounting for up to 83% and 95% of transporting events at the toe and crest respectively.

  3. Sorting during Migration of Aeolian Megaripples

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sullivan, R. J., Jr.; Zimbelman, J. R.

    2014-12-01

    Aeolian sediments commonly are well sorted. However, aeolian megaripples (aka coarse-grained ripples or granule ripples) have bimodal grain size-frequencies. Distinguishing aeolian megaripple deposits from mixed grain size fluvial deposits is important, particularly for martian sedimentary rocks where implications for flowing water in the martian past (if revealed by legitimate fluvial deposits) are important mission drivers for rovers and landers. Aeolian megaripples are relatively minor components of terrestrial aeolian settings (e.g., as interdune features), but on Mars, megaripples have been encountered in many locations by landers and rovers, are durable due to indurated, armoring surface layers of very coarse sand, and therefore are likely candidates for preservation in the martian sedimentary rock record. Unfortunately, megaripple deposits preserved in martian sedimentary rocks must be recognized with much less data or context than obtained typically during terrestrial fieldwork. We have undertaken wind tunnel experiments and fieldwork to assist interpretations distinguishing aeolian megaripple deposits from mixed grain fluvial materials. Lags of coarse or very coarse sand from ancient aeolian environments within the White Rim Sandstone, Canyonlands NP, UT, and at some localities along the J2 Unconformity at Buckhorn Wash, UT, are well sorted, with a sharply defined maximum grain size in each case. We conducted wind tunnel experiments to explore whether the well-sorted, sharp cutoff in maximum grain size of the coarse fraction in these deposits could be diagnostic of aeolian megaripple formation and migration. Wind tunnel experiments involved 250 μm sand saltating against 600-2800 μm grains. For a given wind tunnel speed, only a narrow grain size range appeared on megaripple surfaces as these bedforms developed spontaneously from the bed; somewhat finer grains migrated rapidly downwind, while slightly coarser grains remained immobile. The physics of

  4. Morphology and stratigraphic evolution of aeolian protodunes at White Sands Dune Field

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ewing, R. C.; Weymer, B. A.; Barrineaux, P.

    2014-12-01

    Protodunes are low-relief, slipfaceless migrating bed forms thought to represent fundamental emergent bed forms that develop from a flat bed of sand and evolve into dunes. Protodunes at White Sands Dune Field in New Mexico are found at the upwind margin of the field, on dune stoss slopes and in interdune areas. Here we used time-series aerial photos from 1996, 2003, 2005 and 2012 and digital elevation models from 2007, 2008, 2009 and 2010 in conjunction with ground penetrating radar (GPR) to characterize the morphodynamics of protodunes and the stratigraphy generated by protodune migration. Protodunes at the upwind margin of the dune field are larger in wavelength and amplitude and coarser grained than those in the interior of the field. Wind ripples cover protodunes in all areas of the field, but the protodunes at the upwind margin are covered by coarse grained ripples. A consistent progression of ripple patterns occurs over protodunes in which ripples coarsen in wavelength and grain size toward the protodune crest and then decrease in wavelength and grain size toward the troughs. Ripple migration across the protodunes appears to the primary mode by which the protodunes migrate. Trenching and GPR data show low-angle cross-stratification generated by wind ripples migrating down the protodune lee slope of the protodunes. Internal bounding surfaces within the protodunes likely arise from laterally migration and lee slope reactivation in response to the complex wind regime and dune-modified secondary flow within the dune field at White Sands. Understanding the morphology, distribution and genesis of protodunes in dune fields provides a basis to evaluate the significance of protodune strata in the rock record.

  5. Effects of particle optical properties on grain size measurements of aeolian dust deposits

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Varga, György; Újvári, Gábor; Kovács, János; Szalai, Zoltán

    2015-04-01

    Particle size data are holding crucial information on the sedimentary environment at the time the aeolian dust deposits were accumulated. Various aspects of aeolian sedimentation (wind strength, distance to source(s), possible secondary source regions and modes of sedimentation and transport) can be reconstructed from proper grain size distribution data. Laser diffraction methods provide much more accurate and reliable information on the major granulometric properties of wind-blown sediments compared to the sieve and pipette methods. The Fraunhofer and Mie scattering theories are generally used for laser diffraction grain size measurements. () The two different approaches need different 'background' information on the medium measured. During measurements following the Fraunhofer theory, the basic assumption is that parcticles are relatively large (over 25-30 µm) and opaque. The Mie theory could offer more accurate data on smaller fractions (clay and fine silt), assuming that a proper, a'priori knowledge on refraction and absorption indices exists, which is rarely the case for polymineral samples. This study is aimed at determining the effects of different optical parameters on grain size distributions (e.g. clay-content, median, mode). Multiple samples collected from Hungarian red clay and loess-paleosol records have been analysed using a Malvern Mastersizer 3000 laser diffraction particle sizer (with a Hydro LV unit). Additional grain size measurements have been made on a Fritsch Analysette 22 Microtec and a Horiba Partica La-950 v2 instrument to investigate possible effects of the used laser sources with different wavelengths. XRF and XRD measurements have also been undertaken to gain insight into the geochemical/mineralogical compositions of the samples studied. Major findings include that measurements using the Mie theory provide more accurate data on the grain size distribution of aeolian dust deposits, when we use a proper optical setting. Significant

  6. Effects of non-erodible particles on aeolian erosion: Wind-tunnel simulations of a sand oblong storage pile

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Furieri, B.; Russeil, S.; Santos, J. M.; Harion, J. L.

    2013-11-01

    Non-erodible particles have strong influence on the aeolian erosion phenomena. An oblong stockpile model of sand (bimodal granulometry) was implemented to perform wind-tunnel experiments as similar literature works have only carried out experimental investigations on a flat bed of particles. Thus, the influence of the fluid flow structures around the complex obstacle will be analysed. The tested configurations consisted of two different values of non-erodible particles cover rate (10% and 20%), and three free stream velocities (6, 7 and 8 m s-1). Good repeatability was found. The results showed that the largest amount of particles emitted was for the highest wind velocity and the smallest cover rate. The temporal decreasing of emitted mass flux was found steeper for larger amount of non-erodible particles and higher velocity. The mass flux of particles decreases very strongly in the first four minutes of measurements and the cover rate influences this downward sloping. The same analysis applies for the effects of the free stream velocity. The qualitative analysis (high quality photographic system) of the stockpile surface gradual change has shown that non-erodible particles aggregation induces a pavement effect on some areas of the pile. This analysis indicated typical wind erosion zones: high wall friction on the crest line and lateral sides; low wall friction on the windward wall near the ground and on the recirculation downstream the leeward wall. The results and discussions presented here allows for the understanding of the impact of non-erodible particle on dust emissions.

  7. Relations between rainfall–runoff-induced erosion and aeolian deposition at archaeological sites in a semi-arid dam-controlled river corridor

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Collins, Brian; Bedford, David; Corbett, Skye; Fairley, Helen; Cronkite-Ratcliff, Collin

    2016-01-01

    Process dynamics in fluvial-based dryland environments are highly complex with fluvial, aeolian, and alluvial processes all contributing to landscape change. When anthropogenic activities such as dam-building affect fluvial processes, the complexity in local response can be further increased by flood- and sediment-limiting flows. Understanding these complexities is key to predicting landscape behavior in drylands and has important scientific and management implications, including for studies related to paleoclimatology, landscape ecology evolution, and archaeological site context and preservation. Here we use multi-temporal LiDAR surveys, local weather data, and geomorphological observations to identify trends in site change throughout the 446-km-long semi-arid Colorado River corridor in Grand Canyon, Arizona, USA, where archaeological site degradation related to the effects of upstream dam operation is a concern. Using several site case studies, we show the range of landscape responses that might be expected from concomitant occurrence of dam-controlled fluvial sand bar deposition, aeolian sand transport, and rainfall-induced erosion. Empirical rainfall-erosion threshold analyses coupled with a numerical rainfall–runoff–soil erosion model indicate that infiltration-excess overland flow and gullying govern large-scale (centimeter- to decimeter-scale) landscape changes, but that aeolian deposition can in some cases mitigate gully erosion. Whereas threshold analyses identify the normalized rainfall intensity (defined as the ratio of rainfall intensity to hydraulic conductivity) as the primary factor governing hydrologic-driven erosion, assessment of false positives and false negatives in the dataset highlight topographic slope as the next most important parameter governing site response. Analysis of 4+ years of high resolution (four-minute) weather data and 75+ years of low resolution (daily) climate records indicates that dryland erosion is dependent on short

  8. Video monitoring of meso-scale aeolian activity on a narrow beach

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hage, Pam; Ruessink, Gerben

    2014-05-01

    The morphologic evolution of coastal dunes is inextricably linked to the neighbouring beach through the incessant exchange of sand. Intense storm-wave processes erode the foredune within a few hours and transport its sand sand seaward, while aeolian processes return the eroded sand from the beach into the dune system, although at a much lower pace (months to years, or meso scale). Here we use an 8-year long data set of half-hourly snapshot video images, collected from an ≡ 50 m high tower on Egmond Beach (The Netherlands), and a concurrent meteorological and water level data set, to examine which factors affect aeolian sand delivery into the dunes. Egmond is a north-south oriented, micro- to meso-tidal, wave-dominated site that faces the North Sea. Its beach is relatively narrow ( ~ 100 m at spring low tide) and mildly sloping (~ 1 : 30), and consists of quartz sand with a median diameter of about 300 μm. Aeolian activity is clearly visible on the images as sand streamers and, in particular, sand strips, defined as low-amplitude, large-wavelength and slipfaceless deposits that migrate slowly in the wind direction and, depending on wind direction, can have orientations from almost shore-parallel to shore-normal. Beach width in combination with wind direction appeared to be the dominant factors in controlling aeolian activity. Many high wind (>≡ 13 m/s) events, especially from the west and northwest, were associated with a storm surge that inundated almost the entire beach with, accordingly, no possibility for aeolian transport. In contrast, sand-strip fields covered the entire beach during medium wind (≡ 12 - 13 m/s) events, especially when the wind was nearly shore-parallel. Many sand-strip events were observed to be regulated by the tide. Prominent sand-strip fields on the intertidal and upper beach were largely limited to low-tide situations with a wide beach, with a rising tide obviously destroying the intertidal sand strips and sometimes also negatively

  9. Comparison of mineral resources calculation methods for different genetic types of gravel and sand deposits

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Patashova, T.

    2009-04-01

    Calculation of mineral resources and their proper assessment is relevant, since the stock of resources determines the economic independence of the state. I would like present the work wherein discusses gravel and sand deposits of different genetic type (kames, eskers, marginal glaciofluvial ridges, sandurs, glaciofluvial deltas and redrifted glaciofluvial aeolian formations). Their geological structure and formation conditions have been assessed; quality characteristics of mineral resources have been analysed; calculation of resources has been performed by applying most popular resources calculating methods used in Lithuania up to now, such as those of geological blocks, profiles and isolines, as well as the up-to-date GRID method created on the basis of triangle method in GIS environment. Comparison of resources assessed by different methods has revealed their advantages and disadvantages, their availability subject to deposits‘genetic types.

  10. Comparison of mineral resources calculation methods for different genetic types of gravel and sand deposits

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Patašova, Tatjana; Jurgaitis, Algirdas

    2008-01-01

    Calculation of mineral resources and their proper assessment is relevant, since the stock of resources determines the economic independence of the state. The present work discusses gravel and sand deposits of different genetic type (kames, eskers, marginal glaciofluvial ridges, sandurs, glaciofluvial deltas and redrifted glaciofluvial aeolian formations). Their geological structure and formation conditions have been assessed; quality characteristics of mineral resources have been analysed; calculation of resources has been performed by applying old methods used in Lithuania up to now, such as those of geological blocks, profiles and isolines, as well as the up-to-date GRID method created on the basis of the triangle method in GIS environment. Comparison of resources assessed by different methods has revealed their advantages and disadvantages.

  11. Synthesis on Quaternary aeolian research in the unglaciated eastern United States

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Markewich, Helaine W.; Litwin, Ronald J.; Wysocki, Douglas A.; Pavich, Milan J.

    2015-06-01

    Late-middle and late Pleistocene, and Holocene, inland aeolian sand and loess blanket >90,000 km2 of the unglaciated eastern United States of America (USA). Deposits are most extensive in the Lower Mississippi Valley (LMV) and Atlantic Coastal Plain (ACP), areas presently lacking significant aeolian activity. They provide evidence of paleoclimate intervals when wind erosion and deposition were dominant land-altering processes. This study synthesizes available data for aeolian sand deposits in the LMV, the Eastern Gulf Coastal Plain (EGCP) and the ACP, and loess deposits in the Middle Atlantic Coastal Plain (MACP). Data indicate: (a) the most recent major aeolian activity occurred in response to and coincident with growth and decay of the Laurentide Ice Sheet (LIS); (b) by ∼40 ka, aeolian processes greatly influenced landscape evolution in all three regions; (c) aeolian activity peaked in OIS2; (d) OIS3 and OIS2 aeolian records are in regional agreement with paleoecological records; and (e) limited aeolian activity occurred in the Holocene (EGCP and ACP). Paleoclimate and atmospheric-circulation models (PCMs/ACMs) for the last glacial maximum (LGM) show westerly winter winds for the unglaciated eastern USA, but do not resolve documented W and SW winds in the SEACP and WNW and N winds in the MACP. The minimum areal extent of aeolian deposits in the EGCP and ACP is ∼10,000 km2. For the LMV, it is >80,000 km2. Based on these estimates, published PCMs/ACMs likely underrepresent the areal extent of LGM aeolian activity, as well as the extent and complexity of climatic changes during this interval.

  12. 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.

  13. Spatial and temporal patterns of aeolian sediment transport on an inland parabolic dune, Bigstick Sand Hills, Saskatchewan, Canada

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hugenholtz, C. H.; Wolfe, S. A.; Walker, I. J.; Moorman, B. J.

    2009-04-01

    Topographic changes from erosion pins and on-site meteorological data document the spatial and temporal patterns of aeolian sediment transport at monthly to annual timescales across an active parabolic dune within a vegetation-stabilized inland, prairie dune field. Over two years, the sediment budget, calculated from digital elevation models, shows that the total volume of erosion (9890 m 3) is greater than the amount of deposition (6990 m 3), indicating a net loss of 2900 m 3 of sediment (or ˜ 29% of eroded sediment) from the dune. Sediment erosion occurred mainly on the stoss slope (3600 m 3; ˜ 36% of eroded sediment), but also on the south (2100 m 3; ˜ 21%) and north sides of the dune head (1700 m 3; ˜ 17%), the blowouts along the arms (1740 m 3, ˜ 18%) and the crest (650 m 3; ˜ 7%). Erosion from the deflation basin is limited by surface roughness and armoring effects of a gravel lag deposit (100 m 3; ˜ 1%). Thus, the blowouts currently contribute to maintaining dune mobility because no other sediment input occurs from upwind. Sediment deposition onto the dune occurred primarily beyond the brink on the south and southeast lee slopes (5500 m 3; ˜ 80%), coinciding with the southeasterly resultant transport direction for November 2004-05. The net loss of about 2900 m 3 (˜ 29%) may be attributed to sediment carried in suspension over and beyond the dune. Correlation analysis between sediment transport and meteorological variables suggests that monthly to seasonal changes of surface conditions (e.g., vegetation cover, ground freezing, moisture) buffer the relative importance of temperature and precipitation on rates of sediment transport. Conversely, wind correlates well on a monthly to seasonal basis because it is a driver of transport under all types of surface conditions. Seasonal effects produce a complex interaction between wind, climate and surface conditions. This leads to a dynamic range of threshold velocities, which in turn causes spatial and

  14. A model to study the grain size components of the sediment deposited in aeolian-fluvial interplay erosion watershed

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Xiang; Li, Zhanbin; Li, Peng; Cheng, Shengdong; Zhang, Yang; Tang, Shanshan; Wang, Tian

    2015-12-01

    Aeolian-fluvial interplay erosion areas with complex dynamics and physical sources are the main suppliers of coarse sediment in the Yellow River. Understanding the composition, distribution, and sources of deposited sediments in such areas is of great importance for the control of sediment transport in rivers. In this paper, a typical aeolian-fluvial interplay erosion watershed - the Dongliu Gully - was studied and the frequency distribution curves of sediments deposited in the stream channel were fitted using the Weibull function. Sources of deposited sediment in the stream channel were analyzed based on the law of the conservation of matter. Results showed that the hilly zone accounted for 78% of deposited sediments, which were dominated by material with a median grain size (d50) of 0.093 mm, and the desert zone accounted for 22% of deposited sediments, which were dominated by material with a d50 of 0.01 mm. Wind erosion dynamics accounted for 72% of deposited sediments, while water erosion dynamics accounted for only 28%. This research provides a theoretical basis for the control and management of rivers with high sediment content.

  15. Sand dune materials and polar layered deposits on Mars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thomas, P.; Weitz, C.

    1989-09-01

    The possible place of sand in the Martian polar layered deposits is examined. The erosional features in layered deposits and the morphologic relationship of dunes and the layered deposits are discussed. The colors of the polar dunes are shown to be similar to the colors of dunes at other latitudes, suggesting that the polar dunes can be explained without any special or exotic mechanism. Consideration is given to mixing and segregation of materials by eolian processes observed on Mars, showing that sand was probably carried to the polar regions during part of the formation of the layered deposits.

  16. Holocene aeolian activities in the southeastern Mu Us Desert, China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jia, Feifei; Lu, Ruijie; Gao, Shangyu; Li, Jinfeng; Liu, Xiaokang

    2015-12-01

    Aeolian deposits from three sites in the Mu Us Desert were used to reconstruct the history of aeolian activities during the Holocene. The results of the lithologies, chronologies and proxy indicators showed that aeolian activities occurred at ∼9.96 cal ka BP, 7.9-6.9 ka BP, 6.4 ka BP and 3.8 cal ka BP∼. The cold event that occurred around 6.4 ka BP interrupted the Holocene Optimum period, which is largely consistent with the findings from sediments in adjacent regions and the monsoon areas of China. Combined with punished OSL and 14C ages of aeolian deposits samples in this region, the environmental changes in the Mu Us Desert were divided into four stages. Active sand dunes dominated before 11 ka BP. Aeolian activities occurred regionally from 11 to 8.5 ka BP and typical sandy paleosol widely developed with episodic aeolian activities between 8.5 and 4 ka BP. Dunes have reactivated and active sand dunes have gradually increased since 4 ka BP. Comparisons with the other paleoclimatic records indicated that the evolution of the Mu Us Desert was closely related to the East Asian monsoon. Paleosol development depended more on the precipitation brought by the East Asian summer monsoon (EASM). The stronger East Asian winter monsoon (EAMW) and higher isolation resulted in the aeolian activities in the early Holocene, while during the mid-Holocene the fluctuating EAWM played a more important role in inducing episodic aeolian activities. The environmental deterioration during the late Holocene can be related to weakened EASM or to increased anthropogenic influence.

  17. Physical abrasion of mafic minerals and basalt grains: application to Martian aeolian deposits

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Cornwall, Carin; Bandfield, Joshua L.; Titus, Timothy N.; Schreiber, B. C.; Montgomery, D.R.

    2015-01-01

    Sediment maturity, or the mineralogical and physical characterization of sediment deposits, has been used to locate sediment source, transport medium and distance, weathering processes, and paleoenvironments on Earth. Mature terrestrial sands are dominated by quartz, which is abundant in source lithologies on Earth and is physically and chemically stable under a wide range of conditions. Immature sands, such as those rich in feldspars or mafic minerals, are composed of grains that are easily physically weathered and highly susceptible to chemical weathering. On Mars, which is predominately mafic in composition, terrestrial standards of sediment maturity are not applicable. In addition, the martian climate today is cold, dry and sediments are likely to be heavily influenced by physical weathering rather than chemical weathering. Due to these large differences in weathering processes and composition, martian sediments require an alternate maturity index. Abrason tests have been conducted on a variety of mafic materials and results suggest that mature martian sediments may be composed of well sorted, well rounded, spherical basalt grains. In addition, any volcanic glass present is likely to persist in a mechanical weathering environment while chemically altered products are likely to be winnowed away. A modified sediment maturity index is proposed that can be used in future studies to constrain sediment source, paleoclimate, mechanisms for sediment production, and surface evolution. This maturity index may also provide details about erosional and sediment transport systems and preservation processes of layered deposits.

  18. Physical abrasion of mafic minerals and basalt grains: Application to martian aeolian deposits

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cornwall, C.; Bandfield, J. L.; Titus, T. N.; Schreiber, B. C.; Montgomery, D. R.

    2015-08-01

    Sediment maturity, or the mineralogical and physical characterization of sedimentary deposits, has been used to identify sediment sources, transport medium and distance, weathering processes, and paleoenvironments on Earth. Mature terrestrial sands are dominated by quartz, which is abundant in source lithologies on Earth and is physically and chemically stable under a wide range of conditions. Immature sands, such as those rich in feldspars or mafic minerals, are composed of grains that are easily physically weathered and highly susceptible to chemical weathering. On Mars, which is predominately mafic in composition, terrestrial standards of sediment maturity are not applicable. In addition, the martian climate today is cold and dry and sediments are likely to be heavily influenced by physical weathering rather than chemical weathering. Due to these large differences in weathering processes and composition, martian sediments require an alternate maturity index. This paper reports the results of abrasion tests conducted on a variety of mafic materials and results suggest that mature martian sediments may be composed of well sorted, well rounded, spherical polycrystalline materials, such as basalt. Volcanic glass is also likely to persist in a mechanical weathering environment while more fragile and chemically altered products are likely to be winnowed away. A modified sediment maturity index is proposed that can be used in future studies to constrain sediment source, paleoclimate, mechanisms for sediment production, and surface evolution. This maturity index may also provide insights into erosional and sediment transport systems and preservation processes of layered deposits.

  19. Aeolian Sediment Transport Pathways and Aerodynamics at Troughs on Mars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bourke, Mary C.; Bullard, Joanna E.; Barnouin-Jha, Olivier S.

    2004-01-01

    Interaction between wind regimes and topography can give rise to complex suites of aeolian landforms. This paper considers aeolian sediment associated wit11 troughs on Mars and identifies a wider range of deposit types than has previously been documented. These include wind streaks, falling dunes, "lateral" dunes, barchan dunes, linear dunes, transverse ridges, sand ramps, climbing dunes, sand streamers, and sand patches. The sediment incorporated into these deposits is supplied by wind streaks and ambient Planitia sources as well as originating within the trough itself, notably from the trough walls and floor. There is also transmission of sediment between dneTsh. e flow dynamics which account for the distribution of aeolian sediment have been modeled using two-dimensional computational fluid dynamics. The model predicts flow separation on the upwind side of the trough followed by reattachment and acceleration at the downwind margin. The inferred patterns of sediment transport compare well with the distribution of aeolian forms. Model data indicate an increase of wind velocity by approx. 30 % at the downwind trough margin. This suggests that the threshold wind speed necessary for sand mobilization on Mars will be more freqentmlye t in these inclined locations.

  20. Sandy inland braidplain deposition with local aeolian sedimentation in the lower and middle parts of the buntsandstein and sandy coastal braidplain deposition in the topmost zechstein in the sudetes (Lower Silesia, Poland)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mroczkowski, Jerzy; Mader, Detlef

    The lower and middle parts of the Buntsandstein between Röt and Zechstein in the Sudetes (Lower Silesia, Poland) crop out in the marginal seams of the North Sudetic Trough and the Intra Sudetic Trough. The continental red beds originate in predominantly sandy braided river systems of an extensive inland alluvial plain in almost arid climate. The sediments are laid down in channels and floodplains of a moderately- to highly-braided, sandy to pebbly stream complex consisting of narrowly- to moderately-spaced low-sinuosity watercourses and narrow to wide overbank plains between the channels. Rapid aggradation and abandonment, quick lateral migration or high avulsion rates of the considerably mobile streams result in effective combing of the interchannel areas. Persistent high-energy overspilling of watercourse banks and invasion of bed-load-saturated flood surges into the overbank areas often lead to primary restriction or even suppression of formation of topstratum suspension fines. Secondarily, the silty-clayey and fine sandy overbank sediments which could occasionally originate in remote or sheltered lakes and ponds are frequently completely reworked by considerable lateral and vertical erosion during sidewards displacement of the rivers. As a result of both primary-depositional restriction and secondary-erosional removal of floodplain fines, the channel sediments are commonly stacked upon each other to multistorey stream sand complexes. Emergence and desiccation of parts of the alluvial plain sometimes give rise to aeolian deflation and accumulation of the winnowed sand to small dunelets and wind ripple trains. The aeolian depositional environment representing a more peripheral erg facies with sheet sand interdune milieu could not be fully ascertained due to poor outcrop conditions, but is likely to occur locally in view of comparative interpretation with other mixed dune and river sand sequences in the Mid-European Buntsandstein. Variations of fluvial style are

  1. Evidence for indigenous nitrogen in sedimentary and aeolian deposits from the Curiosity rover investigations at Gale crater, Mars.

    PubMed

    Stern, Jennifer C; Sutter, Brad; Freissinet, Caroline; Navarro-González, Rafael; McKay, Christopher P; Archer, P Douglas; Buch, Arnaud; Brunner, Anna E; Coll, Patrice; Eigenbrode, Jennifer L; Fairen, Alberto G; Franz, Heather B; Glavin, Daniel P; Kashyap, Srishti; McAdam, Amy C; Ming, Douglas W; Steele, Andrew; Szopa, Cyril; Wray, James J; Martín-Torres, F Javier; Zorzano, Maria-Paz; Conrad, Pamela G; Mahaffy, Paul R

    2015-04-01

    The Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) investigation on the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) Curiosity rover has detected oxidized nitrogen-bearing compounds during pyrolysis of scooped aeolian sediments and drilled sedimentary deposits within Gale crater. Total N concentrations ranged from 20 to 250 nmol N per sample. After subtraction of known N sources in SAM, our results support the equivalent of 110-300 ppm of nitrate in the Rocknest (RN) aeolian samples, and 70-260 and 330-1,100 ppm nitrate in John Klein (JK) and Cumberland (CB) mudstone deposits, respectively. Discovery of indigenous martian nitrogen in Mars surface materials has important implications for habitability and, specifically, for the potential evolution of a nitrogen cycle at some point in martian history. The detection of nitrate in both wind-drifted fines (RN) and in mudstone (JK, CB) is likely a result of N2 fixation to nitrate generated by thermal shock from impact or volcanic plume lightning on ancient Mars. Fixed nitrogen could have facilitated the development of a primitive nitrogen cycle on the surface of ancient Mars, potentially providing a biochemically accessible source of nitrogen. PMID:25831544

  2. Evidence for indigenous nitrogen in sedimentary and aeolian deposits from the Curiosity rover investigations at Gale crater, Mars

    PubMed Central

    Stern, Jennifer C.; Sutter, Brad; Freissinet, Caroline; Navarro-González, Rafael; McKay, Christopher P.; Archer, P. Douglas; Buch, Arnaud; Brunner, Anna E.; Coll, Patrice; Eigenbrode, Jennifer L.; Fairen, Alberto G.; Franz, Heather B.; Glavin, Daniel P.; Kashyap, Srishti; McAdam, Amy C.; Ming, Douglas W.; Steele, Andrew; Szopa, Cyril; Wray, James J.; Martín-Torres, F. Javier; Zorzano, Maria-Paz; Conrad, Pamela G.; Mahaffy, Paul R.; Kemppinen, Osku; Bridges, Nathan; Johnson, Jeffrey R.; Minitti, Michelle; Cremers, David; Bell, James F.; Edgar, Lauren; Farmer, Jack; Godber, Austin; Wadhwa, Meenakshi; Wellington, Danika; McEwan, Ian; Newman, Claire; Richardson, Mark; Charpentier, Antoine; Peret, Laurent; King, Penelope; Blank, Jennifer; Weigle, Gerald; Schmidt, Mariek; Li, Shuai; Milliken, Ralph; Robertson, Kevin; Sun, Vivian; Baker, Michael; Edwards, Christopher; Ehlmann, Bethany; Farley, Kenneth; Griffes, Jennifer; Grotzinger, John; Miller, Hayden; Newcombe, Megan; Pilorget, Cedric; Rice, Melissa; Siebach, Kirsten; Stack, Katie; Stolper, Edward; Brunet, Claude; Hipkin, Victoria; Léveillé, Richard; Marchand, Geneviève; Sánchez, Pablo Sobrón; Favot, Laurent; Cody, George; Steele, Andrew; Flückiger, Lorenzo; Lees, David; Nefian, Ara; Martin, Mildred; Gailhanou, Marc; Westall, Frances; Israël, Guy; Agard, Christophe; Baroukh, Julien; Donny, Christophe; Gaboriaud, Alain; Guillemot, Philippe; Lafaille, Vivian; Lorigny, Eric; Paillet, Alexis; Pérez, René; Saccoccio, Muriel; Yana, Charles; Armiens-Aparicio, Carlos; Rodríguez, Javier Caride; Blázquez, Isaías Carrasco; Gómez, Felipe Gómez; Gómez-Elvira, Javier; Hettrich, Sebastian; Malvitte, Alain Lepinette; Jiménez, Mercedes Marín; Martínez-Frías, Jesús; Martín-Soler, Javier; - Torres, F. Javier Martín; Jurado, Antonio Molina; Mora-Sotomayor, Luis; Caro, Guillermo Muñoz; López, Sara Navarro; Peinado-González, Verónica; Pla-García, Jorge; Manfredi, José Antonio Rodriguez; Romeral-Planelló, Julio José; Fuentes, Sara Alejandra Sans; Martinez, Eduardo Sebastian; Redondo, Josefina Torres; Urqui-O'Callaghan, Roser; Mier, María-Paz Zorzano; Chipera, Steve; Lacour, Jean-Luc; Mauchien, Patrick; Sirven, Jean-Baptiste; Manning, Heidi; Fairén, Alberto; Hayes, Alexander; Joseph, Jonathan; Squyres, Steven; Sullivan, Robert; Thomas, Peter; Dupont, Audrey; Lundberg, Angela; Melikechi, Noureddine; Mezzacappa, Alissa; DeMarines, Julia; Grinspoon, David; Reitz, Günther; Prats, Benito; Atlaskin, Evgeny; Genzer, Maria; Harri, Ari-Matti; Haukka, Harri; Kahanpää, Henrik; Kauhanen, Janne; Kemppinen, Osku; Paton, Mark; Polkko, Jouni; Schmidt, Walter; Siili, Tero; Fabre, Cécile; Wray, James; Wilhelm, Mary Beth; Poitrasson, Franck; Patel, Kiran; Gorevan, Stephen; Indyk, Stephen; Paulsen, Gale; Gupta, Sanjeev; Bish, David; Schieber, Juergen; Gondet, Brigitte; Langevin, Yves; Geffroy, Claude; Baratoux, David; Berger, Gilles; Cros, Alain; d’Uston, Claude; Forni, Olivier; Gasnault, Olivier; Lasue, Jérémie; Lee, Qiu-Mei; Maurice, Sylvestre; Meslin, Pierre-Yves; Pallier, Etienne; Parot, Yann; Pinet, Patrick; Schröder, Susanne; Toplis, Mike; Lewin, Éric; Brunner, Will; Heydari, Ezat; Achilles, Cherie; Oehler, Dorothy; Sutter, Brad; Cabane, Michel; Coscia, David; Israël, Guy; Szopa, Cyril; Dromart, Gilles; Robert, François; Sautter, Violaine; Le Mouélic, Stéphane; Mangold, Nicolas; Nachon, Marion; Buch, Arnaud; Stalport, Fabien; Coll, Patrice; François, Pascaline; Raulin, François; Teinturier, Samuel; Cameron, James; Clegg, Sam; Cousin, Agnès; DeLapp, Dorothea; Dingler, Robert; Jackson, Ryan Steele; Johnstone, Stephen; Lanza, Nina; Little, Cynthia; Nelson, Tony; Wiens, Roger C.; Williams, Richard B.; Jones, Andrea; Kirkland, Laurel; Treiman, Allan; Baker, Burt; Cantor, Bruce; Caplinger, Michael; Davis, Scott; Duston, Brian; Edgett, Kenneth; Fay, Donald; Hardgrove, Craig; Harker, David; Herrera, Paul; Jensen, Elsa; Kennedy, Megan R.; Krezoski, Gillian; Krysak, Daniel; Lipkaman, Leslie; Malin, Michael; McCartney, Elaina; McNair, Sean; Nixon, Brian; Posiolova, Liliya; Ravine, Michael; Salamon, Andrew; Saper, Lee; Stoiber, Kevin; Supulver, Kimberley; Van Beek, Jason; Van Beek, Tessa; Zimdar, Robert; French, Katherine Louise; Iagnemma, Karl; Miller, Kristen; Summons, Roger; Goesmann, Fred; Goetz, Walter; Hviid, Stubbe; Johnson, Micah

    2015-01-01

    The Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) investigation on the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) Curiosity rover has detected oxidized nitrogen-bearing compounds during pyrolysis of scooped aeolian sediments and drilled sedimentary deposits within Gale crater. Total N concentrations ranged from 20 to 250 nmol N per sample. After subtraction of known N sources in SAM, our results support the equivalent of 110–300 ppm of nitrate in the Rocknest (RN) aeolian samples, and 70–260 and 330–1,100 ppm nitrate in John Klein (JK) and Cumberland (CB) mudstone deposits, respectively. Discovery of indigenous martian nitrogen in Mars surface materials has important implications for habitability and, specifically, for the potential evolution of a nitrogen cycle at some point in martian history. The detection of nitrate in both wind-drifted fines (RN) and in mudstone (JK, CB) is likely a result of N2 fixation to nitrate generated by thermal shock from impact or volcanic plume lightning on ancient Mars. Fixed nitrogen could have facilitated the development of a primitive nitrogen cycle on the surface of ancient Mars, potentially providing a biochemically accessible source of nitrogen. PMID:25831544

  3. Flood Induced Increases in Aeolian Transport Along the Missouri River

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Benthem, A. J.; Strong, L.; Schenk, E.; Skalak, K.; Hupp, C. R.; Galloway, J.

    2014-12-01

    In 2011, heavy winter snow melt combined with extensive spring rains caused the Missouri River to experience the most extensive flooding since the river was dammed in the 1950s. Large sections of the river banks, islands, and floodplains experienced weeks of prolonged inundation, resulting in extensive sand deposition as up to1 km inland from the established channel. Though locally variable, deposits of up to 3m of loose sand were deposited on the floodplain and extensive areas of shrub, grasslands, and agricultural fields were completely buried or had vegetation washed away in the inundation zone. The flooding also created a number of new unvegetated islands which provide important habitat for endangered species including the Piping Plover (Charadrius melodus). These newly created sand surfaces are unconsolidated and have very little vegetation to prevent aeolian transport. Strong sustained regional winds of up to 20m/s (45mph) cause substantial sediment fluxes which modify landscape topography, shift river morphology, and increase regional dust levels. Our study monitors and quantifies the increase in aeolian transport that occurred following flooding along the Garrison Reach, a 110 km section of free flowing Missouri River in North Dakota. In 2012 and 2013 we measured sand transport and accumulation rates using Leatherman style sand traps and erosion pins to at 9 sites of varying vegetation densities. We apply these flux rates to a high resolution remote sensing vegetation map to estimate the total flux of sand for this segment of the river. We also quantify total available new sand for transport using repeat Light Detection and Ranging (LiDAR) coverage from before and after the flood and examine the relationship between sand deposition and the rate of reestablishment of vegetation. All of these results are used to estimate the scale of flood induced aeolian processes and predict where they may continue to influence the landscape.

  4. Identification of a late Quaternary alluvial-aeolian sedimentary sequence in the Sichuan Basin, China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Feng, Jin-Liang; Ju, Jian-Ting; Chen, Feng; Hu, Zhao-Guo; Zhao, Xiang; Gao, Shao-Peng

    2016-03-01

    The late Quaternary sedimentary sequence in the northwestern part of the Sichuan Basin consists of five lithological units and with increasing depth include the: Chengdu Clay; Brown Clay; Red Clay; Sandy Silt; and basal Muddy Gravel. The genesis, provenance and age of the sediments, as well as the possible presence of hiatuses within this sequence are debated. Measurements of grain-size, magnetic susceptibility, quartz content, quartz δ18O values, element composition, and Sr-Nd isotopic concentrations of samples from a typical sedimentary sequence in the area provides new insights into the genesis and history of the sequence. The new data confirm that the sediments in study site are alluvial-aeolian in origin, with basal alluvial deposits overlain by aeolian deposits. Like the uppermost Chengdu Clay, the underlying Brown Clay and Red Clay are aeolian in origin. In contrast, the Silty Sand, like the basal Muddy Gravel, is an alluvial deposit and not an aeolian deposit as previously thought. Moreover, the succession of the aeolian deposits very likely contains two significant sedimentary hiatuses. Sedimentological analysis demonstrates that the source materials for the aeolian deposits in the northwestern part of the Sichuan Basin and those on the eastern Tibetan Plateau are different. Furthermore, the loess deposits on the eastern Tibetan Plateau are derived from heterogeneous local sources.

  5. Alluvial Fans on Dunes in Kaiser Crater Suggest Niveo-Aeolian and Denivation Processes on Mars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bourke, M. C.

    2005-01-01

    On Earth, cold region sand dunes often contain inter-bedded sand, snow, and ice. These mixed deposits of wind-driven snow, sand, silt, vegetal debris, or other detritus have been termed Niveo-aeolian deposits. These deposits are often coupled with features that are due to melting or sublimation of snow, called denivation features. Snow and ice may be incorporated into dunes on Mars in three ways. Diffusion of water vapour into pore spaces is the widely accepted mechanism for the accretion of premafrost ice. Additional mechanisms may include the burial by sand of snow that has fallen on the dune surface or the synchronous transportation and deposition of snow, sand and ice. Both of these mechanisms have been reported for polar dunes on Earth. Niveo-aeolian deposits in polar deserts on Earth have unique morphologies and sedimentary structures that are generally not found in warm desert dunes. Recent analysis of MOC-scale data have found evidence for potential niveo-aeolian and denivation deposits in sand dunes on Mars.

  6. Effects of River Regulation on Aeolian Landscapes, Grand Canyon National Park, USA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Draut, A. E.

    2010-12-01

    Sediment deposits in the Colorado River corridor include fluvial sandbars and aeolian dune fields, and the fluvial deposits are the primary sediment source for sand in the aeolian dunes. This 7-year study examined the effects of river regulation at Glen Canyon Dam (alteration of flow regime, sediment-supply reduction, and consequent loss of fluvial sandbars) on aeolian landscapes downstream in Grand Canyon National Park. A comparative study was developed between aeolian landscapes in Grand Canyon, Arizona, and Cataract Canyon, Utah, upstream of Glen Canyon Dam and its reservoir (Lake Powell), where hydrology and sediment supply of the Colorado River are affected substantially less by artificial river regulation than occurs in Grand Canyon. Before closure of Glen Canyon Dam in 1963, sediment-rich floods (mean annual peak 2400 m3/s) formed sandbars from which wind moved sand inland to form aeolian dunes. After dam operations reduced the amplitude and frequency of high flows, and eliminated the mainstream fluvial sediment supply, Grand Canyon’s fluvial sandbars lost open sand area owing to erosion by river flows and the spread of riparian vegetation. Two types of aeolian landscapes now occur in Grand Canyon: (1) modern fluvial sourced, those downwind of post-dam sandbars; and (2) relict fluvial sourced, whose primary sediment source was deposits from pre-dam floods that were larger than any post-dam flows have been. Sediment supply has been reduced to type (1) dune fields because post-dam sandbars are smaller than in the pre-dam era; new sediment supply to type (2) dune fields essentially has been eliminated. Type 1 aeolian landscapes can receive new windblown sand from sandbars formed by controlled floods (1160 m3/s), which occurred in 1996, 2004, and 2008. Type 1 dune fields, being downwind and within 100 m of controlled-flood sandbars, have significantly higher aeolian sand-transport rates, more open sand, and less biologic soil crust than relict type 2 dune

  7. Paleoenvironment and depositional environment of Miocene Olcese Sand, Bakersfield, California

    SciTech Connect

    Olson, H.C.

    1986-04-01

    The Olcese Sand near Bakersfield, California, contains evidence of a range of paleoenvironments including nonmarine, estuarine, and outer shelf depositional settings. Foraminifera from surface and subsurface samples place the Olcese in the Saucesian and Relizian of the California benthic stages. A pumice bed in the Olcese has been dated by fission track methods at 15.5 Ma. The Olcese Sand interfingers with the underlying Freeman Silt and the overlying Round Mountain Silt. In the type area, in Round Mountain oil field, the Olcese is 300-360 m thick. The Olcese is subdivided into three environmental facies. In the Knob Hill Quadrangle, the lower Olcese consists of (1) thinly bedded to blocky white tuffaceous silt and sand, or (2) planar cross-bedded fine to coarse-grained sand with pumice pebbles lining the bedding surfaces. Fossil mollusks and skate teeth indicate a shallow marine environment for the lower Olcese. Although the Olcese is predominantly a marine unit, the middle Olcese is nonmarine, with lenses of marine deposition. The middle Olcese is well exposed in the Knob Hill, Oil Center, and Rio Bravo Ranch Quadrangles, and is characterized by fine to coarse sand with occasional gravel lenses, strong cross-bedding, and a blue-gray color. The upper Olcese is a very fine to medium-grained, marine sand that fines upward into a sandy siltstone southward toward the Kern River. Foraminifera and mollusks from outcrops in the Rio Bravo Ranch Quadrangle indicate outer shelf to estuarine environments for the upper Olcese. The varying environments in the Olcese Sand reflect slight but frequent fluctuations in water depth and can be used to interpret the basin-margin history.

  8. Abundances and implications of volatile-bearing species from evolved gas analysis of the Rocknest aeolian deposit, Gale Crater, Mars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Archer, Paul Douglas; Franz, Heather B.; Sutter, Brad; Arevalo, Ricardo D.; Coll, Patrice; Eigenbrode, Jennifer L.; Glavin, Daniel P.; Jones, John J.; Leshin, Laurie A.; Mahaffy, Paul R.; McAdam, Amy C.; McKay, Christopher P.; Ming, Douglas W.; Morris, Richard V.; Navarro-González, Rafael; Niles, Paul B.; Pavlov, Alex; Squyres, Steven W.; Stern, Jennifer C.; Steele, Andrew; Wray, James J.

    2014-01-01

    The Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) instrument on the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) rover Curiosity detected evolved gases during thermal analysis of soil samples from the Rocknest aeolian deposit in Gale Crater. Major species detected (in order of decreasing molar abundance) were H2O, SO2, CO2, and O2, all at the µmol level, with HCl, H2S, NH3, NO, and HCN present at the tens to hundreds of nmol level. We compute weight % numbers for the major gases evolved by assuming a likely source and calculate abundances between 0.5 and 3 wt.%. The evolution of these gases implies the presence of both oxidized (perchlorates) and reduced (sulfides or H-bearing) species as well as minerals formed under alkaline (carbonates) and possibly acidic (sulfates) conditions. Possible source phases in the Rocknest material are hydrated amorphous material, minor clay minerals, and hydrated perchlorate salts (all potential H2O sources), carbonates (CO2), perchlorates (O2 and HCl), and potential N-bearing materials (e.g., Martian nitrates, terrestrial or Martian nitrogenated organics, ammonium salts) that evolve NH3, NO, and/or HCN. We conclude that Rocknest materials are a physical mixture in chemical disequilibrium, consistent with aeolian mixing, and that although weathering is not extensive, it may be ongoing even under current Martian surface conditions.

  9. Geochemical provenance of soils in Kerman urban areas, Iran: Implications for the influx of aeolian dust

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dehbandi, Reza; Aftabi, Alijan

    2016-06-01

    The investigation of the interaction of aeolian dust with residual soils has not been fully explored in the Kerman urban areas, Iran. To assess the geochemical influence of aeolian dust on the residual soils of the Kerman urban areas of Iran, 27 samples were studied petrogeochemically. The arid-semi-arid climate of the area together with the southwest-northeast prevailing wind, have deposited aeolian sands over the residual soils. Residual soils reflect similar mineral compositions to that of the underlying bedrock and include mostly calcite and quartz. However, the minor occurrences of pyroxene, amphibole, olivine, plagioclase and volcanic clasts in urban soils and aeolian dust are attributed to volcanogenic inputs transported by aeolian dust. Urban soils and aeolian dust show different geochemical signatures from the local carbonate rocks. All samples contain trace element concentrations that are higher than the carbonate bedrock. Discrimination diagrams indicate that immobile trace elements have geochemical affinity to the detrital ferromagnesian dust inputs and are different from the local carbonate bedrock. Based on the elemental bivariate and ternary diagrams, the soils and aeolian dust are derived from the interaction of carbonate and volcanic rocks. This highlights that the urban soils in the Kerman urban areas have been formed by interactions of the aeolian dust with the primitive residual soils.

  10. Integrated Results from Analysis of the Rocknest Aeolian Deposit by the Curiosity Rover

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Leshin, L. A.; Grotzinger, J. P.; Blake, D. F.; Edgett, K. S.; Gellert, R.; Mahaffy, P. R.; Malin, M. C.; Wiens, R. C.; Treiman, A. H.; Ming, D. W.; Eigenbrode, J.

    2013-01-01

    The Mars Science Laboratory Curiosity rover spent 45 sols (from sol 56-101) at an area called Rocknest (Fig. 1), characterizing local geology and ingesting its aeolian fines into the analytical instruments CheMin and SAM for mineralogical and chemical analysis. Many abstracts at this meeting present the contextual information and detailed data on these first solid samples analyzed in detail by Curiosity at Rocknest. Here, we present an integrated view of the results from Rocknest - the general agreement from discussions among the entire MSL Science Team.

  11. Postdam evolution of aeolian landscapes in the Colorado River corridor through Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona, USA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Draut, A. E.; Collins, B. D.; Fairley, H. C.; Rubin, D. M.

    2009-12-01

    Sediment deposits within the Colorado River corridor in Grand Canyon, USA, include fluvial sandbars and aeolian dune fields; fluvial deposits are the primary sediment source for the dune fields. We present a conceptual model describing evolution of aeolian landscapes in Grand Canyon, based upon field measurements of wind and sand transport and on surveys of vegetation and substrate properties. The data indicate that Glen Canyon Dam operations can affect geomorphic evolution above the elevation reached by river flows because of the link between fluvial deposition and aeolian transport of sediment. Evolution of aeolian landscapes, in turn, can affect the stability and preservation of archaeological material that occurs in numerous dune fields. Before closure of Glen Canyon Dam on the Colorado River in 1963, sediment-rich floods (mean annual flood 2400 m3/s) formed sandbars from which wind moved sand inland to form aeolian dunes. After dam operations reduced the amplitude and frequency of high flows, and eliminated the mainstream fluvial sediment supply, fluvial sandbars lost open sand area owing to erosion by river flows and the spread of riparian vegetation. Two types of aeolian landscapes now occur: (1) modern fluvial sourced, those downwind of postdam sandbars; and (2) relict fluvial sourced, which are not downwind of postdam sandbars and whose primary sediment source was deposits from predam floods that were larger than any postdam flows have been. Sediment supply has been reduced to type (1) dune fields because postdam sandbars are smaller than in the predam era; new sediment supply to type (2) dune fields has been essentially eliminated. Decreased aeolian sediment supply leads to increased vegetation and biologic soil crust in dune fields, and can result in greater susceptibility to gully formation during rainfall due to lack of infilling aeolian sand. Modern-fluvial-sourced dunes can receive new windblown sand from sandbars formed by controlled

  12. Geochronology of initial soils in Late-Holocene polycyclic drift-sand deposits (Weerterbergen, S.E. Netherlands)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    van mourik, J. M.; Wallinga, J.

    2012-04-01

    Late glacial aeolian coversand dominates the surface geology of the eastern part of the province Noord-Brabant (Netherlands). During prehistoric and early historic time, forest grazing, wood cutting and shifting cultivation gradually transformed natural forest into heath land. During the 11th - 13th century, commercial clear cutting of forests caused sand drifting. Farmers protected the heath against drift sand and continued till 1750 AD with shallow stable management. In the course of the 18th century deep stable management was introduced and farmers started with sod digging on the heath to increase the total amount of manure. Sod digging resulted in a second period of extension of driftsand landscapes with characteristic 'cultural' landforms and soils. Polycyclic driftsand deposits are paleoecological records of alternating instable (sand drifting) and stable (soil formation) phases in landscape development. Interpretation of paleoecological information, derived from these records, requires accurate knowledge of the geochronology. Radiocarbon dating, applied on extracted soil organic matter from humic buried AE horizons is not reliable. Calibrated 14C ages of seven selected buried 'micropodzols' range from 340 - 1950 AD. To understand the geochronology of polycyclic sequences, we applied soil micromorphology to improve our knowledge about the organic matrix of micropodzols and OSL dating. Micromorphological analysis of thin sections of micropodzols provide more information about the composition of SOM of the humic horizons. SOM consists of post sedimentary compounds, related to soil formation. We can identify soil fungi, fragmented litter and fecal pellets as the results of litter decomposition. But SOM contains also sin sedimentary compounds, related to sand drifting. We can identify transported and rounded organic aggregates, mineral grains with organic cutans and charcoal fragments, originating from eroded (older) soil horizons. Consequently, the 14C dates of

  13. Late Pleistocene and Holocene aeolian sedimentation in Gonghe Basin, northeastern Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau: Variability, processes, and climatic implications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Qiang, Mingrui; Jin, Yanxiang; Liu, Xingxing; Song, Lei; Li, Hao; Li, Fengshan; Chen, Fahu

    2016-01-01

    Although stratigraphic sequences of aeolian deposits in dryland areas have long been recognized as providing information about past environments, the exact nature of the environmental processes they reflect remains unclear. Here, we report the results of a detailed investigation of eight outcrop sections in the Gonghe Basin, northeastern Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau. Measurements of sediment grain-size and chemical composition indicate that the deposits are primarily of aeolian origin, consisting of interbedded, well-sorted sand, silty sand, loess and/or palaeosol; however, their occurrence varies from site to site. Fossil dune sands mainly occur in or close to the currently stabilized or semi-stabilized dune fields, whereas loess is distributed along the downwind marginal areas. This pattern of basin-scale differentiation was controlled mainly by spatial variability of sediment supply due to the antecedent sedimentary patterns within the basin. Together with previously-published optically stimulated luminescence (OSL) ages, 24 new OSL dates are used to elucidate the history of aeolian activity and its relationship to climatic changes. There is no apparent relationship between past dune activity and downwind loess deposits. Deposition of silty sand probably occurred during past phases of windy, dry and cold climate in the Late Pleistocene. However, climatic factors alone cannot explain the occurrence of silty sand deposition. This is because the deposition of silty sand was always preceded by episodes of fluvial deposition prior to river incision, thereby indicating the importance of an 'activated' sediment supply associated with fluvial processes. Deposition of well-sorted sand occurred episodically, not only during the Late Pleistocene, but also during the early- to mid-Holocene. Vegetation conditions, controlled either by the occurrence of intervals of moisture deficit during the Late Pleistocene or by changes in the balance between precipitation and

  14. A 37,000-year environmental magnetic record of aeolian dust deposition from Burial Lake, Arctic Alaska

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dorfman, J. M.; Stoner, J. S.; Finkenbinder, M. S.; Abbott, M. B.; Xuan, C.; St-Onge, G.

    2015-11-01

    Environmental magnetism and radiocarbon dating of Burial Lake sediments constrain the timing and magnitude of regional aeolian deposition for the Noatak region of western Arctic Alaska for the last ˜37,000 years. Burial Lake (68.43°N, 159.17°W, 21.5 m water depth) is optimally located to monitor regional dust deposition because it is perched above local drainage and isolated from glacial processes. Cores collected in the summer of 2010 were studied through the application of magnetizations and progressive alternating field (AF) demagnetization of u-channel samples, with additional data provided by computed tomography (CT) derived density, hysteresis measurements, isothermal remanent magnetization (IRM) acquisition experiments, organic carbon content, biogenic silica, physical grain size, radiocarbon dating of wood, seeds, and plant macrofossils, point source magnetic susceptibility, and X-ray fluorescence (XRF). With similar magnetic properties to regional Alaskan loess deposits, low coercivity, highly magnetic material deposited during the late-Pleistocene contrasts with a high coercivity, weakly magnetic component found throughout the record, consistent with locally-derived detritus. The relative proportion of low coercivity to high coercivity magnetic material, defined by the S-Ratios, is used to reconstruct the regional input of dust to the basin over time. A four-fold decrease in the low coercivity component through the deglacial transition is interpreted to reflect diminished dust input to the region. Comparisons with potential sources of dust show that the timing of deposition in Burial Lake is largely consistent with general aridity, lack of vegetative cover, and increased windiness, rather than glacial advances or retreats. The influence from subaerial exposure of continental shelves cannot be ruled out as a significant far-field source of dust to interior Alaska during the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM), but is unlikely to have been the sole source, or to

  15. The aeolian wind tunnel

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Iversen, J. D.

    1991-01-01

    The aeolian wind tunnel is a special case of a larger subset of the wind tunnel family which is designed to simulate the atmospheric surface layer winds to small scale (a member of this larger subset is usually called an atmospheric boundary layer wind tunnel or environmental wind tunnel). The atmospheric boundary layer wind tunnel is designed to simulate, as closely as possible, the mean velocity and turbulence that occur naturally in the atmospheric boundary layer (defined as the lowest portion of the atmosphere, of the order of 500 m, in which the winds are most greatly affected by surface roughness and topography). The aeolian wind tunnel is used for two purposes: to simulate the physics of the saltation process and to model at small scale the erosional and depositional processes associated with topographic surface features. For purposes of studying aeolian effects on the surface of Mars and Venus as well as on Earth, the aeolian wind tunnel continues to prove to be a useful tool for estimating wind speeds necessary to move small particles on the three planets as well as to determine the effects of topography on the evolution of aeolian features such as wind streaks and dune patterns.

  16. Sulfur-bearing phases detected by evolved gas analysis of the Rocknest aeolian deposit, Gale Crater, Mars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McAdam, Amy C.; Franz, Heather B.; Sutter, Brad; Archer, Paul D.; Freissinet, Caroline; Eigenbrode, Jennifer L.; Ming, Douglas W.; Atreya, Sushil K.; Bish, David L.; Blake, David F.; Bower, Hannah E.; Brunner, Anna; Buch, Arnaud; Glavin, Daniel P.; Grotzinger, John P.; Mahaffy, Paul R.; McLennan, Scott M.; Morris, Richard V.; Navarro-González, Rafael; Rampe, Elizabeth B.; Squyres, Steven W.; Steele, Andrew; Stern, Jennifer C.; Sumner, Dawn Y.; Wray, James J.

    2014-02-01

    The Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) instrument suite detected SO2, H2S, OCS, and CS2 from ~450 to 800°C during evolved gas analysis (EGA) of materials from the Rocknest aeolian deposit in Gale Crater, Mars. This was the first detection of evolved sulfur species from a Martian surface sample during in situ EGA. SO2 (~3-22 µmol) is consistent with the thermal decomposition of Fe sulfates or Ca sulfites, or evolution/desorption from sulfur-bearing amorphous phases. Reactions between reduced sulfur phases such as sulfides and evolved O2 or H2O in the SAM oven are another candidate SO2 source. H2S (~41-109 nmol) is consistent with interactions of H2O, H2 and/or HCl with reduced sulfur phases and/or SO2 in the SAM oven. OCS (~1-5 nmol) and CS2 (~0.2-1 nmol) are likely derived from reactions between carbon-bearing compounds and reduced sulfur. Sulfates and sulfites indicate some aqueous interactions, although not necessarily at the Rocknest site; Fe sulfates imply interaction with acid solutions whereas Ca sulfites can form from acidic to near-neutral solutions. Sulfides in the Rocknest materials suggest input from materials originally deposited in a reducing environment or from detrital sulfides from an igneous source. The presence of sulfides also suggests that the materials have not been extensively altered by oxidative aqueous weathering. The possibility of both reduced and oxidized sulfur compounds in the deposit indicates a nonequilibrium assemblage. Understanding the sulfur mineralogy in Rocknest materials, which exhibit chemical similarities to basaltic fines analyzed elsewhere on Mars, can provide insight in to the origin and alteration history of Martian surface materials.

  17. Holocene aeolian sediments on the NE Tibetan Plateau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stauch, G.; Lehmkuhl, F.; Hilgers, A.; Zhao, H.

    2012-04-01

    The semiarid climate of the northeastern Tibetan Plateau supports the formation of different types of aeolian sediments and landforms during the Holocene. Aeolians silts and sands in the catchment of the Donggi Cona in an elevation above 4000m to 4800 m asl reflect variable climate conditions during that time as well as different sediment sources. Based on 51 OSL datings and catchment wide geomorphological mapping a complex pattern of long and short distance sediment transport has been reconstructed. Only few aeolian archives are preserved from the late Pleistocene in this mountain environment indicating cold and dry climate conditions which prevented a continuous accumulation. During the early Holocene a phase of increased aeolian sedimentation of sand at the slopes of the mountains has been reconstructed. The sand originated from a large alluvial fan which was highly active during the Pleistocene. In addition, a thin loess cover is preserved at a few sites in the neighboring mountains ranges. The sedimentation of the loess started around 2000 years later than the sedimentation of the sand at the foot slope. Both archives are related to an increase in precipitation at the northern margin of the Tibetan Plateau which was related to a strengthening of the Asian Monsoon during that time. The wetter climate conditions favored the development of a vegetation cover which leads to the trapping and fixation of the aeolian sediments. However, with a further strengthening of the Monsoon systems these archives subsequently eroded due to higher run off and accumulated as colluvial and fluvial deposits in the basins. These phase lasted until 6 ka. A second aeolian period started at around 3 ka with the formation new dunes in the basins. This period can be associated with dry and cold climate of the late Holocene supporting the reactivation of the sand in the area. This might be further enhanced by an increased human impact by grazing during the late Holocene and resulting

  18. Identifying Tsunami Deposits in the Absence of Sand

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chague-Goff, C.; Judd, K.; Goff, J. R.; Gadd, P.; Fierro, D.; Zawadzki, A.

    2015-12-01

    Tsunamis originating in South America are known to have affected Lyttelton Harbour, New Zealand, in the recent past. However, while there was clear evidence of inundation, in particular in 1960 and 2010, there was no report of any sand left behind. Our study aimed to search for evidence of these small historical tsunamis, in the absence of any visible sand layer. Shallow trenches revealed discontinuous layers of small grey mud clasts at various depths across the study area, most likely transported from the nearby harbour. The origin of these mud clast layers was investigated using sedimentological, geochemical and diatom analyses complemented by dating from 137Cs activity profiles and historical data. Subtle variations consistent with inclusions of marine mud such as a decrease in organic content and magnetic susceptibility and increases in geochemical markers (e.g. Ca, K, K/Rb, Si/Rb and Sr/Rb) were found in the sediment profile. Variations in diatom assemblages suggesting a marine influence were also recorded at similar depths, aligning with layers of mud clasts. Based on 137Cs activity profiles and historical data, these deposits were attributed to the 1960 Chile and 1964 Alaska tsunamis, and we also found evidence for an older deposit, possibly associated with the 1868 Arica tsunami. Sedimentary evidence for the 2010 Chile tsunami was not found at the study site, but our study revealed spatial variations in Ca, Cl and Sr concentrations that were inversely related to Ti concentrations. This was used to identify the landward extent of inundation by the 2010 event. We show that a broad multi-proxy analysis can distinguish even the subtle signatures of an inconspicuous deposit laid down by a small tsunami.

  19. Evidence for Perchlorates and the Origin of Chlorinated Hydrocarbons Detected by SAM at the Rocknest Aeolian Deposit in Gale Crater

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Glavin, Daniel P.; Freissinet, Caroline; Miller, Kristen E.; Eigenbrode, Jennifer L.; Brunner, Anna E.; Buch, Arnaud; Sutter, Brad; Archer, P. Douglas, Jr.; Atreya, Sushil K.; Brinckerhoff, William B.; Cabane, Michael; Coll, Patrice; Conrad, Pamela G.; Coscia, David; Dworkin, Jason P.; Franz, Heather B.; Grotzinger, John P.; Leshin, Laurie A.; Martin, Mildred G.; McKay, Christopher; Ming, Douglas W.; Navarro-Gonzalez, Rafael; Pavlov, Alexander; Steele, Andrew; Summons, Roger E.; Szopa, Cyril; Teinturier, Samuel; Mahaffy, Paul R.

    2013-01-01

    Four individual sample portions from a single scoop of the Rocknest aeolian deposit were sieved ( 150 m) and delivered to the Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) instrument by the Mars Science Laboratory rover's sample acquisition system. The samples were analyzed separately by the SAM pyrolysis evolved gas and gas chromatography mass spectrometry analysis modes. Several chlorinated hydrocarbons including chloromethane, dichloromethane, trichloromethane, a chloromethylpropene, and chlorobenzene were identified by SAM above background levels with abundances of 0.01 to 2.3 nanomole.The evolution of the chloromethanes observed during pyrolysis is coincident with the increase in O2 released from the Rocknest sample and the decomposition of a product of N-methyl-N- (tert-butyldimethylsilyl)trifluoroacetamide (MTBSTFA), a chemical that leaked from a derivatization cup inside SAM.The best candidate for the oxychloride phase in Rocknest is a hydrated calcium perchlorate (Ca(ClO4)2nH2O), based on the temperature release of O2 that correlates with the release of the chlorinated species measured by SAM, although other chlorine bearing phases are being considered. Laboratory pyrolysis experiments suggest that reaction of martian chlorine with organic carbon from MTBSTFA can explain the presence of the chloromethanes and a chloromethylpropene also detected by SAM.However, we cannot exclude the possibility that traces of organic carbon of either martian or exogenous origin contributed to some of the chloromethanes measured by SAM. Although the alteration history and exposure age of the Rocknest deposit is unknown, it is possible that oxidative degradation of complex organic matter by ionizing radiation or other chemical processes in Rocknest has occurred.

  20. Sulfur Biogeochemistry of an Oil Sands Composite Tailings Deposit.

    PubMed

    Warren, Lesley A; Kendra, Kathryn E; Brady, Allyson L; Slater, Greg F

    2015-01-01

    Composite tailings (CT), an engineered, alkaline, saline mixture of oil sands tailings (FFT), processed sand and gypsum (CaSO4; 1 kg CaSO4 per m(3) FFT) are used as a dry reclamation strategy in the Alberta Oil Sands Region (AOSR). It is estimated that 9.6 × 10(8) m(3) of CT are either in, or awaiting emplacement in surface pits within the AOSR, highlighting their potential global importance in sulfur cycling. Here, in the first CT sulfur biogeochemistry investigation, integrated geochemical, pyrosequencing and lipid analyses identified high aqueous concentrations of ∑H2S (>300 μM) and highly altered sulfur compounds composition; low cell biomass (3.3 × 10(6)- 6.0 × 10(6) cells g(-1)) and modest bacterial diversity (H' range between 1.4 and 1.9) across 5 depths spanning 34 m of an in situ CT deposit. Pyrosequence results identified a total of 29,719 bacterial 16S rRNA gene sequences, representing 131 OTUs spanning19 phyla including 7 candidate divisions, not reported in oil sands tailings pond studies to date. Legacy FFT common phyla, notably, gamma and beta Proteobacteria, Firmicutes, Actinobacteria, and Chloroflexi were represented. However, overall CT microbial diversity and PLFA values were low relative to other contexts. The identified known sulfate/sulfur reducing bacteria constituted at most 2% of the abundance; however, over 90% of the 131 OTUs identified are capable of sulfur metabolism. While PCR biases caution against overinterpretation of pyrosequence surveys, bacterial sequence results identified here, align with phospholipid fatty acid (PLFA) and geochemical results. The highest bacterial diversities were associated with the depth of highest porewater [∑H2S] (22-24 m) and joint porewater co-occurrence of Fe(2+) and ∑H2S (6-8 m). Three distinct bacterial community structure depths corresponded to CT porewater regions of (1) shallow evident Fe((II)) (<6 m), (2) co-occurring Fe((II)) and ∑H2S (6-8 m) and (3) extensive ∑H2S (6-34 m) (Uni

  1. Sulfur Biogeochemistry of an Oil Sands Composite Tailings Deposit

    PubMed Central

    Warren, Lesley A.; Kendra, Kathryn E.; Brady, Allyson L.; Slater, Greg F.

    2016-01-01

    Composite tailings (CT), an engineered, alkaline, saline mixture of oil sands tailings (FFT), processed sand and gypsum (CaSO4; 1 kg CaSO4 per m3 FFT) are used as a dry reclamation strategy in the Alberta Oil Sands Region (AOSR). It is estimated that 9.6 × 108 m3 of CT are either in, or awaiting emplacement in surface pits within the AOSR, highlighting their potential global importance in sulfur cycling. Here, in the first CT sulfur biogeochemistry investigation, integrated geochemical, pyrosequencing and lipid analyses identified high aqueous concentrations of ∑H2S (>300 μM) and highly altered sulfur compounds composition; low cell biomass (3.3 × 106– 6.0 × 106 cells g−1) and modest bacterial diversity (H' range between 1.4 and 1.9) across 5 depths spanning 34 m of an in situ CT deposit. Pyrosequence results identified a total of 29,719 bacterial 16S rRNA gene sequences, representing 131 OTUs spanning19 phyla including 7 candidate divisions, not reported in oil sands tailings pond studies to date. Legacy FFT common phyla, notably, gamma and beta Proteobacteria, Firmicutes, Actinobacteria, and Chloroflexi were represented. However, overall CT microbial diversity and PLFA values were low relative to other contexts. The identified known sulfate/sulfur reducing bacteria constituted at most 2% of the abundance; however, over 90% of the 131 OTUs identified are capable of sulfur metabolism. While PCR biases caution against overinterpretation of pyrosequence surveys, bacterial sequence results identified here, align with phospholipid fatty acid (PLFA) and geochemical results. The highest bacterial diversities were associated with the depth of highest porewater [∑H2S] (22–24 m) and joint porewater co-occurrence of Fe2+ and ∑H2S (6–8 m). Three distinct bacterial community structure depths corresponded to CT porewater regions of (1) shallow evident Fe(II) (<6 m), (2) co-occurring Fe(II) and ∑H2S (6–8 m) and (3) extensive ∑H2S (6–34 m) (Uni

  2. Martian aeolian processes, sediments, and features

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Greeley, Ronald; Lancaster, Nicholas; Lee, Steven; Thomas, Peter

    1992-01-01

    In this review of the aeolian regime on Mars, consideration is given to the sources and characteristics of the particles that are involved in aeolian processes and the winds that are required to set grains into motion. Dust storms are reviewed and previous observations and the mechanisms of dust-storm generation are assessed. Various aeolian features, including dunes and albedo features, as well as windblown mantle deposits are discussed. In planning for future missions to Mars, aeolian processes must be taken into account. Surface modifications by the wind and windblown deposits can influence remote-sensing observations, affect sampling strategies, and have detrimental effects on manned and unmanned spacecraft on the surface.

  3. Evidence for perchlorates and the origin of chlorinated hydrocarbons detected by SAM at the Rocknest aeolian deposit in Gale Crater

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Glavin, Daniel P.; Freissinet, Caroline; Miller, Kristen E.; Eigenbrode, Jennifer L.; Brunner, Anna E.; Buch, Arnaud; Sutter, Brad; Archer, P. Douglas; Atreya, Sushil K.; Brinckerhoff, William B.; Cabane, Michel; Coll, Patrice; Conrad, Pamela G.; Coscia, David; Dworkin, Jason P.; Franz, Heather B.; Grotzinger, John P.; Leshin, Laurie A.; Martin, Mildred G.; McKay, Christopher; Ming, Douglas W.; Navarro-González, Rafael; Pavlov, Alexander; Steele, Andrew; Summons, Roger E.; Szopa, Cyril; Teinturier, Samuel; Mahaffy, Paul R.

    2013-10-01

    A single scoop of the Rocknest aeolian deposit was sieved (< 150 µm), and four separate sample portions, each with a mass of ~50 mg, were delivered to individual cups inside the Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) instrument by the Mars Science Laboratory rover's sample acquisition system. The samples were analyzed separately by the SAM pyrolysis evolved gas and gas chromatograph mass spectrometer analysis modes. Several chlorinated hydrocarbons including chloromethane, dichloromethane, trichloromethane, a chloromethylpropene, and chlorobenzene were identified by SAM above background levels with abundances of ~0.01 to 2.3 nmol. The evolution of the chloromethanes observed during pyrolysis is coincident with the increase in O2 released from the Rocknest sample and the decomposition of a product of N-methyl-N-(tert-butyldimethylsilyl)-trifluoroacetamide (MTBSTFA), a chemical whose vapors were released from a derivatization cup inside SAM. The best candidate for the oxychlorine compounds in Rocknest is a hydrated calcium perchlorate (Ca(ClO4)2·nH2O), based on the temperature release of O2 that correlates with the release of the chlorinated hydrocarbons measured by SAM, although other chlorine-bearing phases are being considered. Laboratory analog experiments suggest that the reaction of Martian chlorine from perchlorate decomposition with terrestrial organic carbon from MTBSTFA during pyrolysis can explain the presence of three chloromethanes and a chloromethylpropene detected by SAM. Chlorobenzene may be attributed to reactions of Martian chlorine released during pyrolysis with terrestrial benzene or toluene derived from 2,6-diphenylphenylene oxide (Tenax) on the SAM hydrocarbon trap. At this time we do not have definitive evidence to support a nonterrestrial carbon source for these chlorinated hydrocarbons, nor do we exclude the possibility that future SAM analyses will reveal the presence of organic compounds native to the Martian regolith.

  4. Holocene moisture change revealed by the Rb/Sr ratio of aeolian deposits in the southeastern Mu Us Desert, China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Bing; Jin, Heling; Sun, Liangying; Sun, Zhong; Niu, Qinghe; Xie, Shengbo; Li, Guanhua

    2014-06-01

    Systematic analysis of the Rb and Sr contents and Rb/Sr ratios in different lithological units of the palaeosol-aeolian sequence in the southeastern Mu Us Desert revealed that the Rb/Sr ratio is an accurate proxy for past East Asian summer monsoonal strength and moisture change. A lower Sr content and a higher Rb/Sr ratio, chemical index of alteration (CIA), and clay and organic matter (OM) content in the palaeosol are coincident with stronger Asian summer monsoons and increased precipitation, whereas a higher Sr content and a lower Rb/Sr ratio, CIA, and clay and OM content correspond to a dry climate with weaker summer monsoonal strength. Based on these results, the history of Holocene moisture changes was reconstructed as follows: the moisture was lower before 7.5 ka and approached an optimal climate between 7.5 ka and 4.6 ka, afterwards, the climate tended to be dry. Additionally, six millennial-scale dry events were recorded at the times of ∼7.5 ka, 7.0-6.8 ka, 6.6-5.7 ka, 4.6-4.1 ka, 3.7-3.5 ka, and 3.3-2.5 ka, which were very accordant with cold phases evidenced by ice cores and deep-sea deposits in the low and high latitudes of the Northern Hemisphere. These were also coincident with weaker Asian summer monsoonal intervals revealed by stalagmites within the dating uncertainties, probably implying a prominent synchronism of Holocene millennial-scale climate changes in the Mu Us Desert and global climate changes.

  5. Evidence for Perchlorates and the Origin of Chlorinated Hydrocarbons Detected by SAM at the Rocknest Aeolian Deposit in Gale Crater

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Glavin, Daniel P.; Freissinet, Caroline; Miller, Kristen E.; Eigenbrode, Jennifer L.; Brunner, Anna E.; Buch, Arnaud; Sutter, Brad; Archer, P. Douglas, Jr.; Atreya, Sushil K.; Brinckerhoff, William B.; Cabane, Michel; Coll, Patrice; Conrad, Pamela G.; Coscia, David; Dworkin, Jason P.; Franz, Heather B.; Grotzinger, John P.; Leshin, Laurie A.; Martin, Mildred G.; McKay, Christopher; Ming, Douglas W.; Navarro-Gonzalez, Rafael; Pavlov, Alexander; Steele, Andrew; Summons, Roger E.; Szopa, Cyril; Teinturier, Samuel; Mahaffy, Paul R.

    2013-01-01

    A single scoop of the Rocknest aeolian deposit was sieved (less than 150 micrometers), and four separate sample portions, each with a mass of approximately 50 mg, were delivered to individual cups inside the Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) instrument by the Mars Science Laboratory rover's sample acquisition system. The samples were analyzed separately by the SAM pyrolysis evolved gas and gas chromatograph mass spectrometer analysis modes. Several chlorinated hydrocarbons including chloromethane, dichloromethane, trichloromethane, a chloromethylpropene, and chlorobenzene were identified by SAM above background levels with abundances of approximately 0.01 to 2.3 nmol. The evolution of the chloromethanes observed during pyrolysis is coincident with the increase in O2 released from the Rocknest sample and the decomposition of a product of N-methyl-N-(tert-butyldimethylsilyl)-trifluoroacetamide (MTBSTFA), a chemical whose vapors were released from a derivatization cup inside SAM. The best candidate for the oxychlorine compounds in Rocknest is a hydrated calcium perchlorate (Ca(ClO4)2·nH2O), based on the temperature release of O2 that correlates with the release of the chlorinated hydrocarbons measured by SAM, although other chlorine-bearing phases are being considered. Laboratory analog experiments suggest that the reaction of Martian chlorine from perchlorate decomposition with terrestrial organic carbon from MTBSTFA during pyrolysis can explain the presence of three chloromethanes and a chloromethylpropene detected by SAM. Chlorobenzene may be attributed to reactions of Martian chlorine released during pyrolysis with terrestrial benzene or toluene derived from 2,6-diphenylphenylene oxide (Tenax) on the SAM hydrocarbon trap. At this time we do not have definitive evidence to support a nonterrestrial carbon source for these chlorinated hydrocarbons, nor do we exclude the possibility that future SAM analyses will reveal the presence of organic compounds native to the

  6. Soil heterogeneity of an East and West facing ridge above timberline due to differences in snow and aeolian deposition

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Traver, E.

    2015-12-01

    Hans Jenny's soil forming factors—time, parent material, climate, topography, and organisms—represent the major components of his system to describe and quantify soil development. In almost all situations, it is difficult to hold even one of these factors constant while focusing on another factor; however, in our study site—the East and West side of a narrow North-South running ridge, above timberline in SE Wyoming—we can hold three factors nearly constant (time, parent material, and climate) and focus on how topography, in particular, has influenced the soil differences on the two sides. The East side is the leeside of prevailing and strong westerly winds and receives a large snow pack while the West is consistently snow-free during winter creating a very different moisture and soil temperature regime. The East receives aeolian dust deposition while the West loses surface material from wind scour. A standard chemical and physical analysis found that while the two sides are nearly identical textually, with a similar pH and low electrical conductivity, the East side is richer in minerals. During the short growing season, soil moisture results show that the West side is holding more water than the East side; however, the East side has a higher percentage of organic matter and is more shrub and forb rich. An isotope analysis shows that the C:N ratios are very similar on the two sides. Microbial biomass and functional groups will be analyzed in the soil samples as well as a seismic study conducted to quantity depth of soil to bedrock. Using all these results will help quantify the differences on the two sides of this narrow ridge and add to our understanding of fine-scale soil heterogeneity and its relationship to watershed hydrology.

  7. Holocene deposits of reservoir-quality sand along the Central South Carolina coastline

    SciTech Connect

    Sexton, W.J.; Hayes, M.O.

    1996-06-01

    The Holocene coastal sand deposits of the central South Carolina coastline were investigated to estimate volumes of reservoir-quality (RQ) sediments. These sand bodies, which vary considerably in size, thickness, shape, and continuity, were deposited in a variety of depositional settings including barrier islands, ebb-tidal deltas, exposed sand flats, tidal sand ridges, and tidal point bars. To identify the RQ sediment for each sand-body type, a conservative mud cutoff value of 15% was chosen. Average thickness values ranged from 6 m for barrier island deposits to 15 m for ebb-tidal deltas. Of the six most significant RQ sand depositional environments on the central portion of the South Carolina coast, ebb-tidal delta complexes accounted for 77% of all RQ sediments. This dominance of the ebb-tidal delta deposits is attributed to the relatively large tidal range in the area (up to 3 m) and to the presence of a number of large, incised alluvial valleys, which are host to estuarine complexes with large tidal prisms. If the Holocene sand deposits along the central 115 km of the South Carolina coast were preserved in the rock record, a total of 1.3 X 10{sup 6} ac-ft of RQ sands would be present, a significant amount considering the short time interval of approximately 5000 yr.

  8. Deposit model for heavy-mineral sands in coastal environments: Chapter L in Mineral deposit models for resource assessment

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Van Gosen, Bradley S.; Fey, David L.; Shah, Anjana K.; Verplanck, Philip L.; Hoefen, Todd M.

    2014-01-01

    Heavy mineral grains appear to weather primarily after their deposition in the coastal plain; this weathering is caused by groundwaters, humic acids, and other intrabasinal fluids. This weathering can enhance the TiO2 content of ilmenite. Iron is leached from ilmenite during weathering, which thereby upgrades the TiO2 content of the ilmenite, forming leucoxene. The resulting deposits of heavy-mineral sands can be voluminous. Individual bodies of heavy mineral-rich sands are typically about 1 kilometer wide and more than 5 kilometers long. Many heavy-mineral sands districts extend for more than 10 kilometers and contain several individual deposits that are spread along an ancient or modern strandline. Reported thicknesses of economic deposits range from 3 to 45 meters. Individual ore deposits typically comprise at least 10 megatonnes of ore (the total size of the individual sand-silt body), whose overal

  9. Vegetation and substrate properties of aeolian dune fields in the Colorado River corridor, Grand Canyon, Arizona

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Draut, Amy E.

    2011-01-01

    This report summarizes vegetation and substrate properties of aeolian landscapes in the Colorado River corridor through Grand Canyon, Arizona, in Grand Canyon National Park. Characterizing these parameters provides a basis from which to assess future changes in this ecosystem, including the spread of nonnative plant species. Differences are apparent between aeolian dune fields that are downwind of where modern controlled flooding deposits new sandbars (modern-fluvial-sourced dune fields) and those that have received little or no new windblown sand since river regulation began in the 1960s (relict-fluvial-sourced dune fields). The most substantial difference between modern- and relict-fluvial-sourced aeolian dune fields is the greater abundance of biologic soil crust in relict dune fields. These findings can be used with similar investigations in other geomorphic settings in Grand Canyon and elsewhere in the Colorado River corridor to evaluate the health of the Colorado River ecosystem over time.

  10. The Icelandic volcanic aeolian environment: Processes and impacts - A review

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Arnalds, Olafur; Dagsson-Waldhauserova, Pavla; Olafsson, Haraldur

    2016-03-01

    Iceland has the largest area of volcaniclastic sandy desert on Earth or 22,000 km2. The sand has been mostly produced by glacio-fluvial processes, leaving behind fine-grained unstable sediments which are later re-distributed by repeated aeolian events. Volcanic eruptions add to this pool of unstable sediments, often from subglacial eruptions. Icelandic desert surfaces are divided into sand fields, sandy lavas and sandy lag gravel, each with separate aeolian surface characteristics such as threshold velocities. Storms are frequent due to Iceland's location on the North Atlantic Storm track. Dry winds occur on the leeward sides of mountains and glaciers, in spite of the high moisture content of the Atlantic cyclones. Surface winds often move hundreds to more than 1000 kg m-1 per annum, and more than 10,000 kg m-1 have been measured in a single storm. Desertification occurs when aeolian processes push sand fronts and have thus destroyed many previously fully vegetated ecosystems since the time of the settlement of Iceland in the late ninth century. There are about 135 dust events per annum, ranging from minor storms to >300,000 t of dust emitted in single storms. Dust production is on the order of 30-40 million tons annually, some traveling over 1000 km and deposited on land and sea. Dust deposited on deserts tends to be re-suspended during subsequent storms. High PM10 concentrations occur during major dust storms. They are more frequent in the wake of volcanic eruptions, such as after the Eyjafjallajökull 2010 eruption. Airborne dust affects human health, with negative effects enhanced by the tubular morphology of the grains, and the basaltic composition with its high metal content. Dust deposition on snow and glaciers intensifies melting. Moreover, the dust production probably also influences atmospheric conditions and parameters that affect climate change.

  11. Atlas of Dutch drift sands

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Riksen, Michel; Jungerius, Pieter

    2013-04-01

    The Netherlands is well known for its aeolian landscapes. Frequent storms during the High Middle Ages (1000-1300 AD) reactivated Pleistocene coversands and river dunes and are responsible for the formation of the Holocene drift sands at a scale which is unique for Europe. A hypothesized relationship with farmer practices for making plaggensoils has recently been refuted, because drift sand formation began centuries earlier. The coastal dune belt with their parabolic dunes dates from the same period as the drift sand. An estimate of the extent of drift sands can be made from soil maps: drift sands are too young to show much profile development (Regosols). With this method Koster estimated the maximum extent of Holocene drift sands in the Netherlands to be about 800 km2 (Koster 2005). Laser altimetry allows a more precise estimate of the total surface affected by wind from the characteristic relief patterns produced by the Holocene wind, which is different from the smooth surface of cover sand deposits. Laser altimetry has been used before to investigate the mechanism of drift sand formation (Jungerius & Riksen 2010). Most of the surface affected by wind is not active anymore, but the tell-tale rough surface survived ages of different landuse. The total affected surface amounts to 825 km2. It is noteworthy that both methods give comparable results. We recorded a total number of 367 of affected areas of varying shapes, ranging in size from 1.6 ha to a large complex of drif sands of 7,119.5 ha. As is to be expected from their mode of origin, most occurrences are associated with cover sands, and with river dunes along the river Meuse and smaller rivers in other parts of the country. Particularly the final phases of cover sand and river dunes that show more relief as parabolic dunes were affected. There are also small aeolian deposits at the lee side blown from fallow agricultural fields but they are (sub)recent. Most of the relief is irregular, but the larger

  12. Source-to-sink cycling of aeolian sediment in the north polar region of Mars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ewing, R. C.; Kocurek, G.

    2012-12-01

    Aeolian sand dunes are prominent features on the landscapes of Earth, Mars, Venus and Titan and sedimentary deposits interpreted as aeolian in origin are found in the rock records of Earth and Mars. The widespread occurrence of aeolian dunes on the surface of these worlds and within their deep-time depositional records suggests that aeolian systems are and likely have been a default depositional environment for the Solar System. Within an aeolian source-to-sink context, we hypothesize that planet-specific boundary conditions strongly impact production, transport, accumulation and preservation of aeolian sediment, whereas dunes and dune-field patterns remain largely similar. This hypothesis is explored within the north polar region of Mars, which hosts the most extensive aeolian dune fields and aeolian sedimentary deposits yet recognized on Mars and appears to be a region of dynamic source-to-sink cycling of aeolian sediments. The Planum Boreum Cavi Unit rests beneath north polar ice cap of Mars and is composed of several hundred meters of niveo-aeolian dune cross-stratification. The overall architecture of the unit consists of sets of preserved dune topography with an upward increase in the abundance of ice. Dune sets are defined by stabilized, polygonally fractured bounding surfaces, erosional bounding surfaces and typical internal lee foresets made of sediment and ice. The accumulation of the Cavi Unit is interpreted as occurring through freezing and serves as an example of a cold temperature boundary condition on aeolian sediment accumulation. Preservation of the Cavi Unit arises because of deposition of the overlying ice cap and contrasts with preservation of aeolian sediment on Earth, which is largely driven by eustasy and tectonics. The Cavi Unit is thought to be one source of sediment for the north polar Olympia Undae Dune Field. The region of Olympia Undae near the Cavi Unit shows a reticulate dune field pattern composed of two sets of nearly orthogonal

  13. Aeolian Transport of Ferrous Minerals in the North Polar Region of Mars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Horgan, Briony H.; Bell, J. F., III; Noe Dobrea, E. Z.

    2008-09-01

    The north polar region of Mars contains two areally extensive, dark aeolian deposits: (1) the north polar sand seas that encircle the polar cap, and (2) the north polar veneers that drape over the polar cap itself. Both deposits have been previously identified as containing hydrated minerals, and exhibit spectral features consistent with gypsum, a hydrated calcium sulfate. However, it remains unclear whether or not the deposits have exchanged material in the past, and whether any portion of either deposit is active today. In this study, we are investigating the distribution of ferrous minerals in the north polar region using near-infrared spectral data from the Mars Express OMEGA imaging spectrometer. Ferrous minerals, such as olivine and pyroxene, are most readily identified by the presence of a wide absorption band around 1 micron. Observations of changes in the position, depth, and shape of the 1 micron absorption band may be used to track changes in composition. We have identified the presence of a strong 1 micron band in the veneers, the sand sea, and the surrounding plains. Initial results from study regions in Chasma Boreale and Olympia Planum suggest that the position, depth, and shape of the band do vary within the veneers and sand seas. These spectral differences may reflect: (1) compositional variations between the sources of the deposits, (2) the degree of modern activity of the deposits, or (3) changes in mineralogy due to breakdown of softer minerals during aeolian transport over long distances. By extending our observations of these spectral changes to the entire north polar region, we may be able to help identify sources of aeolian material, transport pathways, and the most active regions of modern aeolian activity.

  14. The aeolian sedimentary system in the northern Qilian Shan and Hexi Corridor (N-China) - geomorphologic, sedimentologic and climatic drivers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nottebaum, Veit; Lehmkuhl, Frank; Stauch, Georg

    2015-04-01

    The formation of aeolian deposits depends on the influence of climatic factors but also on non-climatic controls, such as local geomorphological setting and tectonic activity. Unravelling the environmental history needs a careful consideration of a set of sections to capture spatial variability and a detailed investigation of depositing processes and chronology. Along the northern margin of the Qilian Shan mountain range 22 OSL-dated loess and aeolian sand sections and additional surface samples reveal the interactions between climatic, geomorphologic and sedimentologic factors. Thin loess covers (~1-2 m) occur in elevations of 2000 to 3800 m asl, which were mainly accumulated during the Holocene. End-member modelling of loess grain size data exhibits three dominant aeolian transport pathways representing local transport from fluvial storages, dust storm contribution and background dust deposition. Their relative contributions show a clear dependence on geomorphological setting, and additionally, synchronous trends throughout the Holocene. Their relative changes allow conclusions about Holocene environmental conditions. Discontinuous archives (aeolian sand, lacustrine, and alluvial deposition) in the lower forelands of the Qilian Shan show a distinct spatial pattern contrasting western and eastern forelands. The comparison of OSL ages exhibits high sediment accumulation (~2 m/ka) in the drier western part during the Late Glacial, while the lack of Holocene ages indicates sediment discharge / deflation. In contrast, moister areas in the eastern foreland yield scattered Holocene ages. This indicates high sediment dynamics, benefiting from fluvial reworking and thus provided sediment availability. Fluvial sediment supply plays an important role in sediment recycling. Meanwhile, western forelands lack efficient sand sources and fluvial reworking agents. The study exemplifies the complex sedimentary systems acting along mountain to foreland transects which often host

  15. Aeolian Processes and Features on Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Greeley, Ronald; Bender, Kelly C.; Saunders, Stephen; Schubert, Gerald; Weitz, Catherine M.

    1997-01-01

    Aeolian features on Venus include dune fields, eroded hills (yardangs), wind streaks, (miniature dunes of 10 to 30 cm wavelength). Although and possibly microdunes (in repetitive imaging by Magellan did show changes in the appearance of the surface, these changes are attributed to radar artifacts as a consequence of look direction rather than to physical changes of the surface. Nonetheless, measurements of wind speeds near the surface of Venus and wind tunnel simulations suggest that aeolian processes could be currently active on Venus. Study of radar images of terrestrial analogs shows that radar wavelength, polarization, and viewing geometry, including look direction and incidence angle, all influence the detection of dunes, yardangs, and wind streaks. For best detection, dune crests and yardangs should be oriented perpendicular to look direction. Longer wavelength systems can penetrate sand sheets a meter or more thick, rendering them invisible, especially in arid regions. For wind streaks to be visible, there must be a contrast in surface properties between the streak and the background on which it occurs. Nonetheless, more than 6000 aeolian features have been found on Magellan images of Venus, the most common of which are various wind streaks. Mapping wind streak orientations enables near-surface wind patterns to be inferred for the time of their formation. Type P streaks are associated with parabolic ejecta crater deposits and are considered to have formed in association with the impact event. Most Type P streaks are oriented westward, indicative of the upper altitude superrotation winds of Venus. Non Type P streaks have occurrences and orientations consistent with Hadley circulation. Some streaks in the southern hemisphere are oriented to the northeast, suggesting a Coriolis effect.

  16. Aeolian sedimentary processes at the Bagnold Dunes, Mars: Implications for modern dune dynamics and sedimentary structures in the aeolian stratigraphic record of Mars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ewing, Ryan C.; Bridges, Nathan T.; Sullivan, Rob; Lapotre, Mathieu G. A.; Fischer, Woodward W.; Lamb, Mike P.; Rubin, David M.; Lewis, Kevin W.; Gupta, Sanjeev

    2016-04-01

    Wind-blown sand dunes are ubiquitous on the surface of Mars and are a recognized component of the martian stratigraphic record. Our current knowledge of the aeolian sedimentary processes that determine dune morphology, drive dune dynamics, and create aeolian cross-stratification are based upon orbital studies of ripple and dune morphodynamics, rover observations of stratification on Mars, Earth analogs, and experimental and theoretical studies of sand movement under Martian conditions. In-situ observations of sand dunes (informally called the Bagnold Dunes) by Curiosity Rover in Gale Crater, Mars provide the first opportunity to make observations of dunes from the grain-to-dune scale thereby filling the gap in knowledge between theory and orbital observations and refining our understanding of the martian aeolian stratigraphic record. We use the suite of cameras on Curiosity, including Navigation Camera (Navcam), Mast Camera (Mastcam) and Mars Hand Lens Imager (MAHLI), to make observations of the Bagnold Dunes. Measurements of sedimentary structures are made where stereo images are available. Observations indicate that structures generated by gravity-driven processes on the dune lee slopes, such as grainflow and grainfall, are similar to the suite of aeolian sedimentary structures observed on Earth and should be present and recognizable in Mars' aeolian stratigraphic record. Structures formed by traction-driven processes deviate significantly from those found on Earth. The dune hosts centimeter-scale wind ripples and large, meter-scale ripples, which are not found on Earth. The large ripples migrate across the depositional, lee slopes of the dune, which implies that these structures should be present in Mars' stratigraphic record and may appear similar to compound-dune stratification.The Mars Science Laboratory Curiosity Rover Team is acknowledged for their support of this work.

  17. Characterizing the instability of aeolian environments using analytical reasoning

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Houser, C.; Bishop, M. P.; Dobreva, I. D.; Barrineau, C. P.; Weymer, B. A.

    2013-12-01

    Characterization of aeolian systems is complicated by rapidly changing surface-process regimes, spatio-temporal scale dependencies, and subjective interpretation of imagery and spatial data. Stability and instability of the South Texas sand sheet is addressed using an artificial intelligence approach that integrates spatial information and analytical reasoning. Specifically, the purpose of this study is to determine if landscape evolutionary sequences could be mapped and characterized based on simple conceptual relationships amongst biophysical variables including topography, vegetation, surface moisture, wind speed, and surface erosion and deposition. A digital elevation model was derived from airborne LiDAR data and combined with moisture and vegetation indices computed using Spectral feature extraction from Landsat Thematic Mapper data. Our analysis reveals unique scale dependent spatial patterns and the use of fuzzy cognitive maps provides an analytical reasoning approach to address the complexity of aeolian environments in response to changes in climate forcing. The application to other Holocene aeolian deposits and the potential for this approach to model landscape evolution are also discussed.

  18. Tar sand occurrences in the Bush Butte Quadrangle, Wyoming, with emphasis on the Trapper Canyon Deposit

    SciTech Connect

    VerPloeg, A.J.; DeBruin, R.H.

    1983-01-01

    The Trapper Canyon Tar Sand Deposit is located in the eastern Bighorn Basin, approximately 25 miles east of Greybull, Wyoming. This project not only involved detailed geologic mapping of the Trapper Canyon Tar Sand Deposit, but also sampling and describing the tar zone as well as the bounding barren zones. Samples were analyzed for porosity, permeability, oil saturation, and characteristics of the oil. Thin sections from both the tar zone and barren zones were made and examined to determine textural characteristics and kinds of pore-filling cements. In addition, samples were analyzed using the scanning electron microscope to gain insight into the diagenesis of the reservoir rock and trapping mechanisms. The Trapper Canyon Tar Sand Deposit was investigated because it was considered potentially commercial, and the results of the study could aid in forming an economical plan of development for this deposit and similar deposits elsewhere in the State. Also, the area provided an excellent opportunity to examine surface exposures of a tar sand deposit. The final phase of the study involved mapping the Bush Butte quadrangle and looking for additional tar sand deposits in the quadrangle. The search for additional deposits was carried out based on a model developed by examination of the Trapper Canyon Deposit. 16 references, 14 figures, 3 tables.

  19. Statistical analysis of sand and gravel aggregate deposits of late Pleistocene Lake Bonneville, Utah

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Bliss, James D.; Bolm, K.S.

    2001-01-01

    Sedimentary deposits of pluvial Lake Bonneville are an important source of sand and gravel suitable for aggregate and construction in Utah. Data on Lake Bonneville basin sand and gravel deposit thickness, volume, grain size, percent of fines, and durability were statistically analyzed to detect variations associated with geologic domains, geographic location, Lake Bonneville shorelines, and sand and gravel deposit type, and to construct quantitative deposit models. Analysis showed several trends; (1) sand and gravel in younger shorelines was slightly more durable and the deposits considerably larger in volume, (2) younger shorelines are also more likely to contain more than one genetic deposit type, (3) the volume of terrace deposits is larger than beach deposits, (4) terraces and beaches are generally thicker than spits and bars, (5) the northern part of the Bonneville Basin contains slightly more durable sand and gravel than the southern part of the basin and is more likely to contain deposits composed of more than one genetic deposit type, and (6) the Wasatch domain deposits are composed of more than one genetic deposit type more often than deposits of the Basin and Range domain. Three additional conclusions with immediate economic significance are; (1) the median sand and gravel deposit in the Wasatch domain, 360,000 m3 (275,000 yd3), is three times larger than that of the Basin and Range domain (120,000 m3 [90,000 yd3]), (2) the median deposit thickness in the Wasatch domain, 5.8 m (19.0 ft), is nearly twice that of the Basin and Range domain (3 m [10 ft]), and (3) the Wasatch domain also contains slightly larger diameter gravel. These three conclusions are significant because the trend for sand and gravel development in the Bonneville Basin is to move from the Wasatch domain to the Basin and Range domain. Smaller, thinner deposits with smaller diameter gravel will require more surface area to mine than would have been necessary in the Wasatch domain. The

  20. Aeolian features and processes at the Mars Pathfinder landing site

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Greeley, Ronald; Kraft, Michael; Sullivan, Robert; Wilson, Gregory; Bridges, Nathan; Herkenhoff, Ken; Kuzmin, Ruslan O.; Malin, Michael; Ward, Wes

    1999-01-01

    The Mars Pathfinder landing site contains abundant features attributed to aeolian, or wind, processes. These include wind tails, drift deposits, duneforms of various types, ripplelike features, and ventifacts (the first clearly seen on Mars). Many of these features are consistant with formation involving sand-size particles. Although some features, such as dunes, could develop from saltating sand-size aggregates of finer grains, the discovery of ventifact flutes cut in rocks strongly suggests that at least some of the grains are crystalline, rather than aggregates. Excluding the ventifacts, the orientations of the wind-related features correlate well with the orientations of bright wind steaks seen on Viking Orbiter images in the general area. They also correlate with wind direction predictions from the NASA-Ames General Circulation Model (GCM) which show that the strongest winds in the area occur in the northern hemisphere winter and are directed toward 209°. Copyright 1999 by the American Geophysical Union.

  1. Influence of Perfluorooctanoic Acid on the Transport and Deposition Behaviors of Bacteria in Quartz Sand.

    PubMed

    Wu, Dan; Tong, Meiping; Kim, Hyunjung

    2016-03-01

    The significance of perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) on the transport and deposition behaviors of bacteria (Gram-negative Escherichia coli and Gram-positive Bacillus subtilis) in quartz sand is examined in both NaCl and CaCl2 solutions at pH 5.6 by comparing both breakthrough curves and retained profiles with PFOA in solutions versus those without PFOA. All test conditions are found to be highly unfavorable for cell deposition regardless of the presence of PFOA; however, 7%-46% cell deposition is observed depending on the conditions. The cell deposition may be attributed to micro- or nanoscale roughness and/or to chemical heterogeneity of the sand surface. The results show that, under all examined conditions, PFOA in suspensions increases cell transport and decreases cell deposition in porous media regardless of cell type, presence or absence of extracellular polymeric substances, ionic strength, and ion valence. We find that the additional repulsion between bacteria and quartz sand caused by both acid-base interaction and steric repulsion as well as the competition for deposition sites on quartz sand surfaces by PFOA are responsible for the enhanced transport and decreased deposition of bacteria with PFOA in solutions. PMID:26866280

  2. Deposition and transport of functionalized carbon nanotubes in water-saturated sand columns.

    PubMed

    Tian, Yuan; Gao, Bin; Wang, Yu; Morales, Verónica L; Carpena, Rafael Muñoz; Huang, Qingguo; Yang, Liuyan

    2012-04-30

    Knowledge of the fate and transport of functionalized carbon nanotubes (CNTs) in porous media is crucial to understand their environmental impacts. In this study, laboratory column and modeling experiments were conducted to mechanistically compare the retention and transport of two types of functionalized CNTs (i.e., single-walled nanotubes and multi-walled nanotubes) in acid-cleaned, baked, and natural sand under unfavorable conditions. The CNTs were highly mobile in the acid-cleaned sand columns but showed little transport in the both natural and baked sand columns. In addition, the retention of the CNTs in the both baked and natural sand was strong and almost irreversible even after reverse, high-velocity, or surfactant flow flushing. Both experimental and modeling results showed that pH is one of the factors dominating CNT retention and transport in natural and baked sand. Retention of the functionalized CNTs in the natural and baked sand columns reduced dramatically when the system pH increased. Our results suggest that the retention and transport of the functionalized CNTs in natural sand porous media were mainly controlled by strong surface deposition through the electrostatic and/or hydrogen-bonding attractions between surface function groups of the CNTs and metal oxyhydroxide impurities on the sand surfaces. PMID:22361629

  3. Heterotrophic Potentials and Hydrocarbon Biodegradation Potentials of Sediment Microorganisms Within the Athabasca Oil Sands Deposit

    PubMed Central

    Wyndham, R. C.; Costerton, J. W.

    1981-01-01

    Techniques for the enumeration and the determination of the potential activity of disturbed sediment mixed populations at control sites and sites within the Athabasca oil sands formation were applied to August and December samples. These techniques included the determination of general heterotrophic potential for the assimilation and respiration of glutamate, which indicated no oil sand-related changes in the sediments but which indicated a significant seasonal change. Enumeration by epifluorescence direct counts, oil sand hydrocarbon plate counts, and most-probable-number determinations of [14C]hexadecane and [14C]-naphthalene degraders indicated that only the plate count was sensitive to increased numbers of oil sand-related hydrocarbon-oxidizing microorganisms within the oil sands deposit. Unlike the most probable number determinations of [14C]hexadecane and [14C]naphthalene degraders, however, the biodegradation potential results of these substrates indicated a significant increase in activity at oil sands sites. These biodegradation potentials also showed a marked seasonal fluctuation. Although the biodegradation potentials and the endogenous hydrocarbon plate counts indicated an oil sand-adapted mixed sediment population, the results of these techniques did not correlate well with the concentrations of bituminous hydrocarbons in the sediments. The results suggest that a general capability for hydrocarbon oxidation exists in the Athabasca River system and that this capability is enhanced within the natural bounds of the Athabasca oil sands. Images PMID:16345737

  4. Introducing a New International Society of Aeolian Research

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zobeck, T. M.; Lee, J.; Lancaster, N.; Bullard, J. E.

    2008-12-01

    Aeolian research is a long-standing and rapidly growing area of geological study where scientists of many disciplines meet to investigate the effects of wind on the surface of the Earth and other planetary bodies such as Mars and Titan. Fields of study in aeolian research cover a broad spectrum ranging from developing a basic scientific understanding of the fundamental physical processes of grain motion to the effects of soil erosion on landscape health and environmental sustainability. Aeolian research also includes studies of the effects of aeolian particles on global climate, air quality, and human health, coastal sand transport processes, land degradation, dune migration, the formation of sand seas, and much more. A growing number of international conferences have been organized to focus specifically on aeolian phenomena and a vast number of scholarly publications have been produced to support the science. One popular bibliography includes over 30,000 citations and hundreds of peer-reviewed papers are published each year. Until very recently, no scientific society specifically dealing with aeolian research has been available. The new International Society of Aeolian Research (ISAR) that has been organized to bring together aeolian scientists from around the world. The new society was created to promote contacts among researchers in aeolian processes and related subjects for discussion and comparison of research, to initiate conferences (such as the International Conference on Aeolian Research), to organize excursions, and support the publication of a peer-reviewed scientific journal. The International Society of Aeolian Research sponsors the new Elsevier journal Aeolian Research in support of these activities. This paper will provide further details about the new society and the journal. Please see www.aeolianresearch.org for details.

  5. Paleoclimatic implications of late Pleistocene and Holocene aeolian sediments in lake catchments on the northeastern part of the Tibetan Plateau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lehmkuhl, F.; Stauch, G.; IJmker, J.; Poetsch, S.; Hilgers, A.; Hui, Z.; Diekmann, B.; Hartmann, K.; Wuennemann, B.

    2011-12-01

    On the northeastern part of the Tibetan Plateau aeolian sediments, such as loess, loess-like sediments, dunes and sand sheets, have been investigated. Such archives provide additional information for paleoclimate and environmental change in the catchments of lakes. We present a detailed analysis of aeolian sediments from the Donggi Cona catchment and a loess section from the Aynemachin Mts. on the north-eastern part of the Tibetan Plateau. In the Donggi Cona catchment long and short distance transport leads to a complex pattern in the aeolian sediments. Based on the largest dataset of luminescence dating (n = 51) from a single catchment so far different periods of enhanced sediment transport have been discriminated. Enhanced aeolian deposition in this environment in elevations of more than 4000m a.s.l. started in the early Holocene with the accumulation of sands from around 12 to 7.5ka. Loess have been preserved from a period from 10.5 to 7.5ka. However, further to the east on the southern slopes of the Aynemachin Mts. the sedimentation period of loess lasted longer and was interrupted by two paleosols around 10-9 and 5 ka. Both archives, sand and loess, are related to the strengthening of the East-Asian summer monsoon with wetter and warmer climate conditions. This climate leads to the trapping of aeolian sediments, in the moisture region of the Aynemachin including the development of initial paleosols. In addition, in some parts of the Donggi Cona catchment the enhanced summer monsoon from around 10 ka onwards lead to fluvial erosion of the aeolian archives and the formation of colluvial sediments until 6 ka. A reactivation of dune sands from 3 ka to the present can be associated to dryer and cooler climate conditions in combination with an enhanced human impact on the landscape. Aeolian sediments on the Tibetan Plateau therefore indicate two different climatic modes. During the early Holocene wetter conditions were favourable to retain aeolian sediments while

  6. Deflated rims along the Xiangshui River on the Xiliaohe Plain, Northeast China: A case of active fluvial-aeolian interactions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Han, Guang; Zhang, Guifang; You, Li; Wang, Yong; Yang, Lin; Yang, Ji; Zhou, Liang; Yuan, Minghuan; Zou, Xueyong; Cheng, Hong

    2016-03-01

    Riverine source-bordering sand dunes, as a result of active fluvial-aeolian interactions, are a pronounced feature on the semiarid Xiliaohe Plain, Northeast China. By means of satellite imagery analysis, and both field survey and observation, this paper presents a new type of riverine source-bordering sand dunes - deflated rims, on the downwind margins of the Xiangshui River. They largely result from the deflation of escarpments on the downwind side of valley by local prevailing winds of NW direction, not from the reworking of point bars on floodplain by wind. In general, a rim is primarily composed of three distinct zones: 1) the upwind frontal escarpment zone with variable plan-form shape, gradient and relief, which is formed by either active lateral erosion by river or significant erosion by wind and transient slope runoff; 2) the deflation zone with gentle slopes of 8-18° and small-scale aeolian bedforms, i.e. ripples of fine sand, ridges of coarse sand; and 3) the downwind dynamic deposition zone with distinctive bedforms with variable superficial texture and slip faces. The sand mass on rims derives overwhelmingly from underlying loose late Quaternary sediments, is sufficient and sustainable by successive retreats of the escarpment, and is gradually transported downwind by pulse motions of bedforms, coupled with high wind events. Essentially, deflated rims are a starting point and the incipient phase of mature riverine dunefields. The superimposed bedforms on rims are fundamentally governed by windflow dynamics, sand sediments and antecedent bedform, exhibiting in turn the manner and intensity of rim development. Consequently, the upwind river valley and downwind deflated rim can jointly stimulate marked wave-like motion of both windflow and aeolian bedforms at different scales, especially when high wind events occur. This study sheds some light on the understanding of the origin and development of riverine source-bordering dunefields, and offers new

  7. Semiarid landscapes response to Aeolian processes during Holocene in Baikal Region

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dan'ko, Lidia; Opekunova, Marina

    2010-05-01

    Arid and semiarid landscapes play a significant role in global climate, biogeochemical, and hydrological processes. Regional analysis of the past aeolian processes is essential for improve our understanding of how various landscape and ecosystems responded to climate change in the past. Our investigation presents details on sand dunes and on loess-like sediments. The study areas are situated in the northern part of Baikal Region (Eastern Siberia). In its depressions, the so-called Barguzinskaya and Tunkinskaya Valley surrounded mountain ranges local dunefieds and loess-like sediments have developed. Present climate in the study areas is continental, characterized by low precipitation(mean annual 250-450 mm) and wide annual range of temperature. Field investigations indicate that the Holocene deposits of the Barguzinskaya and Tunkinskaya Valley are sealed the pedo-sedimentary interface. The analytical results suggest that one's represents a changeover from intensified soil formation to accelerated aeolian dust accumulation. The original content of calcium carbonate and gypsum at the base of some sections of loess-like sediments indicates the aeolian origin of these sediments. In whole, the soil horizons are a proof for humid phases. The change was forced by climatic aridity. Absolute dating of the organogenic components of soils (14C) indicate the age positions of the arid and humid climate phases. Our results indicate not only 1-4 long-time episodes of aeolian dust accumulation during the Holocene, but shot-time aeolian accumulation episodes, that were specific for Late Holocene. For example, in the Tunkinskaya Valley the Late Holocene soil formation replaced by aeolian deposit at 1700 - 1900, 800 and 200-250 years ago, in the Barguzinskaya Valley - about 3100 - 2900, 2300 and 600 years ago. It can be concluded that a periodical formation of the aeolian deposits in the semiarid landscapes during Holocene can be postulated. Aeolian and loess-like sediments of the

  8. Deposition of carbonate mud beds within high-energy subtidal sand Dunes, Bahamas

    SciTech Connect

    Dill, R.F.; Steinen, R.P.

    1988-01-01

    Laminated, carbonate mud beds are being deposited in the interisland channels of the Exuma Cays in the Bahamas. They are associated with stromatolites and interbedded with ooid sands that form large migrating subtidal dunes on flood tidal deltas and bars. Currents up to 3 knots sweep in and out of the 4-8 m deep channels 3 hours out of every 6 hours, creating a high-energy bank margin environment not usually considered to be the site of mud-sized particle deposition. Mud deposits reach thicknesses of 1 m and have individual beds 2-5 cm thick. When exposed to flowing seawater, bed surfaces become encrusted with carbonate cement and algal mats. The white interior of mud beds between the crusts appears homogeneous, is soft, and has the consistency of ''tooth paste.'' Loose uncemented ooid sand is found above and below the mud beds, showing that both are occupying the same depositional environment. Rip-up clasts of the crusted mud beds, formed by scour of underlying sands, are carried throughout the channels and accumulate as a lag deposit within the troughs of migrating dunes. Some clasts are colonized by algal mats that trap ooid and skeletal sands forming stromatolite structures that can grow up to 2 m high.

  9. Reconciling historical and contemporary evidence of aeolian-based, gully annealing processes in Glen, Marble, and Grand Canyon, USA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sankey, J. B.; Draut, A. E.

    2013-12-01

    In the absence of large Colorado River floods in Glen, Marble, and Grand Canyons since the completion of Glen Canyon Dam, the geomorphic process most able to counteract the effects of gully incision on terraces and slopes above the contemporary active Colorado River channel is aeolian sand transport that can partially or entirely fill (anneal) small gullies. Whereas gully-formation processes have been much studied, relatively little is known about processes of gully annealing. Aeolian-based annealing has been observed in several instances in the modern Colorado River corridor operating on time scales of months. However, individual, short-term occurrences of aeolian deposition that counteract gully erosion have not yet been expanded into a landscape-scale evaluation of the prevalence of gully-annealing processes over longer time scales (years-decades) along the post-dam corridor. The extent that aeolian or other annealing processes might slow, or temporarily reverse, gully incision and erosion is important in this system because of the propensity for erosion damage to locations of cultural significance that are extensive on terraces and slopes above the contemporary active Colorado River channel. Moreover, the reduction of mainstem fluvial sediment inputs to the system since completion of Glen Canyon Dam might impact the potential of aeolian redistribution of Colorado River-derived sediment as an effective gully annealing mechanism on upper slopes and terraces. We present an investigation of the extent that observations of (i) historical annealing and (ii) contemporary annealing potential, reconcile with (iii) literature and/or model-based estimates of relative rates of gully formation and aeolian deposition in this system. The central question of this work is whether these complimentary lines of evidence support aeolian infilling as a viable mechanism for annealing gullies in Glen, Marble, and Grand Canyons, and analogous systems. We examine the evidence for

  10. Discovery of laterally extensive drape of siliciclastic silt in the Northern Calcareous Alps, Austria: Late-glacial to ?early Holocene aeolian deposition.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gild, Charlotte; Geitner, Clemens; Haas, Jean Nicolas; Sanders, Diethard

    2016-04-01

    Field surveys in the Northern Calcareous Alps (NCA, a nappe stack of Triassic carbonate rocks) revealed a drape, or drapes, typically 20-40 cm in thickness of siliciclastic silt over extensive landscape areas, from valley floors to LGM (Last Glacial Maximum) nunataks. The drape veneers substrates ranging from country rocks to diverse post-LGM deposits - the latter with depositional and/or erosional topographies. The drape mostly is overlain by vegetated organic material and, in turn, tops inactive/abandoned post-LGM successions of fluvial (including kame terrace), alluvial fan, scree slope, LGM basal till, and rock-avalanche origin. The drape extends over kilometers at least (limit of field investigation in specific areas), up to LGM nunatak plateaus. Deposystems (e.g., scree slopes, alluvial fans) on carbonate-rocky terrain that remained active until the Holocene are not topped by the drape; a level of siliciclastic silt, however, was spotted within a few of these successions. The possibility that several levels of silt are intercalated within or top post-glacial deposits cannot be excluded at present; the large lateral extent and the stratigraphic position, however, suggest that at least most locations pertain to a single widespread level (with that reservation, we prefer to speak in singular of the drape). Over the inspected area (~ 90 x 20 km), the drape consists mainly of silt-sized grains of quartz, feldspars, micas, and amphiboles; at a few sites, calci- or dolosilt are admixed. Most of the grains are angular to subrounded, some grains show features of corrosion. Preliminary palynological analyses of this silt - seven locations from LGM nunataks to kame terrace and alluvial fans - suggest vegetation types that, together, may be assigned to palaeoclimates ranging from the late-glacial (Younger Dryas?) to the middle Holocene. A few of the pollen spectra appear to record sparse vegetation cover allowing for enhanced aeolian deposition, but other spectra (e

  11. The chemistry of Saudi Arabian sand: A deposition problem on helicopter turbine airfoils

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Smialek, James L.

    1991-01-01

    Recent operations in the Persian Gulf have exposed military helicopter turbines to excessive amounts of ingested sand. Fine particles, less than 10 microns, are able to bypass the particle separators and enter the cooling and combustion systems. The initial sand chemistry varies by location, but is made up of a calcium aluminum silicate glass, SiO2 low quartz (Ca,Mg) CO3 dolomite, CaCO3 calcite, and occasionally CaCl rocksalt. The sand reacts in the hot combustion gases and deposits onto the turbine vanes as CaSO4, glass, and various crystalline silicates. Deposits up to 0.25 in. thick have been collected. Although cooling hole plugging is a considerable problem, excessive corrosion is not commonly observed due to the high melting point of GaSO4.

  12. The Chemistry of Saudi Arabian Sand - A Deposition Problem on Helicopter Turbine Airfoils

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Smialek, James L.; Archer, Frances A.; Garlick, Ralph G.

    1992-01-01

    Operations in the Persian Gulf have exposed military helicopter turbines to excessive amounts of ingested sand. Fine particles, less than 10 microns, are able to bypass the particle separators and enter the cooling and combustion systems. The initial sand chemistry varies by location, but is made up of a calcium aluminum silicate glass, SiO2 low quartz, (Ca,Mg)CO3 dolomite, CaCO3 calcite, and occasionally NaCl rocksalt. The sand reacts in the hot combustion gases and deposits onto the turbine vanes as CaSO4, glass, and various crystalline silicates. Deposits up to 5 mm thick have been collected. Although cooling hole plugging is a considerable problem, excessive corrosion is not commonly observed due to the high melting point of CaSO4.

  13. The chemistry of Saudi Arabian sand - A deposition problem on helicopter turbine airfoils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smialek, James L.; Archer, Frances A.; Garlick, Ralph G.

    Operations in the Persian Gulf have exposed military helicopter turbines to excessive amounts of ingested sand. Fine particles, less than 10 microns, are able to bypass the particle separators and enter the cooling and combustion systems. The initial sand chemistry varies by location, but is made up of a calcium aluminum silicate glass, SiO2 low quartz, (Ca,Mg)CO3 dolomite, CaCO3 calcite, and occasionally NaCl rocksalt. The sand reacts in the hot combustion gases and deposits onto the turbine vanes as CaSO4, glass, and various crystalline silicates. Deposits up to 5 mm thick have been collected. Although cooling hole plugging is a considerable problem, excessive corrosion is not commonly observed due to the high melting point of CaSO4.

  14. Robotic Measurement of Aeolian Processes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Roberts, S.; Duperret, J. M.; Jerolmack, D. J.; Lancaster, N.; Nikolich, G.; Shipley, T. F.; Van Pelt, R. S.; Zobeck, T. M.; Koditschek, D. E.

    2015-12-01

    Local and regional measurements of sand transport and dust emission in complex natural settings presently lack spatiotemporal resolution adequate to inform models relevant for land management, climate policy, and the basic science of geomorphology. Deployments of wind, sand and dust sensors sophisticated enough to begin unpacking the complex relations among wind turbulence, surface roughness, sand flux and dust emission remain largely stationary. Aerial observations from satellites, planes and even UAVs help fill in, but none of these modalities offer the hope of "capturing the action" by being at the right place at the right time relative to the highly localized nature of sediment transport during wind storms. We have been developing a legged robot capable of rapidly traversing desert terrain, and are now adapting it to serve as a platform for scientific instrumentation. We aim to field a semi-autonomous, reactive mobile sensory package suited to the needs of aeolian science that can address the limitations of existing alternatives. This presentation reports on early trials in the Jornada LTER and White Sands National Monument aimed at gathering measurements of airflow and rates of sand transport on a dune face, assessing the role of roughness elements such as vegetation in modifying the wind shear stresses incident on the surface, and estimating erosion susceptibility in a natural arid soil. We will solicit ideas from the audience about other potentially interesting and viable measurement targets. Future close collaboration between aeolian, cognitive and robotics scientists such as we hope to promote through this presentation may yield machines with scientifically relevant sensory suites possessing sufficient autonomy to operate in-situ at the most intense episodes of wind and sediment movement under conditions far too uncomfortable and hazardous for human presence.

  15. 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

  16. Sands at Gusev Crater, Mars

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Cabrol, Nathalie A.; Herkenhoff, Kenneth E.; Knoll, Andrew H.; Farmer, Jack D.; Arvidson, Raymond E.; Grin, E.A.; Li, Ron; Fenton, Lori; Cohen, B.; Bell, J.F., III; Yingst, R. Aileen

    2014-01-01

    Processes, environments, and the energy associated with the transport and deposition of sand at Gusev Crater are characterized at the microscopic scale through the comparison of statistical moments for particle size and shape distributions. Bivariate and factor analyses define distinct textural groups at 51 sites along the traverse completed by the Spirit rover as it crossed the plains and went into the Columbia Hills. Fine-to-medium sand is ubiquitous in ripples and wind drifts. Most distributions show excess fine material, consistent with a predominance of wind erosion over the last 3.8 billion years. Negative skewness at West Valley is explained by the removal of fine sand during active erosion, or alternatively, by excess accumulation of coarse sand from a local source. The coarse to very coarse sand particles of ripple armors in the basaltic plains have a unique combination of size and shape. Their distribution display significant changes in their statistical moments within the ~400 m that separate the Columbia Memorial Station from Bonneville Crater. Results are consistent with aeolian and/or impact deposition, while the elongated and rounded shape of the grains forming the ripples, as well as their direction of origin, could point to Ma'adim Vallis as a possible source. For smaller particles on the traverse, our findings confirm that aeolian processes have dominated over impact and other processes to produce sands with the observed size and shape patterns across a spectrum of geologic (e.g., ripples and plains soils) and aerographic settings (e.g., wind shadows).

  17. Sands at Gusev Crater, Mars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cabrol, Nathalie A.; Herkenhoff, Kenneth; Knoll, Andrew H.; Farmer, Jack; Arvidson, Raymond; Grin, Edmond; Li, Ronxing; Fenton, Lori; Cohen, Barbara; Bell, James F.; Aileen Yingst, R.

    2014-05-01

    Processes, environments, and the energy associated with the transport and deposition of sand at Gusev Crater are characterized at the microscopic scale through the comparison of statistical moments for particle size and shape distributions. Bivariate and factor analyses define distinct textural groups at 51 sites along the traverse completed by the Spirit rover as it crossed the plains and went into the Columbia Hills. Fine-to-medium sand is ubiquitous in ripples and wind drifts. Most distributions show excess fine material, consistent with a predominance of wind erosion over the last 3.8 billion years. Negative skewness at West Valley is explained by the removal of fine sand during active erosion, or alternatively, by excess accumulation of coarse sand from a local source. The coarse to very coarse sand particles of ripple armors in the basaltic plains have a unique combination of size and shape. Their distribution display significant changes in their statistical moments within the ~400 m that separate the Columbia Memorial Station from Bonneville Crater. Results are consistent with aeolian and/or impact deposition, while the elongated and rounded shape of the grains forming the ripples, as well as their direction of origin, could point to Ma'adim Vallis as a possible source. For smaller particles on the traverse, our findings confirm that aeolian processes have dominated over impact and other processes to produce sands with the observed size and shape patterns across a spectrum of geologic (e.g., ripples and plains soils) and aerographic settings (e.g., wind shadows).

  18. Assessment of the sand and gravel resources of the Lower Boise River Valley area, Idaho: part one: geological framework of the sand and gravel deposits

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Bliss, James D.; Moyle, Phillip R.

    2001-01-01

    The USGS has undertaken a first order evaluation of sand & gravel resources in the Lower Boise River Valley in response to rapid urban expansion in the Boise-Nampa-Caldwell corridor in southwest Idaho. The study is intended to provide land-use planners and managers, particularly in the Bureau of Land Management, with a foundation of knowledge that will allow them to anticipate and plan for demand for and development of sand and gravel resources on public lands in response to the urban growth. Attributes under study include: regional geology of both alluvial source areas as well as deposits; fluvial processes that led to deposition of the sand and gravel deposits; spatial distribution of the deposits; quantity and quality of materials in the deposits; and the suitability of the deposits for a range of applications. The study will also examine and attempt to model the association between fluvial processes, deposit characteristics, and physical specifications for various applications of sand and gravel. The results will be presented in a series of sand and gravel assessment reports of which this is the first.

  19. Validation of OSL and 14C dating of initial soils in Late-Holocene polycyclic drift-sand deposits (Weerterbergen, S.E. Netherlands)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    van Mourik, J. M.; Schilder, M. L. M.; Wallinga, J.

    2009-04-01

    Late glacial aeolian coversand dominates the surface geology of the eastern part of the province Noord-Brabant (Netherlands). During prehistoric and early historic time, forest grazing, wood cutting and shifting cultivation gradually transformed natural forest into heath land. Subsequently the use of the heath for the production of organic manure during the period of plaggen agriculture (from early Middle Ages to the invention of chemical fertilizers around 1900 AD) resulted in the comeback of sand drifting and locally the coversand landscape transformed into a driftsand landscape with characteristic new landforms and soils. Polycyclic driftsand deposits are paleoecological records of alternating instable (sand drifting) and stable (soil formation) phases in landscape development. Interpretation of paleoecological information, derived from these records, requires accurate knowledge of the geochronology. Traditionally radiocarbon dating was applied on SOM (soil organic matter), extracted from humic AE horizons of buried initial soils (micropodzols), developed in driftsand beds. In polycyclic driftsand sequences, micropozols indicate a stable period in landscape development. One of the research questions in driftsand landscapes was related to the distribution and age of micropodzols: Are they the result of just local or more regional events in landscape evolution? The calibrated 14C ages of seven selected of extracted humic acids of micropozols range from 340 - 1950 AD. Based on these results, the alternation of instable and stable periods in landscape development seems to be controlled by local events. But to understand the development of polycyclic sequences, we need more information than just the 14C ages of micropodzols. Every cycle of a polycyclic sequence reflects a period of landscape instability (deposition) and landscape stability (soil development). A 14C based chronological framework does not allow the indicate the available time for deposition and for

  20. Initial insights into the age and origin of the Kubuqi sand sea of northern China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Xiaoping; Forman, Steven; Hu, Fangen; Zhang, Deguo; Liu, Ziting; Li, Hongwei

    2016-04-01

    The Kubuqi Desert is the only active sand sea in the semiarid regions of northern China and occurs along the southern margin of the Yellow River. Little is known about the age and origin of this large (17,000 km2) sand sea with a present annual precipitation of 200-480 mm. Sand drift potentials indicated net capable winds for aeolian transport are from the northwest, though winds are stronger to north beyond the dune field than within the sand sea. Geomorphic and stratigraphic observations indicate that Holocene aeolian sand often drapes over bedrock and river terraces as a palimpsest landscape. Field investigations identified four stratigraphic sections with multiple aeolian sand units and palaeosols, with age control by optically stimulated luminescence (OSL) dating of quartz grains. Palaeosols are weakly developed, mostly accumulative A horizon with organic carbon content < 1% and reflect sand sheet deposition possibly in a steppe environment. Although sediments near river channels or former lakes might give old ages, the initial formation and age of the Kubuqi sand sea should be judged from the occurrence of the sandy palimpsest of the landscape that is OSL dated to the Holocene in general. The latest period of aeolian reactivation may be related to human activity associated with grazing and farming from lost cities in the Kubuqi Desert during the Han (206 B.C. - A.D. 220) and the Tang (A.D. 608 - 907) Dynasties. Also, variable discharge of the Yellow River with local diversions for irrigation and throughout the catchment resulted in possibly an increased supply of aeolian particles for dune field expansion in the past 2 ka.

  1. Hydrodynamic implications of textural trends in sand deposits of the 2004 tsunami in Sri Lanka

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Morton, R.A.; Goff, J.R.; Nichol, S.L.

    2008-01-01

    Field observations and sediment samples at a coastal-plain setting in southeastern Sri Lanka were used to document the erosional and depositional impacts of the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami and to interpret the hydrodynamic processes that produced an extensive sand-sheet deposit. Tsunami deposit thicknesses ranged from 6 to 22??cm with thickness being controlled partly by antecedent topography. The deposit was composed of coarse to medium sand organized into plane-parallel laminae and a few laminasets. Vertical textural trends showed an overall but non-systematic upward fining and upward thinning of depositional units with an upward increase in heavy-mineral laminations at some locations. Repeated patterns in the vertical textural trends (upward fining, upward coarsening, uniform) were used to subdivide and correlate the deposit into five hydro-textural stratigraphic units. The depositional units were linked to hydrodynamic processes and upcurrent conditions, such as rates of sediment supply and composition of the sediment sources. Vertical changes in grain-size distributions recorded the depositional phases associated with flow acceleration, initial unsteady pulsating flow, relatively stable and uniform flow, flow deceleration, slack water, and return flow or flow redirection. Study results suggest that vertical textural trends from multiple cross-shore sections can be used to interpret complex tsunami flow histories, but at the location examined, interpretation of the lateral textural trends did not provide a basis for identifying the correct sediment transport pathways because flow near the landward boundary was multidirectional.

  2. Mid to late Holocene aeolian activity revealed by a multiproxy peat record in continental CE Europe (Northern Romania)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Panait, Andrei Marian; Feurdean, Angelica; Hutchinson, Simon Mark; Tanţǎu, Ioan

    2016-04-01

    Peat bogs, and especially ombrogenous mire, are increasingly used as continental archives of aeolian dust and sand deposition. Since ombrogenous peat is formed above ground water level all the inputs are atmospheric. Dust is more influenced by regional climatic patterns due to its small size, whereas sand tends to record local patterns in storm frequency and intensity reflecting its larger particle size. However, both size fractions are significantly underused proxies of past climate variability. Here, an ombrogenous peat profile from Tǎul Muced in the Rodnei Mountains (Northern Romanian Carpathians), located in a temperate continental climate, with Atlantic and Baltic influences, provides the very first record of mid to late Holocene aeolian activity from Romania highlighting the interplay between local and regional controls in a continental area of CE Europe. We use a multiproxy approach combining radiocarbon dating, the physical properties of the peat (loss-on-ignition, bulk density), mineral magnetic measurements (ARM, SIRM), geochemical (Ti and Zr) and particle size analysis (via both laser diffraction and the manual counting of sand particles under a steromicroscope) to determine changes in: i) atmospheric dust deposition and ii) wind velocities during the last 7800 years. We found that the aeolian particles are mainly silt (3.9-63 μm) (dust) and sand (63-1200 μm). The mineralogical composition of the aeolian sediment in peat is mainly quartz, more rarely calcite and very rarely other minerals such as feldspar, sulphur, mica (biotite and muscovite), magnetite and other melanocrate minerals. The roundness of the sand particles varies from well-rounded to sub-angular and angular, and suggests that the sand particles have different source areas. Results from this study show that over the last 7600 years the pattern of wind frequency changed several times: there are periods characterised by a low aeolian input around 6950-6550, 5000-3900, 3500-2900, 1650

  3. Aeolian sediment transport and landforms in managed coastal systems: A review

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jackson, Nancy L.; Nordstrom, Karl F.

    2011-11-01

    Humans modify beaches and dunes and aeolian transport potential by building structures, walking or driving, extracting resources, accommodating recreation, increasing levels of protection, removing storm deposits, or restoring landforms and habitats. The effects of human adjustments are reviewed here in terms of cross-shore zones because humans tend to compartmentalize landforms and habitats through their actions and regulations. Common human modifications in the beach zone include nourishing beaches, constructing shore protection structures and raking to remove litter. Modifications affecting the dune zone include altering the location, size and stability of dunes using sand-trapping fences, vegetation plantings and bulldozers or replacing dunes with shore-parallel structures. Modifications affecting the landward zone include buildings, roads, and parking lots. Landform and habitat resilience requires levels of dynamism and geomorphic complexity not often found in managed systems. Preserving or enhancing dynamism and complexity requires emphasis on innovative designs rooted in geomorphological and aeolian research. Future studies are suggested for: (1) quantifying the effect of small and large scale beach nourishment designs and sediment characteristics on dune initiation, development, and evolution; (2) quantifying the extent to which size and spacing of human structures and landform alterations inhibit sediment transfers alongshore or onshore; (3) identifying the advantages or disadvantages of "niche" dunes formed by structures; (4) providing quantitative data on the effects of raking or driving on the beach; (5) identifying the role of aeolian landforms on private properties; and (6) identifying alternative ways of employing sand fences and vegetation plantings to increase topographic and habitat diversity.

  4. Modelling the aeolian transport of ammonia emitted from poultry farms and its deposition to a coastal waterbody

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wiegand, Aaron N.; Menzel, Sarah; King, Rob; Tindale, Neil

    2011-10-01

    In response to the absence of monitoring data, the Air Pollution Model (TAPM), a 3D prognostic model that predicts both meteorology and air pollution concentrations, was used to investigate the transport of ammonia across part of the Sunshine Coast region (South East Queensland, Australia), following its emission to the atmosphere from 41 poultry farms (egg and broiler) in the district, which cumulatively house approximately 9.8 million fowl. The study estimated the total amount of ammonia that is deposited directly into the Pumicestone Passage waterbody (63 km2) and onto the surrounding catchment (1184 km2), through both wet and dry deposition processes over a twelve-month period. The results indicate that wet deposition is the dominant deposition process into the waterbody (89%) and catchment area (94%). Most of the ammonia deposition is predicted to occur within a relatively short distance from the farms, due to higher concentrations at these locations. In the base case simulation, the estimated 1823 tonnes of annual ammonia emissions were predicted to result in the direct deposition of approximately 2.3 tonnes of ammonia into the Pumicestone Passage waterbody and approximately 53.5 tonnes onto the Pumicestone Passage catchment land surface, where there was potential for its subsequent run-off into the waterbody. This annual loading into the waterbody is not insignificant and is likely to contribute to the formation of algal blooms. The fate of the remaining 91% of the ammonia estimated to be emitted from the farms was not accounted for in the deposition totals. This ammonia most likely remains suspended in the atmosphere and is transported outside of the simulation study area.

  5. Heavy and tar sand oil deposits of Europe

    SciTech Connect

    Cornelius, C.D.

    1984-09-01

    Several hundred heavy and extra-heavy oil and natural bitumen occurrences from 26 European countries (including European Turkey and the western borderlands of the USSR) were compiled. The definitions used for heavy crude oils and natural bitumens, as proposed by or prepared with the UNITAR/UNDP information center, were applied. Information on stratigraphy, lithology, and depth as well as on gravity, viscosity, and gas and water content, is given. Deposits are characteristically distributed along the flanks of the basins or within the separating uplifts. Nevertheless, they are found from the surface down to depths of 3000 m (9800 ft). Up to now, big accumulations have been exploited in Albania and Sicily, but they have been discovered also in the British North Sea, France, Spain, and West Germany. In carbonates, they were mostly encountered in fractures of synsedimentary or tectonic origin. The accumulations are the result of either intrusion of immature heavy oil from a source rock or of the immigration of mature oil, which was biodegraded afterward. In many cases, there have been at least two separate migration/accumulation events. In some cases paleoseepages did supply a source rock with asphaltic material or became an effective seal of a later hydrocarbon accumulation.

  6. Aeolian processes and the bioshpere: Interactions and feedback loops

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Aeolian processes affect landform evolution, biogeochemical cycles, regional climate, human health, and desertification. The entrainment, transport and deposition of aeolian sediments are recognized as major drivers in the dynamics of the earth system and there is a growing interest in the scientif...

  7. Downslope coarsening in aeolian grainflows of the Navajo Sandstone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Loope, David B.; Elder, James F.; Sweeney, Mark R.

    2012-07-01

    Downslope coarsening in grainflows has been observed on present-day dunes and generated in labs, but few previous studies have examined vertical sorting in ancient aeolian grainflows. We studied the grainflow strata of the Jurassic Navajo Sandstone in the southern Utah portion of its outcrop belt from Zion National Park (west) to Coyote Buttes and The Dive (east). At each study site, thick sets of grainflow-dominated cross-strata that were deposited by large transverse dunes comprise the bulk of the Navajo Sandstone. We studied three stratigraphic columns, one per site, composed almost exclusively of aeolian cross-strata. For each column, samples were obtained from one grainflow stratum in each consecutive set of the column, for a total of 139 samples from thirty-two sets of cross-strata. To investigate grading perpendicular to bedding within individual grainflows, we collected fourteen samples from four superimposed grainflow strata at The Dive. Samples were analyzed with a Malvern Mastersizer 2000 laser diffraction particle analyser. The median grain size of grainflow samples ranges from fine sand (164 μm) to coarse sand (617 μm). Using Folk and Ward criteria, samples are well-sorted to moderately-well-sorted. All but one of the twenty-eight sets showed at least slight downslope coarsening, but in general, downslope coarsening was not as well-developed or as consistent as that reported in laboratory subaqueous grainflows. Because coarse sand should be quickly sequestered within preserved cross-strata when bedforms climb, grain-size studies may help to test hypotheses for the stacking of sets of cross-strata.

  8. Model for sand hills development: Geometry, sediment supply and deposition, river systems and climatic implications

    SciTech Connect

    Pederson, D.T.; Wayne, W.J. . Geology Dept.); Davis, R.K. . Dept. of Earth Science)

    1992-01-01

    A model of sand hills development was formulated using processes occurring along the Dismal, Middle Loup and Platte rivers. A widespread alluvial fan blanketed by loess and sand dunes with interspersed lacustrine deposits is the product. The great arc of the sediment-supplying river indicates direction of wind transport. The key is a Platte-like river with flows near threshold capacity for transport of sediment from the river's source through the area during wetter climatic periods. During dryer periods stream channels fill with sediment pulses transported from mountain headwaters during snowmelt flood flows. The flood flows cause vertical reworking and sorting of the sediment. With waning flood flows many stream channels dry up leaving sediments vulnerable to wind erosion and transpore. With time stream channels become blocked by aggradation of sediment and dune formation diverting snowmelt floods to new paths in the forming dune field or around the margin of the new dune field. This process continues until increased flows with wetter comates are once again able to transport sediment through the area and erode a new river valley. Rivers rising in sand hills are groundwater fed, uniform in flow, and change only in response to climatic changes. They do not have the energy to rework the extensive gravel deposits of the Platte-like rivers and their net effect is to rework sediment above the coarser alluvium and transport the finer sediment out of the sand hills.

  9. Alteration of the Hydraulic and Seismic Properties of a Fracture by Mineral Precipitation and Sand Deposition

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Acosta-Colon, A. A.; Pyrak-Nolte, L. J.

    2006-12-01

    In the near subsurface, rocks are exposed to multiple natural and human made processes that can alter the properties of the rock. These processes can be chemical dissolution, mineral precipitation as well as sand deposition and transport. All these processes alter the hydrological and seismic properties of fractured rock. In this study we used a fractured carbonate rock (150 mm of diameter and 75 mm of height) to study the effect of mineral precipitation and fine sand deposition on the hydrological and seismic properties of the fracture. Prior to geochemical and transport alteration of the fracture, surface roughness measurements were made using laser profilometry to quantify the fracture void geometry. Reconstruction of the fracture void geometry showed quasi-linear channels through the fracture with a correlation length of 20 mm. The long linear channels were not observed in the seismic data for the fracture when it was initially saturated with water. For seismic measurements, water usually masks heterogeneity in a fracture. However, the flow measurements made from eight ports around the sample did indicate flow anisotropy. Next, the fracture void geometry was altered using a solution of hydrochloric acid and sulfuric acid to alternately etch the fracture and precipitate gypsum in the fracture. This reactive solution resulted in an increase in flow rate for several ports but not all. The seismic data showed that portions of the fracture exhibited enhanced transmission, while other portions exhibited a decrease in transmission. Finally, fine sand transport and deposition were performed by using an aqueous containing solid spherical silica beads (an average radius of 25 micrometers). While the flow rate remained relatively constant in three out of four ports, the seismic transmission across the fracture increased. In addition, the structure of the void geometry became apparent in the seismic data. We hypothesize that the deposition of the fine sand was controlled

  10. Eolian sand deposition during th Medieval Climatic Anomaly in Playa San Bartolo, Sonora, Mexico

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ortega, B.; Schaaf, P. E.; Murray, A.; Caballero, M.; Lozano Garcia, S.; Ramirez, A.

    2012-12-01

    Records of past climatic changes in desert environments are scarce due to the poor preservation of biological proxies. To overcome this lack we consider the paleoenvironmental significance and age of a lunette dune in the eastern rim of the Playa San Bartolo (PSB) in Sonoran Desert (Mexico). Rock magnetism, mineralogical, and geochemical analysis (major, trace and REE) allow assessment of sediment provenance and changes in the composition of the PSB dune over time. Thermoluminiscence and optical stimulated luminescence (TL and OSL) provide the chronology of lunette dune development. Dune sediments are composed by intercalated layers of sand beds and sandy silt strata. Variability in composition of dune sediments is attributed to changes in sediment sources. Mineralogical, geochemical and magnetic data show clear differences between the sand and the sandy silt of the PSB dune deposits, which suggest different sediment sources. Sand sized deposits, characterized by coarse magnetite grains, are mainly eroded from granitoids from nearby outcrops. Sandy silt deposits, rich in fine grained magnetite and evaporative minerals, resulted after the erosion of volcanic rocks and their soils from sierras at the NE of PSB during heavy rainfall episodes, the flooding of PSB and later deflation and accumulation in the dune of both detritic and authigenic components. The upper 6 m of dune accumulation occurred largely during AD 500 to 1200, a period that correlates with the Medieval climatic anomaly (AD 300 to 1300). These findings suggest that main dune accretion occurred during regionally extended drought conditions, disrupted by sporadic heavy rainfall.

  11. S reactivity of an oil sands composite tailings deposit undergoing reclamation wetland construction.

    PubMed

    Reid, Michelle L; Warren, Lesley A

    2016-01-15

    This study is the first to characterize the S stability of a composite tailings (CT) deposit undergoing pilot wetland reclamation in the Athabasca Oil Sands Region (AOSR, Alberta, Canada). As CT is sulfur, organic carbon and bacterially rich, the goal of this study was to characterize the in situ aqueous distribution of sulfur compounds across the wetland, sand cap and underlying CT zones of the deposit, in an effort to establish the potential for microbial sulfur cycling and generation of H2S, an explosive, corrosive and toxicity risk. Porewater samples from three depths spanning the different layers of the deposit, as well as wetland surface ponded water samples were collected for geochemical analyses (July and Sept 2013), and for microbial enrichments (both S reducing and S oxidizing bacteria) in June 2014. While porewater ΣH2S(aq) was detected at all depths across the three zones of the deposit, results identify that the sand cap layer required for construction, acts as a mixing zone generating the highest solution H2S concentrations (>500 uM or 18 mg/L) and H2S gas levels (over 100 and up to 180 ppm) observed. Porewater dissolved sulfate concentrations (0.14-6.97 mM) were orders of magnitude higher and did not correlate to the observed distribution of ΣH2S concentrations throughout the deposit. Unique to the sandcap, dissolved organic carbon positively correlated with the observed maxima of ΣH2S(aq) seen in this layer. The water management of the deposit is a critical factor in the observed S trends. Active dewatering of the CT resulted in migration of S rich water up into the sandcap, while downwelling labile organic carbon from the developing wetland acted in concert to stimulate microbial generation of the H2S in this structural layer to the highest levels observed. Functional enrichments identified that diverse S reducing and oxidizing microbial metabolisms are widespread throughout the deposit, indicating that these waste materials are

  12. Dynamics of sediment storage and release on aeolian dune slip faces: A field study in Jericoacoara, Brazil

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pelletier, Jon D.; Sherman, Douglas J.; Ellis, Jean T.; Farrell, Eugene J.; Jackson, Nancy L.; Li, Bailiang; Nordstrom, Karl F.; Maia, Luis Parente; Omidyeganeh, Mohammad

    2015-09-01

    Sediment transport on the lee sides of aeolian dunes involves a combination of grain-fall deposition on the upper portion of the slip face until a critical angle is exceeded, transport of a portion of those sediments down the slip face by grain flows and, finally, deposition at an angle of repose. We measured the mean critical and repose angles and the rate of slip-face avalanching using terrestrial laser scanning (TLS) on two barchans of different size in Jericoacoara, Brazil. Wind speeds and sand fluxes were measured simultaneously at the dune crests. We found that the mean critical decreased with increasing wind speed. We attribute this effect to turbulent shear stresses, the magnitude of which we quantified using 3-D large eddy simulation modeling, that randomly act down the slip face (i.e., in the direction of gravity) to trigger grain flows at lower angles than would be possible with gravity stresses alone. We developed and tested a new predictive model for the frequency of avalanching that depends on both the sediment flux delivered to the slip face and changes in the critical angle with time. In this model, increasing turbulent shear stresses drive avalanching even in the absence of sand flux delivered to the slip face if the critical angle decreases below the slope angle. We also document that the mean critical angle decreases slightly with increasing slip-face height. These results have important implications for aeolian dune evolution, interpretations of aeolian stratigraphy, and granular mechanics.

  13. Tracing industrial ammonium in atmospheric deposition in the Athabasca Oil Sands Region, Alberta, Canada

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mayer, B.; Proemse, B. C.; Fenn, M. E.

    2013-12-01

    The expanding industrial development in the Athabasca oil sands region (AOSR) in northeastern Alberta, Canada, has raised concerns about increasing nitrogen (N) emissions from oil sands operations and their potential effects on the surrounding terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems. Stable isotope techniques may help to trace industrial emissions provided that they are isotopically distinct from background isotope ratios of atmospheric N compounds. Ammonium deposition rates (NH4-N) typically exceed nitrate deposition rates (NO3-N) in the AOSR (Proemse et al., 2013), suggesting that emissions of reduced nitrogen compounds play a significant role for the atmospheric nitrogen budget in the AOSR. We collected atmospheric ammonium in open field bulk deposition and throughfall using ion exchange resins over ~6 months time periods from summer 2007 to summer 2011 located at distances between 3 to 113 km to one of the major oil sands developments in the AOSR. Ammonium deposition rates and δ15N-NH4 values were determined using ion chromatography and the ammonium diffusion method (Sebilo et al., 2004) on resin extracts. Atmospheric ammonium deposition rates in open field bulk collectors and throughfall collectors ranged from 1.0 to 4.7 kg ha-1 yr-1 NH4-N, and from 1.0 to 18.3 kg ha-1 yr-1 NH4-N, respectively. δ15N-NH4 values varied from -6.3 to +14.8‰ with the highest δ15N values typically associated with elevated NH4-N deposition rates. δ15N-NH4 values of up to +20.1‰ were observed for industrially emitted NH4 in particulate matter (PM2.5) emissions (Proemse et al., 2012) suggesting that industrial NH3 and NH4 emissions are associated with elevated δ15N values providing a potential tracer. Applying a two-end-member mixing analysis using a background δ15N-NH4 value of -3.6‰ for summer and -3.2‰ for winter periods revealed that particularly sites within ~30 km radius from the main oil sands developments are significantly affected by industrial contributions to

  14. Aeolian beach ridges and their significance for climate and sea level: Concept and insight from the Levant coast (East Mediterranean)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mauz, B.; Hijma, M. P.; Amorosi, A.; Porat, N.; Galili, E.; Bloemendal, J.

    2013-06-01

    Relict beach ridges of aeolian origin and associated soils are often used for inferring relative sea level and climate with contrasting results. Most studies link the aeolian coastal deposits to regressive phases, some to high sea-level stands, and a few to intermediate relative sea-level positions. We interpret the apparent contradictions as indicating the lack of an over-arching concept and the inconsistent usage of sea level-related terms. In this paper we present an integrated morpho-sedimentological concept for a microtidal, mid-latitudinal coast and review existing data from the Levant (East Mediterranean) coast to evaluate the concept and to eliminate nomenclatural confusion. A coastal depositional environment in a semi-arid environment consists of shallow-marine, aeolian and alluvial facies which together form an aeolian beach-ridge complex as a package of strata which respond simultaneously to sea-level change. A transgressive complex forms through reworking or overstepping of the coastal foredune and a regressive complex forms by downstepping. Under transgression the aeolian beach ridge represents the highstand deposit and its adjacent shallow marine sediment is the transgressive deposit. Under regression the complex represents the falling stage and the associated downdip surface marks the lowstand. On the Levant coast we find chronologically well-constrained, offlapping aeolian beach ridges as parts of six downstepping beach ridge complexes formed between ~ 200 ka and 10 ka. The complexes represent the falling stage systems tract (FSST) of a short-lived (5th-order) depositional sequence when the shoreline shifted from a position close to the modern coastline to the shelf or below the shelf edge. Three of these FSSTs and their up dip and down dip super bounding surface together form the 4th order (~ 100 ka) sequence of the last interglacial/glacial cycle. The absence of transgressive, highstand and lowstand systems tract is explained by the poor

  15. Atmospheric deposition of mercury and methylmercury to landscapes and waterbodies of the Athabasca oil sands region.

    PubMed

    Kirk, Jane L; Muir, Derek C G; Gleason, Amber; Wang, Xiaowa; Lawson, Greg; Frank, Richard A; Lehnherr, Igor; Wrona, Fred

    2014-07-01

    Atmospheric deposition of metals originating from a variety of sources, including bitumen upgrading facilities and blowing dusts from landscape disturbances, is of concern in the Athabasca oil sands region of northern Alberta, Canada. Mercury (Hg) is of particular interest as methylmercury (MeHg), a neurotoxin which bioaccumulates through foodwebs, can reach levels in fish and wildlife that may pose health risks to human consumers. We used spring-time sampling of the accumulated snowpack at sites located varying distances from the major developments to estimate winter 2012 Hg loadings to a ∼20 000 km(2) area of the Athabasca oil sands region. Total Hg (THg; all forms of Hg in a sample) loads were predominantly particulate-bound (79 ± 12%) and increased with proximity to major developments, reaching up to 1000 ng m(-2). MeHg loads increased in a similar fashion, reaching up to 19 ng m(-2) and suggesting that oil sands developments are a direct source of MeHg to local landscapes and water bodies. Deposition maps, created by interpolation of measured Hg loads using geostatistical software, demonstrated that deposition resembled a bullseye pattern on the landscape, with areas of maximum THg and MeHg loadings located primarily between the Muskeg and Steepbank rivers. Snowpack concentrations of THg and MeHg were significantly correlated (r = 0.45-0.88, p < 0.01) with numerous parameters, including total suspended solids (TSS), metals known to be emitted in high quantities from the upgraders (vanadium, nickel, and zinc), and crustal elements (aluminum, iron, and lanthanum), which were also elevated in this region. Our results suggest that at snowmelt, a complex mixture of chemicals enters aquatic ecosystems that could impact biological communities of the oil sands region. PMID:24873895

  16. Atmospheric dry deposition of sulfur and nitrogen in the Athabasca Oil Sands Region, Alberta, Canada.

    PubMed

    Hsu, Yu-Mei; Bytnerowicz, Andrzej; Fenn, Mark E; Percy, Kevin E

    2016-10-15

    Due to the potential ecological effects on terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems from atmospheric deposition in the Athabasca Oil Sands Region (AOSR), Alberta, Canada, this study was implemented to estimate atmospheric nitrogen (N) and sulfur (S) inputs. Passive samplers were used to measure ambient concentrations of ammonia (NH3), nitrogen dioxide (NO2), nitric acid/nitrous acid (HNO3/HONO), and sulfur dioxide (SO2) in the AOSR. Concentrations of NO2 and SO2 in winter were higher than those in summer, while seasonal differences of NH3 and HNO3/HONO showed an opposite trend, with higher values in summer. Concentrations of NH3, NO2 and SO2 were high close to the emission sources (oil sands operations and urban areas). NH3 concentrations were also elevated in the southern portion of the domain indicating possible agricultural and urban emission sources to the southwest. HNO3, an oxidation endpoint, showed wider ranges of concentrations and a larger spatial extent. Concentrations of NH3, NO2, HNO3/HONO and SO2 from passive measurements and their monthly deposition velocities calculated by a multi-layer inference model (MLM) were used to calculate dry deposition of N and S. NH3 contributed the largest fraction of deposited N across the network, ranging between 0.70-1.25kgNha(-1)yr(-1), HNO3/HONO deposition ranged between 0.30-0.90kgNha(-1)yr(-1), and NO2 deposition between 0.03-0.70kgNha(-1)yr(-1). During the modeled period, average dry deposition of the inorganic gaseous N species ranged between 1.03 and 2.85kgNha(-1)yr(-1) and SO4-S deposition ranged between 0.26 and 2.04kgha(-1)yr(-1). Comparisons with co-measured ion exchange resin throughfall data (8.51kgSha(-1)yr(-1)) indicate that modeled dry deposition combined with measured wet deposition (1.37kgSha(-1)yr(-1)) underestimated S deposition. Gas phase NH3 (71%) and HNO3 plus NO2 (79%) dry deposition fluxes dominated the total deposition of NH4-N and NO3-N, respectively. PMID:27295600

  17. Curiosity at Gale Crater, Mars: Characterization and Analysis of the Rocknest Sand Shadow

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Blake, D. F.; Morris, R. V.; Kocurek, G.; Morrison, S. M.; Downs, R. T.; Bish, D.; Ming, D. W.; Edgett, K. S.; Rubin, D.; Goetz, W.; Madsen, M. B.; Sullivan, R.; Gellert, R.; Campbell, I.; Treiman, A. H.; McLennan, S. M.; Yen, A. S.; Grotzinger, J.; Vaniman, D. T.; Chipera, S. J.; Achilles, C. N.; Rampe, E. B.; Sumner, D.; Meslin, P.-Y.; Maurice, S.; Forni, O.; Gasnault, O.; Fisk, M.; Schmidt, M.; Mahaffy, P.; Leshin, L. A.; Glavin, D.; Steele, A.; Freissinet, C.; Navarro-González, R.; Yingst, R. A.; Kah, L. C.; Bridges, N.; Lewis, K. W.; Bristow, T. F.; Farmer, J. D.; Crisp, J. A.; Stolper, E. M.; Des Marais, D. J.; Sarrazin, P.; Agard, Christophe; Alves Verdasca, José Alexandre; Anderson, Robert; Anderson, Ryan; Archer, Doug; Armiens-Aparicio, Carlos; Arvidson, Ray; Atlaskin, Evgeny; Atreya, Sushil; Aubrey, Andrew; Baker, Burt; Baker, Michael; Balic-Zunic, Tonci; Baratoux, David; Baroukh, Julien; Barraclough, Bruce; Bean, Keri; Beegle, Luther; Behar, Alberto; Bell, James; Bender, Steve; Benna, Mehdi; Bentz, Jennifer; Berger, Gilles; Berger, Jeff; Berman, Daniel; Blanco Avalos, Juan Jose; Blaney, Diana; Blank, Jen; Blau, Hannah; Bleacher, Lora; Boehm, Eckart; Botta, Oliver; Böttcher, Stephan; Boucher, Thomas; Bower, Hannah; Boyd, Nick; Boynton, Bill; Breves, Elly; Bridges, John; Brinckerhoff, William; Brinza, David; Brunet, Claude; Brunner, Anna; Brunner, Will; Buch, Arnaud; Bullock, Mark; Burmeister, Sönke; Cabane, Michel; Calef, Fred; Cameron, James; Cantor, Bruce; Caplinger, Michael; Rodríguez, Javier Caride; Carmosino, Marco; Blázquez, Isaías Carrasco; Charpentier, Antoine; Choi, David; Clark, Benton; Clegg, Sam; Cleghorn, Timothy; Cloutis, Ed; Cody, George; Coll, Patrice; Conrad, Pamela; Coscia, David; Cousin, Agnès; Cremers, David; Cros, Alain; Cucinotta, Frank; d'Uston, Claude; Davis, Scott; Day, Mackenzie; Juarez, Manuel de la Torre; DeFlores, Lauren; DeLapp, Dorothea; DeMarines, Julia; Dietrich, William; Dingler, Robert; Donny, Christophe; Drake, Darrell; Dromart, Gilles; Dupont, Audrey; Duston, Brian; Dworkin, Jason; Dyar, M. Darby; Edgar, Lauren; Edwards, Christopher; Edwards, Laurence; Ehlmann, Bethany; Ehresmann, Bent; Eigenbrode, Jen; Elliott, Beverley; Elliott, Harvey; Ewing, Ryan; Fabre, Cécile; Fairén, Alberto; Farley, Ken; Fassett, Caleb; Favot, Laurent; Fay, Donald; Fedosov, Fedor; Feldman, Jason; Feldman, Sabrina; Fitzgibbon, Mike; Flesch, Greg; Floyd, Melissa; Flückiger, Lorenzo; Fraeman, Abby; Francis, Raymond; François, Pascaline; Franz, Heather; French, Katherine Louise; Frydenvang, Jens; Gaboriaud, Alain; Gailhanou, Marc; Garvin, James; Geffroy, Claude; Genzer, Maria; Godber, Austin; Goesmann, Fred; Golovin, Dmitry; Gómez, Felipe Gómez; Gómez-Elvira, Javier; Gondet, Brigitte; Gordon, Suzanne; Gorevan, Stephen; Grant, John; Griffes, Jennifer; Grinspoon, David; Guillemot, Philippe; Guo, Jingnan; Gupta, Sanjeev; Guzewich, Scott; Haberle, Robert; Halleaux, Douglas; Hallet, Bernard; Hamilton, Vicky; Hardgrove, Craig; Harker, David; Harpold, Daniel; Harri, Ari-Matti; Harshman, Karl; Hassler, Donald; Haukka, Harri; Hayes, Alex; Herkenhoff, Ken; Herrera, Paul; Hettrich, Sebastian; Heydari, Ezat; Hipkin, Victoria; Hoehler, Tori; Hollingsworth, Jeff; Hudgins, Judy; Huntress, Wesley; Hurowitz, Joel; Hviid, Stubbe; Iagnemma, Karl; Indyk, Steve; Israël, Guy; Jackson, Ryan; Jacob, Samantha; Jakosky, Bruce; Jensen, Elsa; Jensen, Jaqueline Kløvgaard; Johnson, Jeffrey; Johnson, Micah; Johnstone, Steve; Jones, Andrea; Jones, John; Joseph, Jonathan; Jun, Insoo; Kahanpää, Henrik; Kahre, Melinda; Karpushkina, Natalya; Kasprzak, Wayne; Kauhanen, Janne; Keely, Leslie; Kemppinen, Osku; Keymeulen, Didier; Kim, Myung-Hee; Kinch, Kjartan; King, Penny; Kirkland, Laurel; Koefoed, Asmus; Köhler, Jan; Kortmann, Onno; Kozyrev, Alexander; Krezoski, Jill; Krysak, Daniel; Kuzmin, Ruslan; Lacour, Jean Luc; Lafaille, Vivian; Langevin, Yves; Lanza, Nina; Lasue, Jeremie; Le Mouélic, Stéphane; Lee, Ella Mae; Lee, Qiu-Mei; Lees, David; Lefavor, Matthew; Lemmon, Mark; Lepinette Malvitte, Alain; Léveillé, Richard; Lewin-Carpintier, Éric; Li, Shuai; Lipkaman, Leslie; Little, Cynthia; Litvak, Maxim; Lorigny, Eric; Lugmair, Guenter; Lundberg, Angela; Lyness, Eric; Maki, Justin; Malakhov, Alexey; Malespin, Charles; Malin, Michael; Mangold, Nicolas; Manning, Heidi; Marchand, Geneviève; Marín Jiménez, Mercedes; Martín García, César; Martin, Dave; Martin, Mildred; Martínez-Frías, Jesús; Martín-Soler, Javier; Martín-Torres, F. Javier; Mauchien, Patrick; McAdam, Amy; McCartney, Elaina; McConnochie, Timothy; McCullough, Emily; McEwan, Ian; McKay, Christopher; McNair, Sean; Melikechi, Noureddine; Meyer, Michael; Mezzacappa, Alissa; Miller, Hayden; Miller, Kristen; Milliken, Ralph; Minitti, Michelle; Mischna, Michael; Mitrofanov, Igor; Moersch, Jeff; Mokrousov, Maxim; Molina Jurado, Antonio; Moores, John; Mora-Sotomayor, Luis; Morookian, John Michael; Mueller-Mellin, Reinhold; Muller, Jan-Peter; Muñoz Caro, Guillermo; Nachon, Marion; Navarro López, Sara; Nealson, Kenneth; Nefian, Ara; Nelson, Tony; Newcombe, Megan; Newman, Claire; Newsom, Horton; Nikiforov, Sergey; Niles, Paul; Nixon, Brian; Dobrea, Eldar Noe; Nolan, Thomas; Oehler, Dorothy; Ollila, Ann; Olson, Timothy; Owen, Tobias; Pablo, Hernández; Paillet, Alexis; Pallier, Etienne; Palucis, Marisa; Parker, Timothy; Parot, Yann; Patel, Kiran; Paton, Mark; Paulsen, Gale; Pavlov, Alex; Pavri, Betina; Peinado-González, Verónica; Pepin, Robert; Peret, Laurent; Perez, Rene; Perrett, Glynis; Peterson, Joe; Pilorget, Cedric; Pinet, Patrick; Pla-García, Jorge; Plante, Ianik; Poitrasson, Franck; Polkko, Jouni; Popa, Radu; Posiolova, Liliya; Pradler, Irina; Prats, Benito; Prokhorov, Vasily; Purdy, Sharon Wilson; Raaen, Eric; Radziemski, Leon; Rafkin, Scot; Ramos, Miguel; Raulin, François; Ravine, Michael; Reitz, Günther; Rennó, Nilton; Rice, Melissa; Richardson, Mark; Robert, François; Rodriguez Manfredi, José Antonio; Romeral-Planelló, Julio J.; Rowland, Scott; Saccoccio, Muriel; Salamon, Andrew; Sandoval, Jennifer; Sanin, Anton; Sans Fuentes, Sara Alejandra; Saper, Lee; Sautter, Violaine; Savijärvi, Hannu; Schieber, Juergen; Schmidt, Walter; Scholes, Daniel; Schoppers, Marcel; Schröder, Susanne; Sebastian Martinez, Eduardo; Sengstacken, Aaron; Shterts, Ruslan; Siebach, Kirsten; Siili, Tero; Simmonds, Jeff; Sirven, Jean-Baptiste; Slavney, Susie; Sletten, Ronald; Smith, Michael; Sobrón Sánchez, Pablo; Spanovich, Nicole; Spray, John; Squyres, Steven; Stack, Katie; Stalport, Fabien; Stein, Thomas; Stern, Jennifer; Stewart, Noel; Stipp, Susan Louise Svane; Stoiber, Kevin; Sucharski, Bob; Summons, Roger; Sun, Vivian; Supulver, Kimberley; Sutter, Brad; Szopa, Cyril; Tate, Christopher; Teinturier, Samuel; ten Kate, Inge Loes; Thomas, Peter; Thompson, Lucy; Tokar, Robert; Toplis, Mike; Torres Redondo, Josefina; Trainer, Melissa; Tretyakov, Vladislav; Urqui-O'Callaghan, Roser; Van Beek, Jason; Van Beek, Tessa; VanBommel, Scott; Varenikov, Alexey; Vasavada, Ashwin; Vasconcelos, Paulo; Vicenzi, Edward; Vostrukhin, Andrey; Voytek, Mary; Wadhwa, Meenakshi; Ward, Jennifer; Webster, Chris; Weigle, Eddie; Wellington, Danika; Westall, Frances; Wiens, Roger Craig; Wilhelm, Mary Beth; Williams, Amy; Williams, Joshua; Williams, Rebecca; Williams, Richard B.; Wilson, Mike; Wimmer-Schweingruber, Robert; Wolff, Mike; Wong, Mike; Wray, James; Wu, Megan; Yana, Charles; Zeitlin, Cary; Zimdar, Robert; Zorzano Mier, María-Paz

    2013-09-01

    The Rocknest aeolian deposit is similar to aeolian features analyzed by the Mars Exploration Rovers (MERs) Spirit and Opportunity. The fraction of sand <150 micrometers in size contains ~55% crystalline material consistent with a basaltic heritage and ~45% x-ray amorphous material. The amorphous component of Rocknest is iron-rich and silicon-poor and is the host of the volatiles (water, oxygen, sulfur dioxide, carbon dioxide, and chlorine) detected by the Sample Analysis at Mars instrument and of the fine-grained nanophase oxide component first described from basaltic soils analyzed by MERs. The similarity between soils and aeolian materials analyzed at Gusev Crater, Meridiani Planum, and Gale Crater implies locally sourced, globally similar basaltic materials or globally and regionally sourced basaltic components deposited locally at all three locations.

  18. Curiosity at Gale crater, Mars: characterization and analysis of the Rocknest sand shadow.

    PubMed

    Blake, D F; Morris, R V; Kocurek, G; Morrison, S M; Downs, R T; Bish, D; Ming, D W; Edgett, K S; Rubin, D; Goetz, W; Madsen, M B; Sullivan, R; Gellert, R; Campbell, I; Treiman, A H; McLennan, S M; Yen, A S; Grotzinger, J; Vaniman, D T; Chipera, S J; Achilles, C N; Rampe, E B; Sumner, D; Meslin, P-Y; Maurice, S; Forni, O; Gasnault, O; Fisk, M; Schmidt, M; Mahaffy, P; Leshin, L A; Glavin, D; Steele, A; Freissinet, C; Navarro-González, R; Yingst, R A; Kah, L C; Bridges, N; Lewis, K W; Bristow, T F; Farmer, J D; Crisp, J A; Stolper, E M; Des Marais, D J; Sarrazin, P

    2013-09-27

    The Rocknest aeolian deposit is similar to aeolian features analyzed by the Mars Exploration Rovers (MERs) Spirit and Opportunity. The fraction of sand <150 micrometers in size contains ~55% crystalline material consistent with a basaltic heritage and ~45% x-ray amorphous material. The amorphous component of Rocknest is iron-rich and silicon-poor and is the host of the volatiles (water, oxygen, sulfur dioxide, carbon dioxide, and chlorine) detected by the Sample Analysis at Mars instrument and of the fine-grained nanophase oxide component first described from basaltic soils analyzed by MERs. The similarity between soils and aeolian materials analyzed at Gusev Crater, Meridiani Planum, and Gale Crater implies locally sourced, globally similar basaltic materials or globally and regionally sourced basaltic components deposited locally at all three locations. PMID:24072928

  19. Curiosity at Gale Crater, Mars: Characterization and Analysis of the Rocknest Sand Shadow

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Blake, David F.; Morris, Richard V.; Kocurek, G.; Morrison, S. M.; Downs, R. T.; Bish, D.; Ming, D. W.; Edgett, K. S.; Rubin, D.; Goetz, W.; Madsen, M. B.; Sullivan, R.; Gellert, R.; Campbell, I.; Treiman, A. H.; McLennan, S. M.; Yen, A. S.; Grotzinger, J.; Vaniman, D. T.; Chipera, S. J.; Achilles, C. N.; Rampe, E. B.; Sumner, D.; Meslin, P. -Y.; Maurice, S.; Forni, O.; Gasnault, O.; Fisk, M.; Schmidt, M.; Mahaffy, P.; Leshin, L. A.; Glavin, D.; Steele, A.; Freissinet, C.; Navarro-Gonzalez, R.; Yingst, R. A.; Kah, L. C.; Bridges, N.; Lewis, K. W.; Bristow, T. F.; Farmer, J. D.; Crisp, J. A.; Stolper, E. M.; DesMarais, D. J.; Sarrazin, P.

    2013-01-01

    The Rocknest aeolian deposit is similar to aeolian features analyzed by the Mars Exploration Rovers (MER) Spirit and Opportunity. The fraction of sand <150 micron in size contains approx. 55% crystalline material consistent with a basaltic heritage, and approx. 45% X-ray amorphous material. The amorphous component of Rocknest is Fe-rich and Si-poor, and is the host of the volatiles (H2O, O2, SO2, CO2, and Cl) detected by the Surface Analysis at Mars (SAM) instrument and of the fine-grained nanophase oxide (npOx) component first described from basaltic soils analyzed by MER. The similarity between soils and aeolian materials analyzed at Gusev crater, Meridiani Planum and Gale crater implies locally sourced, globally similar basaltic materials, or globally and regionally sourced basaltic components deposited locally at all three locations.

  20. Processes of deposition of interlaminated sand-and-mud at a temperate tidewater glacier

    SciTech Connect

    Cowan, E.A.; Duncker, J.D.; Powell, R.D.

    1985-01-01

    Interlaminated sand-and-mud is the most common lithofacies deposited proximal (<1km) to McBride Glacier, Glacier Bay, Alaska. Two main sediment sources are a subglacial melt-water stream discharging at 100m depth that rises to form turbid overflow plumes and subaqueous sediment gravity flows. Traps collected sediment settling from turbid overflows within 300m of the glacier face at an average rate of 780mg dry sediment cm/sup -2/ day/sup -1/ (about. 06 cm/sup -2/ day /sup -1/). Very-fine sand or silt laminae (0.5mm to a few grains thick) trapped over several days, have sharp basal contacts and grade into thicker mud laminae. These couplets, termed cyclopels, are produced about twice daily, and result from plume interaction with diurnal tidal currents, fluctuations in melt water discharge and variations in spatial distribution of the overflow. Short cores from McBride Inlet include: sediment gravity flow deposits, cyclopels, ice-rafted debris, and homogeneous mud. Sediment gravity flow deposits predominate in cores from ice-proximal locations, and cyclopels are observed primarily in cores from distal locations (>1km) where they are not obscured by sediment gravity flow deposits. Ice-rafted debris is found as laminae in cores throughout the inlet because of high calving rates of debris-rich ice and the wide areal dispersal of bergs.

  1. Deposition and remaining productive capabilities of the Upper Cretaceous Eutaw sands of East-Central Mississippi

    SciTech Connect

    Greer, B.R.

    1995-10-01

    Nearing the close of the Cretaceous, there were several transgressions and regressions of the epicontinental seas. These rapid changes in sea level played a large part in the depositing and reworking of the Eutaw sands of East-Central Mississippi. The study area includes Jasper, Jones, Clarke and Wayne Counties. The Eutaw sands of this area are described as fine to very fine grained sand which are glauconitic, micaceous and sometimes fossiliferous. This indicates that the environment of deposition was in the neritic zone of the continental shelf. Its high porosities and permeabilities along with its prolific nature makes this formation one of the most sought after reservoirs of the state of Mississippi. All of the 18 Eutaw fields in the study area are closely reaching their economic limits for primary production. Four of these fields have undergone successful waterfloods which have greatly enhanced their ultimate recoveries. The remaining fields in the study area have the potential of yielding millions of barrels of oil from secondary and tertiary recovery methods.

  2. Understanding early-stage dune development: morphodynamics of aeolian protodunes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baddock, Matthew; Wiggs, Giles; Nield, Joanna

    2016-04-01

    For such a fundamental aspect of bedform development, the initiation and early-stage growth of sand dunes remain poorly understood. Protodunes are bedforms within the continuum of early-stage depositional aeolian features that exist between flat sand patches and small dunes. As transitory bedforms with the potential to develop into dunes, the detailed study of protodune morphodynamics can provide significant insights into nascent dune development. As part of a multi-annual study investigating bedform change through repeat morphological surveys of bedforms with differing maturity, measurements of near-surface airflow and sand transport were conducted over a protodune in a small Namibian barchan dune field. The protodune was approximately 85 m in length and 1 m high, and was without a slipface. Data show that over the course of a week, patterns of airflow and transport flux variation were linked with accretion at the crest, and erosion of the leeside edge showing an increase in protodune height, and providing evidence of the dune's vertical development. Surveys reveal the longer term evolution of the protodune, in the context of changes exhibited by nearby, fully developed barchan dunes, and long term monitoring of wind regime at the site.

  3. 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.

  4. Aggradation and degradation of alluvial sand deposits, 1965 to 1986, Colorado River, Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Schmidt, J.C.; Graf, J.B.

    1988-01-01

    High discharges occurring between 1983-1985 resulted in redistribution of sand stored in zones of recirculating current in the Colorado River in Grand Canyon National Park. Redistribution resulted in net loss in the number of reattachment deposits in narrow reaches and aggradation of some separation deposits. Separation deposits were more stable than other types of deposits. Alluvial sand deposits that are large enough and of sufficient size for use as campsites were more stable than smaller lower-elevation deposits. Fluctuating flows between October 1985 and January 1986 caused erosion throughout the Grand Canyon, and caused erosion of some deposits created by the high flows of 1983-1985. Data collected for this study included measurements of flow velocity, scour-and-fill of sand deposits, topographic and bathymetric surveys, mapping of surface-flow patterns, water-surface slope surveys, sedimentological analysis, and replication of photographs. A classification system of alluvial sand deposits was developed on the basis of morphometric characteristics and the location of these deposits in relation to parts of recirculation zones. (Author 's abstract)

  5. Studies in Aeolian geology

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Greeley, Ronald

    1988-01-01

    The objective of the research was to assess the significance of aeolian (windblown) processes in the evolution of planetary surfaces. The approach was to use wind tunnel simulations, field studies of possible analogs, and analyses of spacecraft data.

  6. Size-differentiated chemical characteristics of Asian paleo dust: records from aeolian deposition on Chinese Loess Plateau.

    PubMed

    Wu, Feng; Chow, Judith C; An, Zhisheng; Watson, John G; Cao, Junji

    2011-02-01

    The Chinese Loess Plateau (CLP) receives and potentially contributes to Asian dust storms that affect particulate matter (PM) concentrations, visibility, and climate. Loess on the CLP has experienced little weathering effect and is regarded as an ideal record to represent geochemical characteristics of Asian paleo dust. Samples were taken from 2-, 9-, and 15-m depths (representing deposition periods from approximately 12,000 to approximately 200,000 yr ago) in the Xi Feng loess profile on the CLP. The samples were resuspended and then sampled through total suspended particulates (TSP), PM10, PM2.5, and PM1 (PM with aerodynamic diameters < approximately 30, 10, 2.5, and 1 microm, respectively) inlets onto filters for mass, elemental, ionic, and carbon analyses using a Desert Research Institute resuspension chamber. The elements Si, Ca, Al, Fe, K, Mg, water-soluble Ca (Ca2+), organic carbon, and carbonate carbon are the major constituents (> 1%) in loess among the four PM fractions (i.e., TSP, PM10, PM2.5, and PM1). Much of Ca is water soluble and corresponds with measures of carbonate, indicating that most of the calcium is in the form of calcium carbonate rather than other calcium minerals. Most of the K is insoluble, indicating that loess can be separated from biomass burning contributions when K+ is measured. The loess has elemental abundances similar to those of the upper continental crust (UCC) for Mg, Fe, Ti, Mn, V, Cr, and Ni, but substantially different ratios for other elements such as Ca, Co, Cu, As, and Pb. These suggest that the use of UCC as a reference to represent pure or paleo Asian dust needs to be further evaluated. The aerosol samples from the source regions have similar ratios to loess for crustal elements, but substantially different ratios for species from anthropogenic sources (e.g., K, P, V, Cr, Cu, Zn, Ni, and Pb), indicating that the aerosol samples from the geological-source-dominated environment are not a "pure" soil product as compared

  7. Publication trends in aeolian research: An analysis of the Bibliography of Aeolian Research

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stout, John E.; Warren, Andrew; Gill, Thomas E.

    2009-04-01

    An analysis of the Bibliography of Aeolian Research has provided information regarding publication trends in aeolian research. Results suggest that there has been a significant increase in the number of publications per year since the first aeolian-research publication appeared in 1646. Rates of publication have increased from only three publications in the 17th Century to nearly three publications per day in the 21st Century. The temporal distribution of publications follows a complex pattern that is influenced by many factors. In the 17th and 18th Centuries, publications appear as isolated clusters indicating limited interest in aeolian research and limited opportunities for individuals to contribute to scientific literature. With time, many new scientific societies are formed and many new scientific journals are established, opening new opportunities for scientists to contribute to scientific discourse. Landmark publications open up new research areas and define new directions for aeolian research. General advances in science and technology provide new techniques for sampling blowing sand and dust. In addition, clear signs exist that publication rates respond to major environmental and climatic events, especially large-scale disasters that focus attention on wind erosion and blowing dust. The Sirocco dust events of 1901-1903, the North American Dust Bowl of the1930s, and the recent sand and dust storm problems in China have all led to significant increases in the number of publications in aeolian research. Rates of publication are negatively influenced by major political and social upheavals, especially global conflicts such as World Wars I and II. Sudden shifts in government structure and support can also influence publication rates. A good example is the increased publication rates in China following the end of the Cultural Revolution, a trend that continues today.

  8. Bursts in discontinuous Aeolian saltation.

    PubMed

    Carneiro, M V; Rasmussen, K R; Herrmann, H J

    2015-01-01

    Close to the onset of Aeolian particle transport through saltation we find in wind tunnel experiments a regime of discontinuous flux characterized by bursts of activity. Scaling laws are observed in the time delay between each burst and in the measurements of the wind fluctuations at the fluid threshold Shields number θc. The time delay between each burst decreases on average with the increase of the Shields number until sand flux becomes continuous. A numerical model for saltation including the wind-entrainment from the turbulent fluctuations can reproduce these observations and gives insight about their origin. We present here also for the first time measurements showing that with feeding it becomes possible to sustain discontinuous flux even below the fluid threshold. PMID:26073305

  9. Bursts in discontinuous Aeolian saltation

    PubMed Central

    Carneiro, M. V.; Rasmussen, K. R.; Herrmann, H. J.

    2015-01-01

    Close to the onset of Aeolian particle transport through saltation we find in wind tunnel experiments a regime of discontinuous flux characterized by bursts of activity. Scaling laws are observed in the time delay between each burst and in the measurements of the wind fluctuations at the fluid threshold Shields number θc. The time delay between each burst decreases on average with the increase of the Shields number until sand flux becomes continuous. A numerical model for saltation including the wind-entrainment from the turbulent fluctuations can reproduce these observations and gives insight about their origin. We present here also for the first time measurements showing that with feeding it becomes possible to sustain discontinuous flux even below the fluid threshold. PMID:26073305

  10. Sedimentary processes associated with sand and boulder deposits formed by the 2011 Tohoku-oki tsunami at Sabusawa Island, Japan

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Goto, Kazuhisa; Sugawara, Daisuke; Ikema, Satoko; Miyagi, Toyohiko

    2012-12-01

    This paper reports on the sedimentary processes of sand and boulder deposition at Sabusawa Island, Japan as a result of the 2011 Tohoku-oki tsunami. Boulders were composed of tuffaceous rocks and sourced from an earthquake-triggered slope failure as well as concrete fragments of seawall. They were scattered over the ground surface and did not form boulder ridges, although there was some local imbrication. The boulders were deposited on top of a sand layer indicating that the latter, possibly deposited from bed load, covered the ground surface first. This sand layer probably reduced friction allowing boulders to be transported more easily than might be expected across a hard ground with a high bottom friction. Sand deposits showed landward thinning and fining features, while the boulders showed a landward coarsening (tuffaceous boulders) or a landward fining (concrete boulders), indicating that large clasts were not necessarily scattered randomly but rather might have a clast size gradient with distance inland. These features are explained by the local topographic setting that constrained the directions of incoming and returning tsunami flows. Some clasts at the inland extent of the boulder field were covered by an upward fining sand layer. This feature suggests that the boulders were deposited prior to the suspended sands, with the latter subsequently laid down before the water level dropped below the top of the boulders. Such modern investigations of the sedimentary features of various sizes of grains and clasts immediately after a tsunami provide invaluable data for the reconstruction of inundation processes.

  11. High albedo dune features suggest past dune migration and possible geochemical cementation of aeolian sediments on Mars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gardin, Emilie; Bourke, Mary C.; Allemand, Pascal; Quantin, Cathy

    2011-04-01

    High albedo features are identified in association with barchan dunes in an equatorial inter-crater dune field on Mars using images from the MRO mission. This paper describes the morphometric properties of these features and their association with the present barchan dune field. We propose that these features are cemented aeolian deposits that form at the foot of the dune avalanche face. A possible terrestrial analog exists at White Sands National Monument, in south-central New Mexico, USA. The presence of these features suggests past episodes of dune migration in inter-crater dunefields and liquid water in the near sub-surface in sufficient quantity to cause the cementation of aeolian dune sediment.

  12. Aggradation and degradation of alluvial sand deposits, 1965 to 1986, Colorado River, Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona; executive summary

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Schmidt, J.C.; Graf, J.B.

    1988-01-01

    High discharges that occurred in 1983-85 resulted in redistribution of sand stored in zones of recirculating current in the Colorado River in Grand Canyon National Park. Redistribution resulted in net loss in the number of reattachment deposits in narrow reaches and aggradation of some separation deposits. Separation deposits were more stable than other types of deposits. Alluvial sand deposits that are large enough and of sufficient areal extent for use as campsites were more stable than smaller lower-elevation deposits. Fluctuating flows between October 1985 and January 1986 caused erosion throughout the Grand Canyon and caused erosion of some deposits created by the high flows of 1983-85. (Author 's abstract)

  13. Natural radioactivity of the tar-sand deposits of Ondo State, Southwestern Nigeria

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fasasi, M. K.; Oyawale, A. A.; Mokobia, C. E.; Tchokossa, P.; Ajayi, T. R.; Balogun, F. A.

    2003-06-01

    A combination of gamma spectrometry and energy dispersive X-ray fluorescence was used to determine the presence and level of radioactivity of radionuclides in bituminous sand and overburden obtained from bituminous sand deposits in Ondo State Nigeria for the purpose of providing baseline data and assessing its impact on the environment. The radionuclides identified with reliable regularity belong to the decay series of naturally occurring radionuclides headed by 238U and 232Th. The non-decay series of naturally occurring 40K was found to be below the limit of detection. The average specific activity concentration values obtained for 214 Bi, 208Tl, and 226Ra in the overburden are 165.64±2.91, 150.25±2.91 and 60.97±2.27 Bq kg -1, respectively. The measured activity in the bituminous sand layer is so low that it can be said to be non-radioactive. The result of the EDXRF supports the presence of radioelements in the overburden, which are likely to be embedded in accessory minerals like zircon and tourmaline. Thus, surface exploration technique using soil-gas radon measurement will not yield the desired result. Furthermore, the level of radioelements and associated decay daughter 222Rn is not expected to cause any health hazard.

  14. Holocene environment changes around the Sara Us River, northern China, revealed by optical dating of lacustrine-aeolian sediments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhao, Hui; Sheng, Yongwei; Li, Bo; Fan, Yuxin

    2016-04-01

    The Sara Us River is located along the boundary of the Mu Us Desert and the Chinese Loess Plateau in northern China. The river has cut down through Quaternary sediments creating 70-80 m deep valleys with thick lacustrine/aeolian sequences exposed. We applied optical stimulated luminescence on sediments from a Holocene section of aeolian sand/lacustrine deposits in the top of the river valley. The dating results show that a humid period existed from 7.1 to 2.0 ka ago as evidenced by two layers of peat and lacustrine sediments. However, compared to other published Holocene sections in the Sara Us River valleys close to the section under studying, the local environment experienced very complicated changes during the Holocene. All of the sections recorded a period with drought and/or cold before the Holocene at around 13 ka, and an episode of aridity after about 2 ka ago as evidenced by the layers of aeolian sand. However, the ages of the lacustrine and peat layers in these sections are substantially different. Geomorphological analysis by digital elevation models does not support the existence of a mega lake covering the study area at 2 ka. The intricate environmental changes may have been caused by the meandering of the Sara Us River. Environmental changes also strongly affected human migration in this area, which is documented by Chinese historical records.

  15. Oil sands development and its impact on atmospheric wet deposition of air pollutants to the Athabasca Oil Sands Region, Alberta, Canada.

    PubMed

    Lynam, Mary M; Dvonch, J Timothy; Barres, James A; Morishita, Masako; Legge, Allan; Percy, Kevin

    2015-11-01

    Characterization of air pollutant deposition resulting from Athabasca oil sands development is necessary to assess risk to humans and the environment. To investigate this we collected event-based wet deposition during a pilot study in 2010-2012 at the AMS 6 site 30 km from the nearest upgrading facility in Fort McMurray, AB, Canada. Sulfate, nitrate and ammonium deposition was (kg/ha) 1.96, 1.60 and 1.03, respectively. Trace element pollutant deposition ranged from 2 × 10(-5) - 0.79 and exhibited the trend Hg < Se < As < Cd < Pb < Cu < Zn < S. Crustal element deposition ranged from 1.4 × 10(-4) - 0.46 and had the trend: La < Ce < Sr < Mn < Al < Fe < Mg. S, Se and Hg demonstrated highest median enrichment factors (130-2020) suggesting emissions from oil sands development, urban activities and forest fires were deposited. High deposition of the elements Sr, Mn, Fe and Mg which are tracers for soil and crustal dust implies land-clearing, mining and hauling emissions greatly impacted surrounding human settlements and ecosystems. PMID:26277649

  16. Aeolian processes in Proctor Crater on Mars: Sedimentary history as analyzed from multiple data sets

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Fenton, L.K.; Bandfield, J.L.; Ward, A.W.

    2003-01-01

    Proctor Crater is a 150 km diameter crater in Noachis Terra, within the southern highlands of Mars. The analysis leading to the sedimentary history incorporates several data sets including imagery, elevation, composition, and thermal inertia, mostly from the Mars Global Surveyor mission. The resulting stratigraphy reveals that the sedimentary history of Proctor Crater has involved a complex interaction of accumulating and eroding sedimentation. Aeolian features spanning much of the history of the crater interior dominate its surface, including large erosional pits, stratified beds of aeolian sediment, sand dunes, erosional and depositional streaks, dust devil tracks, and small bright bed forms that are probably granule ripples. Long ago, up to 450 m of layered sediment filled the crater basin, now exposed in eroded pits on the crater floor. These sediments are probably part of an ancient deposit of aeolian volcaniclastic material. Since then, some quantity of this material has been eroded from the top layers of the strata. Small, bright dune forms lie stratigraphically beneath the large dark dune field. Relative to the large dark dunes, the bright bed forms are immobile, although in places, their orientations are clearly influenced by the presence of the larger dunes. Their prevalence in the crater and their lack of compositional and thermal distinctiveness relative to the crater floor suggests that these features were produced locally from the eroding basin fill. Dust devil tracks form during the spring and summer, following a west-southwesterly wind. Early in the spring the dust devils are largely restricted to dark patches of sand. As the summer approaches, dust devil tracks become more plentiful and spread to the rest of the crater floor, indicating that the entire region acquires an annual deposit of dust that is revealed by seasonal dust devils. The dark dunes contain few dust devil tracks, suggesting that accumulated dust is swept away directly by saltation

  17. Mega-ripples in Iran: A new analog for transverse aeolian ridges on Mars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Foroutan, M.; Zimbelman, J. R.

    2016-08-01

    A new terrestrial analog site for transverse aeolian ridges (TARs) is described in this study. The Lut desert of Iran hosts large ripple-like aeolian bedforms, with the same horizontal length scales and patterns of TARs on Mars. Different classes of TARs and different types of other aeolian features such as sand dunes, zibars, dust devil tracks and yardangs can be found in this area, which signify an active aeolian region. This area represents a unique site to study the formation and evolution of these enigmatic features, with potential relevance toward a better understanding of TARs on Mars.

  18. Aggradation and degradation of alluvial sand deposits, 1965 to 1986, Colorado River, Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Schmidt, John C.; Graf, Julia B.

    1990-01-01

    Alluvial sand deposits along the Colorado River in Grand Canyon National Park are used as campsites and are substrate for vegetation. The largest and most numerous of these deposits are formed in zones of recirculating current that are created downstream from where the channel is constricted by debris fans at tributary mouths. Alluvial sand deposits are classified by location and form. Separation and reattachment deposits are downstream from constrictions within recirculation zones. Separation deposits are near the point of flow separation and typically mantle large debris fans. Reattachment deposits are near the point of flow reattachment and project upstream beneath much of the zone of recirculating current. Upper-pool deposits are upstream from a constriction and are associated with backwaters. Channel-margin deposits line the channel and have the form of terraces. Some are created in small recirculation zones. Reattachment and channel-margin deposits are largest and most numerous in wide reaches, although small channel-margin deposits are used as campsites in the narrow Muav Gorge. Separation deposits are more uniformly distributed throughout Grand Canyon National Park than are other types of deposits. In some narrow reaches where the number of alluvial sand deposits used as campsites is small, separation deposits are a high percentage of the total. During high flows, both separation and reattachment deposits are initially scoured but are subsequently redeposited during flow recession. Sand is also exchanged between the main channel and recirculation zones. The rate of recession of high flows can affect the elevation of alluvial deposits that are left exposed after a flood has passed. Fluctuating flows that follow a period of steady discharge cause initial erosion of separation and reattachment deposits. A part of this eroded sand is transported to the main channel. Therefore, sand is exchanged between the main channel and recirculation zones and redistributed

  19. Sedimentology and paleohydrology of Late Quaternary lake deposits in the northern Namib Sand Sea, Namibia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Teller, James T.; Rutter, Nat; Lancaster, N.

    The Namib Sand Sea is the largest active desert dunefield in southern Africa, and is comprised mainly of large north-south linear dunes. In the interdune areas of the northern Sand Sea eleven small areas of calcareous lacustrine sediment have been studied. These beds are typically less than a metre thick and are dominantly comprised of calcareous sandstones to mudstones and sandy limestones. The carbonates are mainly magnesian calcites (1-14% MgCO 3) with some protodolomite and aragonite. Calcified reed casts and fresh to brackish water gastropods, diatoms, and ostracods are present in some beds. δ18O values indicate a hot and dry climate. A number of enriched δ13C values may reflect high salinity, low organic populations, or carbonate recrystallization. These carbonate-rich lacustrine deposits are indicative of increased periods of moisture availability in this normally hyperarid region during the Late Quaternary. The origin of the water responsible for depositing these sediments may be: (1) ponding at the end point of the Tsondab River, which at one time extended farther west into the Sand Sea; (2) flooding into interdune corridors when water levels rose in rivers such as the Kuiseb; (3) groundwater seepage into depressions either through dunes that border rivers or from the underlying Tsondab Sandstone; and (4) increased rainfall. We do not believe that there is evidence to support a major increase in precipitation over the region. However, even a small increase in precipitation in the headwaters of valleys that drain toward the Sand Sea might: (1) generate enough additional runoff to extend the terminal point of rivers such as the Tsondab farther into the dunes; (2) cause lateral flooding from major valleys into interdune corridors; and (3) recharge aquifers. The sedimentary records at Narabeb, Ancient Tracks, and West Pan, which lie along the old course of the Tsondab River, favor a ponded river origin for them, whereas groundwater seepage is favored at

  20. The nature and formation of aeolian mineral dust material

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smalley, Ian; O'hara-Dhand, Ken; McLaren, Sue

    2013-04-01

    Aeolian dust affects climate and records past climates. It has become a much studied material but there has been a certain lack of emphasis on the actual nature of the dust, and an even greater neglect of actual production mechanisms for dust particles. Huge amounts of dust may be raised from the Bodele depression and other parts of North Africa, and much of it may be carried across the North Atlantic to aid in soil formation in Brazil. But what does it consist of? We know that much of the Bodele dust is diatoms from old Lake Chad, but what of the lithological inorganic mineral content? A very crude division of aeolian dust into large dust(say around 20-50um) and small dust (2-5um)has been proposed. Much of the study of loess has been confused by the failure to make this distinction, and similar problems may arise in the study of the finer fractions of aeolian dust. Much aeolian material is clay-mineral based- formed from clay mineral aggregates(CMA), from lake bottom sediments. This can form large dust particles, as in parna in Australia, but also contributes largely to small long travel aerosolic dust. Another major contributor is the quartz fragment. The large dust for classic loess deposits is mostly quartz silt- and there is considerable discussion about the controls that affect quartz silt. There are some interesting modalities in the world of quartz particle sedimentology which need to be examined. Quartz sand (say 200-500um) is the key initiating material and the formation processes for quartz sand have a down-the-line effect on the formation of smaller particles. The central observation is the action of two processes- a eutectic-like reaction in the proto-rock granite which defines the essential nature of sand particles, and the high-low displacive crystallographic transformation which introduces tensile stresses into the quartz particle systems. The limited range of eutectic particle size means a limited range of tensile stresses. A neat combination of

  1. Genetic features of soils on sorted sand deposits of different origins in the Kola Peninsula

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pereverzev, V. N.

    2009-09-01

    Differences in the chemical composition of soils developed from sorted sands of different origins are revealed. The iron-illuvial podzols on rich glaciofluvial and marine sands are characterized by well-pronounced Al-Fe-humus differentiation of the Si, Al, and Fe in the soil profile. These soils are relatively similar in their bulk elemental composition. The difference between them is seen in the degree of differentiation of the soil profiles; it is stronger in the soils developed from glaciofluvial deposits. This is particularly true with respect to the oxalate-soluble iron and aluminum hydroxides. The deposits derived from the red-colored Tersk sandstone and processed by the sea (in the coastal zone of the White Sea) have the poorest chemical composition. In the soils developed from them, the differentiation of oxalate-soluble compounds is slightly pronounced (for Fe) or completely absent (for Si and Al). These soils can be classified as podzolized ferruginous red-colored psammozems (within the order of poorly developed soils) with the following horizons: O-Ce-Cf-C. The Ce horizon has the features of podzolization, and the Cf horizon has some features attesting to the illuvial accumulation of Fe. The profile of these soils inherits a reddish tint from the parent material.

  2. Depositional environments of Schuler Formation (Cotton Valley Sands), Upshur County, Texas

    SciTech Connect

    Kast, J.A.

    1983-03-01

    Exploration for tight gas (FERC Section 107) production from the Schuler Formation (Cotton Valley sands) has provided recent data for the recognition of the lower Schuler (Shongaloo member) shoreface facies and delineation of the upper Schuler (Dorcheat member) delta plain complex in Upshur County. Shoreface facies within the lower Schuler have a typical funnel-shaped log pattern (coarsening-upward clastic). In core, the corresponding coarsening-upward sequence grades from offshore to upper shoreface facies. Upper offshore sediments are dominated by a heavily bioturbated and intercalated sandstone/shale sequence with numerous trace fossils, escape traces, and shell debris. Associated facies overlying the upper shoreface are lagoonal. Subaerially exposed mottled red and green siltsone and red mudstone show evidence of root penetration and are interpreted as coastal plain to tidal flat. The marsh deposits (green siltstones and red mudstones) gradationally interbed with a subtidal lagoonal facies containing dark gray, fossiliferous, argillaceous, limestone containing oysters, echinoid fragments, and annelid worm tubes. In an effort to tie the limited core data (4 wells) to a countywide environmental interpretation, sand percent interval slice maps were constructed above and below the ubiquitous subtidal lagoonal marker. These maps and core data in the lower Schuler delineate a strike-oriented, linear clastic shoreline (ENEWSW). Within Upshur County, lower Schuler sediments were deposited as interdeltaic, shoreface facies. The upper member is characterized by a dip-oriented sandstone trend interpreted as an aggradational delta plain complex associated with the Lone Oak delta system.

  3. Snowpack deposition of trace elements in the Athabasca oil sands region, Canada.

    PubMed

    Guéguen, C; Cuss, C W; Cho, S

    2016-06-01

    The total recoverable and dissolved concentrations of 29 metals and metalloids were analyzed in snowpack collected at 91 sites in the Athabasca oil sands region, Canada in winter 2011. Based on deposition pattern from geographical centre, three groups were found: Type-1 metals (i.e. dissolved and total recoverable V; Mo) showed a significant exponential decrease with distance, suggesting oil sands development sources; Type-2 elements (e.g. Al, Sb, As, Ba, Fe, Ni, Tl, and Ti and Zn) showed exponentially decline patterns but with some local point sources; Type-3 elements (e.g. Cd, Cl, Cr, Mn, Sr and Th) deposition pattern represented local sources. A self-organizing map showed that sites with the highest elemental concentrations (Cluster I) were mainly located in the vicinity of upgrading facilities and along the north-south transects. The lowest elemental concentration sites (Cluster III) were the most distal sites or located in the western region of the study area. PMID:27031808

  4. Vertical ground motion and its effects on liquefaction resistance of fully saturated sand deposits

    PubMed Central

    Kontoe, Stavroula; Taborda, David M. G.; Potts, David M.

    2016-01-01

    Soil liquefaction has been extensively investigated over the years with the aim to understand its fundamental mechanism and successfully remediate it. Despite the multi-directional nature of earthquakes, the vertical seismic component is largely neglected, as it is traditionally considered to be of much lower amplitude than the components in the horizontal plane. The 2010–2011 Canterbury earthquake sequence in New Zealand is a prime example that vertical accelerations can be of significant magnitude, with peak amplitudes well exceeding their horizontal counterparts. As research on this topic is very limited, there is an emerging need for a more thorough investigation of the vertical motion and its effect on soil liquefaction. As such, throughout this study, uni- and bidirectional finite-element analyses are carried out focusing on the influence of the input vertical motion on sand liquefaction. The effects of the frequency content of the input motion, of the depth of the deposit and of the hydraulic regime, using variable permeability, are investigated and exhaustively discussed. The results indicate that the usual assumption of linear elastic response when compressional waves propagate in a fully saturated sand deposit does not always hold true. Most importantly post-liquefaction settlements appear to be increased when the vertical component is included in the analysis. PMID:27616931

  5. Ancient sand-rich submarine fans: depositional systems, models, identification, and analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mattern, F.

    2005-05-01

    Sand-rich submarine fans are radial or curved in plan view depending on the slope of the basin floor. They occur isolated or in coalescing systems. The fans' average lateral extent measures close to 25 km and their thickness usually less than 300 m. The thickness of outer fan sequences averages around 120 m and that of middle fan successions around 160 m. Rarely reported inner fan sequences have a maximum thickness of 80 m. The formation of sand-rich fans is closely related to tectonic activity. Their sediment is coarse-grained and compositionally immature as indicated by significant feldspar content due to close provenance and rapid transport by short rivers with a steep gradient controlled by tectonism. Tectonic activity also provides for narrow shelves making the fans relatively insensitive to sealevel changes. Formation of sand-rich fans typically occurs in restricted continental basins. The tectonic settings are highly variable. Sand-rich fans typically receive their sediment through submarine canyons which intercept sand from longshore drift and/or are fed more or less directly by regional rivers. The type of ancient fan system (radial, curved, isolated, coalescing) may be identified through paleocurrent map plots, facies map sketches, recognition of lateral thickness variations and sediment influx centers, as well as lateral bed correlations defining the minimum fan extent. Important in distinguishing different environments of ancient fans are detailed measured sections, their comparison and correlation. Channelized inner fan and middle fan deposits may be distinguished from the unchannelized outer fan successions through bed correlation tests which reflect their different stratigraphic architectures and bedding patterns. Bedding in outer fan deposits (lobes) is relatively simple, parallel, and regular. The lateral bed continuity is relatively high. Channel fills, especially those of middle fan distributary channels, display a complicated bedding pattern

  6. Boundary Conditions for Aeolian Activity in North American Dune Fields

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Halfen, A. F.; Lancaster, N.; Wolfe, S.

    2014-12-01

    Geomorphic and chronological data for dune fields are evaluated for three contrasting areas of North America: 1) the Prairie-Parkland-Boreal ecozones of the northern Great Plains in Canada; 2) the Central Great Plains of the USA; and 3) the deserts of southwestern USA and northern Mexico. Luminescence and radiocarbon ages for periods of dune accumulation and stability are compared with palaeoenvironment proxies to provide an assessment of the boundary conditions of dune system response to changes in sediment supply, availability, and mobility. Dune fields in the northern Great Plains were formed from sediment originating from glaciofluvial or glaciolacustrine sediments deposited during deglaciation 16-11 ka. Subsequent aeolian deposition occurred in Parkland and Prairie dune fields as a result of mid-Holocene (8-5 ka) and late-Holocene (< 3.5 ka) activity related to drought conditions that reworked pre-existing aeolian sands. In the Central Great Plains, dune fields are closely linked to fluvial sediment sources. Sediment supply was high during deglaciation of the Rocky Mountains and resulted in widespread dune construction 16-10 ka. Multiple periods of Holocene reactivation are recorded and reflect increased sediment availability during drought episodes. Dune fields in the southwestern deserts experienced periods of construction as a result of enhanced supply of sediment from fluvial and lacustrine sources during the period 11.8-8 ka and at multiple intervals during the late Holocene. Despite spatial and temporal gaps in chronometric data as a result of sampling biases, the record from North American dune fields indicates the strong influence of sediment supply on dune construction, with changes in sediment availability as a result of drought episodes resulting in dune field reactivation and reworking of pre-existing sediment.

  7. The Halekulani Sand Channel and Makua Shelf sediment deposits: Are they a sand resource for replenishing Waikiki's beaches?

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hampton, M.A.; Fletcher, C. H., III; Barry, J.H.; Lemmo, S.J.

    2000-01-01

    The Halekulani Sand Channel and the Makua Shelf off the south shore of Oahu contain at least 1.3 million m3 of sediment that is a possible resource for nourishing degraded sections of Waikiki Beach. A sidescan sonar survey indicates continuous sediment cover within the channel and on the shelf, and samples from the top and bottom of vibracores from the channel and shelf contain from 29% to 77% of grains between 0 to 2.5 phi (1 to 0.177 mm), the size range of four samples from Waikiki Beach. Compositional analyses indicate high variability, but the vibracore samples normally have relatively high Halimeda content compared to beach sand samples. Laboratory tests show a positive correlation of abrasion with Halimeda content, suggesting that the offshore sediment would abrade more than beach sediment under nearshore wave action. The common gray color of the offshore sediment can be aesthetically undesirable for sand on popular tourist beaches such as Waikiki; however, visual observation of native beach sand indicates that a significant component of gray color is endemic to many Hawaiian beaches. The gray color was removed in the laboratory by soaking in heated hydrogen peroxide. The geological properties of the offshore sediment indicate potential as a resource for beach nourishment, but industrial treatment might be necessary to remove excess fine and coarse grains, and possibly the gray color. Further, the abrasion potential might have to be considered in calculating beach sand losses over time.

  8. Atmospheric significance of aeolian salts in the sandy deserts of northwestern China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhu, B.-Q.

    2015-12-01

    Large sandy deserts in the middle latitudes of northwestern China were investigated for soluble salt variations in modern and ancient aeolian sediments, aiming to explore the environmental significance of "aeolian salts". Results revealed that aeolian salt variations have a clear relationship with the changing meridional and zonal gradients of the desert locations and the aeolian differentiation effect, but are weakly linked to local geological conditions. It suggests that the natural system of aeolian salts is hydrologically open and the chemistry of the parent brines are different from that predicted for hydrologically closed systems. Atmospheric depositions of water-soluble chemical species are an important process/source contributing to aeolian salt. Sequential variations of soluble salts in sedimentary profiles interbedded with aeolian and non-aeolian deposits and their palaeoenvironmental implications in the hinterland areas of these deserts were further evaluated, based on the constraints of OSL dating and radiocarbon dating data. The results indicate that the inorganic salts may be a latent geoproxy in revealing regional palaeoclimatic changes in desert areas for the sediments deposited under onefold depositional environment, but the interpretation should be more careful for the sediments deposited under diverse depositional conditions. This study presents the evidence of atmospheric origin of aeolian salt in sandy deserts, with limited climatic significance in palaeoenvironmental reconstruction.

  9. Abrasion by aeolian particles: Earth and Mars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Greeley, R.; Marshall, J. R.; White, B. R.; Pollack, J. B.; Marshall, J.; Krinsley, D.

    1984-01-01

    Estimation of the rate of aeolian abrasion of rocks on Mars requires knowledge of: (1) particle flux, (2) susceptibilities to abrasion of various rocks, and (3) wind frequencies on Mars. Fluxes and susceptibilities for a wide range of conditions were obtained in the laboratory and combined with wind data from the Viking meteorology experiment. Assuming an abundant supply of sand-sized particles, estimated rates range up to 2.1 x 10 to the minus 2 power cm of abrasion per year in the vicinity of Viking Lander 1. This rate is orders of magnitude too great to be in agreement with the inferred age of the surface based on models of impact crater flux. The discrepancy in the estimated rate of abrasion and the presumed old age of the surface cannot be explained easily by changes in climate or exhumation of ancient surfaces. The primary reason is thought to be related to the agents of abrasion. At least some sand-sized (approx. 100 micrometers) grains appear to be present, as inferred from both lander and orbiter observations. High rates of abrasion occur for all experimental cases involving sands of quartz, basalt, or ash. However, previous studies have shown that sand is quickly comminuted to silt- and clay-sized grains in the martian aeolian regime. Experiments also show that these fine grains are electrostatically charged and bond together as sand-sized aggregates. Laboratory simulations of wind abrasion involving aggregates show that at impact velocities capable of destroying sand, aggregates from a protective veneer on the target surface and can give rise to extremely low abrasion rates.

  10. Hydraulic fracturing for control of sand production and asphaltene deposition in deep hot wells

    SciTech Connect

    Ortega, L.; Brito, L.; Ben-Naceur, K.

    1996-12-31

    The North of Monagas giant field in Venezuela has been produced since the late 80-s. Depth ranges from 12000 to 20000 ft (3,600 to 6,000 in). Wells in the field have experienced early in the production cycle both problems of sand production and asphaltene flocculation. A multi-disciplinary team was created to define ways to optimize production from the field The paper first addresses the methodology used to identify the source of the sanding problem, including extensive mechanical analysis of the formation, with tri-axial testing and sanding critical flow gradient analysis. The effectiveness of the initial strategies of optimization of choke size, and selection of perforated intervals and gun sizes is evaluated. The onset of asphaltene deposition was analyzed, and it was determined that most occurring problems were related to drilling and production practices. To solve both problems, by modifying pressure drop and flow profiles, a hydraulic fracturing strategy was implemented in the field. Special care was given to the particular well conditions (close-by dual tubing completion, with potential risk of communication, thick and multi-layered geometry), in addition to expected high treating pressures and sensitivity of formation fluids to thermal shocks. A detailed pre- and post-fracturing well testing procedure was adopted which allows for an optimization of the fracture length, and comparison of results with predictions. Prior to the main fracture, calibration treatments were performed; calculated fracture heights were compared to the ones determined from temperature logs. A new technique to determine permeability from mini-fracs using the theory of impulse testing was also applied. Finally, production logging after the frac and a build-up were used to assess the validity of the predictions.

  11. Acid deposition in the Athabasca Oil Sands Region: a policy perspective.

    PubMed

    Whitfield, Colin J; Watmough, Shaun A

    2015-12-01

    Industrial emissions of sulphur (S) and nitrogen (N) to the atmosphere associated with the oil sands industry in north-eastern Alberta are of interest as they represent the largest localized source in Canada (with potential for future growth) and the region features acid-sensitive upland terrain. Existing emission management policy for the Regional Municipality of Wood Buffalo, where the industry is located, is based on a time-to-effect approach that relies on dynamic model simulations of temporal changes in chemistry and features highly protective chemical criteria. In practice, the policy is difficult to implement and it is unlikely that a scientifically defensible estimate of acidification risk can be put forward due to the limitations primarily associated with issues of scale, chemical endpoint designation (selection of chemical limit for ecosystem protection from acidification) and data availability. A more implementable approach would use a steady-state critical load (CL) assessment approach to identify at-risk areas. The CL assessment would consider areas of elevated acid deposition associated with oil sands emissions rather than targeted political jurisdictions. Dynamic models should only be (strategically) used where acidification risk is identified via CL analysis, in order to characterize the potential for acidification-induced changes that can be detrimental to sensitive biota within the lifespan of the industry. PMID:26607154

  12. Biodiversity impact of the aeolian periglacial geomorphologic evolution of the Fontainebleau Massif (France)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thiry, M.; Liron, M. N.

    2009-04-01

    erosion of the sand beneath the bordering sandstone benches, resulting in overhangs. These structures are the most common in the western district of the Fontainebleau Massif. Ponds develop on the tightly silicified and impermeable sandstone pans that form the "platières". There are permanent ponds and temporary wet zones, formed of interconnected or isolated depressions. The origin of these ponds has to be questioned with regard to the landscape shaping. Their origin is directly bound to the hollowing of uncemented, sandy zones, within the sandstone pans forming the "platières". Erosion by runoff cannot be considered; the only way to hollow them out is by deflation processes. No direct dating of the Quaternary dune and loess deposits of the Fontainebleau Massif exists. Nevertheless, dating of paleopodzols interlayered between drift sands, pond deposits and bones within congelifracts allow relating these periglacial features with the end of the last glacial period. For now, there is no dating to assess what belongs to older glacial periods. Distribution of the aeolian patterns The Fontainebleau Massif displays noteworthy morphological diversities in the various districts of the forest. Some of these differentiations result from geological features, but most of them are related to erosion processes, and among them deflation processes leaved different imprints in the western and eastern districts of the Fontainebleau Massif. The topography played an important role controlling the aeolian processes. Deflation was important in the westerly upwind district. In the westerly front face, aeolian erosion was activated by turbulences around the topographic obstacles. The reliefs funneled the winds and gave rise to swirls that hollow the blowouts. This area displays the sharpest and more chiseled landforms of the massif. Moreover, the sandstone scarps at the edge of the "platières" are high and uncovered, with frequent overhangs. The collapsed sandstone blocks of the "chaos" are

  13. Liquefaction Potential Assessment Of Silty And Silty-Sand Deposits: A Case Study

    SciTech Connect

    Lo Presti, Diego C. F.; Squeglia, Nunziante

    2008-07-08

    The paper shows a case study concerning the liquefaction potential assessment of deposits which mainly consist of non plastic silts and sands (FC>35 %,I{sub p}<10%, CF negligible). The site under study has been characterized by means of in situ tests (CPTU, SPT and DPSH), boreholes and laboratory tests on undisturbed and remolded samples. More specifically, classification tests, cyclic undrained stress-controlled triaxial tests and resonant column tests have been performed. Liquefaction susceptibility has been evaluated by means of several procedures prescribed by codes or available in technical literature. The evaluation of liquefaction potential has been carried out by means of three different procedure based on in situ and laboratory tests.

  14. Could Poor Fens BE More Sensitive than Bogs to Elevated N Deposition in the Oil Sands Region of Northern Alberta?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wieder, R. K.; Vile, M. A.; Scott, K. D.

    2015-12-01

    Bogs and fens cover 29% of the 140,000 km2 Oil Sands Administrative Area (OSAA) in northern Alberta, a region characterized by quite low background N deposition (1-2 kg/ha/yr). However, development of the oil sands resource has led to increasing emission of nitrogen oxides, which are then returned to regional ecosystems as elevated atmospheric N deposition. Given the nutrient deficient nature of bogs and poor fens, elevated N deposition from oil sands development could potentially affect peatland ecosystem structure and function. To evaluate the ecosystem-level effects of N deposition, since 2011, we have experimentally applied N to a bog and a poor fen near Mariana Lakes, Alberta, located far enough from the OSAA to be unaffected by oil sands emissions. Treatments include simulated rainfall equivalent to N deposition of 0, 5, 10, 15, 20, and 25 kg/ha/yr, plus control plots receiving no added water (3 replicate plots per site per N treatment). Concentrations of NH4+-N, NO3- N, and DON at the top of the peatland water table did not increase with increasing N deposition, averaging 0.61, 0.09, and 1.07 mg/L, respectively, in the bog, and 0.53, 0.10, and 0.81 mg/L, respectively, in the poor fen. Ericaceous shrub abundance increased with increasing N deposition in both the bog and the poor fen, although plot-scale greenness (hand-held spectral measurement of the Normalized Difference Red Edge (NDRE) index) increased with N deposition in the poor fen, but not in the bog. Segmented regression indicated that in the poor fen, at N deposition above 14-16 kg/ha/yr, total microbial, bacterial, and fungal biomass in the top 5 cm of peat increased with N deposition, with no effect at lower N deposition. No effect of N deposition on microbial, bacterial, or fungal biomass was observed at 5-10 cm in the poor fen, or at either 0-5 or 5-10 cm in the bog. In the poor fen, microbial, bacterial, and fungal biomass increased with NDRE, but the effect was not significant in the bog

  15. 26Al/10Be dating of an aeolian dust mantle soil in western New South Wales, Australia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fisher, Adrian; Fink, David; Chappell, John; Melville, Michael

    2014-08-01

    Aeolian dust mantle soils are an important element of many landscapes in south-eastern Australia, though the age of these aeolian deposits has not been radiometrically determined. At Fowlers Gap in western New South Wales, surface cobbles of silcrete and quartz overlie a stone-free, aeolian dust mantle soil, which has a thickness of about 1.6 m. The clay-rich aeolian dust deposit in turn lies upon a buried silcrete and quartz stone layer. Modelling in-situ cosmogenic 26Al and 10Be concentrations measured in both the surface quartz stones and in the buried quartz layer of rocks, reveals that each has experienced a complex exposure-burial history. Due to the absence of quartz stones or sand at intermediate depths, our cosmogenic 26Al and 10Be modelling was not able to determine a definitive mechanism of stone pavement formation and stone burial. Various scenarios of stone formation, transport, burial and exhumation were tested that constrain the age of the deposit to range from 0.9 ± 0.2 Ma to 1.8 ± 0.2 Ma, based largely on different assumptions taken for the time-dependency of the net sedimentation rate. This corresponds with the initiation of the Simpson Desert dune fields and the deflation of lakes in central Australia, which probably responded to the shift to longer-wavelength, larger-amplitude Quaternary glacial cycles at around 1 Ma. Sensitivity analyses were carried out to identify those parameters which better constrained model outputs. Within model errors, which largely are the result of analytical errors in measured 26Al and 10Be concentrations, all three competing theories of colluvial wash, upward displacement of stones, and cumulic pedogenesis are possible mechanisms for the formation of the surface stone pavement.

  16. Elevated Nitrogen Deposition from Alberta Oil Sands Development Stimulates Phosphatase Activity in Dominant Sphagnum Moss Species

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kashi, N. N.; Wieder, R.; Vile, M. A.

    2013-12-01

    Emissions of NOx associated with Alberta oil sands (AOS) development are leading to locally elevated atmospheric N deposition, in a region where background N deposition has been historically quite low (< 1 kg/ha/yr). This elevated N deposition has the potential to alter the ecosystem structure and function of nutrient-poor boreal peatlands. Nitrogen enrichment may alter soil microbial activity, which could be manifested in changes in extracellular enzyme activities. Since 2011, we have been experimentally adding N as NH4NO3 in simulated precipitation at 0, 5, 10, 15, 20, and 25 kg N ha/yr/ plus no-water controls to a boreal bog and a poor fen (3 replicate plots per treatment). In 2013, acid phosphatase activities in living plant capitulum of Sphagnum angustifolium, Sphagnum fuscum, and Sphagnum magellanicum were quantified in June and July using 4-methyumbelliferylphosphate and fluorescence detection of the enzymatically released methylumbelliferone (MUF). Phosphatase activities did not differ with N treatment for S. angustifolium in the bog (p=0.3409) or the poor fen (p=0.0629), or for S. fuscum in the bog (p=0.1950), averaging 35.0 × 0.7, 61.6 × 1.2, and 41.6 × 0.9 μmol MUF/g DWT/hr, respectively. For S. fuscum in the poor fen, phosphatase activities differed between N treatments (p=0.0275), ranging 40.6 × 1.1 μmol MUF/g DWT/hr in the control plots to 73.7 × 2.0 μmol MUF/g DWT/hr in the 5 kg/ha/yr N treatment plots; increasing N deposition did not result in a gradual change in enzyme activity. On the other hand, S. magellanicum phosphatase activities differed between N treatments (p=0.0189) and showed a pattern of generally increasing activity with increasing N deposition (37.4 × 0.5 μmol MUF/g DWT/hr in control plots; 97.9 × 4.5 μmol MUF/g DWT/hr in the 25 kg/ha/yr N treatment plots). The differing phosphatase responses between these dominant Sphagnum species suggest unique differences in nutrient balance and/or microbial activity. Combining the

  17. The significance of discharge in the replenishment of sand bar deposits along the Colorado River through the Grand Canyon

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wiele, S.; Hazel, J.; Schmidt, J. C.; Melis, T.

    2002-12-01

    Topographic sandbar surveys, recovered scour chains, analysis of aerial photos, and modeling of sand deposition demonstrate that releases from Glen Canyon Dam greater than power-plant capacity (PPC; about 900 cubic meters per second) are significantly more effective than PPC-limited releases at redistributing sand from the channel bed to higher elevations along the channel margin. A release of 1,270 m3/s (1.4 times the PPC) for 7 days in 1996 tested the effectiveness with which sandbars could be restored by the manipulation of dam releases aimed at redistributing a limited sand supply. This high flow generally resulted in substantial increases in bar size, although some sandbars close to the dam eroded. Since 1996, releases for bar building and habitat maintenance (a 2-day release in 1997 and two 4-day releases in 2000) have been limited to PPC. Field measurements indicate that the 1996 release of 1,270 m3/s significantly increased the area and volume of sand deposits at elevations greater than the stage reached during typical post-dam flows. Minor aggradation occurred during the PPC flows. In 1996, the relative extent of erosion and deposition changed longitudinally downstream as evidenced by the area of substantial deposition exceeding that of erosion at sites further downstream. The number of bars that were substantially reworked, as measured by the number of bars that significantly increased or decreased in area at the elevation range of normal dam operations, was much greater at 1,270 m3/s than at 900 m3/s. Deposition from the 1,270 m3/s release persisted at many sites on a multi-year scale whereas deposition resulting from the PPC flows only lasted a few months. Minor deposition during PPC flows in 1997, however, was greatest in upstream reaches where bar erosion during normal flows had been more extensive. These observations show that deposition is sensitive to flow magnitude and depth of inundation as well as sand supply. Flow, sand transport, and bed

  18. Highstand shelf fans: The role of buoyancy reversal in the deposition of a new type of shelf sand body

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Steel, Elisabeth; Simms, Alexander R.; Warrick, Jonathan; Yokoyama, Yusuke

    2016-01-01

    Although sea-level highstands are typically associated with sediment-starved continental shelves, high sea level does not hinder major river floods. Turbidity currents generated by plunging of sediment-laden rivers at the fluvial-marine interface, known as hyperpycnal flows, allow for cross-shelf transport of suspended sand beyond the coastline. Hyperpycnal flows in southern California have deposited six subaqueous fans on the shelf of the northern Santa Barbara Channel in the Holocene. Using eight cores and nine grab samples, we describe the deposits, age, and stratigraphic architecture of two fans in the Santa Barbara Channel. Fan lobes have up to 3 m of relief and are composed of multiple hyperpycnite beds ∼5 cm to 40 cm thick. Deposit architecture and geometry suggest the hyperpycnal flows became positively buoyant and lifted off the seabed, resulting in well-sorted, structureless, elongate sand lobes. Contrary to conventional sequence stratigraphic models, the presence of these features on the continental shelf suggests that active-margin shelves may locally develop high-quality reservoir sand bodies during sea-level highstands, and that such shelves need not be solely the site of sediment bypass. These deposits may provide a Quaternary analogue to many well-sorted sand bodies in the rock record that are interpreted as turbidites but lack typical Bouma-type features.

  19. Building of tropical beach ridges, northeastern Queensland, Australia: Cyclone inundation and aeolian decoration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tamura, Toru; Nicholas, William; Brooke, Brendan; Oliver, Thomas

    2016-04-01

    Processes associated with tropical cyclones are thought responsible for building coarse sand beach ridges along the northeastern Queensland coast, Australia. While these ridges are expected to be geological records of the past cyclone, they question the general consensus of the aeolian genesis of sandy beach ridges. To explore the ridge-forming process, we carried out the GPR survey, auger drilling, pit excavation, grain-size analysis, and OSL dating for coarse sand beach ridges at the Cowley Beach, northeastern Queensland. The Cowley Beach is a mesotidal beach characterized by a low-tide terrace and steep beach face. Ten beach ridges are recognized along the survey transect that extends 700 m inland from the shore. 37 OSL ages are younger seawards, indicating the seaward accretion of the ridge sequence over the last 2700 years. The highest ridge is +5.1 m high above AHD (Australian Height Datum). Two GPR units are bounded by a groundwater surface at c. +1.5 m AHD. The upper unit is characterized by horizontal to hummocky reflectors punctuated by seaward dipping truncation surfaces. These reflectors in places form dome-like structure that appears to be the nucleus of a beach ridge. The shape and level (+2.5 m AHD) of the dome are similar to those of the present swash berm. The lower unit shows a sequence of reflectors that dip at an angle of present beach face. The sequence is dissected by truncation surfaces, some of which are continuous to those in the upper unit. Coarse sand mainly forms beach ridge deposits below +4.0 m AHD, while a few higher ridges have an upward fining layer composed of medium sand above +4.0 m, which is finer than aeolian ripples found on the backshore during the survey. In addition, pumice gravel horizons underlie the examined ridge crests. The sequence of seaward dipping reflectors indicates that the Cowley Beach, like other many sandy beaches, has prograded during onshore sand accretion by fairweather waves and has been eroded by storms

  20. Method and apparatus for producing tar sand deposits containing conductive layers

    SciTech Connect

    Glandt, C.A.; Vinegar, H.J.; Gardner, J.W.

    1991-08-27

    This patent describes a process for recovering hydrocarbon from tar sand deposits containing high conductivity layers and a hydrocarbon rich zone. It comprises selecting a thin high conductivity target layer near the hydrocarbon rich zone; installing at least one pair of horizontal production wells that are horizontal electrodes during an electrical heating stage, and are production wells during a production stage, wherein the horizontal electrodes, when electrically excited, span the high conductivity target layer and divide the target layer into electrically heated zones and non-electrically heated zones; providing at least one injection well for hot fluid injection into the hydrocarbon rich zone; electrically exciting the horizontal electrodes during the electrical heating stage to electrically heat the high conductivity target layer to form a thin preheated hydrocarbon rich zone immediately adjacent to the target layer; injecting a hot fluid into the deposit adjacent to the high conductivity target layer and within the thin preheated hydrocarbon rich zone to displace the hydrocarbons to the production wells; and recovering hydrocarbons from the production wells.

  1. An Introduction to Using Surface Geophysics to Characterize Sand and Gravel Deposits

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Lucius, Jeffrey E.; Langer, William H.; Ellefsen, Karl J.

    2006-01-01

    This report is an introduction to surface geophysical techniques that aggregate producers can use to characterize known deposits of sand and gravel. Five well-established and well-tested geophysical methods are presented: seismic refraction and reflection, resistivity, ground penetrating radar, time-domain electromagnetism, and frequency-domain electromagnetism. Depending on site conditions and the selected method(s), geophysical surveys can provide information concerning aerial extent and thickness of the deposit, thickness of overburden, depth to the water table, critical geologic contacts, and location and correlation of geologic features. In addition, geophysical surveys can be conducted prior to intensive drilling to help locate auger or drill holes, reduce the number of drill holes required, calculate stripping ratios to help manage mining costs, and provide continuity between sampling sites to upgrade the confidence of reserve calculations from probable reserves to proved reserves. Perhaps the greatest value of geophysics to aggregate producers may be the speed of data acquisition, reduced overall costs, and improved subsurface characterization.

  2. An Introduction to Using Surface Geophysics to Characterize Sand and Gravel Deposits

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Lucius, Jeffrey E.; Langer, William H.; Ellefsen, Karl J.

    2007-01-01

    This report is an introduction to surface geophysical techniques that aggregate producers can use to characterize known deposits of sand and gravel. Five well-established and well-tested geophysical methods are presented: seismic refraction and reflection, resistivity, ground penetrating radar, time-domain electromagnetism, and frequency-domain electromagnetism. Depending on site conditions and the selected method(s), geophysical surveys can provide information concerning areal extent and thickness of the deposit, thickness of overburden, depth to the water table, critical geologic contacts, and location and correlation of geologic features. In addition, geophysical surveys can be conducted prior to intensive drilling to help locate auger or drill holes, reduce the number of drill holes required, calculate stripping ratios to help manage mining costs, and provide continuity between sampling sites to upgrade the confidence of reserve calculations from probable reserves to proved reserves. Perhaps the greatest value of geophysics to aggregate producers may be the speed of data acquisition, reduced overall costs, and improved subsurface characterization.

  3. Gully annealing by aeolian sediment: field and remote-sensing investigation of aeolian-hillslope-fluvial interactions, Colorado River corridor, Arizona, USA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sankey, Joel B.; Draut, Amy E.

    2014-09-01

    Processes contributing to development of ephemeral gully channels are of great importance to landscapes worldwide, and particularly in dryland regions where soil loss and land degradation from gully erosion pose long-term land-management problems. Whereas gully formation has been relatively well studied, much less is known of the processes that anneal gullies and impede their growth. This study of gully annealing by aeolian sediment, spanning 95 km along the Colorado River corridor in Glen, Marble, and Grand Canyon, Arizona, USA, employed field and remote sensing observations, including digital topographic modelling. Results indicate that aeolian sediment activity can be locally effective at counteracting gully erosion. Gullies are less prevalent in areas where surficial sediment undergoes active aeolian transport, and have a greater tendency to terminate in active aeolian sand. Although not common, examples exist in the record of historical imagery of gullies that underwent infilling by aeolian sediment in past decades and evidently were effectively annealed. We thus provide new evidence for a potentially important interaction of aeolian-hillslope-fluvial processes, which could affect dryland regions substantially in ways not widely recognized. Moreover, because the biologic soil crust plays an important role in determining aeolian sand activity, and so in turn the extent of gully development, this study highlights a critical role of geomorphic-ecologic interactions in determining arid-landscape evolution.

  4. Atmospheric significance of aeolian salts in the sandy deserts of northwestern China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhu, B.-Q.

    2016-02-01

    Large sandy deserts in the middle latitudes of northwestern China were investigated for soluble salt variations in modern and ancient aeolian sediments, aiming to explore the environmental significance of "aeolian salts". Results revealed that aeolian salt variations have a clear relationship with the changing meridional and zonal gradients of the desert locations and the aeolian differentiation effect, but are weakly linked to local geological conditions. Atmospheric depositions of water-soluble chemical species are an important process/source contributing to aeolian salt. Sequential variations of soluble salts in sedimentary profiles interbedded with aeolian and non-aeolian deposits and their palaeoenvironmental implications in the hinterland areas of these deserts were further evaluated, based on the constraints of OSL dating and radiocarbon dating data. The results indicate that inorganic salts may be a latent geoproxy in revealing regional palaeoclimatic changes in desert areas for sediments deposited under a single depositional environment, but the interpretation should be more cautious for sediments deposited under diverse depositional conditions. This study presents evidence of the atmospheric origin of aeolian salt in sandy deserts, with limited climatic significance in palaeoenvironmental reconstruction.

  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. Modeling aeolian erosion in presence of vegetation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dupont, S.; Bergametti, G.; Simoëns, S.

    2014-02-01

    Semiarid landscapes are characterized by vegetated surfaces. Understanding the impact of vegetation on aeolian soil erosion is important for reducing soil erosion or limiting crop damage through abrasion or burial. In the present study, a saltation model fully coupled with a large-eddy simulation airflow model is extended to vegetated landscapes. From this model, the sensitivity of sand erosion to different arrangements and type of plants (shrub versus tree) representative of semiarid landscapes is investigated and the wind erosion reduction induced by plants is quantified. We show that saltation processes over vegetated surfaces have a limited impact on the mean wind statistics, the momentum extracted from the flow by saltating particles being negligible compared to that extracted by plants. Simulated sand erosion patterns resulting from plant distribution, i.e., accumulation and erosion areas, appear qualitatively consistent with previous observations. It is shown that sand erosion reduction depends not only on vegetation cover but also on plant morphology and plant distribution relative to the mean wind direction. A simple shear stress partitioning approach applied in shrub cases gives similar trends of sand erosion reduction as the present model following wind direction and vegetation cover. However, the magnitude of the reduction appears significantly different from one approach to another. Although shrubs trap saltating particles, trees appear more efficient than shrubs to reduce sand erosion. This is explained by the large-scale sheltering effect of trees compared to the local shrub one.

  7. Atmospheric deposition of nitrogen, sulfur and base cations in jack pine stands in the Athabasca Oil Sands Region, Alberta, Canada.

    PubMed

    Fenn, M E; Bytnerowicz, A; Schilling, S L; Ross, C S

    2015-01-01

    Atmospheric deposition in the Athabasca Oil Sands Region decreased exponentially with distance from the industrial center. Throughfall deposition (kg ha(-1) yr(-1)) of NH(4)-N (.8-14.7) was double that of NO(3)-N (.3-6.7), while SO(4)-S ranged from 2.5 to 23.7. Gaseous pollutants (NO(2), HNO(3), NH(3), SO(2)) are important drivers of atmospheric deposition but weak correlations between gaseous pollutants and deposition suggest that particulate deposition is also important. The deposition (eq ha(-1)) of base cations (Ca + Mg + Na) across the sampling network was highly similar to N + S deposition, suggesting that acidic deposition is neutralized by base cation deposition and that eutrophication impacts from excess N may be of greater concern than acidification. Emissions from a large forest fire in summer 2011 were most prominently reflected in increased concentrations of HNO(3) and throughfall deposition of SO4-S at some sites. Deposition of NO(3)-N also increased as did NH(4)-N deposition to a lesser degree. PMID:25236261

  8. Aeolian processes and dune morphology in the Gobi and Badain Jaran Desert using LandSat Imagery.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cardinale, Marco; Cannito, Arturo; Marinangeli, Lucia

    2014-05-01

    The Gobi and Badain Jaran Deserts are parts of the vast sand sea of the Alashan Region, one of the greatest dunefield in China [1]. They lie between the southern Mongolia and the northern China (latitude 37° 06'N - 41°50'N; longitude 99°10'E - 107°09'E) [2]. The studied area is characterized by an arid climate with low average annual rainfall between 50-60mm, extreme fluctuation in temperature, very strong winds and by the occurrence of mega dunes and permanent lakes within the dunefield [3]. According to our morphological analysis, wind action has been one of the main factors that have shaped the surface features inside the investigated area. We produce a detailed geomorphological map of the desertic zone, highlighting the aeolian morphologies, in order to characterize aeolian deposits and processes. The LandSat ETM+ data [4], providing a continuous coverage of the dune fields with no gaps, were processed using ENVI software and then ingested in a GIS project. We also used DTMs (30m / pixel) from Aster data [5]. The dune morphology was classified using McKee criteria [6] and we interpreted the pattern of the complex ergs as the result of self - organization within complex systems [7]. Compound transverse mega dunes and barchanoid dunes developed under a variable wind regime, star dunes in the northern area near the mountain have been formed under a multi directional wind regime. The area covered by mega dunes suggests a complex evolution of these features dominated by the wind activity. Different episodes of deposition, erosion and motion, could explain the height of these dunes measured by the DTMs. The diverse aeolian features identified in the investigated area suggest that aeolian activity play a key role for the evolution of the surface morphologies of the Gobi Desert. To understand the local dynamics of aeolian processes, we are currently comparing these features with meteorological data from mesoscale wind models. References: [1] E. D.McKee. A Study of

  9. Contemporary research in aeolian geomorphology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bauer, B. O.

    2009-04-01

    The first International Conference on Aeolian Geomorphology (ICAR) was held in 1986, and every four years since then, aeolian geomorphologists from around the world have assembled to discuss their research and to showcase recent advancements in understanding and modeling of aeolian processes. A content analysis of the "Bibliography of Aeolian Research" [Stout, J.E., Warren, A., Gill, T.E., 2009. Publication trends in aeolian research: An analysis of the Bibliography of Aeolian Research. Geomorphology 105, 6-17 (this volume)] shows that the number of publications on aeolian topics has increased exponentially from the mid-20th Century with approximately 50 publications per year to about 500 publications per year when the first ICAR was held, to almost 1000 publications per year currently. Areas of focus have shifted historically from initial concerns with aeolian erosion and dust events as isolated phenomenon of localized curiosity or only regional importance, to comprehensive physically-based investigations and modeling of the mechanics of aeolian transport. Recently, more applied studies have been motivated by the recognition of the importance of aeolian processes to dust emissions into the atmosphere (with relevance for human health and for meteorological conditions and climate change) and within regional management contexts (especially on coasts where impending sea-level rise is of great concern and in arid and semi-arid environments given the dependence of sediment surface stability and remobilization on meteorological and ecological conditions). Aeolian geomorphology is a rapidly growing sub-discipline of Geomorphology that offers rich opportunities for interdisciplinary collaborations with colleagues from the Atmospheric Sciences, Climatology, Sedimentology, Quaternary Geology, Fluid Mechanics, Physics, Mathematics, Computer Science, Physical Geography, Ecology, and Agricultural Sciences, as well as our counterparts in fluvial, coastal, and arid

  10. Transport and deposition of stabilized engineered silver nanoparticles in water saturated loamy sand and silty loam.

    PubMed

    Braun, Anika; Klumpp, Erwin; Azzam, Rafig; Neukum, Christoph

    2015-12-01

    It is considered inevitable that the increasing production and application of engineered nanoparticles will lead to their release into the environment. However, the behavior of these materials under environmentally relevant conditions is still only poorly understood. In this study the transport and deposition behavior of engineered surfactant stabilized silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) in water saturated porous media was investigated in transport experiments with glass beads as reference porous medium and in two natural soils under various hydrodynamic and hydrochemical conditions. The transport and retention processes of AgNPs in the porous media were elucidated by inverse modeling and possible particle size changes occurring during the transport through the soil matrix were analyzed with flow field-flow fractionation (FlFFF). A high mobility of AgNPs was observed in loamy sand under low ionic strength (IS) conditions and at high flow rates. The transport was inhibited at low flow rates, at higher IS, in the presence of divalent cations and in a more complex, fine-grained silty loam. The slight decrease of the mean particle size of the AgNPs in almost all experiments indicates size selective filtration processes and enables the exclusion of homoaggregation processes. PMID:25527873

  11. Aeolian process-induced hyper-concentrated flow in a desert watershed

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ta, Wanquan; Wang, Haibin; Jia, Xiaopeng

    2014-04-01

    Ephemeral desert channels are characterized by very high rates of sediment transport during infrequent flood events. Here we show that aeolian process-induced hyper-concentrated (AHC) flows occur in the Sudalaer desert watershed in the Ordos Plateau of China, which primarily transport 0.08-0.25 mm non-cohesive aeolian sand and have a peak suspended sediment concentration of 1.1-1.4 × 106 mg l-3. Aeolian sand supply and storage in the channel play a crucial role in causing hyper-concentrated flow. Our results indicate that non-cohesive aeolian sand can be entrained from the bed and suspended in the turbulent flow when the channel bed slope exceeds a critical threshold (0.0003). We also show that if the frequency ratio of wind-blown sandstorms to rainstorms Tw/Tp exceeds β(γ - γ0)/α (P/V3) (A/L) (where α is the wind-blown sand transport coefficient, β is the runoff coefficient, γ - γ0 is the increase in suspension concentration caused by addition of aeolian sands, P is the density of rainstorms, V is the wind speed of sandstorms, A is the runoff-generating area, L is the aeolian sand-filled channel length), an AHC flow occurs during the passage of a flood in a desert channel. Since high-frequency aeolian processes provide an adequate quantity of transportable sediment and promote AHC flow, most of the infrequent rainfall-induced floods occurring in arid zones can develop as AHC flows.

  12. Effect of different-sized colloids on the transport and deposition of titanium dioxide nanoparticles in quartz sand.

    PubMed

    Cai, Li; Peng, Shengnan; Wu, Dan; Tong, Meiping

    2016-01-01

    Colloids (non-biological and biological) with different sizes are ubiquitous in natural environment. The investigations regarding the influence of different-sized colloids on the transport and deposition behaviors of engineered-nanoparticles in porous media yet are still largely lacking. This study investigated the effects of different-sized non-biological and biological colloids on the transport of titanium dioxide nanoparticles (nTiO2) in quartz sand under both electrostatically favorable and unfavorable conditions. Fluorescent carboxylate-modified polystyrene latex microspheres (CML) with sizes of 0.2-2 μm were utilized as model non-biological colloids, while Gram-negative Escherichia coli (∼ 1 μm) and Gram-positive Bacillus subtilis (∼ 2 μm) were employed as model biological colloids. Under the examined solution conditions, both breakthrough curves and retained profiles of nTiO2 with different-sized CML particles/bacteria were similar as those without colloids under favorable conditions, indicating that the copresence of model colloids in suspensions had negligible effects on the transport and deposition of nTiO2 under favorable conditions. In contrast, higher breakthrough curves and lower retained profiles of nTiO2 with CML particles/bacteria relative to those without copresent colloids were observed under unfavorable conditions. Clearly, the copresence of model colloids increased the transport and decreased the deposition of nTiO2 in quartz sand under unfavorable conditions (solution conditions examined in present study). Both competition of deposition sites on quartz sand surfaces and the enhanced stability/dispersion of nTiO2 induced by copresent colloids were found to be responsible for the increased nTiO2 transport with colloids under unfavorable conditions. Moreover, the smallest colloids had the highest coverage on sand surface and most significant dispersion effect on nTiO2, resulting in the greatest nTiO2 transport. PMID:26561451

  13. Approach to Assessing the Effects of Aerial Deposition on Water Quality in the Alberta Oil Sands Region.

    PubMed

    Dayyani, Shadi; Daly, Gillian; Vandenberg, Jerry

    2016-02-01

    Snow cover forms a porous medium that acts as a receptor for aerially deposited polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) and metals. The snowpack, acting as a temporary storage reservoir, releases contaminants accumulating over the winter during a relatively short melt period. This process could result in elevated concentrations of contaminants in melt water. Recent studies in the Alberta oil sands region have documented increases in snowpack and lake sediment concentrations; however, no studies have addressed the fate and transport of contaminants during the snowmelt period. This study describes modelling approaches that were developed to assess potential effects of aerially deposited PAHs and metals to snowpack and snowmelt water concentrations. The contribution of snowmelt to freshwater PAH concentrations is assessed using a dynamic, multi-compartmental fate model, and the contribution to metal concentrations is estimated using a mass-balance approach. The modelling approaches described herein were applied to two watersheds in the Alberta oil sands region for two planned oil sands developments. Accumulation of PAHs in a lake within the deposition zone was also modelled for comparison to observed concentrations. PMID:26803105

  14. Retention in Treated Wastewater Affects Survival and Deposition of Staphylococcus aureus and Escherichia coli in Sand Columns

    PubMed Central

    Li, Jiuyi; Zhao, Xiaokang; Tian, Xiujun; Li, Jin; Sjollema, Jelmer

    2015-01-01

    The fate and transport of pathogenic bacteria from wastewater treatment facilities in the Earth's subsurface have attracted extensive concern over recent decades, while the impact of treated-wastewater chemistry on bacterial viability and transport behavior remains unclear. The influence of retention time in effluent from a full-scale municipal wastewater treatment plant on the survival and deposition of Staphylococcus aureus and Escherichia coli strains in sand columns was investigated in this paper. In comparison to the bacteria cultivated in nutrient-rich growth media, retention in treated wastewater significantly reduced the viability of all strains. Bacterial surface properties, e.g., zeta potential, hydrophobicity, and surface charges, varied dramatically in treated wastewater, though no universal trend was found for different strains. Retention in treated wastewater effluent resulted in changes in bacterial deposition in sand columns. Longer retention periods in treated wastewater decreased bacterial deposition rates for the strains evaluated and elevated the transport potential in sand columns. We suggest that the wastewater quality should be taken into account in estimating the fate of pathogenic bacteria discharged from wastewater treatment facilities and the risks they pose in the aquatic environment. PMID:25595758

  15. Gully annealing by aeolian sediment: field and remote-sensing investigation of aeolian-hillslope-fluvial interactions, Colorado River corridor, Arizona, USA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sankey, Joel B.; Draut, Amy E.

    2014-01-01

    Processes contributing to development of ephemeral gully channels are of great importance to landscapes worldwide, and particularly in dryland regions where soil loss and land degradation from gully erosion pose long-term land-management problems. Whereas gully formation has been relatively well studied, much less is known of the processes that anneal gullies and impede their growth. This study of gully annealing by aeolian sediment, spanning 95 km along the Colorado River corridor in Glen, Marble, and Grand Canyon, Arizona, USA, employed field and remote sensing observations, including digital topographic modelling. Results indicate that aeolian sediment activity can be locally effective at counteracting gully erosion. Gullies are less prevalent in areas where surficial sediment undergoes active aeolian transport, and have a greater tendency to terminate in active aeolian sand. Although not common, examples exist in the record of historical imagery of gullies that underwent infilling by aeolian sediment in past decades and evidently were effectively annealed. We thus provide new evidence for a potentially important interaction of aeolian–hillslope–fluvial processes, which could affect dryland regions substantially in ways not widely recognized. Moreover, because the biologic soil crust plays an important role in determining aeolian sand activity, and so in turn the extent of gully development, this study highlights a critical role of geomorphic–ecologic interactions in determining arid-landscape evolution.

  16. Depositional models of sandy debrites and turbidites of Palaeogene reservoir sands in deep-lacustrine environments, South China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Y.; Chen, G.

    2013-12-01

    Two depositional models are proposed for deep-lacustrine petroleum reservior sands (Palaeogene) in the Fushan Sag, Beibuwan Basin, South China. This facies trend is used as a template for predicting the distribution of reservoir facies of the Fushan oilfield. Based on examination of 150m of conventional cores from 13 drilled wells, four depositional facies have been interpreted: (1) fine-grained massive sandstone with floating mudstone clasts and planar clast fabric (sandy debrite); (2) fine-grained sandstone and siltstone showing contorted bedding, sand injection, and ptygmatic folding (sandy slump), (3) fine-grained sandstone with thin layers of normal grading and flute casts (turbidite), and (4) mudstone with faint laminae (suspension fallout). Combined with multiple seismic attributes, two depositional models are characterized by (1) sublacustrine fan: thick turbidite units occur at the bottom of the western sag beneath a series of normal faults slope. (2) Thinner deposition of sandy debrites mainly distribute at the bottom of eastern sag far from sandy slump at the lake margin slope, which interpreted to be controlled by "two-step" flexure slope break. The transfer zone located in the centre area is confirmed to be the primary origin for such differential depositions. In our study area, sandy debrites constitute the producing petroleum reservoirs, but turbidites are non reservoirs. This dramatic understanding will well account for "eastern much more than western" distribution of proven petroleum reserves and be applicable to predicting reservoir distribution.

  17. Primary sedimentary structures and the internal architecture of a Martian sand body in search of evidence for sand transport and deposition

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Basu, Abhijit

    1988-01-01

    Lunar experiences show that unmanned sample return missions, despite limitations on sample size, can produce invaluable data to infer crustal processes, regolith processes, regolith-atmosphere/ionosphere interaction processes, etc. Drill cores provide a record of regolith evolution as well as a more complete sample of the regolith than small scoops and/or rakes. It is proposed that: (1) a hole be drilled in a sand body to obtain continuous oriented cores; a depth of about 10 m would be compatible with what we know of bed form hierarchy of terrestrial stream deposits; (2) two trenches, at right angles to each other and close to the drill-hole, be dug and the walls scraped lightly such that primary/internal sedimentary structures of the sand body become visible; (3) the walls of the trenches be made gravitationally stable by impregnation techniques; (4) acetate or other peels of a strip on each wall be taken; and (5) appropriately scaled photographs of the walls be taken at different sun-angles to ensure maximum ease of interpretation of sedimentary structures; and, to correlate these structural features with those in the core at different depth levels of the core.

  18. Gravel and sand resources of the New England-New York region

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Currier, Louis W.

    1955-01-01

    Deposits of sand and gravel are widespread in the New England-New York regions and constitute one of its principal mineral resources. Most of the pits are operated intermittently to supply local needs. Because of the great number and variety of known deposits, and because they have been worked at countless points it is impracticable to describe in detail either the deposits or the individual pits. On the other hand, a broad description of the geologic modes of occurrence with relation to the regional geology will serve adequately to indicate the importance of the resource in the regional economy and development. Except for some special sands, such as "glass sand", certain molding and foundry sands, et. al., for which restrictive textural, compositional and physical properties are required, sand and gravel are used chiefly for local construction and are not commonly transported for long distances. Sand and gravel deposits of the region fall into four principal genetic categories - e.g., glacial, alluvial, marine, and aeolian. Of these, deposits of glacial origin are by far the most widespread and important.

  19. Structure, stratigraphy, and depositional environment of the Heterostegina limestone and overlying sands in the Lake Pontchartrain Area of southeast Louisiana

    SciTech Connect

    Street, S.B. III

    1994-09-01

    The Heterostegina zone of the Oligocene Anahuac Formation in southeastern Louisiana occurs in the subsurface as an extensive shelf reef complex. The Heterostegina limestone is overlain by strata associated with the Oligocene Discorbis and lower Miocene Robulus (43) biostratigraphic zones. Examination of electric logs and drill cuttings from wells in the Lake Pontchartrain area of southeastern Louisiana reveal the importance of the Heterostegina reef as a paleoenvironmental punctuation marking a significant shift in regional depositional patterns that occurred between the generally transgressive Oligocene seas and the generally regressive Miocene seas. Fauna identified in thin section from the Heterostegina reef interval suggest deposition in a warm, shallow marine environment relatively free of significant elastic influx. An eastward migration of late Oligocene-early Miocene stream systems introduced an influx of elastic sediments onto the ancient shelf of the Lake Pontchartrain area, which influenced the termination of favorable conditions for Heterostegina reef growth. The Robulus (43) zone strata are characterized by a cyclic sequence of lime, shale, and sand. Within this interval, two general lithofacies are identified. Lithofacies I is characterized by thick, shore-parallel sand deposits, and is interpreted to have been deposited in association with a barrier-beach/tidal-inlet channel environment. Lithofacies II is characterized by shaleprone sand intervals, which are immediately overlain by calcareous shales and limestones deposited in the offshore inner-middle neritic environment. Five oil and gas fields in the study area have produced hydrocarbons from the interval of interest. The occurrence of hydrocarbons at these locations with respect to mechanisms of entrapment and areal extent of the reservoirs is characterized through detailed subsurface mapping.

  20. Braidplain, floodplain and playa lake, alluvial-fan, aeolian and palaeosol facies composing a diversified lithogenetical sequence in the permian and triassic of South Devon (England)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mader, Detlef

    flat seaming the toes of the fan chain. Sedimentation is characterized by flashy discharge with many episodic flood pulses of short periodicity and mainly rapid waning of high-water phases with quick underrunning of the threshold velocity for keeping the large clasts rolling. Pronounced slack water episodes allow occasionally the draping of gravel sheets with thin veneers of waning-flow and stagnant-water fines. Spectacular invertebrate burrows in finer breccias underline the flashy nature of most of the flood and flow events, allowing the colonization of the sediments with ground-living invertebrates during interruptions of transport and accumulation. Some peculiar dewatering structures being infilling of crack systems in breccias with wash-load sand are probably induced by earthquake shocks thus pointing to the active tectonic setting of the depositional area. Aeolian sands originate as transverse dune ridges in restricted dune fields and extensive sand seas and as sheet sands in interdune playa depressions. Associated mudstones and ventifact gravel form in wet interdunes or in playa lakes and in deflationary interdunes, respectively. Accumulation of aeolian dunes and interdune sheet sands takes place by both spreading out of drapes on flats and infilling of abandoned fluvial channels which enhance the trapping of sand by topographical effects. The dunes and wind ripple trains migrate across dry interdune floors under predominantly unidirectional winds. Sedimentary processes are grainfall and grainflow on the lee slope of dunes and subcritical climbing of wind ripples. Episodical wetting and dampening of dry interdune flats by intermittent rainfall, periodical dew and even ephemeral fluvial or alluvial-fan incursions allow formation of adhesion-rippled sands on damp surfaces and origin of sandy and silty-clayey lacustrine sediments in shallow water veneers of the flooded playa. Aquatic modification of aeolian sands by invading flood surges of atmospheric or alluvial

  1. HIGH-ANGLE AEOLIAN CROSSBEDDING AT TRAIL RIDGE, FLORIDA.

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Force, Eric; Garnar, Tom

    1985-01-01

    This paper described new evidence concerning the origin of the Trail Ridge mineral sands deposit in Florida. Rarely exposed sections of the orebody exhibit structures indicative of sand dune formation rather than coastal beach sand accumulation. The implications for mineral sands exploration, and therefore resources, in the southeastern USA are highlighted.

  2. A linear dune dam - a unique late Pleistocene aeolian-fluvial archive bordering the northwestern Negev Desert dunefield, Israel

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Roskin, Joel; Bookman, Revital; Friesem, David; Vardi, Jacob

    2016-04-01

    Interactions between aeolian and fluvial processes, known as aeolian-fluvial (A-F) interactions, play a fundamental role in shaping the surface of the Earth especially in arid zones. The blocking of wadis by dunes (dune-damming) is an A-F interaction that is perceived to be an archive of periods of aeolian 'superiority' on fluvial transport power and has had a strong impact on arid landscapes and prehistoric man since the late Quaternary. The southern fringes of the northwestern Negev dunefield are lined with discontinuous surfaces of light-colored, playa-like, low-energy, fine-grained fluvial deposits (LFFDs). Abundant Epipalaeolithic camp sites mainly border the LFFDs. The LFFDs are understood to be reworked loess-like sediment deposited in short-lived shallow water bodies during the late Pleistocene. These developed adjacently upstream of hypothesized dune dams of wadis that drain the Negev highlands. However, no dune dam structures by the LFFDs have been explicitly identified or analyzed. This paper presents for the first time the morphology, stratigraphy and sedimentology of a hypothesized dune dam. The studied linear-like dune dam structure extends west-east for several hundred meters, has an asymmetric cross-section and is comprised of two segments. In the west, the structure is 3-5 m high, 80 m wide, with a steep southern slope, and is covered by pebbles. Here, its morphology and orientation resembles the prevailing vegetated linear dunes (VLDs) of the adjacent dunefield though its slope angles differ from VLDs. To the south of the structure extends a thick LFFD sequence. In the east the structure flattens and is covered by nebkhas with its southern edge overlapped by LFFD units. The structures' stratigraphy is found to be comprised of a thick LFFD base, overlaid by aeolian and fluvially reworked sand, a thin middle LFFD unit, and a crest comprised of LFFDs, fluvial sand and pebbles. Carbonate contents and particle size distributions of the sediments easily

  3. Physical and chemical determinants of colloid transport and deposition in water-unsaturated sand and Yucca Mountain tuff material.

    PubMed

    Gamerdinger, A P; Kaplan, D I

    2001-06-15

    Colloid mobility was determined in a system consisting of quartz sand or crushed Yucca Mountain tuff, simulated groundwater (J-13), and hydrophilic latex particles. Water content (theta) and ionic strength (I; DI water, 0.1x, 1x, 10x groundwater dilution) were manipulated to define limiting conditions for colloid transport atthe Yucca Mountain site. Colloid transport, measured with a centrifuge method at relatively high theta (saturation >36% for sand, >62% for crushed tuff) in DI water, was equivalent to transport at 100% saturation measured with conventional columns. When variables were isolated, increasing I and decreasing theta resulted in a greater extent of colloid deposition; I was more important at higher theta; physical properties were more important at lower theta. I and theta had an interactive effect on colloid deposition whereby synergism was generally observed, especially for simulated groundwater (1x); antagonism was observed at 10x groundwater dilution. At 19% moisture saturation on the crushed tuff, a decreasing rate of colloid deposition was observed. This corresponded to a hydrodynamic condition of 79% immobile water where solute tracers were excluded from a fraction of the pore volume. This suggests that a portion of the favorable sites for deposition were associated with the excluded or immobile water domain and were not accessible to colloids. PMID:11432554

  4. Use of radar to assess aeolian processes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Greeley, Ronald; Lancaster, N.; Gaddis, L.; Blumberg, D.; Debrovolskis, A.; Saunders, R. S.; Wall, S.; Iversen, J. D.; White, B.; Rasmussen, K. R.

    1991-01-01

    The interaction between wind and desert surfaces has important implications for sediment transport on Earth, Mars, and Venus, and for understanding the relationship between radar backscatter and aerodynamic roughness. Here, researchers report results from measurements of atmospheric boundary layer profiles, assessment of radar backscatter at P, L, and C wavelengths, and surface roughness in Death Valley, the Mojave Desert, and Lunar Lake, NV, and discuss the implications for aeolian process. The sites include playas, gravel and sand regs, alluvial fans, and lava flows. Boundary layer wind profiles were measured using anemometers at heights of 0.75, 1.25, 2.07, 3.44, 5.72, and 9.5 m; temperature sensors at heights of 1.3 and 9.6 m; and wind vanes at 9.7 and 1.5 m. Microtopographic measurements were made using a template and a laser-photo device to obtain RMS height. This study demonstrates that radar backscatter coefficients obtained from airborne and perhaps orbiting instruments could permit the derivation of aerodynamic roughness values for large areas. Such values, when combined with wind frequency data, could enable assessment of aeolian processes on a regional scale.

  5. Agriculture as a source of Aeolian sediment affecting air quality

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Aeolian processes on agricultural lands have been examined for the past several decades on nearly every continent and has led to a better understanding of detachment, entrainment, transport, and deposition. Relatively little is known concerning the effect of these processes on air quality. In fact, ...

  6. Radar-aeolian roughness project

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Greeley, Ronald; Dobrovolskis, A.; Gaddis, L.; Iversen, J. D.; Lancaster, N.; Leach, Rodman N.; Rasnussen, K.; Saunders, S.; Vanzyl, J.; Wall, S.

    1991-01-01

    The objective is to establish an empirical relationship between measurements of radar, aeolian, and surface roughness on a variety of natural surfaces and to understand the underlying physical causes. This relationship will form the basis for developing a predictive equation to derive aeolian roughness from radar backscatter. Results are given from investigations carried out in 1989 on the principal elements of the project, with separate sections on field studies, radar data analysis, laboratory simulations, and development of theory for planetary applications.

  7. Basaltic lava flows covering active aeolian dunes in the Paraná Basin in southern Brazil: Features and emplacement aspects

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Waichel, Breno L.; Scherer, Claiton M. S.; Frank, Heinrich T.

    2008-03-01

    Burial of active aeolian dunes by lava flows can preserve the morphology of the dunes and generate diverse features related to interaction between unconsolidated sediments and lavas. In the study area, located in southern Brazil, burial of aeolian deposits by Cretaceous basaltic lava flows completely preserved dunes, and generate sand-deformation features, sand diapirs and peperite-like breccia. The preserved dunes are crescentic and linear at the main contact with basalts, and smaller crescentic where interlayered with lavas. The various feature types formed on sediment surfaces by the advance of the flows reflect the emplacement style of the lavas which are compound pahoehoe type. Four feature types can be recognized: (a) type 1 features are related to the advance of sheet flows in dune-interdune areas with slopes > 5°, (b) type 2 is formed where the lava flows advance in lobes and climb the stoss slope of crescentic dunes (slopes 8-12°), (c) type 3 is generated by toes that descend the face of linear dunes (slopes 17-23°) and (d) type 4 occurs when lava lobes descend the stoss slope of crescentic dunes (slopes 10-15°). The direction of the flows, the disposition and morphology of the dunes and the ground slope are the main factors controlling formation of the features. The injection of unconsolidated sand in lava lobes forms diapirs and peperite-like breccias. Sand diapirs occur at the basal portion of lobes where the lava was more solidified. Peperite-like breccias occur in the inner portion where lava was more plastic, favoring the mingling of the components. The generation of both features is related to a mechanical process: the weight of the lava causes the injection of sand into the lava and the warming of the air in the pores of the sand facilitates this process. The lava-sediment interaction features presented here are consistent with previous reports of basalt lavas with unconsolidated arid sediments, and additional new sand-deformation features

  8. Persistent Aeolian Activity at Endeavour Crater, Mars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chojnacki, M.; Michaels, T. I.; Fenton, L. K.

    2013-12-01

    Long-term monitoring of sites that are known to have active dunes and ripples is generally limited to 3 Mars-Years (MY). Here, we discuss new results of dune activity and albedo change in Endeavour crater (EC), Meridiani Planum (MP) that record eight MY of aeolian activity. MP dune fields often show large yearly variations in albedo; EC darkened by ~12% in TES albedo between MY 24 and 26 (from 0.14 to 0.12). THEMIS VIS albedo of dunes did not change significantly from MY 26 to 29, but did decrease notably (~15 %) in MY 30. These darkening events are most likely related to aeolian-driven dust cleaning (e.g., removal by saltating sand, dust devils). For example, the Opportunity rover (poised on the western rim of EC) observed evidence for a MY 31 dune field dust-clearing event. HiRISE monitoring of MP has shown it be one of the most active regions outside of north polar latitudes. Paired images of western EC taken 3 MY apart show clear evidence for dune modification that include: ripple migration, change in dune perimeters, exposure of previously buried light-toned rock, and/or burial of rock by sand (Fig. 1a-1b). Dune slip face movement is evident for most dunes, where crests and aprons advanced (2-7 m) in the downwind direction (to the SSE) at rates of 0.7-2.3 m per MY. Small dome dunes in the eastern EC were found to have a large degree of aeolian activity (e.g., deflation and/or translation) by an earlier study that used MGS-MRO images (MY 24-30). New MY 31 images validate earlier observations, showing clear evidence for bedform deflation where dunes often occupy less area (~50%) than in earlier MY 29 images (Fig. 1c-1d). Areal removal rates are on par with earlier estimates. Bedform modification and sand streamer orientation appear to be caused by a NNW wind regime, consistent with earlier observations, mesoscale modeling, and the transport direction of barchans to the west. Dunes in EC are now known to be periodically (consistently?) active from over a decade

  9. Geochemical characterization of a Holocene aeolian profile in the Zhongba area (southern Tibet, China) and its paleoclimatic implications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Tuoyu; Wu, Yongqiu; Du, Shisong; Huang, Wenmin; Hao, Chengzhi; Guo, Chao; Zhang, Mei; Fu, Tianyang

    2016-03-01

    The Zhongba area lies in the valley of the Maquan River in southern Tibet, where there are both strong modern aeolian activities and ancient aeolian sand sediments. A Holocene aeolian sand and paleosol profile in the Zhongba area was selected for study and termed (Zhuzhu (ZZ) profile). The chronology of the ZZ profile was established by optically stimulated luminescence (OSL) and accelerator mass spectrometry (AMS) 14C dating. Based on the grain size and geochemical elements of the ZZ profile, the geochemical characterization was analyzed, the Holocene aeolian activity processes were reconstructed in the study area, and the paleoclimatic implications were discussed. The major elements and the chemical indicators are highly correlated with different grain-sizes in the ZZ profile. The evolutionary sequence of the aeolian activities and the paleoclimate in Holocene reveal four stages: before 7.3 ka BP, the climate was warm and wet with weak winds when the sand paleosol developed; at 7.3-3.8 ka BP, the climate turned dry, with strong aeolian activities; at 3.8-0.7 ka BP, the climate became wetter and the winds weakened when the silt paleosol developed; and since 0.7 ka BP, it was cold and dry with strong aeolian activities.

  10. Bog Plant Tissue Chemistry as Indicators of Regionally Elevated Atmospheric N and S Deposition in the Alberta Oil Sands Region

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wieder, R.; Vile, M. A.; Scott, K. D.; Vitt, D. H.; Quinn, J.

    2011-12-01

    Nitrogen oxide and sulfur oxide emission from ongoing development of oil sands in northern Alberta results in regionally elevated atmospheric deposition of N and S in an area where background deposition of both N and S is exceptionally low (less than 1 kg/ha/yr). Because bogs, which represent major landforms in the Alberta oil sands region, are believed to be N-limited and potentially sensitive to S inputs, we have been investigating the effects of elevated N deposition on C, N, and S cycling in bogs, as well as the potential of bogs to serve as monitors of N and S deposition. Toward this latter end, we have measured seasonal variation (5 sampling dates between June and October 2009) concentrations of N and S, as well as δ15N value, in leaf tissues (Picea mariana (ectomycorrhizal); Ledum groenlandicum, Oxycoccos microcarpon, Vaccinium vitis-idaea (ericoid mycorrhizal); Rubus chamaemorus, and Smilacina trifolia (nonmycorrhizal), Sphagnum (S. fuscum, S. capillifolium, S. magellanicum, S. angustifolium) moss capitula (top 1-cm of plant) and lichens (Cladina mitis and Evernia mesomorpha) at 5 bogs at distances ranging from 14 to 300 km from the heart of the oil sands mining area. Averaged across all sites and sampling dates, N concentrations in ectomycorrhizal, ericoid mycorrhizal, nonmycorrhizal, Sphagnum, and lichens was 8.6 + 0.2, 11.9 + 0.2, 26.3 + 0.6, 10.2 + 0.1, 7.2 + 0.2 mg/g, respectively; δ15N values were -10.3 + 0.1, -6.0 + 0.1, 1.7 + 0.2, -5.3 + 0.1, -4.7 + 0.1 mg/g, respectively, and S concentrations were 1.07 + 0.2, 1.31 + 0.2, 1.94 + 0.6, 1.46 + 0.2, 1.11 + 0.3 mg/g, respectively. Plant functional groups and individual species behaved differently with respect to both seasonal variation and site differences, often with significant interactions when analyzed using two-way analyses of variance. Some species exhibited seasonal variation in some aspects

  11. Mineral Resource Assessment of Marine Sand Resources in Cape- and Ridge-Associated Marine Sand Deposits in Three Tracts, New York and New Jersey, United States Atlantic Continental Shelf

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Bliss, James D.; Williams, S. Jeffress; Arsenault, Matthew A.

    2009-01-01

    Demand is growing in the United States and worldwide for information about the geology of offshore continental shelf regions, the character of the seafloor, and sediments comprising the seafloor and subbottom. Interest in locating sand bodies or high quality deposits that have potential as sources for beach nourishment and ecosystem restoration is especially great in some regions of the country. The Atlantic coast, particularly New York and New Jersey, has been the focus of these studies for the past 40 years with widely varying results. This study is the first attempt at applying probability statistics to modeling Holocene-age cape-and ridge-associated sand deposits and thus focuses on distinct sand body morphology. This modeling technique may have application for other continental shelf regions that have similar geologic character and late Quaternary sea-level transgression history. An estimated volume of 3.9 billion m3 of marine sand resources is predicted in the cape-and ridge-associated marine sand deposits in three representative regions or tracts on the continental shelf offshore of New York and New Jersey. These estimates are taken from probabilistic distributions of sand resources and are produced using deposit models and Monte Carlo Simulation (MCS) techniques. The estimated sand resources presented here are for only three tracts as described below and for Holocene age sand resources contained in cape-and ridge-associated marine sand deposit types within this area. Other areas may qualify as tracts for this deposit type and other deposit types and geologic ages (for example, paleo-stream channels, blanket and outwash deposits, ebb-tide shoals, and lower sea level-stand deltas), which are present on the New Jersey and New York continental shelf area but are not delineated and modeled in this initial evaluation. Admittedly, only a portion of these probable sand resources will ultimately be available and suitable for production, dependent largely on

  12. Meso-scale modelling of aeolian sediment input to coastal dunes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Delgado-Fernandez, Irene

    2011-07-01

    The collection of a time series coupling hourly wind data (speed and direction) with sand transport over months has provided new insights into the dynamics of transport events that input sediment to the foredune at Greenwich Dunes, Prince Edward Island National Park, Canada. This paper summarises the key aspects of aeolian sediment movement for a period of 9 months and presents a modelling approach for resolving aeolian transport to coastal dunes at the meso-scale. The main hypothesis of the modelling approach is that a small number of key factors control both the occurrence and the magnitude of transport events. Thresholds associated with these factors may be used to filter the time series and isolate potential transport periods over the year. The impacts of nearshore processes are included in the approach as part of the dynamics of coastal dunes, as are supply-limiting factors and trade-offs between fetch distances, angle of wind approach, and beach dimensions. A simple analytical procedure, based on previously published equations, is carried out to assess the general viability of the conceptual approach. Results show that the incorporation of moisture and fetch effects in the calculation of transport for isolated potential transport periods result in improved predictions of sediment input to the dune. Net changes, measured with three different techniques, suggest that survey data with coarse temporal resolution underestimates the amount of sand input to the dune, because sediment is often removed from the embryo dune and foredune by other processes such as wave scarping. Predictions obtained by the proposed modelling approach are of the same order of magnitude as measured deposition and much less than predicted by models based solely on wind speed and direction. Areas for improvement and alternative modelling approaches, such as probabilistic approaches similar to weather forecasting, are covered in the discussion.

  13. Optical dating of dune sand from Blombos Cave, South Africa: I--multiple grain data.

    PubMed

    Jacobs, Z; Wintle, A G; Duller, G A T

    2003-05-01

    An aeolian sand unit overlies the Middle Stone Age deposits at Blombos Cave on the southern Cape coast. These deposits contained culturally-important artefacts, including bone tools and pieces of engraved ochre, as well as a large number of worked lithics. The aeolian sand and two other remnants of the sand dune formed against the coastal cliff were dated using optical dating. To determine the dose received since deposition, measurements were made on 5mg aliquots of purified quartz grains using the single-aliquot regenerative-dose (SAR) protocol. The results of several internal check procedures are reported and at least 15 replicate dose determinations are presented for each sample. Combining these dose values with measurements of the radioactive content of each sample resulted in an age of 69.2+/-3.9 ka for the unit within the cave, and a mean age of 70.1+/-1.9 ka for all three dune samples. This provides a minimum age for the Middle Stone Age material at Blombos Cave. PMID:12765620

  14. Laboratory Simulations of Martian and Venusian Aeolian Processes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Greeley, Ronald

    1999-01-01

    With the flyby of the Neptune system by Voyager, the preliminary exploration of the Solar System was accomplished. Data have been returned for all major planets and satellites except the Pluto system. Results show that the surfaces of terrestrial planets and satellites have been subjected to a wide variety of geological processes. On solid- surface planetary objects having an atmosphere, aeolian processes are important in modifying their surfaces through the redistribution of fine-grained material by the wind. Bedrock may be eroded to produce particles and the particles transported by wind for deposition in other areas. This process operates on Earth today and is evident throughout the geological record. Aeolian processes also occur on Mars, Venus, and possibly Titan and Triton, both of which are outer planet satellites that have atmospheres. Mariner 9 and Viking results show abundant wind-related landforms on Mars, including dune fields and yardangs (wind-eroded hills). On Venus, measurements made by the Soviet Venera and Vega spacecraft and extrapolations from the Pioneer Venus atmospheric probes show that surface winds are capable of transporting particulate materials and suggest that aeolian processes may operate on that planet as well. Magellan radar images of Venus show abundant wind streaks in some areas, as well as dune fields and a zone of possible yardangs. The study of planetary aeolian processes must take into account diverse environments, from the cold, low-density atmosphere of Mars to the extremely hot, high- density Venusian atmosphere. Factors such as threshold wind speeds (minimum wind velocity needed to move particles), rates of erosion and deposition, trajectories of windblown particles, and aeolian flow fields over various landforms are all important aspects of the problem. In addition, study of aeolian terrains on Earth using data analogous to planetary data-collection systems is critical to the interpretation of spacecraft information and

  15. Variation of Atmospheric Deposition of Acid Species and Yellow Sand Particles From 1987 to 1999 Through Modeling Studies and Observations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Z.; Uno, I.; Zhang, M.; Akimoto, H.

    2002-05-01

    Acid deposition is of serious environmental concern in East Asia. Wet and dry deposition monitoring datasets have been collected for long enough to understand the deposition distribution and its variation in time and space in this region Field observations indicate that acid precipitation often occurs in the southern part of China, even though emissions of the precursors are stronger in the north, where such high levels of strong acids in precipitation have not been widely. The acidity of rainwater is heavily influenced and modified by natural soil dust from desert and semi-arid areas. This soil aerosol, or _gKOSA", is lifted from Asian deserts and the Loess plateau, and then carried by the prevailing wind over East Asia. A comprehensive Air Quality Prediction Modeling System (AQPMS) is used to perform year-long, quantitative simulation of rainwater pH in East Asia for 1987 and 1999, respectively with emissions of Akimoto et al.(1987) and Street et al.(2000), to discuss the variation of deposition of acid species and yellow sand particles due to the emission change in the past dozen years. Monitoring data at 17 sites of EANET (the Acid Deposition Monitoring Network in East Asia) in addition to the field observation data of SEPA(State Environmental Protection Agency) of China are used to evaluate the model, and a reasonable agreement is obtained. Emission in Sichuan province has decreased and emission in central China including Hubei province and Hunan province has increased. Model simulation shows the change of emission pattern caused the serious acid-rain-hit area moving southeastward as observed. In the west part of Sichuan province, the pH value increased, this is partly due to the success of countermeasures against acid rain in China since 1996, which reduce the emission in Sichuan area much more than expected. The variations of annual distribution of rain pH, sulfate, nitrite and yellow sand particles deposition are also discussed in detail, so do the

  16. Chronology and geochemistry of late Holocene eolian deposits in the Brandon Sand Hills, Manitoba, Canada

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Wolfe, S.A.; Muhs, D.R.; David, P.P.; McGeehin, J.P.

    2000-01-01

    Accelerator mass spectrometry and conventional radiocarbon age determinations of organic matter from paleosols indicate that the Brandon Sand Hills area of southern Manitoba has been subjected to recurrent intervals of eolian activity in the past 5000 years. Although precise regional correlations are precluded by dating uncertainties, periods of most notable paleosol development occurred around 2300 to 2000, 1400 to 1000, and 600 to 500 cal yr BP with eolian activity occurring before and after each of these periods. Episodes of eolian activity may correspond to periods of regional drought, whereas paleosols mark periods of increased moisture availability and stabilization by vegetation. The geochemistry of the eolian sands, paleosols and source sediments indicates that partial leaching of carbonates occurs from pedogenesis during humid climatic phases, and that this is probably the primary mechanism of carbonate depletion of eolian sands in this area. Recent trends in sand dune activity from historic aerial photography and early explorers' accounts indicate that the few active dunes that presently exist have stabilized at a rate of 10-20% per decade, despite several severe droughts in the 20th century. This may be attributed to pre-settlement droughts that were more severe than those in historic times although regional dune stabilization may also be related, in part, to the spread of forest cover in the past few hundred years. Crown copyright (C) 2000 Published by Elsevier Science Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. Plasma proteome profiles of White Sucker (Catostomus commersonii) from the Athabasca River within the oil sands deposit.

    PubMed

    Simmons, Denina B D; Sherry, James P

    2016-09-01

    There are questions about the potential for oil sands related chemicals to enter the Athabasca River, whether from tailing ponds, atmospheric deposition, precipitation, or transport of mining dust, at concentrations sufficient to negatively impact the health of biota. We applied shotgun proteomics to generate protein profiles of mature male and female White Sucker (Catostomus commersonii) that were collected from various sites along the main stem of the Athabasca River in 2011 and 2012. On average, 399±131 (standard deviation) proteins were identified in fish plasma from each location in both years. Ingenuity Pathway Analysis software was used to determine the proteins' core functions and to compare the datasets by location, year, and sex. Principal component analysis (PCA) was used to determine if variation in the number of proteins related to a core function among all male and female individuals from both sampling years was affected by location. The core biological functions of plasma proteins that were common to both sampling years for males and females from each location were also estimated separately (based on Ingenuity's Knowledge Base). PCA revealed site-specific differences in the functional characteristics of the plasma proteome from white sucker sampled from downstream of oil sands extraction facilities compared with fish from upstream. Plasma proteins that were unique to fish downstream of oil sands extraction were related to lipid metabolism, small molecule biochemistry, vitamin and mineral metabolism, endocrine system disorders, skeletal and muscular development and function, neoplasia, carcinomas, and gastrointestinal disease. PMID:27013027

  18. Method and apparatus for producing tar sand deposits containing conductive layers having little or no vertical communication

    SciTech Connect

    Glandt, C.A.; Vinegar, H.J.; Gardner, J.W.

    1991-10-29

    This patent describes a process for recovering hydrocarbons from hydrocarbon-bearing deposits containing thin highly conductive layers adjacent to at least one hydrocarbon rich zone. It comprises selecting a hydrocarbon-bearing deposit which contains a thin highly conductive layer within the deposit; installing at least one pair of horizontal electrodes spanning the highly conductive layer and dividing the layer into electrically heated and non-electrically heated zones; providing at least one vertical injection well for hot fluid injection into the hydrocarbon rich zone; providing at least one vertical production well for production of hydrocarbons; electrically heating the thin highly conductive layer to form a preheated zone immediately adjacent to the thin highly conductive layer while simultaneously stimulating the wells with steam; injecting the hot fluid into the deposit adjacent to the thin highly conductive layer and within the thin preheated zone to displace the hydrocarbons to the production wells; and recovering hydrocarbons from the production wells. This patent also describes an apparatus for recovering hydrocarbons from tar sand deposits containing highly conductive layers. It comprises at least two pairs of horizontal electrodes which span the highly conductive layer and divide the highly conductive layer into at least two horizontally displaced electrically heated zones separated by non-electrically heated zones; at least one vertical injection well; and at least one vertical production well.

  19. Early Pliocene Hiatus in Sand Output by the Colorado River: Evidence From Marine Deposits in the Salton Trough, Southern California

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dorsey, R. J.; Bykerk-Kauffman, A.

    2015-12-01

    Early Pliocene deposits in the western Salton Trough preserve a high-fidelity record of sediment dispersal into the marine realm during initiation and early evolution of the Colorado River (CR). Grain-size fractionation, sediment routing, and transport dynamics of the early CR delta are recorded in sediments of the Fish Creek - Vallecito basin, which was located ~100 km south of Yuma along the transform plate boundary at 5 Ma. Early Pliocene delivery of CR sand to the basin took place in two distinct pulses: (1) deposition of sandy turbidites (Wind Caves Mbr of the Latrania Fm) in a restricted submarine canyon at Split Mt Gorge between ~5.3 and 5.1 Ma; and (2) progradation of a thick, widespread, coarsening-up deltaic sequence of marine mudstone, sandstone, and coquinas (Deguynos Fm) between ~4.8 and 4.2 Ma. Estimated flux of CR sediment during Wind Caves deposition was weak (~3-5 Mt/yr) compared to the long-term average (172±64 Mt/yr). The two pulses of CR sand input are separated by the Coyote Clay (CC, ~5.1-4.8 Ma), a regionally correlable, greenish-yellow-weathering marine claystone unit at the base of the Deguynos Fm. CC gradationally overlies Wind Caves turbidites in the area of the paleocanyon. In contrast, in the Coyote Mts 15-23 km to the south and SE, CC rests on coarse-grained locally-derived late Miocene sedimentary rocks, Alverson volcanics, and metamorphic basement rock along a regional unconformity. Identical claystone facies occur in the NW Indio Hills (restores to Yuma at the mouth of the CR at 5 Ma), and Sierra Cucapa in Mexico (~200 km south of Yuma at 5 Ma). Marine localities outside of the Wind Caves paleocanyon experienced slow to negligible sedimentation along a rugged rocky shoreline until abrupt arrival of CR-derived clay. CC accumulated in a sand-starved, pro-delta marine setting (Winker, 1987) over an inferred N-S distance of ~200 km. We therefore reject an alternate hypothesis that CC accumulated on the muddy slope of the prograding CR

  20. Paleo-Environment and C-14 Dating: The Key to the Depositional Age of the Tha Chang and Related Sand Pits, Northeastern Thailand

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Putthapiban, P.; Zolensky, M.; Jull, T.; Demartino, M.; Salyapongse, S.

    2012-01-01

    Tha Chang sand pits, Nakhon Ratchasima Province and many other sand pits in the area adjacent to the Mun River are characterized by their fluviatile environment in association with mass wasting deposits, along the paleo-river channel and the flood plain of the Mun River. Sediments of these deposits are characterized by clasts of various rock types especially the resistant ones with frequent big tree trunks, logs and wood fragments in different sizes and various stages of transformation from moldering stage to lignification and petrification. Widespread pyritization of the lower horizon suggests strongly reducing environment during burial. The Tha Chang deposits have been received much attention from geoscientists especially paleontologist communities, as they contain fragments of some distinct vertebrate species such as Stegadon sp., hominoid primate, rhinoceros Aceratherium and others. Based on the associated mammal fauna and hominoid fossils, the late Miocene ( 9 - 6 Ma) was given for the time of deposition of this sand and gravel unit. Some other reports believed that sediments and materials of these sand and gravel quarries (pits) were deposited by high-energy flood pulses contemporaneous with the tektites forming event during mid-Pleistocene at c. 0.8 Ma. Interpretation from Palynostratigraphical study suggested that the lower horizon of Tha Chang sand pit was deposited during Pliocene/Pleistocene period and the upper horizons are Pleistoncene/Holocene. It is crystal clear that all the fluviatile sediments including tektites and almost all fossil fragments being deposited in these sand pits were, likely a multiple times reworked materials. Only some old bamboo trees, some old crowling trees and fossils grasses observed on the old river bank are considered in situ. C-14 dating of 5 old wood specimens from Tha Chang Sand Pits, 15 old wood specimens from Chumpuang Sand Pits and one sample of old pottery from a Chumpuang Sand Pit were carried out in the NSF

  1. Eolian depositional phases during the past 50 ka and inferred climate variability for the Pampean Sand Sea, western Pampas, Argentina

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tripaldi, Alfonsina; Forman, Steven L.

    2016-05-01

    The Pampean Sand Sea, which occurs from the Argentinian Pampas to the eastern Andean piedmont, hosts presently stabilized dune fields spanning the late Quaternary. This study integrates previous results and presents new geomorphic, stratigraphic, sedimentological, and chronologic data for nineteen >2 m-thick eolian successions for the San Luis paleo-dune field, western Pampas, to better constrain the depositional history. Six eolian depositional phases are identified spanning the past 50 ka, interposed with paleosols and/or bounded by erosive surfaces. Age control was from 61 OSL ages of small aliquots of quartz grains from eolian stratigraphic units. The inferred timing of eolian phases are at ca. 70 ± 10 yr, 190 ± 20 yr, 12 to 1 ka, 22 to 17 ka, 29 to 24 ka, and 40 to 32 ka. A maximum span for periods of pedogenesis at ca. 12 to 17 ka, 22 to 24 ka, and 29 to 32 ka was provided by bounding OSL ages, which broadly overlap with high stands of pluvial lakes and glacier advances in the central Andes. We infer that the added precipitation may reflect expansion of the Southern Hemisphere monsoon, associated with Northern Hemisphere Heinrich events, leading to episodes of significantly wetter conditions (>350 mm MAP) to at least 35° S. Most of the Holocene (12 ka to 0.8 ka) was characterized by sand sheet deposit under drier than present conditions (100-450 mm MAP), associated with Monte-type vegetation (shrub steppe). The latest two eolian depositional phases, occurred at ca. 190 and 70 yr ago, during the historic period with European settlement and are related to anthropogenic landscape disturbance, though the youngest phase was concomitant with 1930s drought. Wet conditions dominated since ca. AD 1970 with new lakes and rivers forming across this eolian terrain; an incongruous environmental response in reference to drier conditions for most of the Holocene.

  2. Tar sands

    SciTech Connect

    Wennekers, J.H.N.

    1981-10-01

    The four largest oil sand deposits contain over 90% of the world's known heavy oil. The total heavy oil and bitumen in place, estimated at nearly 6 trillion barrels is almost entirely concentrated in western Canada, principally Alberta, and eastern Venezuela. The known tar sand resource in the United States consists of about 550 occurrences located in 22 states. The total oil in place in 39 of these occurrences is estimated to be between 23.7 billion and 32.7 billion barrels. At least 90% of this resource is located in Utah. Other significant deposits are in Texas, New Mexico, California, and Kentucky. Bituminous sand deposits and petroleum-impregnated rocks are found in Malagasy, Albania, Rumania, the USSR, and Trinidad. 4 figures, 2 tables. (DP)

  3. [Nutrient contents and microbial populations of aeolian sandy soil in Sanjiangyuan region of Qinghai Province].

    PubMed

    Lin, Chao-feng; Chen, Zhan-quan; Xue, Quan-hong; Lai, Hang-xian; Chen, Lai-sheng; Zhang, Deng-shan

    2007-01-01

    Sanjiangyuan region (the headstream of three rivers) in Qinghai Province of China is the highest and largest inland alpine wetland in the world. The study on the nutrient contents and microbial populations of aeolian sandy soils in this region showed that soil organic matter content increased with the evolution of aeolian sand dunes from un-stabilized to stabilized state, being 5.9 and 3.8 times higher in stabilized sand dune than in mobile and semi-stabilized sand dunes, respectively. Soil nitrogen and phosphorus contents increased in line with the amount of organic matter, while potassium content and pH value varied slightly. The microbial populations changed markedly with the development of vegetation, fixing of mobile sand, and increase of soil nutrients. The quantities of soil bacteria, fungi and actinomycetes were 4.0 and 2.8 times, 19.6 and 6.3 times, and 12.4 and 2.6 times higher in stabilized and semi-stabilized sand dunes than in mobile sand dune, respectively, indicating that soil microbial bio-diversity was increased with the evolution of aeolian sand dunes from mobile to stabilized state. In addition, the quantities of soil microbes were closely correlated with the contents of soil organic matter, total nitrogen, and available nitrogen and phosphorus, but not correlated with soil total phosphorus, total and available potassium, or pH value. PMID:17396507

  4. Biodiversity impact of the aeolian periglacial geomorphologic evolution of the Fontainebleau Massif (France)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thiry, M.; Liron, M. N.

    2009-04-01

    erosion of the sand beneath the bordering sandstone benches, resulting in overhangs. These structures are the most common in the western district of the Fontainebleau Massif. Ponds develop on the tightly silicified and impermeable sandstone pans that form the "platières". There are permanent ponds and temporary wet zones, formed of interconnected or isolated depressions. The origin of these ponds has to be questioned with regard to the landscape shaping. Their origin is directly bound to the hollowing of uncemented, sandy zones, within the sandstone pans forming the "platières". Erosion by runoff cannot be considered; the only way to hollow them out is by deflation processes. No direct dating of the Quaternary dune and loess deposits of the Fontainebleau Massif exists. Nevertheless, dating of paleopodzols interlayered between drift sands, pond deposits and bones within congelifracts allow relating these periglacial features with the end of the last glacial period. For now, there is no dating to assess what belongs to older glacial periods. Distribution of the aeolian patterns The Fontainebleau Massif displays noteworthy morphological diversities in the various districts of the forest. Some of these differentiations result from geological features, but most of them are related to erosion processes, and among them deflation processes leaved different imprints in the western and eastern districts of the Fontainebleau Massif. The topography played an important role controlling the aeolian processes. Deflation was important in the westerly upwind district. In the westerly front face, aeolian erosion was activated by turbulences around the topographic obstacles. The reliefs funneled the winds and gave rise to swirls that hollow the blowouts. This area displays the sharpest and more chiseled landforms of the massif. Moreover, the sandstone scarps at the edge of the "platières" are high and uncovered, with frequent overhangs. The collapsed sandstone blocks of the "chaos" are

  5. A Japan-Sino joint project, ADEC - Aeolian Dust Experiment on Climate Impact

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mikami, M.

    2004-05-01

    In recent years, aeolian dust has been thought to be an important factor of the climate system on the earth by the radiative forcing effect in the atmosphere and by the influence on the carbon dioxide cycle because deposited dust supplies nutrient salts for the phytoplankton on the ocean surface. Among them, radiative forcing direct and/or indirect effects are important factors of the global warming. Nevertheless, the reliability of the evaluation regarding the radiative forcing impact of aeolian dust is very low. [IPCC, 2001]. This is because the understanding and the model representations of dust entrainment, spatial and temporal distribution of dust, and optical properties of dust particles are not so accurate. Based on this background, Aeolian Dust Experiment on Climate Impact (ADEC) was started in April 2000 as a Japan-Sino Joint Project. The goal of this project is to evaluate the global dust supply to the atmosphere and its radiative forcing direct effect. For this purpose, we have made: 1) in situ observations at desert areas in China for wind erosion processes, 2) network observations from China to Japan, ranging from 80 to 140 East, for understanding spatial-size distribution, chemical, and optical properties of dust particles, and 3) numerical simulation by GCM dust model for evaluation of dust impact on the global climate over the past 50 years. This was planned as a five-year project and two intensive observations, IOP-1, April 12-25 2002, and IOP-2, March 15-26 2003, were put into practice. Intensive observations were made at 6 sites in China (Qira, Aksu, Dunhuang, Shapotou, Beijing, and Qingdao) and 4 sites in Japan (Naha, Fukuoka, Nagoya, and Tsukuba). Preliminary results show that 1) saltation flux at a gobi desert monitored by a newly developed sand particle counter was around 10 times larger than that of a sand dune, which will be caused by the difference of the parent soil size distribution of each ground condition, 2) the background of KOSA

  6. Effects of aeolian erosion on microbial release from solids.

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gustan, E. A.; Olson, R. L.; Taylor, D. M.; Green, R. H.

    1972-01-01

    This study was initiated to determine the percentage of spores that would be expected to be released from the interior of solid materials by aeolian erosion on a planetary surface. Methyl methacrylate and Eccobond disks were fabricated so that each disk contained approximately 40,000 Bacillus subtilis var. niger spores. The disks were placed in a specially designed sandblasting device and eroded. Exposure periods of 0.5, 2 and 24 hours were investigated using filtered air to accelerate the sand. A series of tests was also conducted for a 0.5 hour period using carbon dioxide. Examination of the erosion products showed that less than 1% of the spores originally contained in the solids was released by aeolian erosion.

  7. Character and provenance of aeolian sediments in northeast Thailand

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nichol, Janet E.; Nichol, Douglas W.

    2015-12-01

    Aeolian activity is not generally associated with the humid tropics, and although reports of loess-like soils in various locations in southeast Asia exist, these mainly lack the detailed analysis to set them in meaningful spatial or historical context. This paper examines the red and yellow sandy sediments of the Khorat Plateau in northeast Thailand which have been variously referred to as 'cover sands', 'loessial soils' or 'loess'. The sediments are referred to as having alluvial, biological as well as aeolian origin, and a date of 9-35 ka is reported. The study compares the Khorat sediments physically and geochemically with loess and aeolian sediments from other regions, as well as with other sites in southeast Asia which are reported here. The moderate degree of particle sorting and unimodal sizes of the sediments along with a sub-spherical sub-rounded form, supports previous diagnoses of an aeolian origin. Geochemical analysis of the Khorat sediments indicates severe depletion in both mobile and immobile elements, which are even more depleted than other southeast Asian loessic soils examined. This depletion, along with the only moderate particle sorting, suggests the source of the sediments to be the local weathered sandstones outcropping around the edge of the Khorat Plateau. The dissimilarity of the Khorat sediments from Upper Continental Crust (UCC) elemental values supports this, as homogenisation would occur if diverse source areas were involved. The study suggests that aeolian sediments of humid tropical regions warrant more attention as climate proxy markers, due to the dissimilarity between the present climate and conditions required for their formation.

  8. Detecting Patterns of Aeolian Transport Direction

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The magnitude and direction of aeolian transport are of direct interest to those engaged in the study of aeolian processes. Although the magnitude of sediment transport has been studied extensively, the study of aeolian transport direction has garnered less attention. This paper describes the deve...

  9. The potential scale of aeolian structures on Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Marshall, J. R.; Greeley, Ronald

    1991-01-01

    Simulations of the Venusian aeolian environment with the Venus Wind Tunnel have shown that microdunes are formed during the entrainment of sand-sized material. These structures are several tens of centimeters long (2-3 cm high) and combine the morphological and behavioral characteristics of both full-scale terrestrial dunes and current ripples formed in subaqueous environments. Their similarity to both reflects the fact that the Venusian atmosphere has a density intermediate between air and water. Although the development of microdunes in the wind tunnel experiments was limited by tunnel dimensions, it is possible to make some predictions about their potential size on Venus, and the potential size of related aeolian structures. Microdunes are fluid-filled structures (as are dunes and current ripples) and as such have no theoretical upper limit to their size from a fluid dynamics viewpoint. Limitations to size observed in subaqueous structures are set by, for example, water depth; limitations to the size of dunes are set by, for example, sand supply. It is therefore reasonable to suppose that the microdunes on Venus could evolve into much larger features than those observed in experiments. In addition, the researchers note that current ripples (which are closely related to microdunes) are often found in association with giant ripples that have dimensions similar to aeolian dunes. Thus, it may be reasonable to assume that analogous large scale structures occur on Venus. Both (terrestrial) aeolian and subaqueous environments generate structures in excess of one hundred meters in wavelength. Such dimensions may therefore be applicable to Venusian bedforms. Analysis of Magellan data may resolve the issue.

  10. Avalanche grainflow on a simulated aeolian dune

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sutton, S. L. F.; McKenna Neuman, C.; Nickling, W.

    2013-09-01

    Avalanches maintain the slipface of aeolian dunes, which alters their airflow characteristics and sediment dynamics, and results in the development of grainflow cross-bedding. We report on a series of experiments in which avalanches were observed on a 1:1 replica of a small (1.2 m brink height) transverse dune in the Dune Simulation Wind Tunnel under wind velocities of 8-11 m s-1. Changes in slipface topography were observed photographically and measured utilizing a 3-D laser scanner with 1 mm2 spatial resolution. Avalanches in noncohesive sands were observed to progress through scarp recession from the point of initiation and continue until the slope angle is reduced. Changes in local slope confirm that the steep, pre-avalanche mean slope relaxes to a uniform value equal to the angle of repose of the test sand (32°) over all involved portions of the slipface. Avalanche volumes are measured, and demonstrate that avalanche magnitude is independent of wind speed over the range of velocities observed. This independence provides the potential to significantly simplify the modeling of grainflow as a function of only the total cross brink sediment transport.

  11. Dynamic Aeolian Deposition of Glacial Iron to the Open Ocean: 2 Years of Time-Series Observations from Middleton Island and the Copper River Delta

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schroth, A. W.; Crusius, J.; Campbell, R. W.; Gasso, S.; Moy, C. M.

    2013-12-01

    ron (Fe) is thought to be a limiting nutrient for phytoplankton in much of the north Pacific and the Gulf of Alaska (GoA) in particular. In the subarctic GoA, we have a limited knowledge of the role of glaciers in driving the supply of iron to marine ecosystem, and in particular, the role that dust derived from glacial flour plays in delivering bioavailable iron to the offshore ecosystems. In order to better understand glacial dust deposition in the GoA and its potential role in marine productivity, we combine time-series satellite, meteorological, and aerosol geochemical data from over 2 years of monitoring at Middleton Island and the Copper River Valley. Middleton Island is located on the edge of the continental shelf and is ideally positioned to monitor the flux of aerosol iron into adjacent Fe-limited waters, while the Copper River Delta and Valley are thought to be the source of much of the glacial dust that reaches Middleton. In fact, widespread dust events have been frequently observed (MODIS imagery) emanating from exposed floodplains within the heavily glacierized Copper River Valley. These events are most common in the fall, when high pressure in the AK interior and low pressure in the central GoA establish a pressure gradient that drives anomalously strong northerly winds capable of entraining the abundant glacial flour that is exposed under low water conditions in the Copper River floodplain. Here we present Fe geochemical data from continuous automated aerosol sampling on Middleton Island from 2011-2013. These time-series geochemical data, when coupled with MODIS and meteorological observations, present a remarkable opportunity to examine the drivers of these dust events and how inter-annual meteorological variability between dust seasons influences the annual flux of soluble Fe associated with these phenomena. The dust season of 2011-12, characterized by early and heavy snows and onshore winds, generated very little dust with minimal and infrequent

  12. Aeolian to shallow-marine shelf architecture off a major desert since the Late Pleistocene (northern Mauritania)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hanebuth, T. J. J.; Mersmeyer, H.; Kudrass, H. R.; Westphal, H.

    2013-12-01

    Continental shelves off major desert regions are not expected to host substantial amounts of sediments due to long-lasting and unfocused material supply and a high re-mobilization potential of aeolian material. This study, in contrast, demonstrates that significant volumes of sediments have accumulated on the northern Mauritanian shelf under the arid climate conditions and prevail over consecutive climatic cycles. Eight late Pleistocene to Holocene depositional units, each formed under contrasting depositional conditions, are identified in high-resolution seismo-acoustic data and dated sediment cores. These are: (1) a highly differentiated Pleistocene paleo-landscape older than the past climatic cycle, (2) a continental dune complex (MIS-4), (3) a thick regressive shallow-water clinoform (late MIS-3), (4) a regressive to lowstand shore deposit (latest MIS-3), and (5) a local transgressive cover (LGM to deglacial). Additionally, (6) an open-shelf highstand cover, (7) an outer-shelf highstand wedge and (8) mid-shelf mud depocenters have formed during the Holocene sea-level highstand. The common local offshore formation and preservation of confined stratigraphic units, in particular from during MIS-3, mark the interplay of: a) episodes of pronounced arid climatic conditions resulting in enhanced aeolian and coastal sediment input, b) shelf current patterns focusing sediment deposition locally, and c) early post-depositional sediment stabilization providing protection against erosion. Prominent internal surfaces at 63 and 115 m modern water depths indicate widespread and intense erosional activity during late MIS-3 regression and MIS-2 lowstand to post-LGM transgression, hosting coarse shell sands and gravels from beach and shoreface paleo-environments. The reasons for the high preservation potential of confined stratigraphic units are: a) carbonaceous cementation, b) sediment composition (massive widespread shore-related gravel and shell beds with subtle minor

  13. Intermittency of aeolian saltation.

    PubMed

    Wang, Zhen-Ting; Zhang, Chun-Lai; Wang, Hong-Tao

    2014-12-01

    Saltation motion of sand grains in a steady wind was measured using a high-speed camera at very high frequency in a wind tunnel. A Heaviside-type function was defined to quantificationally describe an inherent property of saltation, i.e. intermittency. Kurtosis and periodicity of state function are statistical manifestations of intermittency. In addition, the strong autocorrelation of time series of volume concentration clearly confirms that saltation is not a completely random process at the timescale of subsecond. Formation mechanism, especially turbulent structures responsible for intermittent saltation, remains to be revealed from the viewpoint of classical mechanics. PMID:25528744

  14. Lunar and Planetary Science XXXV: Martian Aeolian and Mass Wasting Processes: Blowing and Flowing

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2004-01-01

    The session Martian Aeolian and Mass Wasting Processes: BLowing and Flowing included the following topics: 1) Three Decades of Martian Surface Changes; 2) Thermophysical Properties of Isidis Basin, Mars; 3) Intracrater Material in Eastern Arabia Terra: THEMIS, MOC, and MOLA Analysis of Wind-blown Deposits and Possible High-Inertia Source Material; 4) Thermal Properties of Sand from TES and THEMIS: Do Martian Dunes Make a Good Control for Thermal Inertia Calculations? 5) A Comparative Analysis of Barchan Dunes in the Intra-Crater Dune Fields and the North Polar Sand Sea; 6) Diluvial Dunes in Athabasca Valles, Mars: Morphology, Modeling and Implications; 7) Surface Profiling of Natural Dust Devils; 8) Martian Dust Devil Tracks: Inferred Directions of Movement; 9) Numerical Simulations of Anastomosing Slope Streaks on Mars; 10) Young Fans in an Equatorial Crater in Xanthe Terra, Mars; 11) Large Well-exposed Alluvual Fans in Deep Late-Noachian Craters; 12) New Evidence for the Formation of Large Landslides on Mars; and 13) What Can We Learn from the Ages of Valles Marineris Landslides on Martian Impact History?

  15. Field, Laboratory and Imaging spectroscopic Analysis of Landslide, Debris Flow and Flood Hazards in Lacustrine, Aeolian and Alluvial Fan Deposits Surrounding the Salton Sea, Southern California

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hubbard, B. E.; Hooper, D. M.; Mars, J. C.

    2015-12-01

    High resolution satellite imagery, field spectral measurements using a portable ASD spectrometer, and 2013 hyperspectral AVIRIS imagery were used to evaluate the age of the Martinez Mountain Landslide (MML) near the Salton Sea, in order to determine the relative ages of adjacent alluvial fan surfaces and the potential for additional landslides, debris flows, and floods. The Salton Sea (SS) occupies a pluvial lake basin, with ancient shorelines ranging from 81 meters to 113 meters above the modern lake level. The highest shoreline overlaps the toe of the 0.24 - 0.38 km3 MML deposit derived from hydrothermally altered granites exposed near the summit of Martinez Mountain. The MML was originally believed to be of early Holocene age. However, AVIRIS mineral maps show abundant desert varnish on the top and toe of the landslide. Desert varnish can provide a means of relative dating of alluvial fan (AF) or landslide surfaces, as it accumulates at determinable rates over time. Based on the 1) highest levels of desert varnish accumulation mapped within the basin, 2) abundant evaporite playa minerals on top of the toe of the landslide, and 3) the highest shoreline of the ancestral lake overtopping the toe of the landslide with gastropod and bivalve shells, we conclude that the MML predates the oldest alluvial fan terraces and lake sediments exposed in the Coachella and Imperial valleys and must be older than early Holocene (i.e. Late Pleistocene?). Thus, the MML landslide has the potential to be used as a spectral endmember for desert varnish thickness and thus proxy for age discrimination of active AF washes versus desert pavements. Given the older age of the MML landslide and low water levels in the modern SS, the risk from future rockslides of this size and related seiches is rather low. However, catastrophic floods and debris flows do occur along the most active AF channels; and the aftermath of such flows can be identified spectrally by montmorillonite crusts forming in

  16. Mean flow and Reynolds stress structure over aeolian ripples

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Bailiang; McKenna Neuman, Cheryl; Bédard, Otto; O'Brien, Patrick

    2015-04-01

    Mean flow and turbulence structure on transverse ripples have been well documented in hydrodynamic literature. However, very few studies have described the flow characteristics over aeolian ripples. This study adopted laser Doppler anemometry (LDA) to measure the wind field above granular ripples with different bimodal particle size distributions in a wind tunnel. Multiple runs were conducted to examine the vertical profiles of time-averaged horizontal and vertical velocities and Reynolds stress above four different locations: crest, lee slope, trough, and stoss slope. The rippled sand bed has a fine beige fraction with grain size smaller than 0.542 mm concentrated in the troughs and a coarse fraction dyed in red with grain size greater than 0.542 mm concentrated in the crests. The magnitude of the ripples at equilibrium is controlled by both wind velocity and the ratio of beige sand to red sand. Freestream velocity has a range between 8-11 m/s (above the saltation threshold of beige sand and below the threshold of red sand) and the percentage coarse by mass varies from 5.2% to 27.5% with median grain size from 0.289 mm to 0.399 mm. Experimental results indicate that the ripples have the wave length ranged between 20 mm and 140 mm with a characteristic ripple index (wave length/wave height) of 15. Flow streamlines are generally parallel to the bed surface, which is inconsistent with previous hydrodynamic observations that a return flow is usually found at the lee side of the ripples. Reynolds stress has demonstrated a strong spatial differentiation near the sand surface: greatest at crests and smallest at the troughs, however, this difference diminishes with elevation. This is an exploratory study on the turbulence characteristics of air flow above aeolian ripples, and we believe the finding of this research will enhance the understanding the interaction mechanisms between the air and bed morphology.

  17. Induced liquefaction experiment in relatively dense, clay-rich sand deposits

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hatzor, Yossef H.; Gvirtzman, Haim; Wainshtein, Ilia; Orian, Itay

    2009-02-01

    In this paper we report results from a controlled blast-induced liquefaction experiment at the field scale. The physical and mechanical properties of the materials at the subsurface are characterized by a suite of in situ and laboratory tests, including the Standard Penetration Test (SPT); downhole and cross-hole seismic velocity tests; density, porosity, and gradation tests; and direct shear tests. Since the blast experiment was performed above groundwater table, the subsurface was saturated by a sequence of controlled infiltration tests. A 50-kg TNT charge was detonated at a depth of 10 m, and seismic ground motions were recorded in a vertical geophone array positioned at a horizontal distance of 30 m from the blast borehole. Obtained liquefaction features include a water fountain that erupted from the blast borehole, prolonged bubbling of the water surface inside the infiltration trench (a process equivalent to "sand boils" typically observed at sites which have experienced liquefaction), lateral spreading, and surface settlement. We argue that in contrast to conventional predictions, liquefaction may be induced in relatively dense silty and clayey sands (shear wave velocity >300 m s-1; relative density = 63-89%) relatively rich in clays (fines content >30%) and that the driving mechanism should not necessarily be restricted to cyclic shear stress loading.

  18. Aeolian transport pathways along the transition from Tibetan highlands towards northwestern Chinese deserts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nottebaum, Veit; Lehmkuhl, Frank; Stauch, Georg

    2014-05-01

    The identification and semi-quantification of aeolian transport pathways enhances the understanding of aeolian sediment archive formation and thus supports reliability and explanatory power concerning palaeoenvironmental reconstructions. Grain size analysis of 279 surface sediment samples from the transition of Tibetan highlands (Qilian Shan) towards northwestern Chinese deserts allows the differentiation of contributing pathways among three types of aeolian sediments: silty loess, sandy loess, and aeolian sands. The study area exhibits a high diversity of geomorphological surfaces due to varieties in relief, elevation and climatic conditions. Therefore, it provides the opportunity to investigate the characteristics of sediments in different geomorphological settings. Using the peaks of grain size frequency's standard deviation of primary loess allows identification of the most sensitive fractions to varying accumulation conditions. mU/fS-ratio (7 - 13 μm / 58 - 84 μm) of primary silty loess relates the far-travelled dust proportion to the locally transported fine sand component. In vicinity to fluvial channels in the foreland mU/fS-values are significantly decreased, whereas mU/fS-values increase with altitude (r2 = 0.74). This indicates higher contribution of long distance transport compared to lower regions. A prominent increase of mU/fS-values above 3000 m asl likely indicates an increasing contribution of fine and medium silt particles transported by Westerlies in higher altitudes. In contrast, lower areas seem to be more strongly influenced by low altitude monsoon currents (NW-Winter- / SE-summer monsoon). The difference in grain size properties is additionally enhanced by the contrasting geomorphologic settings along the mountain declivity: Plain foreland alluvial fans support fine sand supply and availability whereas steep high mountain topography provides only limited potential for fine sand deflation. Similarly, the relatively low relief in intramontane

  19. Declination and inclination errors in experimentally deposited specularite-bearing sand

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Bressler, S.L.; Elston, D.P.

    1980-01-01

    Naturally disaggregated specularite-bearing sandstone from the Triassic Moenkopi Formation, artificially deposited in controlled magnetic fields of ???5 ?? 10-2 mT, acquires a stable remanent magnetization that has systematic errors in inclination and declination. Inclinations about 12?? shallower than the applied fields are produced by deposition on a horizontal surface in still water. Deposition from flowing water on a surface inclined 6-10?? results in inclination errors of as much as 20??. Water flowing obliquely to the applied field results in declination errors of about 10??, with declinations systematically rotated toward the upstream direction of current flow. These experimental results indicate that specularite-bearing sediment responds to the earth's field in a manner similar to magnetite-bearing sediment, and support observational evidence for a primary magnetization of depositional origin in specularite in red beds of the Moenkopi Formation. ?? 1980.

  20. Temporal variation in the deposition of polycyclic aromatic compounds in snow in the Athabasca Oil Sands area of Alberta.

    PubMed

    Manzano, Carlos A; Muir, Derek; Kirk, Jane; Teixeira, Camilla; Siu, May; Wang, Xiaowa; Charland, Jean-Pierre; Schindler, David; Kelly, Erin

    2016-09-01

    Atmospheric deposition of polycyclic aromatic compounds (PACs) via and onto snow, and their releasing during spring snowmelt has been a concern in the Athabasca Oil Sands Region of Alberta. This study was designed to evaluate the concentrations, loadings, and distribution of PACs in springtime snowpack and how they have changed since the first study in 2008. Snowpack samples were collected in late winters 2011-2014 at varying distances from the main developments. PAC concentration and deposition declined exponentially with distance, with pyrenes, chrysenes, and dibenzothiophenes dominating the distribution within the first 50 km. The distribution of PACs was different between sites located close to upgraders and others located close to mining facilities. Overall, PAC loadings were correlated with priority pollutant elements and water chemistry parameters, while wind direction and speed were not strong contributors to the variability observed. Total PAC mass deposition during winter months and within the first 50 km was initially estimated by integrating the exponential decay function fitted through the data using a limited number of sites from 2011 to 2014: 1236 kg (2011), 1800 kg (2012), 814 kg (2013), and 1367 (2014). Total loadings were estimated to have a twofold increase between 2008 and 2014, although the increase observed was not constant. Finally, kriging interpolation is presented as an alternative and more robust approach to estimate PAC mass deposition in the area. After a more intensive sampling campaign in 2014, the PAC mass deposition was estimated to be 1968 kg. PMID:27581009

  1. Interfingering sand-rich aprons and Var Fan lobe deposits off Corsica: Analog for thick and laterally extensive turbidite petroleum reservoirs

    SciTech Connect

    Nelson, C.H.; Escutia, C. ); Savoye, B. ); Rehault, J.P. )

    1996-01-01

    The sand-rich Var submarine fan initiates off Nice, France, extends 230 km to the southeast, and then deposits a distal lobe (80 x 40 km) that parallels the northwestern base of the Corsican continental slope. Interfingering with the lobe deposits are base-of-slope, sand-rich aprons derived from Corsica. Both the fan lobe and aprons onlap the outcropping steep (6-110) slopes of Corsica. The fan lobe is characterized by generally flat-bedded layers with the total percentage of sand beds in cores ranging from 60-94% of the Holocene deposits. The aprons are characterized by feeder canyons exhibiting common sediment failures and proximal regions with numerous chaotic layers. With increasing distance from the apron apexes, high amplitude wedging reflectors grade laterally to flatter ones, reflector continuity increases, chaotic layers thin, and some incipient channels form. Chaotic layers are the dominant deposit shown on seismic profiles of the aprons. The layers extend as much as 15 km laterally onto the fan lobe and maximum thicknesses of single layers reach 35-70 m, The prolonged echo character with poor penetration, together with irregular surfaces and possible large blocks seen in sidescan sonar records, suggest that apron deposits are coarse grained. Gravel is found in apron layers that extend 21 km onto the fan lobe and the total percentage of sand beds in cores ranges from 37-79% of the Holocene deposits. Because the estimated sand : shale ratio averages 8.6:1 in the Holocene highstand deposits of the interfingering Corsican aprons and Var Fan lobe, this combined environment is an intriguing setting that could provide large continuous reservoirs if it occurred in a suitable ancient petroleum province.

  2. Interfingering sand-rich aprons and Var Fan lobe deposits off Corsica: Analog for thick and laterally extensive turbidite petroleum reservoirs

    SciTech Connect

    Nelson, C.H.; Escutia, C.; Savoye, B.; Rehault, J.P.

    1996-12-31

    The sand-rich Var submarine fan initiates off Nice, France, extends 230 km to the southeast, and then deposits a distal lobe (80 x 40 km) that parallels the northwestern base of the Corsican continental slope. Interfingering with the lobe deposits are base-of-slope, sand-rich aprons derived from Corsica. Both the fan lobe and aprons onlap the outcropping steep (6-110) slopes of Corsica. The fan lobe is characterized by generally flat-bedded layers with the total percentage of sand beds in cores ranging from 60-94% of the Holocene deposits. The aprons are characterized by feeder canyons exhibiting common sediment failures and proximal regions with numerous chaotic layers. With increasing distance from the apron apexes, high amplitude wedging reflectors grade laterally to flatter ones, reflector continuity increases, chaotic layers thin, and some incipient channels form. Chaotic layers are the dominant deposit shown on seismic profiles of the aprons. The layers extend as much as 15 km laterally onto the fan lobe and maximum thicknesses of single layers reach 35-70 m, The prolonged echo character with poor penetration, together with irregular surfaces and possible large blocks seen in sidescan sonar records, suggest that apron deposits are coarse grained. Gravel is found in apron layers that extend 21 km onto the fan lobe and the total percentage of sand beds in cores ranges from 37-79% of the Holocene deposits. Because the estimated sand : shale ratio averages 8.6:1 in the Holocene highstand deposits of the interfingering Corsican aprons and Var Fan lobe, this combined environment is an intriguing setting that could provide large continuous reservoirs if it occurred in a suitable ancient petroleum province.

  3. Coupled effect of pH and porous media type on transport and deposition of variably-charged soil colloids in saturated sands

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sharma, A.; Kawamoto, K.; Moldrup, P.; de Jonge, L. W.; Komatsu, T.

    2011-12-01

    Understanding colloid transport and deposition in subsurface is essential for predicting colloid-associated contaminant transport and developing effective remedial strategies. Compared to numerous studies using model colloids and model porous media, limited studies have been conducted with natural soil-colloids and porous media. This study investigated transport and deposition of suspended soil-colloids with diameter less than 1 μm extracted from a volcanic ash-soil (VAS colloids) from Nishi-Tokyo, Japan and a red-yellow soil (RYS colloids) from Okinawa, Japan. The extracted soil colloids were applied to 10-cm long saturated sand columns repacked with either Narita sand (mean diameter = 0.64 mm) or Toyoura sand (mean diameter = 0.21 mm) at different flow rates, input concentrations and pH conditions. The pH was adjusted using 0.1 M HCl and 0.01 M NaBr was used as a conservative tracer. Colloid transport and deposition were studied by analyzing colloid effluent concentration breakthrough curves, corresponding deposition profiles and particle size distributions. Based on zeta potential measurements, VAS colloids and Toyoura sand were characterized as pH-dependent surface charge dominant whereas, RYS colloids and Narita sand were categorized as less pH-dependent surface charge dominant colloids and porous media. The results of column studies indicated that decreasing pH decreased the colloid breakthrough curves and increased the deposition of colloids through both porous media. The effect of pH was more significant for VAS colloids than for RYS colloids and for Toyoura sand than for Narita sand, mainly attributed to the pH-dependent surface charge characteristics of VAS colloids and Toyoura sand. The results also demonstrated that if either a colloid or a porous medium is pH-dependent, a significant decrease in breakthrough curves is accompanied by depth-dependent deposition profiles. This study indicated that surface charge properties of colloids coupled with

  4. Influence of depositional sand quality and diagenesis on porosity and permeability: Examples from Brent Group reservoirs, northern North Sea

    SciTech Connect

    Ehrenberg, S.N.

    1997-01-01

    Multivariate statistical analysis was applied to examine correlations between reservoir quality and petrology in two data sets from the Middle Jurassic Brent Group. One of the data sets is from relatively shallow depth and has been little affected by chemical diagenesis (Statfjord Nord and Ost Fields; 2.3--2.6 km below the sea floor), while the second data set is from a more deeply buried reservoir having an advanced degree of diagenesis (Huldra Field; 3.6--3.9 km). Much of the total variation in porosity and permeability within each data set (0.02 mD to > 7 D in both sets) can be accounted for by laboratory measurements of parameters mainly related to depositional sand quality, including shaliness (represented by bulk-rock alumina/silica ratio), early carbonate cement, feldspar content, and grain size. Despite major differences in the proportions of different sedimentary facies in the two data sets, they have similar ranges of depositional sand quality and therefore probably had similar reservoir quality early in their burial history. Deeper burial diagenesis at Huldra Field has shifted the average of both porosity and permeability to lower values and produced a bimodal permeability distribution, apparently reflecting preferential preservation of permeability in the cleaner sandstones. On the basis of these examples, the author outlines an approach for unmixing the diagenetic and lithologic components of variation in regional compilations of sandstone porosity-permeability data. The procedure and its consequences are illustrated using a regional compilation of core data from the Brent Group of the northern North Sea.

  5. Influence of depositional sand quality of porosity and permeability: Examples from Brent Group Reservoirs in the northern North Sea

    SciTech Connect

    Ehrenberg, S.N.; Bjorkum, P.A.; Naddeau, P.H. )

    1996-01-01

    Multivariate statistical analysis was applied to examine correlation between reservoir quality and petrology in two data sets from the Middle Jurassic Brent Group. One of the data sets is from relatively shallow depth an has been little affected by chemical diagenesis (Staffjord Nord Ost Fields 2.3-2.6 km below the sea floor), while the second data set is from a more deeply buried reservoir having an advanced degree of diagenesis (Huldra Field 3.6-3.9 km). Much of the total variation in porosity and permeability (0.02 mD to >7 D in both sets) can be accounted for by laboratory measurements of parameters mainly related to depositional sand quality, including [open quotes]shaliness[close quotes] (represented by bulk-rock alumina content), earl carbonate cement, feldspar content, and grain size. Despite major differences in the proportions of different sedimentary facies in the two data sets, they have similar ranges of depositional sand quality and therefore probably had similar reservoir quality early in their burial history. Deeper burial diagenesis at Huldra Field has shifted the average porosity and permeability lower and produced a bimodal permeability distribution, apparently reflecting preferential preservation of permeability in the cleaner sandstones. Based on these examples, a method is outlined for [open quotes]unmixing[close quotes] the diagenetic and lithologic components of variation in regional compilations of sandstone porosity-permeability data. The procedure and its consequences are illustrated using a regional compilation of core data from the Brent Group of northern North Sea.

  6. Influence of depositional sand quality of porosity and permeability: Examples from Brent Group Reservoirs in the northern North Sea

    SciTech Connect

    Ehrenberg, S.N.; Bjorkum, P.A.; Naddeau, P.H.

    1996-12-31

    Multivariate statistical analysis was applied to examine correlation between reservoir quality and petrology in two data sets from the Middle Jurassic Brent Group. One of the data sets is from relatively shallow depth an has been little affected by chemical diagenesis (Staffjord Nord & Ost Fields 2.3-2.6 km below the sea floor), while the second data set is from a more deeply buried reservoir having an advanced degree of diagenesis (Huldra Field 3.6-3.9 km). Much of the total variation in porosity and permeability (0.02 mD to >7 D in both sets) can be accounted for by laboratory measurements of parameters mainly related to depositional sand quality, including {open_quotes}shaliness{close_quotes} (represented by bulk-rock alumina content), earl carbonate cement, feldspar content, and grain size. Despite major differences in the proportions of different sedimentary facies in the two data sets, they have similar ranges of depositional sand quality and therefore probably had similar reservoir quality early in their burial history. Deeper burial diagenesis at Huldra Field has shifted the average porosity and permeability lower and produced a bimodal permeability distribution, apparently reflecting preferential preservation of permeability in the cleaner sandstones. Based on these examples, a method is outlined for {open_quotes}unmixing{close_quotes} the diagenetic and lithologic components of variation in regional compilations of sandstone porosity-permeability data. The procedure and its consequences are illustrated using a regional compilation of core data from the Brent Group of northern North Sea.

  7. Modeling colloid deposition on a protein layer adsorbed to iron-oxide-coated sand

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, X.; Flynn, R.; von der Kammer, F.; Hofmann, T.

    2012-11-01

    Our recent study reported that conformation change of granule-associated Bovine Serum Albumin (BSA) may influence the role of the protein controlling colloid deposition in porous media (Flynn et al., 2012). The present study conceptualized the observed phenomena with an ellipsoid morphology model, describing BSA as an ellipsoid taking a side-on or end-on conformation on granular surface, and identified the following processes: (1) at low adsorbed concentrations, BSA exhibited a side-on conformation blocking colloid deposition; (2) at high adsorbed concentrations, BSA adapted to an end-on conformation promoted colloid deposition; and (3) colloid deposition on the BSA layer may progressively generate end-on molecules (sites) by conformation change of side-on BSA, resulting in sustained increasing deposition rates. Generally, the protein layer lowered colloid attenuation by the porous medium, suggesting the overall effect of BSA was inhibitory at the experimental time scale. A mathematical model was developed to interpret the ripening curves. Modeling analysis identified the site generation efficiency of colloid as a control on the ripening rate (declining rate in colloid concentrations), and this efficiency was higher for BSA adsorbed from a more dilute BSA solution.

  8. Holocene aeolian sedimentation and episodic mass-wasting events recorded in lacustrine sediments on Langøya in Vesterålen, northern Norway

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nielsen, Pål Ringkjøb; Dahl, Svein Olaf; Jansen, Henrik Løseth; Støren, Eivind N.

    2016-09-01

    In this study, the frequency of mass-wasting events and past storminess has been reconstructed throughout the Holocene (11,500 cal yr BP to present) from lacustrine sediments in lake Trehynnvatnet (33 m a.s.l.), which is located in a glacially carved valley at Nykvåg on the outmost coast of western Langøya, Vesterålen, northern Norway. Sediment cores (∼2-5 m long) have been examined by use of high-resolution magnetic susceptibility and XRF-scanning as well as grain size and loss-on-ignition analysis. In total 35 episodic event layers have been identified throughout the Holocene. The majority of these events are characterized as discrete coarse-grained sediment layers followed by normal grading, and are related to past mass-wasting activity within the catchment. Periods with high mass-wasting activity are dated to 11,000-10,500, 5500-4500, 4000-3500, 3000-2500, 2000-1000 and 500-0 cal yr BP. The continuous input of sand grains (>250 μm) has been systematically investigated throughout the sediment cores. The sand grains are related to catchment samples from the sandy beach deposits in Sandvikbukta c. 750 m away in SW direction, and are suggested to indicate (niveo-) aeolian influx to the lake. The content of sand grains varies greatly throughout the record, although there is a clear increase in influx of sand during the last 2800 years. Periods with high aeolian influx are proposed to indicate increased storminess, which occurred between 1600 and 1550 (350-400 CE), 1400-1300 (450-550 CE), 750-550 (1200-1400 CE) and 250-20 cal yr BP (1700-1930 CE), which to some degree coincides with periods of increased storminess and winter precipitation recorded in other studies around the North Eastern Atlantic region.

  9. Compositional Variations of Rocknest Sand, Gale Crater, Mars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Goetz, Walter; Madsen, Morten B.; Edgett, Kenneth S.; Clark, Benton C.; Meslin, Pierre-Yves; Blaney, Diana L.; Bridges, Nathan; Fisk, Martin; Hviid, Stubbe F.; Kocurek, Gary; Lasue, Jeremie; Maurice, Sylvestre; Newsom, Horton; Renno, Nilton; Rubin, David M.; Sullivan, Robert; Wiens, Roger C.; MSL Science Team

    2013-04-01

    The Curiosity rover spent over 40 sols at an aeolian deposit (termed Rocknest sand shadow deposit) that is several meters long (oriented north-south), 15-20 cm high (at crest) and about 50 cm wide. Material was scooped up from the subsurface to a depth of about 40 mm at five different locations on the deposit. Part of the sampled material was delivered to the analytical laboratories CheMin (x-ray diffraction) and SAM (pyrolysis, evolved gas analysis, gas chromatography, mass spectrometry, tunable laser spectroscopy) in the rover body. Scoop troughs and walls were imaged extensively by cameras onboard the rover (Mastcam, Mars Hand Lens Imager (MAHLI), Remote Microscopic Imager (RMI)) and probed by Laser Induced Breakdown Spectroscopy (LIBS) as provided by the ChemCam instrument. Images show that the top surface of the deposit is armored by a layer 1-3 grains thick of mm-sized, subrounded, dust-mantled grains. The bulk of the deposit is composed of particles smaller than 150 microns (fine and very fine sand and likely silt and dust). Furthermore, there are bright bands in the subsurface, a narrow one and a broad one at depths 2-4 mm and 20-30 mm, respectively. The images also provide evidence for crust formation and cementation as the scoop trough floors are littered by platy angular fragments and cemented clods. Many of the clods contain numerous sub-mm sized bright (sulfate rich?) inclusions. Chemical profiles (as provided by ChemCam data) do not clearly support the type of subsurface layering inferred from the images. However, chemical abundances (Li, Na, K, Mn, Fe, Ca, Mg, and Si) significantly deviating from average values are found at two different depths (respectively 15 and 25 mm). It is unclear when (and over which time scale) the Rocknest sand deposit in Gale Crater formed. In any case, mm-sized particles cannot be moved efficiently in the current aeolian regime. If the deposit has been immobile for an extended period of time, it is conceivable that Martian

  10. Ancient wet aeolian environments on Earth: Clues to presence of fossil/live microorganisms on Mars

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Mahaney, W.C.; Milner, M.W.; Netoff, D.I.; Malloch, D.; Dohm, J.M.; Baker, V.R.; Miyamoto, H.; Hare, T.M.; Komatsu, G.

    2004-01-01

    Ancient wet aeolian (wet-sabkha) environments on Earth, represented in the Entrada and Navajo sandstones of Utah, contain pipe structures considered to be the product of gas/water release under pressure. The sediments originally had considerable porosity allowing the ingress of living plant structures, microorganisms, clay minerals, and fine-grained primary minerals of silt and sand size from the surface downward in the sedimentary column. Host rock material is of a similar size and porosity and presumably the downward migration of fine-grained material would have been possible prior to lithogenesis and final cementation. Recent field emission scanning electron microscopy (FESEM) and EDS (energy-dispersive spectrometry) examination of sands from fluidized pipes in the Early Jurassic Navajo Sandstone reveal the presence of fossil forms resembling fungal filaments, some bearing hyphopodium-like structures similar to those produced by modern tropical leaf parasites. The tropical origin of the fungi is consistent with the paleogeography of the sandstone, which was deposited in a tropical arid environment. These fossil fungi are silicized, with minor amounts of CaCO3 and Fe, and in some cases a Si/Al ratio similar to smectite. They exist as pseudomorphs, totally depleted in nitrogen, adhering to the surfaces of fine-grained sands, principally quartz and orthoclase. Similar wet aeolian paleoenvironments are suspected for Mars, especially following catastrophic sediment-charged floods of enormous magnitudes that are believed to have contributed to rapid formation of large water bodies in the northern plains, ranging from lakes to oceans. These events are suspected to have contributed to a high frequency of constructional landforms (also known as pseudocraters) related to trapped volatiles and water-enriched sediment underneath a thick blanket of materials that were subsequently released to the martian surface, forming piping structures at the near surface and

  11. Hydrological indications of aeolian salts in mid-latitude deserts of northwestern China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhu, Bing-Qi

    2016-06-01

    Large sandy deserts in middle latitude of northwestern China were studied on salt variations in modern and ancient aeolian sediments, aiming to explore their hydrological indications at the present and past. Globally, sulphate is rich in arid to semi-arid deserts, including the aeolian loess sediments in China and soils in low-latitude deserts, but is less common in the aeolian sediments from the mid-latitude deserts in this study. The compositional differences between aeolian salts and local natural waters is evident, indicating the chemistry of aeolian salts and the associated parent brines may be significantly different than that predicted for hydrologically closed systems. The formation of aeolian salts in the studied deserts is strongly controlled by earth surface processes in a large scale but not in a local scale. Vertical changes in facies and salinities are abrupt in the studied palaeo-aeolian sediment samples, which were interbedded by lacustrine/fluvial sediments with OSL and 14C ages ranging between 40 and 2 ka BP, reflecting rapid high-amplitude changes in hydrological settings during late Pleistocene to later Holocene in these ancient playa systems. A great difference in salt composition between aeolian and lacustrine sediments suggests that the inorganic salt is a latent geoproxy in revealing local hydrological variations and climate change in the desert areas. But the environmental indications could be amphibolous for the sedimentary sequences with dual/multiple depositional end-members; under this situation an increase in sequence salinity does not always represent an enhanced environmental aridity. Ancient playas are arid or humid at the same time based on several sporadic records is not a valid approach to correlation of salt deposits in adjacent saline playa basin in the studied areas. Effects of earth surface processes including erosion, deposition and other processes on sediment properties will bias the hydrological implications of sediment

  12. Quantifying the provenance of aeolian sediments using multiple composite fingerprints

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Benli; Niu, Qinghe; Qu, Jianjun; Zu, Ruiping

    2016-09-01

    We introduce a new fingerprinting method that uses multiple composite fingerprints for studies of aeolian sediment provenance. We used this method to quantify the provenance of sediments on both sides of the Qinghai-Tibetan Railway (QTR) in the Cuona Lake section of the Tibetan Plateau (TP), in an environment characterized by aeolian and fluvial interactions. The method involves repeatedly solving a linear mixing model based on mass conservation; the model is not limited to spatial scale or transport types and uses all the tracer groups that passed the range check, Kruskal-Wallis H-test, and a strict analytical solution screening. The proportional estimates that result from using different composite fingerprints are highly variable; however, the average of these fingerprints has a greater accuracy and certainty than any single fingerprint. The results show that sand from the lake beach, hilly surface, and gullies contribute, respectively, 48%, 31% and 21% to the western railway sediments and 43%, 33% and 24% to the eastern railway sediments. The difference between contributions from various sources on either side of the railway, which may increase in the future, was clearly related to variations in local transport characteristics, a conclusion that is supported by grain size analysis. The construction of the QTR changed the local cycling of materials, and the difference in provenance between the sediments that are separated by the railway reflects the changed sedimentary conditions on either side of the railway. The effectiveness of this method suggests that it will be useful in other studies of aeolian sediments.

  13. Depositional mechanisms and architecture of a pre-early Cambrian mixed sand mud deepwater ramp (Apiúna Unit, South Brazil)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Basilici, Giorgio

    2006-06-01

    The Apiúna Unit is located in the south of Brazil, in the State of Santa Catarina. It is a deepwater depositional system, which is part of the sedimentary fill of the Itajaí Basin, pre-early Cambrian in age, interpreted as a foredeep basin. We have described and interpreted the depositional mechanisms according to the terminology proposed by Mulder and Alexander [Mulder, T., Alexander, J., 2001. The Physical Character of Subaqueous Sedimentary Density Flows and their Deposits. Sedimentology 48 (2), 269-299] and have recognized seven architectural elements. The Apiúna Unit is interpreted as a mixed sand-mud deepwater ramp system. The slope deposits are characterized by laminated argillite with slumped beds. The proximal and medial ramp is characterized by channel-levee systems. The distal ramp shows sandstone sheet, which pass distally into interlayered sandstone/pelite. The sequence development of this ramp unit differs from other known ancient ramp systems. The Apiúna Unit shows at least five phases of sandy input, recording times of progradation or retrogradation of the ramp, interstratified with muddy deposits, related to sand-starved phases. In the upper part of the succession, the ramp building was interrupted and the sandy deposits are replaced by pelitic slope deposits. The depositional mechanisms have a direct relationship to the architectural elements and the regions of the depositional system. Settling, very low-density turbidity currents and slumps formed the slope deposits. Channel deposits are formed by debris flows, hyperconcentrated density flows and concentrated density flows, in that vertical sequence order. Levee deposits were made of surge-like turbidity flows. Proximal sandstone sheet deposits were formed by concentrated density flows. Distal sandstone sheet deposits are formed by concentrated density flows and surge-like turbidity flows. Surge-like turbidity flows and quasi-steady (?) turbidity flows formed the interchannel deposits.

  14. Effects of Seismological and Soil Parameters on Earthquake Energy demand in Level Ground Sand Deposits

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    nabili, sara; shahbazi majd, nafiseh

    2013-04-01

    Liquefaction has been a source of major damages during severe earthquakes. To evaluate this phenomenon there are several stress, strain and energy based approaches. Use of the energy method has been more focused by researchers due to its advantages with respect to other approaches. The use of the energy concept to define the liquefaction potential is validated through laboratory element and centrifuge tests as well as field studies. This approach is based on the hypothesis that pore pressure buildup is directly related to the dissipated energy in sands which is the accumulated areas between the stress-strain loops. Numerous investigations were performed to find a relationship which correlates the dissipated energy to the soil parameters, but there are not sufficient studies to relate this dissipated energy, known as demand energy, concurrently, to the seismological and the soil parameters. The aim of this paper is to investigate the dependency of the demand energy in sands to seismological and the soil parameters. To perform this task, an effective stress analysis has been executed using FLAC finite difference program. Finn model, which is a built-in constitutive model implemented in FLAC program, was utilized. Since an important stage to predict the liquefaction is the prediction of excess pore water pressure at a given point, a simple numerical framework is presented to assess its generation during a cyclic loading in a given centrifuge test. According to the results, predicted excess pore water pressures did not closely match to the measured excess pore water pressure values in the centrifuge test but they can be used in the numerical assessment of excess pore water pressure with an acceptable degree of preciseness. Subsequently, the centrifuge model was reanalyzed using several real earthquake acceleration records with different seismological parameters such as earthquake magnitude and Hypocentral distance. The accumulated energies (demand energy) dissipated in

  15. A multi-isotope approach for estimating industrial contributions to atmospheric nitrogen deposition in the Athabasca oil sands region in Alberta, Canada.

    PubMed

    Proemse, Bernadette C; Mayer, Bernhard; Fenn, Mark E; Ross, Christopher S

    2013-11-01

    Industrial nitrogen (N) emissions in the Athabasca oil sands region (AOSR), Alberta, Canada, affect nitrate (NO3) and ammonium (NH4) deposition rates in close vicinity of industrial emitters. NO3-N and NH4-N open field and throughfall deposition rates were determined at various sites between 3 km and 113 km distance to the main oil sand operations between May 2008 and May 2009. NO3 and NH4 were analyzed for δ(15)N-NO3, δ(18)O-NO3, Δ(17)O-NO3 and δ(15)N-NH4. Marked differences in the δ(18)O and Δ(17)O values between industrial emissions and background deposition allowed for the estimation of minimum industrial contributions to atmospheric NO3 deposition. δ(15)N-NH4 values also allowed for estimates of industrial contributions to atmospheric NH4 deposition. Results revealed that particularly sites within ~30 km radius from the main oil sands developments are significantly affected by industrial contributions to atmospheric NO3 and NH4 deposition. PMID:23896680

  16. Water in sand and gravel deposits in McHenry County, Illinois

    SciTech Connect

    Nicholas, J.R.; Krohelski, J.T.

    1984-01-01

    Two general types of sand and gravel occur in McHenry County - unconfined aquifers, which are at or near the land surface, and semiconfined aquifers, which are overlain by one or more till members. Water levels in both types of aquifers are mapped from measurements made in the spring of 1979. The water-level configuration roughly parallels the land surface. Moraines and other topographically high features coincide with ground-water divides of local flow systems. Flow paths from divides to low-lands are relatively short - a few miles or less. Recharge predominates in uplands, whereas discharge predominates in lowlands. Water levels change seasonally in response to variations in recharge and discharge conditions. The highest water levels occur during spring and decline during the rest of the year. Ground water is of the calcium magnesium bicarbonate type and is of acceptable quality for most uses. However, for domestic and some industrial uses, treatment may be required to reduce hardness and to remove iron. Hardness ranged from 130 to 600 milligrams per liter as calcium carbonate, and dissolved iron concentrations ranges from less than 10 to 6200 micrograms per liter. The specific conductance of ground water ranged from 260 to 1170 micromhos per centimeter. Specific conductance exceeded 1000 micromhos per centimeter near Huntley and Hebron. Nitrate concentration was generally less than 0.68 milligrams per liter. 22 refs., 9 figs., 3 tabs.

  17. Radiometric, SEM and XRD investigation of black sands at Chituc placer deposit North of the City of Navodari, Romania

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Duliu, Octavian G.; Blebea-Apostu, Ana-Maria; Gomoiu, Claudia; Margineanu, Romul M.; Costea, Constantin; Dumitras, Delia; Ion, Adriana

    2014-05-01

    The black sand of the Chituc marine sandbank situated northern of the city of Navodari (Romania), displayed anomalous high ambient dose rates. Field measurements performed during 2013 Summer campaign recorded in some places dose rate up to 200 nSv/h, significantly overpassing the average value of 44 ± 20 nSv/h recorded along the entire Southern sector of Romanian Black Sea shore. Here, the sand presented a black-brownish hue, different by the usual white yellowish colour. Gamma ray spectrometry performed on both Slanic-Prahove Underground Low Background Laboratory and Gological Institute Radiometric Facilities showed with clarity the dominance of 228-Ac radioisotope in the 50 microns fraction together with the 226-Ra and traces of 40-K. No significant amount of anthropogenic 137-Cs were identified. The other granulometric fractions, i.e. 315, 200 as well 100 microns presented a significant lower level of radioactivity. X-ray diffraction (XRD) as well as Scanning Electron Microsopy (SEM) data attested the presence of monazite, zircon, magnetite, ilmenite, andradite, quartz, aragonite and albite in different proportions, the monazite and zircon being preponderant in the 50 microns, the most radioactive fraction. Based on both radiometric and XRD determinations we come to the conclusion that the evidenced radioactivity could be attributed to both uranium and thorium series in the zircon and monazite fractions and to a lesser extent in the garnet fraction. By its position with respect to Danube Delta, the Chituc marine sandbank could be regarded as a placer where heavy minerals discharged in the Black Sea by the Danube River and transported southward by the Great Black Sea Rim are deposited by gravity separation during sedimentary processes. The implications of the Chituc levee radioactive anomaly for any further human activity are analysed and discussed. Acknowledgement: Work done within the BS ERA NET 041 project in the frame of BS-ERA.NET Pilot Joint CAll 2010-2011.

  18. Studies in Martian Aeolian Geology

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Greeley, Ronald

    2001-01-01

    This report gives the results from the investigation through March 15, 1999 for the first two years of the three year investigation (year 3 runs from March 1, 1999 to February 27, 2000). The investigation included three tasks, all involving windblown dust (particles a few micrometers in diameter) to simulate the aeolian regime on Mars. Experiments were conducted primarily in the Mars Surface Wind Tunnel (MARSWIT) at NASA-Ames Research Center.

  19. The geomorphology and evolution of aeolian landforms within a river valley in a semi-humid environment: A case study from Mainling Valley, Qinghai-Tibet Plateau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhou, Na; Zhang, Chun-Lai; Wu, Xiao-Xu; Wang, Xun-ming; Kang, Li-qiang

    2014-11-01

    This paper systematically analyzes a valley's aeolian landforms in a semi-humid region and presents a model of its contemporary evolution. Mainling Valley of the Yarlung Zangbo River on the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau was chosen as the case study for the analysis of morphometric characteristics and the evolution sequence of aeolian landforms via field data and remote sensing images. The aeolian landforms were primarily composed of aeolian sand belts on river terraces and dunes (sheets) on hillside slopes. Three types of aeolian sand belts were identified based on their dune types. In type I belts, an erosive air stream combined with relatively high vegetation cover (10%) produced sparsely distributed parabolic dunes with a high variability of dune heights; in type II belts, the continual reworking by the erosive air stream in combination with low vegetation cover (3%) formed more densely distributed barchans and transitional dunes with a moderate variability of dune heights; and in type III belts, the gradual evolution from an erosive sand-laden air stream to a saturated sand-laden air stream in combination with low vegetation cover (2%) produced the densest crescentic dunefields but with the least variability in dune heights. Dune sizes increase, dune shapes become uniform, and dune distribution becomes close from type I to III belts. Lateral linking and merging of the dunes were also observed within the belts. Together this evidence indicates that an evolution sequence may exist. Aeolian dunefields in the belt appear to evolve from embryonic parabolic dunefields to adolescent barchan dunefields and, subsequently, to mature compound crescentic dunefields. As the aeolian sand belt evolves into the mature stage, sand accumulations at the foot of the mountain valley can be steps for sand accumulation on valley-side slopes.

  20. Bog Plant Tissue Chemistry and N and S Accumulation in Peat are Influenced by Elevated N and S Deposition from Alberta Oil Sands Development

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wieder, R.; Vile, M. A.; Quinn, J.; Albright, C. M.; Scott, K. D.; Vitt, D. H.

    2013-12-01

    Development of the oil sands resource in northern Alberta, Canada has led to elevated atmospheric N and S deposition, the N coming mainly from the exhaust of diesel fueled-trucks that haul the raw oil sands from the mine sites and the S coming mainly from refining. Against a background deposition of < 1 kg/ha/yr for both N and S, at sites within 15 km of the oil sands mining region we have measured current N and S deposition to be as high as 2 and 27 kg/ha/yr. With a goal of developing monitoring tools to assess the spatial extent of elevated N and S deposition in the region, we collected leaves, needles, or whole plants of 12 bog species (lichens: Cladina mitis and Evernia mesomorpha; Sphagnum mosses: S. capillifolium and S. fuscum; a tree: Picea mariana; ericaceous shrubs: Ledum groenlandicum, Oxycoccos microcarpus and Vaccinium vitis-idaea; deciduous forbs: Rubus chamaemorus and Smilacina trifolia) from 5 bogs ranging from 11 to over 250 km from the oil sands mining area. Samples were collected on 23 dates between May and October of 2009-2012 and were analyzed for C, N, and S concentrations. Six species (C. mitis, E. mesomorpha, S. fuscum, O. microcarpus, V. vitis-idaea, and R. chamaemorus) exhibited statistically significant increases in C:N ratio with increasing distance from the oil sands mining area. Five species (C. mitis, E. mesomorpha, S. fuscum, S. capillifolium, O. microcarpus) exhibited statistically significant increases in C:S ratio with increasing distance from the oil sands mining area. For three species (S. fuscum, E. mesomorpha, O. microcarpus), N concentrations gradually and significantly increased (C:N ratios decreased) over the four years of the study, with the rate of increase as high as 1 mg/g/yr at sites in close proximity to the oil sands mining area. In contrast, S concentrations in plant tissues generally did not increase over the four years, possibly because of increasing efforts to control S emissions from stacks. Using 210Pb

  1. Earth and planetary aeolian streaks: A review

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cohen-Zada, Aviv Lee; Blumberg, Dan Gabriel; Maman, Shimrit

    2016-03-01

    Wind streaks are abundant aeolian features that have been observed on planetary surfaces by remote sensing means. They have been widely studied, particularly on Mars and Venus and to a much lesser extent on Earth. In imagery, these streaks appear as elongated features that are easily distinguishable from their surroundings. Geomorphologically, these streaks have, thus far, been interpreted as the presence or absence of small loose particles on the surface, deposited or eroded, respectively, by wind. However, the use of different (optical and radar) remote-sensing tools to study wind streaks has led to uncertain interpretations of these features and has hindered their geomorphological definition. Since wind streaks indicate the prevailing wind direction at the time of their formation, they may be used to map near-surface winds and to estimate atmospheric circulation patterns. The aim of this article is to review the main studies focusing on wind streaks and to present the most up-to-date knowledge on this topic. Moreover, a new perspective for wind streak research is suggested: As 'wind streak' is a collective term for a variety of aeolian features that when viewed from above appear as distinctive albedo surface patterns, we suggest that the term should not be used to refer to a geomorphological feature. Since the definition of wind streaks is constrained to remote sensing rather than to geomorphology and is affected by the inherent biases of remote sensing methods, we suggest that 'wind streaks' should be used as a collective term for aeolian surfaces that are discernable from above as bright and dark patterns due to alterations in the characteristics of the surface or to the presence of bedforms. To better understand the mechanisms, time-frames, climate compatibility of wind streaks and the influences of remote sensing on their appearance, we have compiled a new database containing more than 2,900 Earth wind streaks. A comprehensive study of these Earth wind

  2. Publication trends in Aeolian research: An analysis of the biblography of Aeolian research

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    An analysis of the Bibliography of Aeolian Research has provided information regarding publication trends in aeolian research. Overall, results suggest that there has been a significant increase in the number of publications per year since the first aeolian-research publication appeared in 1646. P...

  3. 10 years of aeolian geomorphology at the EGU: past achievements and future challenges

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baas, Andreas C. W.; Wiggs, Giles F. S.; Claudin, Philippe

    2016-04-01

    On this tenth anniversary of the Aeolian Processes & Landforms session at the EGU the original conveners review and reflect on the recent achievements and expansion in aeolian geomorphological research, focussing on advances in our understanding of sand transport processes, dune development and dynamics, and the mechanisms and scalings involved. This talk will highlight the variety and impact of the dramatic increase in the extent and interest of research on aeolian processes and landforms in the last ten years, including the increasingly strong community presence at international meetings, the diversity and extent of collaborations across subject boundaries, and the application of new measurement technologies and mathematical approaches. We conclude with a forward-looking prospectus of exciting future challenges and open research questions.

  4. Quaternary downcutting rates from cave-deposited river sediment and Holocene erosion rates from river sand in the Central Pyrenees

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vernant, Philippe; Genti, Manon; Chéry, Jean; Cazes, Gaël; Braucher, Régis

    2016-04-01

    We use 26Al and 10Be to infer the time of cave-deposited river sediment emplacement in the Central Pyrenees and the Cevennes. Using these ages, we derive mid-term downcutting rates (1-4.106 a). We also use the cosmogenic radionuclides 10Be concentration in quartz extracted from river sand to estimate short-term (102-105 a) erosion rates. Along the N-S profile across the central Pyrenees, we do not see any significant change in erosion rates during the Quaternary. On the other hand, the erosion rates are highly correlated with the local elevation. They vary roughly from 50 m/Myr in the foreland up to 800 m/Myr in the axial part of the mountain range. The mechanisms responsible for the Pyrenees moderate, but frequent, seismicity have yet to be determined. Based on numerical modeling and our erosion rates, we propose that this seismicity could be explained by the isostatic rebound associated to the erosion of the range. To evaluate the likeliness of this hypothesis, we aim at comparing the Pyrenees and the Cevennes to check if the rates are significantly different between these mountain ranges with very different seismic behavior.

  5. An integrated coastal model for aeolian and hydrodynamic sediment transport

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baart, F.; den Bieman, J.; van Koningsveld, M.; Luijendijk, A. P.; Parteli, E. J. R.; Plant, N. G.; Roelvink, J. A.; Storms, J. E. A.; de Vries, S.; van Thiel de Vries, J. S. M.; Ye, Q.

    2012-04-01

    Dunes are formed by aeolian and hydrodynamic processes. Over the last decades numerical models were developed that capture our knowledge of the hydrodynamic transport of sediment near the coast. At the same time others have worked on creating numerical models for aeolian-based transport. Here we show a coastal model that integrates three existing numerical models into one online-coupled system. The XBeach model simulates storm-induced erosion (Roelvink et al., 2009). The Delft3D model (Lesser et al., 2004) is used for long term morphology and the Dune model (Durán et al., 2010) is used to simulate the aeolian transport. These three models were adapted to be able to exchange bed updates in real time. The updated models were integrated using the ESMF framework (Hill et al., 2004), a system for composing coupled modeling systems. The goal of this integrated model is to capture the relevant coastal processes at different time and spatial scales. Aeolian transport can be relevant during storms when the strong winds are generating new dunes, but also under relative mild conditions when the dunes are strengthened by transporting sand from the intertidal area to the dunes. Hydrodynamic transport is also relevant during storms, when high water in combination with waves can cause dunes to avalanche and erode. While under normal conditions the hydrodynamic transport can result in an onshore transport of sediment up to the intertidal area. The exchange of sediment in the intertidal area is a dynamic interaction between the hydrodynamic transport and the aeolian transport. This dynamic interaction is particularly important for simulating dune evolution at timescales longer than individual storm events. The main contribution of the integrated model is that it simulates the dynamic exchange of sediment between aeolian and hydrodynamic models in the intertidal area. By integrating the numerical models, we hope to develop a model that has a broader scope and applicability than

  6. 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

  7. Rapid anthropogenic response to short-term aeolian-fluvial palaeoenvironmental changes during the Late Pleistocene-Holocene transition in the northern Negev Desert, Israel

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Roskin, Joel; Katra, Itzhak; Agha, Nuha; Goring-Morris, A. Nigel; Porat, Naomi; Barzilai, Omry

    2014-09-01

    Archaeological investigations along Nahal Sekher on the eastern edge of Israel's northwestern Negev Desert dunefield revealed concentrations of Epipalaeolithic campsites associated respectively with ancient water bodies. This study, aimed at better understanding the connections between these camps and the water bodies, is concerned with a cluster of Natufian sites. A comprehensive geomorphological study integrating field mapping, stratigraphic sections, sedimentological analysis and optically stimulated luminescence (OSL) ages was conducted in the vicinity of a recently excavated Natufian campsite of Nahal Sekher VI whose artifacts directly overlay aeolian sand dated by OSL to 12.4 ± 0.7 and 11.7 ± 0.5 ka. Residual sequences of diagnostic silty sediments, defined here as low-energy fluvial fine-grained deposits (LFFDs), were identified within the drainage system of central Nahal Sekher around the Nahal Sekher VI site. LFFD sections were found to represent both shoreline and mid-water deposits. The thicker mid-water LFFD deposits (15.7 ± 0.7-10.7 ± 0.5 ka) date within the range of the Epipalaeolithic campsites, while the upper and shoreline LFFD units that thin out into the sands adjacent to the Nahal Sekher VI site display slightly younger ages (10.8 ± 0.4 ka-7.6 ± 0.4 ka). LFFD sedimentation by low-energy concentrated flow and standing-water developed as a result of proximal downstream dune-damming. These water bodies developed as a result of encroaching sand that initially crossed central Nahal Sekher by 15.7 ± 0.7 ka and probably intermittently blocked the course of the wadi. LFFD deposition was therefore a response to a unique combination of regional sand supply due to frequent powerful winds and does not represent climate change in the form of increased precipitation or temperature change. The chronostratigraphies affiliate the Natufian sites to the adjacent ancient water bodies. These relations reflect a rapid, but temporary anthropogenic response to a

  8. Aeolian Coastal Landscapes in changes (a study from Tahkuna, Estonia)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Anderson, A.

    2012-04-01

    The openness of the coast to the winds and storm waves has an important part in changing aeolian coastal landscapes as well as anthropogenic factor. The aeolian coastal landscapes are probably the most dynamic areas. Occurrence of aeolian coastal landscapes in Estonia is limited. They consist of sandy beaches, sandy beach ridges and dunes. The coastal ecosystems are strongly affected by their topography, based on the character of deposits and moisture conditions. The majority of their ecosystems are quite close to the specific natural habitat. These ecosystems are represented in the list of the European Union Habitats (Natura 2000). In recent decades human influence has changed the landscape over time in different activities (recreation, trampling, off-road driving) and their intensities, which has led to destruction or degradation of various habitats. Previously coastal landscapes were used for forestry and pasture. Nowadays one of the most serious threats to open landscape is afforestation. This study examines the relationships between landscape components during last decades. Trying to find out how much aeolian coastal landscapes are influenced by natural processes or human activities. The results are based on cartographic analysis, fieldwork data. The method of landscape complex profile was used. The profiles show a cross-sections of landforms and interrelationships between landscape components, most frequently describing the relations between soils and vegetation. In each sample point the mechanical composition of sediments, vegetation cover and soil is determined. Results show that changes in landscapes are induced by their own development as well as changes in environmental factors and human activities. Larger changes are due to increase of coastal processes activity. These processes can be observed in sandy beaches, which are easily transformed by waves. Higher sea levels during storm surges are reaching older beach formation, causing erosion and creating

  9. Detrital zircon geochemistry and U-Pb geochronology as an indicator of provenance of the Namakwa Sands heavy mineral deposit, west coast of South Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Philander, C.; Rozendaal, A.

    2015-10-01

    A representative suite of detrital zircons from the Cenozoic Namakwa Sands heavy mineral placer deposit, which is hosted by mainly unconsolidated clastic sediments of the West Coast Group, has been studied from a provenance perspective. The deposit is located along the west coast of South Africa and is underlain by a metamorphosed Meso- and Neoproterozoic basement. Mineral geochemistry of individual zircon grains indicated that the entire population is continentally derived and is dominated by zircons from a felsic magmatic source, some highly evolved, with minor contributions from a metamorphic and mafic provenance. The U-Pb zircon age distribution is diverse, but is dominated by three distinct age populations. The 1100-1020 Ma interval can be equated with the felsic meta-intrusives of the Namaquan Orogeny of the Namaqualand Metamorphic Province, and the 650-500 Ma period with the meta-volcanosedimentary Pan-African Gariep and Saldania Belts. A particularly dominant group with a narrow time interval (145-130 Ma) is correlated with the proximal intrusives of the anorogenic Koegel Fontein Complex. Equivalent source rocks of the above time intervals occur proximal to the Namakwa Sands deposit. As a result, it was demonstrated that the Namakwa Sands zircon population has mainly a proximal, primary provenance, whereas contributions attributed to secondary, reworked or distal sources proved minor. The high concentration and quality of zircons in this deposit compared to similar placers globally is attributed to the proximity of a primary, zircon-rich provenance to a geomorphologically controlled depositional trap. The results of the study suggest that the contribution of Pan-African (750-500 Ma) sources is a key prerequisite in the successful exploration for similar high-quality zircon placer deposits along the west coast of South Africa.

  10. River terrace sand and gravel deposit reserve estimation using three-dimensional electrical resistivity tomography for bedrock surface detection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chambers, J. E.; Wilkinson, P. B.; Penn, S.; Meldrum, P. I.; Kuras, O.; Loke, M. H.; Gunn, D. A.

    2013-06-01

    We describe the application of 3D electrical resistivity tomography (ERT) to the characterisation and reserve estimation of an economic fluvial sand and gravel deposit. Due to the smoothness constraints used to regularise the inversion, it can be difficult to accurately determine the geometry of sharp interfaces. We have therefore considered two approaches to interface detection that we have applied to the 3D ERT results in an attempt to provide an accurate and objective assessment of the bedrock surface elevation. The first is a gradient-based approach, in which the steepest gradient of the vertical resistivity profile is assumed to correspond to the elevation of the mineral/bedrock interface. The second method uses an intrusive sample point to identify the interface resistivity at a location within the model, from which an iso-resistivity surface is identified that is assumed to define the interface. Validation of these methods has been achieved through direct comparison with observed bedrock surface elevations that were measured using real-time-kinematic GPS subsequent to the 3D ERT survey when quarrying exposed the bedrock surface. The gradient-based edge detector severely underestimated the depth to bedrock in this case, whereas the interface resistivity method produced bedrock surface elevations that were in close agreement with the GPS-derived surface. The failure of the gradient-based method is attributed to insufficient model sensitivity in the region of the bedrock surface, whereas the success of the interface resistivity method is a consequence of the homogeneity of the mineral and bedrock, resulting in a consistent interface resistivity. These results highlight the need for some intrusive data for model validation and for edge detection approaches to be chosen on the basis of local geological conditions.

  11. Microtopography-Induced Lag Formation on Bedforms and Biogenic Structures in Aeolian Settings

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Buynevich, I. V.

    2010-12-01

    In a variety of sand-dominated depositional settings, high-energy events typically culminate with the formation of a lag deposit, expressed as an increase in coarse fraction, accumulation of shell fragments, or a concentration of heavy minerals (density >2.9) beyond their background values. In aeolian settings, grain impact plays a greater role in sediment transport than under subaqueous conditions, but there is a similar segregation of minerals by size and density due to different threshold entrainment and fall velocities of sand grains. For fine-to-medium sand transition, near-surface wind velocities increase from 4.5 m/s for quartz to 6.5 m/s for magnetite, which has twice the density. Most heavy minerals occur in a finer fraction of the surface sediment layer, which further increases their entrainment threshold due to high pivot angles and sheltering by the lighter minerals. Prolonged periods of increased wind activity generate heavy-mineral-enriched horizons ranging in thickness from a few grain diameters to more than 10-20 cm, producing distinct marker horizons and placers of economic importance. However, even under relatively low wind regime, localized density lag may form due to minor variations in topography and bed roughness. This process was exemplified along Revere Beach (Massachusetts, USA), where a series of 15-cm-high steps were installed at the base of a low seawall to prevent the formation of aeolian ramp that facilitated frequent overtopping. During the following months, a clear trend was established where the heavy-mineral fraction (primarily almandine garnet) progressively increased in a landward direction, toward higher substrate elevations. In natural settings with even a small background fraction of heavy minerals (2-5%), microtopographic highs of less than 1 cm are sufficient for the formation of a density lag. In a backshore area of Assateague Island (Maryland, USA), a clear increase in heavy-mineral content (mostly magnetite) was observed

  12. Transverse Aeolian Ridges on Mars: Sediment sources, volumes, and ages.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Berman, D. C.; Balme, M. R.

    2014-12-01

    Transverse Aeolian Ridges (TARs) are aeolian bedforms that are morphologically and dimensionally distinct from Large Dark Dune (LDD) fields, being generally brighter than, or of similar albedo to, the surrounding terrain. These features are significantly smaller than the LDDs, appear to form normal to local winds, and tend to have simple, transverse, ripple-like morphologies. Whether these small martian bedforms represent large granule ripples, small transverse dunes, or something else entirely is currently under debate. The spatial distribution of TARs provides important information about where on Mars aeolian sediments are concentrated, and determining their volume can help us constrain the sediment transport regime on Mars. Also, if we can determine if TARs were active only in the past, or whether TARs are mobile under today's wind conditions, then we can begin to assess when and where TARs are/were active over Mars' recent geological history. Thus TARs have the potential for being indicators/records of climate change on Mars. In this work we build on previous work [1,2] and focus on the local/regional scale. We have identified six regional study areas, each 5° by 5°, to investigate the behavior of TARs in detail; one in the northern hemisphere, three in the equatorial band, and two in the southern hemisphere. We have systematically mapped TAR and LDD deposits in each study area to constrain sediment transport pathways and identify sediment sources. In general, TAR sediments appear to be tied to local sources such as LDDs or layered terrains. HiRISE DTMs were utilized to measure TAR heights, widths, wavelengths, and lengths to calculate sediment volumes and estimate volumes over entire study areas based on mapping. Crater count analyses on contiguous TAR fields in the equatorial regions, where the bedforms appear more lithified, reveal ages of several million years. Mid-latitude TAR fields do not show any superposed craters, suggesting much younger deposits

  13. The developmental trend and influencing factors of aeolian desertification in the Zoige Basin, eastern Qinghai-Tibet Plateau

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hu, Guangyin; Dong, Zhibao; Lu, Junfeng; Yan, Changzhen

    2015-12-01

    The Zoige Basin is located in the northeastern region of the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau and covers an area of 19,400 km2. At a mean altitude of 3500 m, the basin is highly sensitive to global environmental change and human disturbance due to its high elevation and fragile cold environment. The process of aeolian desertification in the basin can be clearly recognized in Landsat images that show the development of sand sheets and dunes over time. To monitor the spatial and temporal changes of aeolian desertification in the Zoige Basin, we analyzed Landsat images recorded in 1975, 1990, 2000, 2005, and 2010. Results showed that aeolian desertification increased rapidly from 1975 to 1990, was stable from 1990 to 2000, decreased slightly from 2000 to 2005, and decreased sharply from 2005 to 2010. Increasing temperature, overgrazing, rodent damage, and drainage of wetlands were considered the key driving factors of the expansion of aeolian desertification. A number of political measures were initiated in the 1990s to slow desertification, but the countermeasures of grazing prohibition, enclosures, and paving straw checkerboard barriers were not implemented until around 2005. These measures resulted in a dramatic recovery of aeolian desertified land between 2005 and 2010. Based on the cause analysis, anthropogenic factors were identified as the dominant driving force for both development and recovery of aeolian desertified land.

  14. Sequence stratigraphy of a Pliocene delta complex deposited in an active margin setting, Etchegoin and San Joaquin gas sands, San Joaquin basin, California

    SciTech Connect

    Steward, D.C.

    1996-12-31

    Prolific gas sands of the Pliocene Etchegoin and San Joaquin formations of the southern San Joaquin basin, California, are part of a 1300-m thick succession of deltaic sediments that record the final regression of the Pacific Ocean from a tectonically active, restricted basin associated with the California transform margin. Individual field studies, lacking a regional framework and based primarily on electric log data, correlate these gas sands to the extent that individual sands maintain the same stratigraphic level within the succession. However, a high-resolution sequence stratigraphic framework, constructed from recent 3D-seismic data and detailed well log correlations on the Bakersfield Arch area of the basin, indicates that the Pliocene succession is part of a south/southwest prograding delta complex. Therefore, sands climb up-section in the landward direction and grade laterally from deep-water to shallow-water facies. Because lithofacies boundaries cross chronostratigraphic surfaces, previous interpretations of the reservoir architecture are inaccurate. This model increases predictability of reservoir facies by constraining lithofacies mapping and enables interpretation of the effects on deposition of the integrated and inter-related controls of tectonics, eustatic sea-level change, and sediment supply. With this understanding, a well-defined model of the stratal architecture of the Pliocene succession of the southern San Joaquin basin is now possible.

  15. Sequence stratigraphy of a Pliocene delta complex deposited in an active margin setting, Etchegoin and San Joaquin gas sands, San Joaquin basin, California

    SciTech Connect

    Steward, D.C. )

    1996-01-01

    Prolific gas sands of the Pliocene Etchegoin and San Joaquin formations of the southern San Joaquin basin, California, are part of a 1300-m thick succession of deltaic sediments that record the final regression of the Pacific Ocean from a tectonically active, restricted basin associated with the California transform margin. Individual field studies, lacking a regional framework and based primarily on electric log data, correlate these gas sands to the extent that individual sands maintain the same stratigraphic level within the succession. However, a high-resolution sequence stratigraphic framework, constructed from recent 3D-seismic data and detailed well log correlations on the Bakersfield Arch area of the basin, indicates that the Pliocene succession is part of a south/southwest prograding delta complex. Therefore, sands climb up-section in the landward direction and grade laterally from deep-water to shallow-water facies. Because lithofacies boundaries cross chronostratigraphic surfaces, previous interpretations of the reservoir architecture are inaccurate. This model increases predictability of reservoir facies by constraining lithofacies mapping and enables interpretation of the effects on deposition of the integrated and inter-related controls of tectonics, eustatic sea-level change, and sediment supply. With this understanding, a well-defined model of the stratal architecture of the Pliocene succession of the southern San Joaquin basin is now possible.

  16. Variation in aeolian environments recorded by the particle size distribution of lacustrine sediments in Ebinur Lake, northwest China.

    PubMed

    Ma, Long; Wu, Jinglu; Abuduwaili, Jilili

    2016-01-01

    Particle size analysis of lacustrine core sediments and atmospheric natural dust were conducted in the drainage area of Ebinur Lake in arid northwest China. Using a combination of (137)Cs and (210)Pb dating, a continuous record of aeolian transportation to the lake sediments and related factors over about the past 150 years was analyzed. Factor analysis revealed the particle-size distributions of riverine and aeolian sediments composed of the terrigenous materials of the lake deposits. Compared with the grain-size distributions of natural dust samples, the results showed that the coarser particle size fraction of lake sediments was mainly derived from the sediments that had experienced aeolian transport to the drainage surface, and the finer sediments came from hydraulic inputs. Then, the method of variations in particle-size standard deviation was used to extract the grain size intervals with the highest variability along a sedimentary sequence. The coarser grain-size populations dominated the variation patterns of the sedimentary sequence. During the last 150 years, strong intensity aeolian transportation occurred during three periods, 1915-1935, 1965-1975 and since the beginning of the 2000s. The climate was dry around 1910s-1930s in this region associated with the appropriate dynamic condition, which provided the enhanced source materials and wind power for the aeolian dust transport. Since 1950s, the climate controlled the foundation of aeolian dust transport, and the aeolian dust transport won't be increased under the humid climate. PMID:27217996

  17. Effects of canopy-deposition interaction on H+ supply to soils in Pinus banksiana and Populus tremuloides ecosystems in the Athabasca oil sands region in Alberta, Canada.

    PubMed

    Jung, Kangho; Chang, Scott X; Arshad, M A Charlie

    2011-05-01

    Soil acidification has been of concern in the oil sands region in Alberta due to increased acid deposition. Using the canopy budget model, and accounting for H(+) canopy leaching by organic acids, we determined sources and sinks of H+ in throughfall in jack pine (Pinus banksiana) and trembling aspen (Populus tremuloides) stands in two watersheds from 2006 to 2009. In pine stands, H+ deposition was greater in throughfall than in bulk precipitation while the opposite was true in aspen stands. The annual H+ interception deposition was 148.8-193.8 and 49.7-70.0 molcha(-1) in pine and aspen stands, respectively; while the annual H+ canopy leaching was 127.1-128.7 and 0.0-6.0 molcha(-1), respectively. The greater H+ supply in pine stands was caused by greater interception deposition of SO4(2-) and organic acids released from the pine canopy. Such findings have significant implications for establishing critical loads for various ecosystems in the oil sands region. PMID:21310518

  18. Investigation into the Origin and Character of Surficial Sedimentary Deposits at the Midshore Regional Solid Waste Facility near Easton, Maryland

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Smoot, Joseph P.; Newell, Wayne L.; DeJong, Benjamin D.

    2009-01-01

    A temporary exposure at the Midshore Regional Solid Waste Facility near Easton, MD, provided an opportunity to document the characteristics of the complex assemblage of surficial facies in that area. This unusually large cross section allowed interpretation of the changing processes that shaped the landscape in response to climate change through the late Pleistocene. Eight stratigraphic units were recognized: (1) gray, fossiliferous, muddy silt of the marine Miocene Choptank Formation; (2) coarse, crossbedded conglomerate of the late Miocene to Pliocene fluvial Pensauken Formation; (3) bioturbated muddy conglomerate interpreted as deposits of small colluvial fans; (4) pebbly, quartzose sand overlying a planar erosional surface reflecting a marine transgression; (5) irregular pods and lenses of sand and gravel deformed into bowl-shaped folds and faulted, which are interpreted as wind deposits over a semipermanent snow cover (niveo-aeolian deposits); (6) crossbedded sand and conglomerate with abundant mud partings indicating tidal influences on sinuous stream channels; (7) heavily bioturbated silt and sand with abundant root casts and flattened vesicles interpreted as aeolian loess deposits in marshy fens; and (8) pebbly sand and mud with scattered boulders and cobbles that reflect modern infill of the excavation by the operators. Soils formed on units 3, 4, and 7. Superimposed on units 4, 5, and 7 is evidence of deep freezing and permafrost development and subsequent thermokarst development after thawing, which includes large, complexly filled wedge-shaped cracks, deformed bedding and faults, fluid-injection structures, and spherical blobs of sand and mud. Each of the stratigraphic units has irregular distributions and lateral changes. The results of this study provide a unique insight into the geometry of surficial deposits that will help facilitate mapping of units, interpretation of cored intervals, and understanding of ground-penetrating radar profiles. The

  19. New chronology for Pleistocene shoreline deposits on the central US Atlantic Coast: implication for relative sea level during MIS 5 and 7

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shen, Z.; Wright, E. E.; Mauz, B.

    2015-12-01

    Emerged shoreline deposits are the most important records for studying relative sea level (RSL) of previous interglacial and understanding glacial/hydro isostasy. The Lower Atlantic Coastal Plain in the U.S. is characterized by coast-parallel barrier beaches and back-barrier deposits formed during maximum Pleistocene marine transgressions. Thus, they offer an opportunity to investigate RSL changes of multiple Pleistocene interglacials. However, the chronology of these deposits has been controversial due to the lack of reliable numerical ages, especially in South Carolina. Here we present stratigraphy and OSL dating results for both the late Pleistocene barrier and the back-barrier deposits between Georgetown and Myrtle Beach, South Carolina and discuss their sea-level implications. The barrier ridge near Georgetown is covered by about 1 m aeolian deposits dated to ~20 ka. The aeolian deposits overlie humic sand and laminated beach sand that is dated to ~80 ka, corresponding to Marine Isotope Stage (MIS) 5a. Stratigraphy of back-barrier deposits exposed along the Intracoastal Waterway near Myrtle Beach reveals a unit of back-barrier deposits separated from underlying shallow marine deposits by a paleosol. The back-barrier deposits are dated to MIS 5a while the lower shallow marine deposits yielded OSL ages corresponding to MIS 7 (~200 ka). The beach sand near Georgetown and the back-barrier deposits near Myrtle Beach together suggest that MIS 5a RSL was up to about 5 m above present sea level while the shallow marine deposits near Myrtle Beach indicate a MIS 7 RSL at or above present sea level along the northeastern South Carolina coast. The MIS 5a and MIS 7 RSL are in agreement with previous studies along other U.S. Atlantic coast. However, the missing of MIS 5e deposits between MIS 5a and MIS 7 deposits at the exposure near Myrtle Beach needs be confirmed with additional work.

  20. The physics of wind-blown sand and dust.

    PubMed

    Kok, Jasper F; Parteli, Eric J R; Michaels, Timothy I; Karam, Diana Bou

    2012-10-01

    The transport of sand and dust by wind is a potent erosional force, creates sand dunes and ripples, and loads the atmosphere with suspended dust aerosols. This paper presents an extensive review of the physics of wind-blown sand and dust on Earth and Mars. Specifically, we review the physics of aeolian saltation, the formation and development of sand dunes and ripples, the physics of dust aerosol emission, the weather phenomena that trigger dust storms, and the lifting of dust by dust devils and other small-scale vortices. We also discuss the physics of wind-blown sand and dune formation on Venus and Titan. PMID:22982806

  1. Aeolian geomorphology from the global perspective

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Greeley, R.

    1985-01-01

    Any planet or satellite having a dynamic atmosphere and a solid surface has the potential for experiencing aeolian (wind) processes. A survey of the Solar System shows at least four planetary objects which potentially meet these criteria: Earth, Mars, Venus, and possibly Titan, the largest satellite of Saturn. While the basic process is the same among these four objects, the movement of particles by the atmosphere, the aeolian environment is drastically different. It ranges from the hot (730 K), dense atmosphere of Venus to the extremely cold desert (218 K) environment of Mars where the atmospheric surface pressure is only approximately 7.5 mb. In considering aeolian processes in the planetary perspective, all three terrestrial planets share some common areas of attention for research, especially in regard to wind erosion and dust storms. Relevant properties of planetary objects potentially subject to aeolian processes are given in tabular form.

  2. Potential of natural gamma-ray spectrometry for mapping and environmental monitoring of black-sand beach deposits on the northern coast of Sinai, Egypt.

    PubMed

    Aboelkhair, Hatem; Zaaeimah, Mostafa

    2013-04-01

    The concentrations and distributions of naturally occurring radioactive materials were studied with the aim of detecting and mapping radioactive anomalies as well as monitoring the environment for black-sand beach deposits in Northern Sinai, Egypt. For this purpose, ground gamma-ray spectrometric surveys were conducted using a portable GS-512 spectrometer, with an NaI (Tl) detector, on an area 77.5 km(2) in surface area located between the cities of Rafah and Elareish on the Mediterranean Sea coast. The results revealed that the black-sand beach deposits could be differentiated according to their total-count (TC) radioactivity into five normally distributed interpreted radiometric lithologic (IRL) units denoted by U1, U2, U3, U4 and U5. The computed characteristic TC radiometric statistics of these five IRL units range from 4.67  to 9.96 Ur for their individual arithmetic means. The computed arithmetic means for the three radioelements K, eU and eTh reach 0.46 %, 2.25 and 6.17 ppm, respectively for the whole study area. Monitoring the environmental effects of radioelement concentrations on the study area showed that the mean natural equivalent radiation dose rate from the terrestrial gamma-radiation of the whole area attains 0.33 mSv y(-1). This average value remains on the safe side and within the maximum permissible safe radiation dose (<1.0 mSv y(-1)) without harm to the individual, except at three scattered points reaching more than these values. Some of the local inhabitants in the region sometimes use black sands as a building material. Consequently, they are not recommended for use as building materials, because the inhabitants will, then, receive a relatively high radioactive dose generated mainly by monazite and zircon minerals, two of the main constituents of black sands. PMID:22869819

  3. Environmental, health, safety, and socioeconomic concerns associated with oil recovery from US tar-sand deposits: state-of-knowledge

    SciTech Connect

    Daniels, J.I.; Anspaugh, L.R.; Ricker, Y.E.

    1982-01-08

    Tar-sand petroleum-extraction procedures undergoing field testing for possible commercial application in the US include both surface (above-ground) and in situ (underground) procedures. The surface tar-sand systems currently being field tested in the US are thermal decomposition processes (retorting), and suspension methods (solvent extraction). Underground bitumen extraction procedures that are also being field tested domestically are in situ combustion and steam-injection. Environmental, health, safety, and socioeconomic concerns associated with construction and operation of 20,000-bbl/d commercial tar-sand surface and in situ facilities have been estimated and are summarized in this report. The principal regulations that commercial tar-sand facilities will need to address are also discussed, and environmental control technologies are summarized and wherever possible, projected costs of emission controls are stated. Finally, the likelihood-of-occurrence of potential environmental, health, and safety problems that have been determined are reviewed, and from this information inference is made as to the environmental acceptability of technologically feasible 20,000-bbl/d commercial tar-sand oil-extraction procedures.

  4. Late Amazonian aeolian features, gradation, wind regimes, and Sediment State in the Vicinity of the Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity, Meridiani Planum, Mars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fenton, Lori K.; Michaels, Timothy I.; Chojnacki, Matthew

    2015-03-01

    The 2° × 2° region surrounding the landing site and traverse of Mars Exploration Rover (MER) Opportunity is richly blanketed with several generations and classes of aeolian features, including coarse-grained ripples, large dark dunes (LDDs), transverse aeolian ridges (TARs), erosional scars, depositional wind streaks of two types, and a new class of wind streak comprised entirely of coarse-grained ripples. The extensive observation campaigns from orbiting spacecraft in support of the MER and 2016 ExoMars missions, as well as in situ data from Opportunity, have provided unprecedented coverage of the region, permitting further interpretation of the local aeolian history than is typically possible on Mars. We present an analysis of bedform construction, sediment-transporting wind patterns, crater gradation and resulting erosion rate, sand provenance, and sediment state resulting from surficial mapping and geomorphic backstripping of aeolian features. Coarse-grained ripples on the intercrater plains formed from local sediments, with induration and low wind speeds preventing them from migrating more than roughly one bedform wavelength from their source region. Limited migration and a likely local, planar sand source of plains bedforms suggests their provenance is previously-eroded layers within the underlying Burns Formation. Although the bedform stabilization process is different from that of Earth, these ripples appear to be analogous to coarse-grained ripples that form and quickly stabilize on the Argentinean Puna. Some small craters (<100 m) exhibit inverted topography as high as ∼1 m, produced by an armoring effect of the indurated coarse-grained ripples. The erosion rate leading to this relief is ∼0.014 m/Myr over the past 71 ± 2 Ma, falling between values estimated for younger and older surfaces. Present-day winds are not represented uniformly in the region, with most active sandy wind streaks on the plains formed by a southeasterly wind and intracrater

  5. Persistent aeolian activity at Endeavour crater, Meridiani Planum, Mars; new observations from orbit and the surface

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chojnacki, Matthew; Johnson, Jeffrey R.; Moersch, Jeffrey E.; Fenton, Lori K.; Michaels, Timothy I.; Bell, James F., III

    2015-05-01

    Aeolian-driven bedform activity is now known to occur in many regions of Mars, based on surface and orbital observation of contemporary martian ripple and dune mobility events. Many of these sites have only been monitored with sufficient resolution data for the last few Mars years, when the High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (HiRISE) began acquiring images of Mars. One exception is the well-monitored Endeavour crater in Meridiani Planum, which was one of the first known sites of unambiguous dune activity (migration and deflation). However, those early detections used lower resolution images over longer temporal baselines (versus the HIRISE data now available), leaving some measurements poorly constrained. New orbital and surface observations of Endeavour show multiple spatial (cm, m, km) and temporal (seasons, Mars year) scales of aeolian-driven surface change, which confirms earlier reports. Dome dunes in the eastern portion of the crater persistently deflate, disseminating dark sand across lighter-toned regolith and/or eroded bright dust, and likely contribute to the crater interior's episodic decreases in orbital albedo measurements. Other dome dunes are detected with the highest migration rates (4-12 m per Mars year) and volumetric sand fluxes reported yet for Mars. Estimated dune construction times or "turnover times" here and elsewhere on Mars are significantly shorter than martian obliquity cycles, implying that it is not necessary to invoke paleoclimate wind regimes to explain current dune morphologies. Located on the crater rim, the Opportunity rover detected evidence for near- and far-field aeolian-driven activity, with observations of spherules/sand movement in the rover workspace, bedform albedo alteration, and dust-lifting events. Observations of intracrater dunes show periodic shifting dark streaks that significantly constrain local wind regimes (directionality and seasonality). Constraints on wind directions from surface and orbital images

  6. The primary role of active large sand seas in forming warm-desert loess sequences

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Crouvi, O.; Enzel, Y.; Amit, R.; Gillespie, A.

    2009-12-01

    Loess is a widespread aeolian deposit in warm deserts and their semiarid margins. It is commonly dominated by coarse silts. Quartz particles, commonly angular, are the main component (commonly 50%-70%) of this coarse silt fraction. Despite intensive research during the past century on loess formation, the origin of these coarse quartz silts comprising most of desert loess remains one of the fundamental debated problems in sedimentology and Quaternary geology. The ongoing debate is focused on the first stage of loess formation - the production of the quartz silt grains. Therefore this debate influences interpretations of past environmental and climatic changes. Although laboratory experiments indicate the potential of spalling coarse silt grains from abrading sand grains during saltation, field-based evidence is rare and the concept has been minimized and even rejected. We examined in detail data available for several well-known loess zones in subtropical deserts (including: Sahara, Sinai-Negev, Arabia) and show that all these, desert loess sequences are located downwind of adjacent sand dunes/seas both during the late Pleistocene as indicated by dune directions and even at present as indicated by wind data and drift analyses. Additional observations include: (a) mineralogical similarity between the loess and the upwind sand dunes, (b) temporal association of intensified erg activity and loess formation, and (c) grain-size mode reduction of loess with distance from ergs. Where there is no loess sequence downwind of ergs, there is an ocean, sometimes with reported silts (interpreted as dust) in coastal and deeper sea cores. These observations suggest that sand dunes must have been an important source for desert loess. We postulate that the silt grains are generated through active aeolian abrasion of sand grains during episodes of intense windy conditions, in most cases in glacial times. Thus our findings stress that the primary role of active ergs and aeolian

  7. A Fuzzy Cognitive Model of aeolian instability across the South Texas Sandsheet

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Houser, C.; Bishop, M. P.; Barrineau, C. P.

    2014-12-01

    Characterization of aeolian systems is complicated by rapidly changing surface-process regimes, spatio-temporal scale dependencies, and subjective interpretation of imagery and spatial data. This paper describes the development and application of analytical reasoning to quantify instability of an aeolian environment using scale-dependent information coupled with conceptual knowledge of process and feedback mechanisms. Specifically, a simple Fuzzy Cognitive Model (FCM) for aeolian landscape instability was developed that represents conceptual knowledge of key biophysical processes and feedbacks. Model inputs include satellite-derived surface biophysical and geomorphometric parameters. FCMs are a knowledge-based Artificial Intelligence (AI) technique that merges fuzzy logic and neural computing in which knowledge or concepts are structured as a web of relationships that is similar to both human reasoning and the human decision-making process. Given simple process-form relationships, the analytical reasoning model is able to map the influence of land management practices and the geomorphology of the inherited surface on aeolian instability within the South Texas Sandsheet. Results suggest that FCMs can be used to formalize process-form relationships and information integration analogous to human cognition with future iterations accounting for the spatial interactions and temporal lags across the sand sheets.

  8. Characterizing subsurface complexity of aeolian morphotypes with georadar

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bentley, Andrew Phillip Keller

    Aeolian landforms are classified based on their plan morphology, which is a function of sediment transport volume, wind direction, and vegetation. In the case of compound landforms or two-dimensional exposures (outcrops), there is insufficient information for discriminating between 3D morphotypes (e.g., barchans vs. parabolic dunes). To characterize the dip-section architecture of near end-member morphologies (interacting barchans and sparsely vegetated parabolics), a series of axial transects were selected from >25 km of high-resolution (500 MHz) ground-penetrating radar (GPR) data from the gypsum dune field of White Sands National Monument, New Mexico. For dunes of comparable size (6-7 m high), a series of attributes were analyzed for unsaturated portions along the thickest (axial) radargram sections. Given the limitations in vertical resolution (7 cm in dry sand), the average measureable slipface thickness in barchans ranged between 10-22 cm, whereas parabolic slipfaces were thinner at 10-14 cm. High-amplitude diffractions produced by buried vegetation, semi-lithified pedestals, and bioturbation structures were rare within barchans (point-source diffraction density = 0.03/m2; hyperbolics per 1-m-wide cross-sectional area of the image), in contrast to a point-source density of 0.07/m2 in parabolics. An aeolian internal complexity threshold (pi) is proposed, which incorporates standardized scores of slipface thickness, point-source diffraction density, and continuity of major bounding surfaces at mesoscale range determined through semivariogram analysis. For the study region, these variables were sufficient for discriminating barchans (pi = -2.39 to -0.25; pib= -1.65) from parabolic (pi = 0.13 to 2.87; pip= 1.65) dunes. This threshold has the potential for differentiating dune morphotypes in areas where surface morphology is masked and for identifying compound landforms (e.g., a re-activated parabolic dune converted into a barchan in situ ). Ultimately

  9. Theoretical analysis of particle number density in steady aeolian saltation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kang, Liqiang; Zou, Xueyong

    2014-01-01

    Particle number density or particle concentration in aeolian saltation is one important input parameter to calculate the sand flux, kinetic energy and mid-air collision probability in the aeolian saltation and particle concentration is also related to the wind erosion capacity, hence, in the present paper, the vertical distribution of particle number density in steady aeolian saltation is analyzed based on two different types of probability density functions of vertical lift-off velocity of saltating particles: one is the PDF (probability density function) of vertical velocity of lift-off particles in the three-dimensional space defined as a type-A PDF which considers the number of particles in various velocity bins per unit volume; and the other is the PDF of vertical velocity of lift-off particles ejected from the sand bed surface in a period of time as a type-B PDF which considers the number flux of particles in various velocity bins per unit surface area. These two types of PDFs are from two different perspectives (i.e., volume- and surface-based perspectives, respectively), and can be deduced from each other. The half-normal and exponential distributions are recommended for the type-A PDF, and the corresponding type-B PDF is expressed by Rayleigh and Gamma(2) distributions. The PDF distribution pattern of vertical velocity of lift-off particles has an important influence on the vertical profile of particle number density. If the type-A PDF of vertical velocity of ejected particles is a half-normal distribution, the particle number density decays exponentially with height. If the type-A PDF is an exponential distribution, the particle number density also decreases with height. If the type-A PDF is Gamma(3) and Rayleigh distributions, the particle number density first increases, then decreases with height. The type-A and type-B height parameters, which are calculated according to the mean vertical lift-off velocity from the type-A and type-B PDFs, respectively

  10. Aeolian dust in Colorado Plateau soils: Nutrient inputs and recent change in source

    PubMed Central

    Reynolds, Richard; Belnap, Jayne; Reheis, Marith; Lamothe, Paul; Luiszer, Fred

    2001-01-01

    Aeolian dust (windblown silt and clay) is an important component in arid-land ecosystems because it may contribute to soil formation and furnish essential nutrients. Few geologic surfaces, however, have been characterized with respect to dust-accumulation history and resultant nutrient enrichment. We have developed a combination of methods to identify the presence of aeolian dust in arid regions and to evaluate the roles of this dust in ecosystem processes. Unconsolidated sandy sediment on isolated surfaces in the Canyonlands region of the Colorado Plateau differs greatly in mineralogical and chemical composition from associated bedrock, mainly aeolian sandstone. Detrital magnetite in the surficial deposits produces moderately high values of magnetic susceptibility, but magnetite is absent in nearby bedrock. A component of the surficial deposits must be aeolian to account for the abundance of magnetite, which formed originally in far-distant igneous rocks. Particle-size analysis suggests that the aeolian dust component is typically as much as 20–30%. Dust inputs have enriched the sediments in many elements, including P, Mg, Na, K, and Mo, as well as Ca, at sites where bedrock lacks calcite cement. Soil-surface biologic crusts are effective dust traps that apparently record a change in dust sources over the past several decades. Some of the recently fallen dust may result from human disturbance of land surfaces that are far from the Canyonlands, such as the Mojave Desert. Some land-use practices in the study area have the potential to deplete soil fertility by means of wind-erosion removal of aeolian silt. PMID:11390965

  11. Aeolian dust in Colorado Plateau soils: Nutrient inputs and recent change in source

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Reynolds, R.; Belnap, Jayne; Lamothe, Paul; Luiszer, Fred

    2001-01-01

    Aeolian dust (windblown silt and clay) is an important component in arid-land ecosystems because it may contribute to soil formation and furnish essential nutrients. Few geologic surfaces, however, have been characterized with respect to dust-accumulation history and resultant nutrient enrichment. We have developed a combination of methods to identify the presence of aeolian dust in arid regions and to evaluate the roles of this dust in ecosystem processes. Unconsolidated sandy sediment on isolated surfaces in the Canyonlands region of the Colorado Plateau differs greatly in mineralogical and chemical composition from associated bedrock, mainly aeolian sandstone. Detrital magnetite in the surficial deposits produces moderately high values of magnetic susceptibility, but magnetite is absent in nearby bedrock. A component of the surficial deposits must be aeolian to account for the abundance of magnetite, which formed originally in far-distant igneous rocks. Particle-size analysis suggests that the aeolian dust component is typically as much as 20a??30%. Dust inputs have enriched the sediments in many elements, including P, Mg, Na, K, and Mo, as well as Ca, at sites where bedrock lacks calcite cement. Soil-surface biologic crusts are effective dust traps that apparently record a change in dust sources over the past several decades. Some of the recently fallen dust may result from human disturbance of land surfaces that are far from the Canyonlands, such as the Mojave Desert. Some land-use practices in the study area have the potential to deplete soil fertility by means of wind-erosion removal of aeolian silt.

  12. Aeolian Abrasion at the Curiosity Landing Site: Clues to the Role of Wind in Landscape Modification

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bridges, N. T.; Le Mouélic, S.; Hallet, B.; Newman, C. E.; Rice, M. S.; Blaney, D. L.; Calef, F. J.; Herkenhoff, K. E.; Langevin, Y.; Lewis, K. W.; Maurice, S.; Pinet, P. C.; Wiens, R. C.; de Pablo, M.; Renno, N. O.

    2013-12-01

    The broad scale geomorphology of Gale Crater reflects diverse aeolian processes, from airfall settling that likely deposited much of the upper and some of the lower units of Mt. Sharp, to evidence of extensive wind exhumation and removal of material exterior to the mound, to active dunes on the crater floor. The integrated effect of aeolian sand transport can also be examined on a much smaller scale by the study of ventifacts, rocks that have been abraded by windborne particles. A diversity of ventifacts are found along Curiosity's traverse through the upper 'hummocky' (HY) geomorphic unit and the lower Yellowknife Bay (YKB) sedimentary rocks. The textures are analogous to abrasion features found on Earth and include cm-scale facets, keels, elongated pits, grooves, flutes, and basal sills. High-resolution images from ChemCam's Remote Micro-Imager also show mm-scale lineations. Evidence of differential erosion is common, with HY conglomerates (e.g., Hottah, Link) and the YKB Sheepbed mudstone unit containing distinct wind tails in the lee of resistant pebbles, and bedding features within Rocknest 3, the YKB Shaler sandstone unit, and other layered rocks displaying prominent ridge-groove topography. ChemCam LIBS depth profile data so far show no strong evidence for chemical differences in the elemental composition between abraded and non-abraded surfaces (as determined from qualitative assessment), as might be expected if there were rock coatings or weathering rinds undergoing active abrasion. Preliminary measurements of ventifact texture and wind tail orientations indicate sandblasting in HY and YKB from predominantly southwesterly and northerly directions, respectively. Based on meso-scale models of current winds and REMS results, SW flow is uncommon whereas N winds are frequent. Compositional and textural information from the suite of MSL instruments indicate that HY rocks are dominated by various types of basalt (either as whole rocks or the resistant clasts in

  13. Technology assessment: environmental, health, and safety impacts associated with oil recovery from US tar-sand deposits

    SciTech Connect

    Daniels, J.I.; Anspaugh, L.R.; Ricker, Y.E.

    1981-10-13

    The tar-sand resources of the US have the potential to yield as much as 36 billion barrels (bbls) of oil. The tar-sand petroleum-extraction technologies now being considered for commercialization in the United States include both surface (above ground) systems and in situ (underground) procedures. The surface systems currently receiving the most attention include: (1) thermal decomposition processes (retorting); (2) suspension methods (solvent extraction); and (3) washing techniques (water separation). Underground bitumen extraction techniques now being field tested are: (1) in situ combustion; and (2) in situ steam-injection procedures. At this time, any commercial tar-sand facility in the US will have to comply with at least 7 major federal regulations in addition to state regulations; building, electrical, and fire codes; and petroleum-industry construction standards. Pollution-control methods needed by tar-sand technologies to comply with regulatory standards and to protect air, land, and water quality will probably be similar to those already proposed for commercial oil-shale systems. The costs of these systems could range from about $1.20 to $2.45 per barrel of oil produced. Estimates of potential pollution-emisson levels affecting land, air, and water were calculated from available data related to current surface and in situ tar-sand field experiments in the US. These data were then extrapolated to determine pollutant levels expected from conceptual commercial surface and in situ facilities producing 20,000 bbl/d. The likelihood-of-occurrence of these impacts was then assessed. Experience from other industries, including information concerning health and ecosystem damage from air pollutants, measurements of ground-water transport of organic pollutants, and the effectiveness of environmental-control technologies was used to make this assessment.

  14. Tracking aeolian transport patterns across a mega-nourishment using video imagery

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wijnberg, Kathelijne; van der Weerd, Lianne; Hulscher, Suzanne

    2014-05-01

    Coastal dune areas protect the hinterland from flooding. In order to maintain the safety level provided by the dunes, it may be necessary to artificially supply the beach-dune system with sand. How to best design these shore nourishments, amongst others with respect to optimal dune growth on the long-term (decadal scale), is not yet clear. One reason for this is that current models for aeolian transport on beaches appear to have limited predictive capabilities regarding annual onshore sediment supply. These limited capabilities may be attributed to the lack of appropriate input data, for instance on moisture content of the beach surface, or shortcomings in process understanding. However, it may also be argued that for the long-term prediction of onshore aeolian sand supply from the beach to the dunes, we may need to develop some aggregated-scale transport equations, because the detailed input data required for the application of process-scale transport equations may never be available in reality. A first step towards the development of such new concepts for aggregated-scale transport equations is to increase phenomenological insight into the characteristics and number of aeolian transport events that account for the annual volume changes of the foredunes. This requires high-frequency, long-term data sets to capture the only intermittently occurring aeolian transport events. Automated video image collection seems a promising way to collect such data. In the present study we describe the movement (direction and speed) of sand patches and aeolian bed forms across a nourished site, using video imagery, to characterize aeolian transport pathways and their variability in time. The study site is a mega-nourishment (21 Mm3 of sand) that was recently constructed at the Dutch coast. This mega-nourishment, also referred to as the Sand Motor, is a pilot project that may potentially replace current practice of more frequently applying small scale nourishments. The mega

  15. A new turbulence-based model for sand transport

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mayaud, Jerome; Wiggs, Giles; Bailey, Richard

    2016-04-01

    Knowledge of the changing rate of sediment flux in space and time is essential for quantifying surface erosion and deposition in desert landscapes. While many aeolian studies have relied on time-averaged parameters such as wind velocity (U) and wind shear velocity (u*) to determine sediment flux, there is increasing evidence that high-frequency turbulence is an important driving force behind the entrainment and transport of sand. However, turbulence has yet to be incorporated into a functional sand transport model that can be used for predictive purposes. In this study we present a new transport model (the 'turbulence model') that accounts for high-frequency variations in the horizontal (u) and vertical (w) components of wind flow. The turbulence model is fitted to wind velocity and sediment transport data from a field experiment undertaken in Namibia's Skeleton Coast National Park, and its performance at three temporal resolutions (10 Hz, 1 Hz, 1 min) is compared to two existing models that rely on time-averaged wind velocity data (Radok, 1977; Dong et al., 2003). The validity of the three models is analysed under a variety of saltation conditions, using a 2-hour (1 Hz measurement resolution) dataset from the Skeleton Coast and a 5-hour (1 min measurement resolution) dataset from the southwestern Kalahari Desert. The turbulence model is shown to outperform the Radok and Dong models when predicting total saltation count over the three experimental periods. For all temporal resolutions presented in this study (10 Hz-10 min), the turbulence model predicted total saltation count to within at least 0.34%, whereas the Radok and Dong models over- or underestimated total count by up to 5.50% and 20.53% respectively. The strong performance of the turbulence model can be attributed to a lag in mass flux response built into its formulation, which can be adapted depending on the temporal resolution of investigation. This accounts for the inherent lag within the physical

  16. Recent near-surface wind directions inferred from mapping sand ripples on Martian dunes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Zac Yung-Chun; Zimbelman, James R.

    2015-11-01

    The High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (HiRISE) provides the capability to obtain orbital images of Mars that are of sufficient resolution to record wind ripple patterns on the surfaces of sand dunes. Ripple patterns provide valuable insights into aeolian erosion and deposition on Earth and Mars. In this study, we develop a systematic mapping procedure to examine sand ripple orientations and create surface process maps to evaluate the recent wind flow over the dunes, as well as the interplay of wind and dune shape. By carefully examining the morphology of the dunes and the location of grainflow and grainfall on dune slipfaces, the recent near-surface wind direction (short-term wind) can be identified. Results from the analysis of three dune fields on the floors of craters west of Hellas Basin show regional N, NW, SE, and ESE wind directions. In the three adjacent dune fields, surface process and flow maps suggest a complex wind pattern. The comparison of short-term wind with dune-constructing wind (long-term wind) shows NE and ESE winds may be persistent at least for the past thousands of years. The results also show that the orientation of inferred wind direction on linear dunes is correlated with the crestlines, which suggest that form-flow interaction may take place. The results of local wind flow documentation should improve Martian surface wind modeling and advance our understanding of sand transport, as well as the rates of sand mobility on both Mars and Earth.

  17. Aeolian transport of biota with dust: A wind tunnel experiment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rivas, J. A., Jr.; Gill, T. E.; Van Pelt, R. S.; Walsh, E.

    2015-12-01

    Ephemeral wetlands are ideal sources for dust emission, as well as repositories for dormant stages of aquatic invertebrates. An important component of invertebrate dispersal and colonization to new areas is the ability to be entrained into the atmosphere. Aquatic invertebrate eggs fall within the size of dust and sand grains (30-600μm), are less dense and aerodynamically shaped. We have shown previously that aquatic invertebrates can be dispersed long distances in dust storms but the extent of transport of taxa based on diapausing egg size/morphology has not been investigated. Here, we control the wind erosion process in a wind tunnel to test entrainment of diapausing stages of brine shrimp, clam shrimp, tadpole shrimp, fairy shrimp, Daphnia, and the rotifers Brachionus plicatilis and B. calyciflorus into the air by saltation. Diapausing eggs were mixed with sterilized wind-erodible soil. The soil/egg mixture was moistened with distilled water and air dried to form a crust. Dust was generated in a wind tunnel by releasing sand grains that act as saltator material similar to wind-entrained natural sands. Maximum wind velocity was 10m/s and entrained particles were sampled through an isokinetic horizontal intake opening. Aeolian sediment was collected from three points in the system; transfer section for coarse sediment, the pan subtending a settling chamber for finer saltation-sized sediment, and two paper filters for suspension-sized sediment. Samples were then passed through 250 and 350 μm sieves to remove abrader sand and rehydrated with various sterile media depending on the type of organism. We retrieved viable brine, fairy, and tadpole shrimp, ostracods, Daphnia, and diapausing eggs of the rotifers after hydration. This experiment demonstrates that resting stages of many invertebrates can be wind-eroded due to size and egg morphology and remain viable under controlled conditions mimicking dust emission.

  18. The variety of shelf sand bodies within the transgressive systems tract as illustrated by the high-resolution sequence stratigraphy of Late Wisconsin/Holocene deposits from the continental shelf of Texas

    SciTech Connect

    Bartek, L.R.; Anderson, J.B.; Thomas, M.A.; Siringan, F.P. )

    1990-05-01

    An ongoing investigation of the high-resolution sequence stratigraphy of the Texas continental shelf indicates that a variety of shelf sand bodies formed during the late Wisconsinan-Holocene transgression. Episodic variations in eustasy and sediment supply have apparently caused the formation of backstepping parasequences (bayhead delta progradational units bounded by flooding surfaces) within the incised valley systems of the continental shelf. The Trinity/Sabine incised valley systems contain isolated sand bodies within the dip-aligned incised valleys whereas the Brazos/Colorado incised valley systems apparently contain broad sheetlike sand bodies. Sabine Bank is also associated with the Trinity/Sabine incised valley systems. The Sabine Bank is thought to be comprised of either reworked, overstepped shoreline sands or sand that was mined from the incised valley system and reworked into a strike-aligned sand body as the shoreface migrated across the shelf during the transgression. Transgressed wave-dominated deltas are another important type of shelf sand body in the transgressive systems tract of the Texas continental shelf. Sediment texture maps and high-resolution seismic data suggest that strike-aligned sand bodies lying offshore of the modern Brazos delta are modified remnants of ancestral Brazos and Colorado river deltas. These delta deposits may have been isolated on the shelf during intervals when eustatic rise was more rapid. Seismic data indicate that the upper part of these deltaic deposit was reworked into strike-aligned shelf sand bodies whereas the lower portion was preserved in place. The relative significance of storms in both sourcing and altering shelf sand bodies in this setting is still being addressed. Two hurricanes struck the study area during the past summer and post-storm surveys were conducted.

  19. The Use of Statistical End-Member Mixing Analysis (EMMA) of Grain Size Distributions to Characterize Site Deposition of a Deeply Stratified Paleoindian Rock Shelter, Harney Basin, Eastern Oregon

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Collins, J. D., Jr.

    2014-12-01

    Sedimentological investigations were conducted on Excavation Unit 2 of Rimrock Draw Rockshelter (35HA3855), a deeply stratified, multi-component Paleoindian site located along the western margin of the Harney Basin, eastern Oregon. Field descriptions and end-member mixing analysis (EMMA) of grain-size distributions (GSD) of 13 sediment samples identified six stages of site formation: three stratigraphic units (SU), two unconformities, and a relict Bt soil horizon. EMMA resulted in the characterization of three end-members (EM) that correlate with field descriptions. EM's 1 and 2 represent 88.4% of the total variance among samples and are present within the upper-most stratigraphic unit, SU1, and the lower-most stratigraphic unit, SU3. EM 3 correlates with the poorly developed Bt horizon within the middle stratigraphic unit, SU2. EM 1 is a well-sorted coarse to medium sand interpreted as fluvial deposition. EM 2 is a trimodal deposit of poorly sorted sand, silt, and clay, interpreted as a predominantly aeolian deposition occasionally punctuated by colluvium derived from the colluvial wedge to the east of the Unit and from the brow of the rockshelter. EM 3 is a bimodal distribution of medium sand to fine silts and clays that represent a predominately aeolian deposit overprinted by a Bt horizon. The results of this study demonstrate the applicability of EMMA to distinguish between depositional units within an archaeological context and provide geologically meaningful interpretations of paleoenvironments for the development of hypotheses related to human environmental interactions.

  20. Aeolian Slipface Processes on Earth and Mars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cornwall, Carin; Jackson, Derek; Bourke, Mary; Cooper, Andrew

    2016-04-01

    The surface of Mars is dominated by aeolian features and many locations show ripple and dune migration over the past decade with some sediment fluxes comparable to terrestrial dunes. One of the leading goals in investigating aeolian processes on Mars is to explore the boundary conditions of sediment transport, accumulation, and dune mor-phology in relation to wind regime as well as to quantify migration rates and sediment flux. We combine terrestrial field observations, 3D computational fluid dynamics (CFD) modeling and remote sensing data to investigate com-plex, small scale wind patterns and grainflow processes on terrestrial and martian dunes. We aim to constrain grain flow magnitudes and frequencies that occur on slipface slopes of dunes in order to improve estimates of martian dune field migration and sediment flux related to wind velocity and flow patterns. A series of ground-based, high resolution laser scans have been collected in the Maspalomas dune field in Gran Canaria, Spain to investigate grainflow frequency, morphology and slipface advancement. Analysis of these laser scans and simultaneous video recordings have revealed a variety of slipface activity. We identify 6 different grain-flow morphologies including, hourglass shape (classic alcove formation with deposit fan below), superficial flow (thin lenses), narrow trough (vertical lines cm in width), sheet, column (vertical alcove walls), and complex (combi-nation of morphologies triggered simultaneously in the same location). Hourglass grainflow morphologies were the most common and occurred regularly. The superficial and narrow trough morphologies were the second most com-mon and frequently occurred in between large grain flows. Sheet grainflows were rare and unpredictable. These flows involved large portions of the slipface (metres across) and mobilized a substantial amount of sediment in one event. We have compared these grainflow morphologies from Maspalomas to those in martian dune fields and

  1. Episodic Eolian Sand Deposition in the Past 4000 Years in Cape COD National Seashore, Massachusetts, USA in Response to Possible Hurricane/storm and Anthropogenic Disturbances

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Forman, Steven

    2015-02-01

    The eolian sand depositional record for a dune field within Cape Cod National Seashore, Massachusetts is posit as a sensitive indicator of environmental disturbances in the late Holocene from a combination of factors such as hurricane/storm and forest fire occurrence, and anthropogenic activity. Stratigraphic and sedimentologic observations, particularly the burial of spodosol-like soils, and associated 14C and OSL ages that are concordant indicate at least six eolian depositional events at ca. 3750, 2500, 1800, 960, 430 and <250 years ago. The two oldest events are documented at just one locality and thus, the pervasiveness of this eolian activity is unknown. However, the four younger events are identified in three or more sites and show evidence for dune migration and sand sheet accretion. The timing of eolian deposition, particularly the initiation age, corresponds to documented periods of increased storminess/hurricane activity in the North Atlantic Ocean at ca. 2.0 to 1.6, and 1.0 ka and also a wetter coastal climate, which suppressed the occurrence of forest fire. Thus, local droughts are not associated with periods of dune movement in this mesic environment. Latest eolian activity on outer Cape Cod commenced in the past 300 to 500 years and may reflect multiple factors including broad-scale landscape disturbance with European colonization, an increased incidence of forest fires and heightened storminess. Eolian systems of Cape Cod appear to be sensitive to landscape disturbance and prior to European settlement may reflect predominantly hurricane/storm disturbance, despite generally mesic conditions in past 4 ka.

  2. Aeolian sediment reconstructions from the Scottish Outer Hebrides: Late Holocene storminess and the role of the North Atlantic Oscillation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Orme, Lisa C.; Reinhardt, Liam; Jones, Richard T.; Charman, Dan J.; Barkwith, Andrew; Ellis, Michael A.

    2016-01-01

    Northern Europe can be strongly influenced by winter storms driven by the North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO), with a positive NAO index associated with greater storminess in northern Europe. However, palaeoclimate reconstructions have suggested that the NAO-storminess relationship observed during the instrumental period is not consistent with the relationship over the last millennium, especially during the Little Ice Age (LIA), when it has been suggested that enhanced storminess occurred during a phase of persistent negative NAO. To assess this relationship over a longer time period, a storminess reconstruction from an NAO-sensitive area (the Outer Hebrides) is compared with Late Holocene NAO reconstructions. The patterns of storminess are inferred from aeolian sand deposits within two ombrotrophic peat bogs, with multiple cores and two locations used to distinguish the storminess signal from intra-site variability and local factors. The results suggest storminess increased after 1000 cal yrs BP, with higher storminess during the Medieval Climate Anomaly (MCA) than the LIA, supporting the hypothesis that the NAO-storminess relationship was consistent with the instrumental period. However the shift from a predominantly negative to positive NAO at c.2000 cal yrs BP preceded the increased storminess by 1000 years. We suggest that the long-term trends in storminess were caused by insolation changes, while oceanic forcing may have influenced millennial variability.

  3. Fluvial sedimentary styles and associated depositional environments in the buntsandstein west of river rhine in saar area and pfalz (F.R. Germany) and vosges (France)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dachroth, Wolfgang

    The Buntsandstein west of river Rhine in Saar area, Pfalz and Vosges consists of three fluvial magnacycles which are characterized by different associated non-alluvial environments. The stratigraphic sequence is divided by several unconformities reflecting tectonic movements which were connected with periods of extension of the depositional area. Two major phases and two minor events are recognized by the evaluation of the Pfalz unconformity and the Lothringen unconformity, and the Leuter unconformity and the Saar unconformity, respectively. The Lower Buntsandstein (including Zechstein) compries the first magnacycle and is built up of alluvial-fan deposits, fluvial braidplain sediments and marine to lagoonal deposits. Some aeolian sands as well as several palaeosols are also present. The palaeolandscape consists of alluvial fans seaming the margin of the basin and fluvial braidplains reaching from the toes of the fan belt to the centre of the depositional area which is occupied by a lagoonal sea that partially evolves into a playa-lake with progressive refreshment. The Middle Buntsandstein comprises the second magnacycle and is composed of an alternation of aeolian Dünnschichten and fluvial Felsbänke. The third facies are alluvial-fan deposits of palaeogeographically restricted distribution along the margins of the basin. The aeolian Dünnschichten originate in the marginal parts of chott-type depressions (in comparison with the recent Chott Djerid in Tunesia) where rising ground water moistens the dry sediments that are laid down on the playa floor and thus allows their enhanced preservation. In dry periods, wind-blown sand is spread out as plane sheets or as migrating wind ripple trains, or accumulates to barchanoid-type dunes that advance across the flat. Depending on supply of sand, all stages of transition between dune fields with only narrow interdune corridors between the ridges and interdune playas with isolated widely-spaced dunes are developed. The

  4. 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.

  5. Geochemical investigation of dry- and wet-deposited dust during the same dust-storm event in Harbin, China: Constraint on provenance and implications for formation of aeolian loess

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xie, Yuanyun; Chi, Yunping

    2016-04-01

    A strong dust-storm event occurred in Harbin, China on May 11, 2011. The dry- and wet-deposited dust depositions in this dust-storm event, together with the surface sediments from the potential sources, were collected to study grain size distributions, carbonate content and carbon isotopic composition of carbonate, major element, trace element and rare earth elements (REE), and Sr-Nd isotopic compositions. The results indicate as follows. The dry-deposited dusts are characterized by bimodal grain-size distributions with a fine mode at 3.6 μm and a coarse mode at 28 μm whereas the wet-deposited dusts are indicative of unimodal grain-size modes with a fine mode at 6 μm. The dust-storm depositions are influenced to a certain extent by sedimentary sorting and are of a derivation from the recycled sediments. Based on identifying the immobility of element pairs before constraining sources of dust-storm deposits using geochemical elements, in conjunction with REE and especially Sr-Nd isotopic compositions, the primary and strengthening sources for the dust-storm event were detected, respectively. The Hunsandake Sandy Land as the primary source and the Horqin Sandy Land as the strengthening source were together responsible for the derivation of dust depositions during dust-storm event. The Hunsandake Sandy Land, however, contributes less dust to the dust-storm event in Harbin compared to the Horqin Sandy Land, and the Hulun Buir Sandy Land is undoubtedly excluded from being one of the sources for dust-storm depositions in Harbin. There are not notable differences in geochemical (especially Sr-Nd isotopic) compositions between dry- and wet-deposited dusts, indicating that the wet-deposited dust is of identical derivation to the dry-deposited dust. Based on our observations, it is of interest to suggest that fine and coarse particles in the CLP (Chinese Loess Plateau) loess possibly have the same sources.

  6. Abstracts for the Planetary Geology Field Conference on Aeolian Processes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Greeley, R. (Editor); Black, D. (Editor)

    1978-01-01

    The Planetary Geology Field Conference on Aeolian Processes was organized at the request of the Planetary Geology Program office of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration to bring together geologists working on aeolian problems on earth and planetologists concerned with similar problems on the planets. Abstracts of papers presented at the conference are arranged herein by alphabetical order of the senior author. Papers fall into three broad categories: (1) Viking Orbiter and Viking Lander results on aeolian processes and/or landforms on Mars, (2) laboratory results on studies of aeolian processes, and (3) photogeology and field studies of aeolian processes on Earth.

  7. In Vitro Microbial Degradation of Bituminous Hydrocarbons and In Situ Colonization of Bitumen Surfaces Within the Athabasca Oil Sands Deposit

    PubMed Central

    Wyndham, R. C.; Costerton, J. W.

    1981-01-01

    Bituminous hydrocarbons extracted from the Athabasca oil sands of north-eastern Alberta were adsorbed onto filter supports and placed at sites in the Athabasca River and its tributaries where these rivers come in contact with the oil sands formation. Colonization of the hydrocarbon surfaces at summer and winter ambient temperatures was examined by scanning and transmission electron microscopy as well as by epifluorescence microscopy of acridine orange-stained cross sections. Ruthenium red and alkaline bismuth stains visualized an association of bacteria with the hydrocarbon surface which was mediated by bacterial polysaccharides. Bacteria apparently lacking a glycocalyx were also found closely associated with the surface of the hydrophobic substrate and in channels within the substrate. A solvent precipitation and column chromatographic fractionation of the bitumen was followed by cross-tests for growth on the fractions by various isolated sediment microorganisms, as determined by epifluorescence count. All fractions except the asphaltenes supported the growth of at least two of the isolates, although fractionation of degraded bitumen revealed that the saturate, aromatic, and first polar fractions were preferentially degraded. Images PMID:16345738

  8. Rapid Anthropogenic Response to Short-Term Local Aeolian and Fluvial Palaeoenvironmental Changes during the Late Pleistocene-Holocene Transition (at the Edge of the Northwestern Negev Dunefield, Israel)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Roskin, Joel; Barzilai, Omry; Goring-Morris, Nigel; Katra, Itzhak; Porat, Naomi; Agha, Nuha; Boaretto, Elisabetta

    2013-04-01

    Several prehistoric camp sites, mainly attributed to the Natufian culture, were excavated over the past decades along Nahal Sekher on the eastern edge of Israel's northwestern Negev Desert dunefield. In this research we reconstruct the aeolian and fluvial environs of these sites by integrating field mapping, stratigraphic sections, particle-size analysis, sand spectroscopy, optically stimulated luminescence ages, and radiocarbon dates. Intermittent surface stabilization and aeolian deflation are hypothesized to explain the appearance of the Natufians who probably inhabited the region during the last main Negev dune encroachment in a windy palaeoenvironment. It is argued that the residual sequences of diagnostic low-energy fluvial fine-grained deposits (LFFDs) documented around the Natufian sites resemble the ephemeral event-layers of hyper-concentrated flow into the ever-emptying dryland-type reservoirs formed by dunes that dammed wadis. The location of the Natufian sites along the shorelines of these water bodies point to rapid but temporary anthropogenic responses to short-term and improved local palaeoenvironmental conditions during the Late Pleistocene-Holocene transition.

  9. Roughness configuration matters for aeolian sediment flux

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The parameterisation of surface roughness effects on aeolian sediment transport is a key source of uncertainty in wind erosion models. Roughness effects are typically represented by bulk drag-partitioning schemes that scale the threshold friction velocity (u*t) for soil entrainment by the ratio of s...

  10. Debris-flow benches: Dune-contact deposits record paleo-sand dune positions in north Panamint Valley, Inyo County, California

    SciTech Connect

    Anderson, S.P. ); Anderson, R.S. )

    1990-06-01

    Debris flows debouching onto the alluvial fan at the north end of Panamint Valley, California, have been episodically impounded behind sand dunes, resulting in boulder-strewn, nearly flat topped deposits in irregular basins upslope of the dune, whose upper surface is higher than the adjacent fan surface. Upslope migration of the dune field over and beyond these deposits eventually leaves them as debris-flow benches rising above the general fan surface. These features are therefore dune-contact forms, analogous to ice-contact forms such as kame terraces, in that both involve deposition against ephemeral barriers. Benches punctuate the alluvial-fan surface for 5 km downfan from the modern dune field. Clast seismic velocities of boulders on these benches indicate that bench ages increase monotonically with distance from the present dunes, implying that the dune field has migrated up the fan. Because the oldest bench is below the altitude of the highest pluvial lake shoreline in Panamint Valley (Gale Stage, ca. 50 ka) and slightly above the latest lakeshore (I Stage, ca. 14 ka), it seems likely that the dunes originated near the shore of the latest lake and have moved upfan at an average rate of 0.8 m/yr.

  11. Incident velocity and incident angle of saltating sand grains on Mars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zheng, Xiao-Jing; Fu, Lin-Tao; Bo, Tian-Li

    2013-04-01

    Incident velocity and incident angle are important parameters for Martian aeolian research. In this paper we have established a model for investigating the saltation of sand in steady state, mainly considering the hopping of sand in the air and sand-bed collision process. The model proves to be able to predict sand motion in steady-state saltation on Earth well both qualitatively and quantitatively. Thus, it was applied to the study of sand saltation on Mars. With the help of the model, we found incident velocities and incident angles of Martian grains in steady-state saltation in cases of various wind strengths. Then, these predicted velocities and angles were compared with previous studies. Besides, the model also can show information on lift-off parameters of saltating particles. Therefore, it allows us to study other features in aeolian processes such as the saltation length and sand transport rate.

  12. Vadose-zone recharge and weathering in an Eocene sand deposit, East Texas, U.S.A.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dutton, A. R.

    1990-03-01

    Weathering of terrigenous sand in the vadose zone of the Eocene Calvert Bluff Formation in Freestone County, Texas, appears to be controlled by vadose-water flow rate and kinetics of dissolution and precipitation of silicate minerals. Feldspar grains more commonly appear corroded by surface-reaction-controlled dissolution than argillized in situ. Kaolinite and smectite, which most likely precipitated from silica-rich vadose water, coat remaining framework grains. Where those grains are later dissolved, delicate clay molds remain. The relative abundances of feldspar and clay minerals are inversely related and vary with depth, reflecting the cumulative effect of feldspar weathering. Concentrations of dissolved and adsorbed cations generally are near massaction equilibrium. Recharge occurs from March to May (spring) and from October to November (autumn) when there is a net excess of water in the vadose zone. Dissolved ionic concentrations fluctuate seasonally with vadose-water residence time, suggesting that mass flux is close to mineral dissolution rate.

  13. Geologic influences on the in situ processing of tar sand at the Northwest Asphalt Ridge deposit, Utah

    SciTech Connect

    Sinks, D.J.

    1985-01-01

    The Laramie Energy Technology Center, Department of Energy, completed three in situ oil recovery field experiments, two combustion and one steamflood, in tar sand at Northwest Asphalt Ridge, Utah. Inadequate resource and site characterization prior to the field experiments contributed to process design and operation problems. The 10-acre field site is part of the Sohio Shale Oil Co. D tract located west of Vernal, Uintah County. The target zone, the middle portion of the Cretaceous Rim Rock Sandstone of the Mesaverde Group, varied from 300 to 500 feet deep. From petrographic analyses of the target zone, this portion is classified as a moderately sorted litharenite with an average visible porosity of 18%. Dominant constituents include quartz, rock fragments, chert, feldspars and clay minerals. X-ray analyses of selected core samples from the Rim Rock and Asphalt Ridge Sandstones indicate the presence of quartz, calcite, dolomite, ankerite, microcline, orthoclase, anorthite, kaolinite and muscovite. Carbonate mineral species were present only in the lower Rim Rock and Asphalt Ridge Sandstones. Reservoir characteristics of the target zone which adversely affected the field experiments include faulting at all three experiment areas, lateral and vertical heterogeneities of permeability and porosity, inadequate target zone confinement, rough surface texture of clastic grains, and oil-wet grains. Favorable target zone characteristics include high quartz content; absence of carbonates; lack of clay minerals bridging and cementing pore spaces; and sufficient porosity, initial oil saturation and overburden. Recommended geologic evaluation methods to aid in the identification of potentially suitable resources and sites for in situ oil recovery from tar sands include seismic surveys; well logging; coring and core analyses; petrographic, binocular, and scanning electron microscopy; and x-ray analyses. 54 references, 25 figures, 8 tables.

  14. Asian Winter Monsoons in the Eocene: Evidence from the Aeolian Dust Series of the Xining Basin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Licht, A.; Adriens, R.; Pullen, A. T.; Kapp, P. A.; Abels, H.; van Cappelle, M.; Vandenberghe, J.; Dupont Nivet, G.

    2014-12-01

    The aeolian dust deposits of the Chinese Loess Plateau are attributed to spring and winter monsoonal storms sweeping clastic material from the deserts of the Asian interior into central China and are reported to begin 25-22 million years (Myr) ago. The beginning of aeolian dust sedimentation has been attributed to the onset of central Asia desertification and winter monsoonal circulation, and are commonly linked to development of high topographic relief associated with the Tibetan-Himalayan orogenic system. However, recent papers suggest that the core of the Tibetan Plateau may have reached significant elevation since the earliest phases of the India-Asia collision 55 Myr ago. Here, we extend the sedimentary record of the Chinese Loess Plateau at its western margin to include the late Eocene - late Oligocene deposits of the Xining Basin, which were deposited between 41 and 25 Myr ago based on detailed magnetostratigraphy. The particle size, shape, and surface microtexture of quartz grains in these deposits display textures indicative of prolonged aeolian transport; grain-size distributions show a bimodal distribution similar to Miocene through Quaternary deposits of the Chinese Loess Plateau. The clay mineralogy of the finer fraction and U/Pb zircon ages of the coarser fraction from Xining Loess sediments sampled along three sections spanning the whole studied interval are also similar to those observed in Quaternary and Neogene aeolian deposits of the Chinese Loess Plateau and thus suggest similar sources located in central China. However, slight differences in Eocene U/Pb zircon ages, such as the lack of Cenozoic ages or the scarcity of zircons older than 2000 Myr, suggest that the Tibetan Plateau may have contributed little to the aeolian dust deposition, in favor of sources located further north and west (Kunlun and Tian Shan Ranges). The Xining deposits are thus the first direct evidence that winter monsoonal winds were active 15 Myr earlier than previously

  15. Microdunes and other aeolian bedforms on Venus - Wind Tunnel simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Greeley, R.; Marshall, J. R.; Leach, R. N.

    1984-10-01

    The development of aeolian bedforms in the simulated Venusian environment has been experimentally studied in the Venus Wind Tunnel. It is found that the development of specific bedforms, including ripples, dunes, and 'waves', as well as their geometry, are controlled by a combination of factors including particle size, wind speed, and atmospheric density. Microdunes are formed which are analogous to full-size terrestrial dunes and are characterized by the development of slip faces, internal cross-bedding, a low ratio of saltation path length to dune length, and a lack of particle-size sorting. They begin to develop at wind speeds just above saltation threshold and evolve into waves at higher velocities. At wind speeds of about 1.5 m/sec and higher, the bed is flat and featureless. This evolution is explained by a model based on the interaction of alternating zones of erosion and deposition and particle saltation distances.

  16. Microdunes and Other Aeolian Bedforms on Venus: Wind Tunnel Simulations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Greeley, R.; Marshall, J. R.; Leach, R. N.

    1985-01-01

    The development of aeolian bedforms in the simulated Venusian environment has been experimentally studied in the Venus Wind tunnel. It is found that the development of specific bedforms, including ripples, dunes, and waves, as well as their geometry, are controlled by a combination of factors including particle size, wind speed, and atmospheric density. Microdunes are formed which are analogous to full-size terrestrial dunes and are characterized by the development of slip faces, internal cross-bedding, a low ratio of saltation path length to dune length, and a lack of particle-size sorting. They begin to develop at wind speeds just above saltation threshold and evolve into waves at higher velocities. At wind speeds of about 1.5 m/sec and higher, the bed is flat and featureless. This evolution is explained by a model based on the interaction of alternating zones of erosion and deposition and particle saltation distances.

  17. Microdunes and other aeolian bedforms on Venus - Wind Tunnel simulations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Greeley, R.; Marshall, J. R.; Leach, R. N.

    1984-01-01

    The development of aeolian bedforms in the simulated Venusian environment has been experimentally studied in the Venus Wind Tunnel. It is found that the development of specific bedforms, including ripples, dunes, and 'waves', as well as their geometry, are controlled by a combination of factors including particle size, wind speed, and atmospheric density. Microdunes are formed which are analogous to full-size terrestrial dunes and are characterized by the development of slip faces, internal cross-bedding, a low ratio of saltation path length to dune length, and a lack of particle-size sorting. They begin to develop at wind speeds just above saltation threshold and evolve into waves at higher velocities. At wind speeds of about 1.5 m/sec and higher, the bed is flat and featureless. This evolution is explained by a model based on the interaction of alternating zones of erosion and deposition and particle saltation distances.

  18. Origin and Depositional Processes of Coastal Sands Revealed by Grain-Size Analysis (golfe du Lion, Mediterranean Sea, France)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barusseau, J. P.; Braud, R.

    2014-12-01

    The study focused on the lower beach and nearshore zone of the Golfe du Lion (northwestern Mediterranean Sea -France). We looked at grain-size distribution in the berm, collision zone, inner and outer bars, lower shoreface applying parametric methods, grain-size modal analysis and a deconvolution program (LNDoGS).Results indicate a mixture of three recognizable sedimentary types (ST1 - ST3 - ST4) and explain grain-size distribution (GSD) of the sands in both multimodal and apparently unimodal GSDs. ST1 flows from the River Rhone, ST3 and 4 are local components originating from either fluvial input or nearshore reworking of Quaternary sediments.A fourth component (ST2), derived in situ from ST1, is found far from the overwhelming footprint of the Rhone river sands, westward in the lower shoreface.The mixing process entails significant variations in grain-size indices and skewness appears as a very sensitive and meaningful parameter. Skewness and bimodality, generated in all zones, are two aspects of the mixing process, depending on the relative proportions of STs.Using LNDoGS makes deciphering the STs a lot easier. It also reveals that some GSDs can result from a combination of 3 sedimentary variants (SVs) belonging to the same ST (monotype grain-size distributions). Monotype mixtures are very abundant on the lower shoreface, significantly present on the berm and inner bar but rare in the most dynamic zones. On the berm they tend towards a lognormal model for only bedload is present in the swash. This trend towards a lognormal model can also be observed on the lower shoreface, possibly indicating the occurrence of suspension as a dominant process.Thus, each segment of the nearshore - foreshore profile can be characterized using coarseness, skewness sign, the presence of locally generated ST2, abundance of bimodalities, occurrence of SVs. Finally, a more detailed description of the spatial properties of grain-size distributions could help explore possible mechanisms

  19. A New Stochastic Modeling of 3-D Mud Drapes Inside Point Bar Sands in Meandering River Deposits

    SciTech Connect

    Yin, Yanshu

    2013-12-15

    The environment of major sediments of eastern China oilfields is a meandering river where mud drapes inside point bar sand occur and are recognized as important factors for underground fluid flow and distribution of the remaining oil. The present detailed architectural analysis, and the related mud drapes' modeling inside a point bar, is practical work to enhance oil recovery. This paper illustrates a new stochastic modeling of mud drapes inside point bars. The method is a hierarchical strategy and composed of three nested steps. Firstly, the model of meandering channel bodies is established using the Fluvsim method. Each channel centerline obtained from the Fluvsim is preserved for the next simulation. Secondly, the curvature ratios of each meandering river at various positions are calculated to determine the occurrence of each point bar. The abandoned channel is used to characterize the geometry of each defined point bar. Finally, mud drapes inside each point bar are predicted through random sampling of various parameters, such as number, horizontal intervals, dip angle, and extended distance of mud drapes. A dataset, collected from a reservoir in the Shengli oilfield of China, was used to illustrate the mud drapes' building procedure proposed in this paper. The results show that the inner architectural elements of the meandering river are depicted fairly well in the model. More importantly, the high prediction precision from the cross validation of five drilled wells shows the practical value and significance of the proposed method.

  20. The birth and death of transverse aeolian ridges on Mars

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Geissler, Paul E.

    2014-01-01

    Transverse aeolian ridges (TARs) are small bright windblown deposits found throughout the Martian tropics that stand a few meters tall and are spaced a few tens of meters apart. The origin of these features remains mysterious more than 20 years after their discovery on Mars. This paper presents a new hypothesis, that some of the TARs could be indurated dust deposits emplaced millions of years ago during periods of higher axial obliquity. It suggests that these TARs are primary depositional bed forms that accumulated in place from dust carried by the winds in suspension, perhaps in a manner comparable to antidunes on Earth, and were subsequently indurated and eroded to their current states by eons of sandblasting. It points out examples of modern dust drifts and dune-like features that appear to have been recently formed by dust accumulating directly onto the surface from atmospheric suspension. It shows how these pristine dust deposits could evolve to explain the range of morphologies of the TARs. Finally, it explains how the known properties of many TARs are consistent with this hypothesis, including their composition, thermal behavior, and distribution.

  1. Deposition and Release Behaviour of ZnO Nanoparticles in Saturated Quartz Sand: Role of Biofilm, Ionic Strength, and pH

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hwang, Gukhwa; Han, Yosep; Kim, Donghyun; Bradford, Scott A.; Lee, Byoungcheun; Eom, Igchun; Kim, Pil Je; Choi, Siyoung Q.; Lee, Youngsoo; Kim, Hyunjung

    2015-04-01

    The influence of biofilm, ionic strength, and pH on the deposition and release behavior of zinc oxide nanoparticles (ZnO-NPs) was systematically investigated in well-controlled saturated sand column. The results for the initial transport of the ZnO-NPs at pH 9 showed significant retention at the inlet of the column with hyper-exponential retention profiles regardless of solution ionic strength investigated (0.1 and 10 mM) and Pseudomonas putida biofilm coating; however, the increase in solution ionic strength and the presence of biofilm onto quartz sand tended to increase the retention of ZnO-NPs. The trend was likely attributed to more favorable NPs-NPs interaction and greater surface roughness, respectively. The results were well supported by the DLVO interaction energy profiles and Electron Microscopic observations. For the release tests, particle free solution at pH 6 was continuously injected into the column with the ZnO-NPs retained during the initial transport tests. The results for breakthrough curves and time-lapsed retention profiles showed that reducing solution pH led to the release of large amount of the initially retained ZnO-NPs, and the release rate was observed to be greater for bare silica than biofilm-coated sand. The release of ZnO-NPs was likely attributed to the dissolution of Zn2+ due to the change of pH. The proposed mechanism was further verified by conducting additional column tests at higher pHs (pH 9 and 10), which showed significantly reduced release of ZnO-NPs, and even nearly no release at pH 10. The findings from this study suggests that there exists high potential of complete transport of ZnO-NPs into groundwater in that the pH of various soil environments typically ranges from 5 to 9. This work was supported by the National Institute of Environmental Research, Ministry of Environment and the Energy Efficiency & Resources Core Technology Program of the Korea Institute of Energy Technology Evaluation and Planning (KETEP), granted

  2. Aeolian particle flux profiles and transport unsteadiness

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bauer, Bernard O.; Davidson-Arnott, Robin G. D.

    2014-07-01

    Vertical profiles of aeolian sediment flux are commonly modeled as an exponential decay of particle (mass) transport with height above the surface. Data from field and wind-tunnel studies provide empirical support for this parameterization, although a large degree of variation in the precise shape of the vertical flux profile has been reported. This paper explores the potential influence of wind unsteadiness and time-varying intensity of transport on the geometry (slope, curvature) of aeolian particle flux profiles. Field evidence from a complex foredune environment demonstrates that (i) the time series of wind and sediment particle flux are often extremely variable with periods of intense transport (referred to herein as sediment "flurries") separated by periods of weak or no transport; (ii) sediment flurries contribute the majority of transport in a minority of the time; (iii) the structure of a flurry includes a "ramp-up" phase lasting a few seconds, a "core" phase lasting a few seconds to many tens of seconds, and a "ramp-down" phase lasting a few seconds during which the system relaxes to a background, low-intensity transport state; and (iv) conditional averaging of flux profiles for flurry and nonflurry periods reveals differences between the geometry of the mean profiles and hence the transport states that produce them. These results caution against the indiscriminate reliance on regression statistics derived from time-averaged sediment flux profiles, especially those with significant flurry and nonflurry periods, when calibrating or assessing the validity of steady state models of aeolian saltation.

  3. 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.

  4. Aeolian Processes at the Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity Landing Site

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sullivan, R.; Bell, J. F., III; Calvin, W.; Fike, D.; Golombek, M.; Greeley, R.; Grotzinger, J.; Herkenhoff, K.; Jerolmack, D.; Malin, M.

    2005-01-01

    The traverse of the Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity across its Meridiani Planum landing site has shown that wind has affected regolith by creating drifts, dunes, and ubiquitous ripples, by sorting grains during aeolian transport, by forming bright wind streaks downwind from craters seen from orbit, and by eroding rock with abrading, wind-blown material. Pre-landing orbiter observations showed bright and dark streaks tapering away from craters on the Meridiani plains. Further analysis of orbiter images shows that major dust storms can cause bright streak orientations in the area to alternate between NW and SE, implying bright wind streak materials encountered by Opportunity are transient, potentially mobilized deposits. Opportunity performed the first in situ investigation of a martian wind streak, focusing on a bright patch of material just outside the rim of Eagle crater. Data from Pancam, the Miniature Thermal Emission Spectrometer (Mini-TES), the Alpha-Particle X-Ray Spectrometer (APXS), and the Mossbauer spectrometer either are consistent with or permit an air fall dust interpretation. We conclude that air fall dust, deposited in the partial wind shadow of Eagle crater, is responsible for the bright streak seen from orbit, consistent with models involving patchy, discontinuous deposits of air fall dust distributed behind obstacles during periods of atmospheric thermal stability during major dust storms.

  5. Origin of basaltic soils at Gusev crater, Mars, by aeolian modification of impact-generated sediment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McGlynn, Ian O.; Fedo, Christopher M.; McSween, Harry Y., Jr.

    2011-04-01

    Textural properties of soils including grain size, sorting, modality, skewness, shape (quantified as sphericity and qualified as form), roundness, and grain size distribution, have been measured and calculated from Microscopic Imager (MI) high-resolution images from the Mars Exploration Rover (MER) Spirit in Gusev crater. Soil targets were classified by grain size into five groups: fine to medium sand dark soil, medium sand to very fine pebble bed form armor, and very fine to medium pebble lithic fragments, a bimodal mixed soil, and an excavated soil trench. The abundance of submature, very poorly sorted, bimodal mixed soils indicates incomplete sorting by soil type. Probability distributions of excavated subsurface soil match crushed sediment analogs, indicating impact comminution, while all other soils show no direct evidence of an impact origin. If soils were produced primarily by impacts, then the evidence from probability distributions, angular shapes, and agglutinates have been reworked by postimpact surface activity. Soils in Gusev crater are continuously modified, reworked, and sandblasted. Textures of surface sediments are disconnected from subsurface textures and only reflect modern surficial aeolian processes. Models to reconstruct physical and chemical soil formation properties should not assume a static three-dimensional structure. A three-step model, initiated by the formation of basaltic crust and its alteration, followed by bolide impact, and finally modification by aeolian reworking is envisioned for the formation of soils. Such a scenario accounts for the potential that surface sediments may be compositionally and texturally distinct from the subsurface.

  6. 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

    , infiltration of relatively warm summer precipitation, and the insulative properties of longlived snowcover. We hypothesize that the seasonally frozen layer and niveoaeolian deposits combined with a shallow aqueous reservoir are responsible for the low migration rate of the GKSD (i.e., ~1.3 m/yr over a recent 5-year period). Just as migration of the GKSD is affected by partial to full snowcover for 70% of the year, Martian polar dunes are affected by partial to full frost mantling for 70% of the year, significantly limiting the duration of aeolian transport. Thin water films surrounding sand grains at the GKSD make moist sand cohesive and structurally stable, like a solid. The partially saturated sand above the capillary fringe of an unconfined aquifer in the GKSD will limit sand available for aeolian transport, potentially similar to effects of permafrost within a Martian dune. We will present our geophysical, geomorphologic, and meteorologic field data and modeling analyses.

  7. Characterization of magnetic spherical fractions in sand deposits for interpretation of environmental change around the El- Zayyan temple, Kharga Oasis, Western Desert, Egypt

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Watanabe, Makiko; Koizumi, Natsuko; Kato, Sayuri; Kikuchi, Ryohei; Kamei, Hiroyuki

    2014-05-01

    Desertification in North Africa has rapidly advanced over the last 6,000 years. Such environmental changes began in the Early Dynastic Period of Egypt (4200 - 3150 BC), and the occupation of Achaemenid Persian and Roman cultures in Egypt occurred under even drier climates. Kharga is the largest oasis of the five oases, located in the western desert of Egypt that contains a treasure trove of archaeological resources. This oasis has been highlighted to promote resource exploration and development of archaeological tourism since the 1980's. The El-Zayyan temple is located 27 km south of the central Kharga oasis. Zayyan was once called 'Tchonemyris', which has connection with the means of 'huge well' in Greek. Although major portions of the temple were rebuilt in 140 AD during the rule of the Roman Emperor Antoninus Pius, this temple is considered to be originally built in the Ptolemaic period (4c-1c BC). It is likely that the area had a sufficient water supply in the past as the El-Zayyan temple stands at the lowest point (-18 m a.s.l.) in the Kharga oasis. Furthermore, the El-Ghueita temple that stands on a hill top at 68.5 m a.s.l., 4 km northward from the El-Zayyan temple, has given name that means 'beautiful garden' in Greek. From these facts, we can imagine that the past landscape of this area contained green surroundings. The El-Ghueita temple was well known as a production centre of high quality wine since the mid-Dynastic age (2050 -1786 BC). As this area is currently arid, it is expected that there were irrigation facilities to maintain the vast farm land during the ancient period. To deepen our knowledge of how people developed their technologies and conducted their life within the natural environment of a drastic drying period, understanding the process of environmental change on a region scale is necessary. The aim of this study was to extract proxies from sand deposits in the western desert area to estimate the change in the environment. We examined the

  8. Sand Volcano Following Earthquake

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1989-01-01

    Sand boil or sand volcano measuring 2 m (6.6 ft.) in length erupted in median of Interstate Highway 80 west of the Bay Bridge toll plaza when ground shaking transformed loose water-saturated deposit of subsurface sand into a sand-water slurry (liquefaction) in the October 17, 1989, Loma Prieta earthquake. Vented sand contains marine-shell fragments. Sand and soil grains have faces that can cause friction as they roll and slide against each other, or even cause sticking and form small voids between grains. This complex behavior can cause soil to behave like a liquid under certain conditions such as earthquakes or when powders are handled in industrial processes. Mechanics of Granular Materials (MGM) experiments aboard the Space Shuttle use the microgravity of space to simulate this behavior under conditions that carnot be achieved in laboratory tests on Earth. MGM is shedding light on the behavior of fine-grain materials under low effective stresses. Applications include earthquake engineering, granular flow technologies (such as powder feed systems for pharmaceuticals and fertilizers), and terrestrial and planetary geology. Nine MGM specimens have flown on two Space Shuttle flights. Another three are scheduled to fly on STS-107. The principal investigator is Stein Sture of the University of Colorado at Boulder. (Credit: J.C. Tinsley, U.S. Geological Survey)

  9. The provenance of Taklamakan desert sand

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rittner, Martin; Vermeesch, Pieter; Carter, Andrew; Bird, Anna; Stevens, Thomas; Garzanti, Eduardo; Andò, Sergio; Vezzoli, Giovanni; Dutt, Ripul; Xu, Zhiwei; Lu, Huayu

    2016-03-01

    Sand migration in the vast Taklamakan desert within the Tarim Basin (Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous region, PR China) is governed by two competing transport agents: wind and water, which work in diametrically opposed directions. Net aeolian transport is from northeast to south, while fluvial transport occurs from the south to the north and then west to east at the northern rim, due to a gradual northward slope of the underlying topography. We here present the first comprehensive provenance study of Taklamakan desert sand with the aim to characterise the interplay of these two transport mechanisms and their roles in the formation of the sand sea, and to consider the potential of the Tarim Basin as a contributing source to the Chinese Loess Plateau (CLP). Our dataset comprises 39 aeolian and fluvial samples, which were characterised by detrital-zircon U-Pb geochronology, heavy-mineral, and bulk-petrography analyses. Although the inter-sample differences of all three datasets are subtle, a multivariate statistical analysis using multidimensional scaling (MDS) clearly shows that Tarim desert sand is most similar in composition to rivers draining the Kunlun Shan (south) and the Pamirs (west), and is distinctly different from sediment sources in the Tian Shan (north). A small set of samples from the Junggar Basin (north of the Tian Shan) yields different detrital compositions and age spectra than anywhere in the Tarim Basin, indicating that aeolian sediment exchange between the two basins is minimal. Although river transport dominates delivery of sand into the Tarim Basin, wind remobilises and reworks the sediment in the central sand sea. Characteristic signatures of main rivers can be traced from entrance into the basin to the terminus of the Tarim River, and those crossing the desert from the south to north can seasonally bypass sediment through the sand sea. Smaller ephemeral rivers from the Kunlun Shan end in the desert and discharge their sediment there. Both river run

  10. Multi-Resolution Analysis of LiDAR data for Characterizing a Stabilized Aeolian Landscape in South Texas

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barrineau, C. P.; Dobreva, I. D.; Bishop, M. P.; Houser, C.

    2014-12-01

    Aeolian systems are ideal natural laboratories for examining self-organization in patterned landscapes, as certain wind regimes generate certain morphologies. Topographic information and scale dependent analysis offer the opportunity to study such systems and characterize process-form relationships. A statistically based methodology for differentiating aeolian features would enable the quantitative association of certain surface characteristics with certain morphodynamic regimes. We conducted a multi-resolution analysis of LiDAR elevation data to assess scale-dependent morphometric variations in an aeolian landscape in South Texas. For each pixel, mean elevation values are calculated along concentric circles moving outward at 100-meter intervals (i.e. 500 m, 600 m, 700 m from pixel). The calculated average elevation values plotted against distance from the pixel of interest as curves are used to differentiate multi-scalar variations in elevation across the landscape. In this case, it is hypothesized these curves may be used to quantitatively differentiate certain morphometries from others like a spectral signature may be used to classify paved surfaces from natural vegetation, for example. After generating multi-resolution curves for all the pixels in a selected area of interest (AOI), a Principal Components Analysis is used to highlight commonalities and singularities between generated curves from pixels across the AOI. Our findings suggest that the resulting components could be used for identification of discrete aeolian features like open sands, trailing ridges and active dune crests, and, in particular, zones of deflation. This new approach to landscape characterization not only works to mitigate bias introduced when researchers must select training pixels for morphometric investigations, but can also reveal patterning in aeolian landscapes that would not be as obvious without quantitative characterization.

  11. Introducing a New International Society of Aeolian Research

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Aeolian research is long-standing and rapidly growing area of study where scientists of many disciplines meet to investigate the effects of wind on the surface of the Earth and other planetary bodies, such as Mars and Titan. Fields of study in aeolian research cover a broad spectrum ranging from dev...

  12. 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

  13. The Origin of Transverse Aeolian Ridges on Mars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Geissler, P.

    2015-12-01

    Transverse aeolian ridges, or TARs, are found throughout the tropics of Mars and typically appear as rows of bright ripples that are several meters tall and spaced semi-regularly several tens of meters apart. The origin of these features remained mysterious for decades after their discovery in Viking and Mars Global Surveyor images. A new hypothesis (Geissler, 2014, 10.1002-2014JE004633) suggests that TARs might be deposits left behind by dusty turbidity currents in the Martian atmosphere. The hypothesis assumes that the micron-sized dust particles are transported in suspension in turbulent flows, driven both by the winds and by gravity. The dust is concentrated near the surface, much like turbidity currents on Earth. Because of the difference in density, however, the dust clouds behave as a fluid distinct from the clear sky above. In particular, waves can appear at the surface of the dense "fluid" when the flows encounter topographic obstacles along their paths. Such gravity waves travel at speeds that are determined by gravity and the thickness of the flow, much like waves in shallow water on Earth. When the wave propagation speed matches the speed of the flow, stationary waves are produced that persist in fixed locations. The bedforms deposited by such stationary waves are called "antidunes" (Gilbert, 1914, USGS Prof. Paper 86) because, unlike dunes, they can migrate upstream in a supercritical flow. Antidunes are commonly seen in shallow, high energy fluvial deposits on Earth. They are usually destroyed as quickly as they form, and are rarely preserved. The Martian TARs survive because the dust is sticky; TARs are deposited by currents that are much slower than the wind speeds needed to lift the dust again. Subaerial antidunes are much rarer on Earth and less well studied, and so the giant subaerial stationary antidunes of Mars, if that is what the TARs turn out to be, may teach us much about a geological process that is poorly known on our planet.

  14. Mars sampling strategy and aeolian processes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Greeley, Ronald

    1988-01-01

    It is critical that the geological context of planetary samples (both in situ analyses and return samples) be well known and documented. Apollo experience showed that this goal is often difficult to achieve even for a planet on which surficial processes are relatively restricted. On Mars, the variety of present and past surface processes is much greater than on the Moon and establishing the geological context of samples will be much more difficult. In addition to impact hardening, Mars has been modified by running water, periglacial activity, wind, and other processes, all of which have the potential for profoundly affecting the geological integrity of potential samples. Aeolian, or wind, processes are ubiquitous on Mars. In the absence of liquid water on the surface, aeolian activity dominates the present surface as documented by frequent dust storms (both local and global), landforms such as dunes, and variable features, i.e., albedo patterns which change their size, shape, and position with time in response to the wind.

  15. 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)

  16. Compositional trends in aeolian dust along a transect across the southwestern United States

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Goldstein, H.L.; Reynolds, R.L.; Reheis, M.C.; Yount, J.C.; Neff, J.C.

    2008-01-01

    Aeolian dust strongly influences ecology and landscape geochemistry over large areas that span several desert ecosystems of the southwestern United States. This study evaluates spatial and temporal variations and trends of the physical and chemical properties of dust in the southwestern United States by examining dust deposited in natural depressions on high isolated surfaces along a transect from the Mojave Desert to the central Colorado Plateau. Aeolian dust is recognized in these depressions on the basis of textural, chemical, isotopic, and mineralogical characteristics and comparisons of those characteristics to the underlying bedrock units. Spatial and temporal trends suggest that although local dust sources are important to the accumulated material in these depressions, Mojave Desert dust sources may also contribute. Depth trends in the depressions suggest that Mojave sources may have contributed more dust to the Colorado Plateau recently than in the past. These interpretations point to the important roles of far-traveled aeolian dust for landscape geochemistry and imply future changes to soil geochemistry under changing conditions in far-distant dust source areas. Copyright 2008 by the American Geophysical Union.

  17. Laboratory studies of aeolian sediment transport processes on planetary surfaces

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rasmussen, Keld R.; Valance, Alexandre; Merrison, Jonathan

    2015-09-01

    , but not all, older or recent wind tunnel observations. Similarly some measurements performed with uniform sand samples having grain diameters of the order of 0.25-0.40 mm indicate that ripple spacing depends on friction velocity in a similar way as particle jump length. The observations are thus in agreement with a recent ripple model that link the typical jump length to ripple spacing. A possible explanation for contradictory observations in some experiments may be that long observation sequences are required in order to assure that equilibrium exists between ripple geometry and wind flow. Quantitative understanding of saltation characteristics on Mars still lacks important elements. Based upon image analysis and numerical predictions, aeolian ripples have been thought to consist of relatively large grains (diameter > 0.6 mm) and that saltation occurs at high wind speeds (> 26 m/s) involving trajectories that are significantly longer than those on Earth (by a factor of 10-100). However, this is not supported by recent observations from the surface of Mars, which shows that active ripples in their geometry and composition have characteristics compatible with those of terrestrial ripples (Sullivan et al., 2008). Also the highest average wind speeds on Mars have been measured to be < 20 m/s, with even turbulent gusts not exceeding 25 m/s. Electrification is seen as a dominant factor in the transport dynamics of dust on Mars, affecting the structure, adhesive properties and detachment/entrainment mechanisms specifically through the formation of aggregates (Merrison et al., 2012). Conversely for terrestrial conditions electric fields typically observed are not intense enough to significantly affect sand transport rates while little is known in the case of extra-terrestrial environments.

  18. Aeolian removal of dust from photovoltaic surfaces on Mars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gaier, James R.; Perez-Davis, Marla E.; Marabito, Mark

    1990-01-01

    It is well documented that Mars is totally engulfed in huge dust storms nearly each Martian year. Dust elevated in these global dust storms, or in any of the numerous local dust storms could settle on photovoltaic surfaces and seriously hamper photovoltaic power system performance. Using a recently developed technique to uniformly dust simulated photovoltaic surfaces, samples were subjected to Martian-like winds in an attempt to determine whether natural aeolian processes on Mars would sweep off the settled dust. The effects of wind velocity, angle of attack, height off the Martian surface, and surface coating material were investigated. Principles which can help to guide the design of photovoltaic arrays bound for the Martian surface were uncovered. Most importantly, arrays mounted with an angle of attack approaching 45 deg show the most efficient clearing. Although the angular dependence is not sharp, horizontally mounted arrays required significantly higher wind velocities to clear off the dust. From the perspective of dust-clearing it appears that the arrays may be erected quite near the ground, but previous studies have suggested that saltation effects can be expected to cause such arrays to be covered by sand if they are set up less than about a meter from the ground. Providing that the surface chemistry of Martian dusts is comparable to our test dust, the materials used for protective coating may be optimized for other considerations such as transparency, and chemical or abrasion resistance. The static threshold velocity is low enough that there are regions on Mars which experience winds strong enough to clear off a photovoltaic array if it is properly oriented. Turbulence fences proved to be an ineffective strategy to keep dust cleared from the photovoltaic surfaces.

  19. Aeolian Abrasion, a Dominant Erosion Agent in the Martian Environment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bridges, N.; Cooper, G.; Eddlemon, E.; Greeley, R.; Laity, J.; Phoreman, J.; Razdan, A.; van Note, S.; White, B.; Wilson, G.

    2004-12-01

    Aeolian abrasion is one of the predominant erosion mechanisms on Mars today. Martian ventifacts record the climate under which the rocks were modified (wind direction, wind speeds and particle flux) and therefore tie into the overall climatic regime of the planet. By better understanding the rates at which rocks abrade and the features diagnostic of specific climatic conditions, we can gain insight into past climates. Herein we report on numerical models, wind tunnel experiments, and field work to determine 1) Particle and kinetic fluxes on Earth and Mars, 2) the degree to which these parameters control abrasion, and 3) how, in detail, rocks of various shapes and compositions erode over time. Kinetic energy generally increases with height, whereas flux decreases, and impact angles, which affect energy transfer, and rebound effects are functions of the rock facet angle. This results in a non-linear relationship between abrasion potential and height that is a function of wind speed, planetary environment, and target geometry. We have computed the first three of these parameters numerically using a numerical saltation code, combined with published flux calculations These results have been compared to wind tunnel tests of flux vs. height, abrasion of erodible targets, and high speed video analysis under terrestrial and Martian pressures. We are also using high resolution laser scanning to characterize textures, shapes, and weathering changes for terrestrial and Martian rocks at the 100s of microns scale. We find that facet angle, texture, and rock heterogeneity are of critical importance in determining the rate and style of abrasion. Field and theoretical results demonstrate that high speed winds, not the integrated flux of lower speeds, and sand, not dust, produce most rock abrasion. On Mars, this requires sustained winds above 20-25 m/s at the near surface, a challenge in the current environment.

  20. The Lilesville Gravels: A Neogene Strath Terrace Deposit from the Piedmont/Coastal Plain Boundary of North Carolina, USA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Diemer, J. A.; McLean, R.; Bobyarchick, A. R.; Xanthos, G.

    2015-12-01

    The Lilesville "gravels" are discontinuous Neogene cobble, sand and silt deposits exposed in gravel quarries in an area covering ~100 km2 where the Pee Dee River crosses the Fall Line of North Carolina. These deposits unconformably overlie the western edge of the Inner Coastal Plain, and parts of the saprolitized Paleozoic Lilesville pluton, and are interpreted as strath terrace deposits. In the Bonsal quarry, the Lilesville "gravels" comprise channel fills, channel bars, pebble lags, trough cross bedding, mud clasts, and mud drapes. These features define several facies including: 1) an imbricated clast-supported conglomerate with a medium- to coarse-grained lithic arenite matrix; 2) a lenticular silt- to medium-grained lithic arenite partly interbedded with the conglomerate; 3) a pebbly cross-bedded medium- to coarse-grained lithic arenite; and 4) a mottled medium- to coarse-grained lithic arenite. Paleoflow indicators suggest southerly transport, parallel to the modern Pee Dee River. GPR profiles and 3D models document facies boundaries on the quarry face and behind the high-wall. The tops of the Lilesville "gravels" are commonly marked by a pebble lag (deflation) horizon disconformably overlain by a medium- to coarse-grained, well-sorted quartz arenite interpreted as an aeolian deposit (Pinehurst Fm?). C14 dates from charcoal in the aeolian sand are 1638 +/- 46 calendar years BP (or 312 AD +/- 46). The age of the Lilesville "gravels" remains uncertain. However, by using regional curves for ages of terrace deposits relative to their heights above river level (Mills 2000), it is suggested here that the Lilesville gravels are 7 to 12 Ma (Upper Miocene). It is likely that the Lilesville "gravels" were deposited by the ancestral Pee Dee River when it was a braided stream flowing in a southerly direction. This suggests that a combination of regional uplift and a wetter paleoclimate in the Late Miocene may have been responsible for a larger discharge and coarser

  1. Incident Angle of Saltating Particles in Wind-Blown Sand

    PubMed Central

    Fu, Lin-Tao; Bo, Tian-Li; Gu, Hai-Hua; Zheng, Xiao-Jing

    2013-01-01

    Incident angle of saltating particles plays a very important role in aeolian events. In this paper, the incident angles of sand particles near the sand bed were measured in wind tunnel. It reveals that the incident angles range widely from 0° to 180° and thereby the means of angles are larger than published data. Surprisingly, it is found the proportion that angles of 5°–15° occupy is far below previous reports. The measuring height is probably the most important reason for the measurement differences between this study and previous investigations. PMID:23874470

  2. A study of the management strategies for river aeolian dust inhibition at the estuary of Zhuo-shui River

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tsai, S. F.; Lin, C. Y.

    2014-12-01

    With the characteristics of humidity in summer and drought in winter, there existing lots of bare lands due to the decline of water level cause large amounts of aeolian dust and environmental deterioration during the monsoon seasons in central Taiwan. How to adopt effective measures to inhibit the damage of dust is an essential issue. This study selected the serious dust-affected section of Zhuo-shui river (bridge Zi-qiang to Xi-bin) to delineate the areas of potential aeolian dust occurrence, explore the relationship between elevation and water level determined from return period analysis, submit the countermeasures for dust inhibition at the bare lands and/or cultivated areas, and address the responsibilities of related authority offices for dust prevention by means of literature review. The return period of inundation for the areas of potential aeolian dust occurrence is 1.1 years. Engineering of dust prevention with highly unit price are not recommended due to could be destroyed annually. The deposition sites of a river are usually located at the convex bank, which with silt texture and high salinity are not suitable for cultivation, are delineated as the areas of potential aeolian dust occurrence. Besides technology consideration in dust prevention, this study also examined the related articles of river management to integrate a comprehensive vision for better riverside environment and air quality.

  3. Last glacial aeolian dynamics at the Titel loess plateau (Vojvodina, Serbia)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marković, S. B.; Bokhorst, M. P.; Machalett, B.; Štrbac, D.; Hambach, U.; Basarin, B.; Svirčev, Z.; Stevens, T.; Frechen, M.; Vandenberghe, J.

    2009-04-01

    The Titel loess plateau (Vojvodina, Serbia) is situated at the confluence of the rivers Danube and Tisa, in the southeastern part of the Bačka subregion. Various phases of fluvial erosion have shaped the ellipsoid form of the plateau, which is characterized by steep slopes on the margins. The Titel loess plateau is a unique geomorphologic feature, further emphasising the wide diversity of the loess landforms. The plateau is an island of loess with a maximum length of about 16 km and a maximum width of 7.2 km. Thick loess deposits of between 35 and 55 m are intercalated by 5 main pedocomplexes likely deposited thought the last 5 glacial/interglacial cycles. Steep loess cliffs expose several important sections for understanding climatic and environmental change during the middle and late Pleistocene in the region. The succession of palaeosols through the sequence strongly suggests a transition from humid interglacial climates in the middle Pleistocene, to drier interglacial climates in the late Pleistocene. Past aeolian dynamics have been reconstructed using magnetic susceptibility, grain size, geochemical and malacological investigations by depth in the thick last glacial unit. Luminescence dating and magnetic susceptibility inter-profile correlation provide the chronological framework. Lower last glacial loess unit V-L1L2 is loosely cemented porous sandy loess, with occasional fine laminations and thin, fine sand beds. Identified malacofauna indicates very dry climatic conditions and poor steppic vegetation. It is hypothesized that while the last glacial vegetation cover is extremely sparse, significant sedimentation rates during the lower last glacial can be explained by the presence of a cyanobacterial crust. Protection of loess sediments from deflation by the presence of a cyanobacterial crust is observed at present in loess quarries (Ruma, Crvenka, Petrovaradin). The middle glacial was warmer and relatively moist, as indicated by an increase in clay content

  4. The Southern Ocean biological response to aeolian iron deposition.

    PubMed

    Cassar, Nicolas; Bender, Michael L; Barnett, Bruce A; Fan, Songmiao; Moxim, Walter J; Levy, Hiram; Tilbrook, Bronte

    2007-08-24

    Biogeochemical rate processes in the Southern Ocean have an important impact on the global environment. Here, we summarize an extensive set of published and new data that establishes the pattern of gross primary production and net community production over large areas of the Southern Ocean. We compare these rates with model estimates of dissolved iron that is added to surface waters by aerosols. This comparison shows that net community production, which is comparable to export production, is proportional to modeled input of soluble iron in aerosols. Our results strengthen the evidence that the addition of aerosol iron fertilizes export production in the Southern Ocean. The data also show that aerosol iron input particularly enhances gross primary production over the large area of the Southern Ocean downwind of dry continental areas. PMID:17717181

  5. Mid-Holocene stabilization of the Karakum and Kyzylkum sand seas, central Asia - evidence from OSL ages

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Maman, Shimrit; Tsoar, Haim; Blumberg, Dan G.; Porat, Naomi

    2013-04-01

    Sand seas (ergs) are large areas of deserts covered by wind-swept sand with varying degrees of vegetation cover. The Kyzylkum and Karakum ergs have accumulated in the Turan basin, northwest of the Hindu Kush range, and span from south Turkmenistan to the Syrdarya River in Kazakhstan. These ergs are dissected by the Amudarya River; To the north lies the Kyzylkum (red sands) and to the south the Karakum (black sands). This area is understudied, and little information has been published regarding the sands stabilization processes and deposition ages. This research focuses on identifying and mapping the ergs of Central Asia and analyzing the climate factors that set the dunes into motion and that stabilized them. A variety of spaceborne imagery with varying spectral and spatial resolutions was used. These images provide the basis for mapping sand distribution, dune forms, and vegetation cover. Wilson (1973) defined these ergs as active based on precipitation. Our results show that they are mostly stabilized, with an estimated area of ~260,000 sq. Km for Kara-Kum , and ~195,500 sq. Km for the Kyzyl-Kum . Meteorological analysis of wind and precipitation data indicate a low wind energy environment (DP<200) and sufficient rainfall (>100 mm) to which is essential for vegetation cover. We present the first optically stimulated luminescence (OSL) ages from the upper meter of 14 exposed sections from both ergs. The age of the sand samples was determined as ~Mid-Holocene by OSL, which provides an insight into past climate characteristics. These ages indicate extensive sand and dune stabilization during the Mid-Holocene. GIS analysis was performed in parallel with field work to validate and verify the results. The OSL ages, coupled with a compilation of regional palaeoclimatic data, corroborate and reinforce the previously proposed Mid-Holocene Liavliakan phase, known to reflect a warmer, wetter, less windy climate than persists today and that resulted in dune stabilization

  6. Shallow Submarine Hydrothermal Systems in the Aeolian Volcanic Arc, Italy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Monecke, Thomas; Petersen, Sven; Lackschewitz, Klas; Hügler, Michael; Hannington, Mark D.; Gemmell, J. Bruce

    2009-03-01

    The majority of known high-temperature hydrothermal vents occur at mid-ocean ridges and back-arc spreading centers, typically at water depths from 2000 to 4000 meters. Compared with 30 years of hydrothermal research along spreading centers in the deep parts of the ocean, exploration of the approximately 700 submarine arc volcanoes is relatively recent [de Ronde et al., 2003]. At these submarine arc volcanoes, active hydrothermal vents are located at unexpectedly shallow water depth (95% at <1600-meter depth), which has important consequences for the style of venting, the nature of associated mineral deposits, and the local biological communities. As part of an ongoing multinational research effort to study shallow submarine volcanic arcs, two hydrothermal systems in the submerged part of the Aeolian arc have been investigated in detail during research cruises by R/V Poseidon (July 2006) and R/V Meteor (August 2007). Comprehensive seafloor video surveys were conducted using a remotely operated vehicle, and drilling to a depth of 5 meters was carried out using a lander-type submersible drill. This research has resulted in the first detailed, three-dimensional documentation of shallow submarine hydrothermal systems on arc volcanoes.

  7. A comparison of general circulation model predictions to sand drift and dune orientations

    SciTech Connect

    Blumberg, D.G.; Greeley, R. |

    1996-12-01

    The growing concern over climate change and decertification stresses the importance of aeolian process prediction. In this paper the use of a general circulation model to predict current aeolian features is examined. A GCM developed at NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center was used in conjunction with White`s aeolian sand flux model to produce a global potential aeolian transport map. Surface wind shear stress predictions were used from the output of a GCM simulation that was performed as part of the Atmospheric Model Intercomparison Project on 1979 climate conditions. The spatial resolution of this study (as driven by the GCM) is 4{degrees} X 5{degrees}; instantaneous 6-hourly wind stress data were saved by the GCM and used in this report. A global map showing potential sand transport was compared to drift potential directions as inferred from Landsat images from the 1980s for several sand seas and a coastal dune field. Generally, results show a good correlation between the simulated sand drift direction and the drift direction inferred for dune forms. Discrepancies between the drift potential and the drift inferred from images were found in the North American deserts and the Arabian peninsula. An attempt to predict the type of dune that would be formed in specific regions was not successful. The model could probably be further improved by incorporating soil moisture, surface roughness, and vegetation information for a better assessment of sand threshold conditions. The correlation may permit use of a GCM to analyze {open_quotes}fossil{close_quotes} dunes or to forecast aeolian processes. 48 refs., 8 figs.

  8. Geographical Detector-Based Identification of the Impact of Major Determinants on Aeolian Desertification Risk.

    PubMed

    Du, Ziqiang; Xu, Xiaoming; Zhang, Hong; Wu, Zhitao; Liu, Yong

    2016-01-01

    Arid and semi-arid areas in North China are facing the challenge of a rising aeolian desertification risk (ADR) due to the intertwined effects of complex natural processes and intensified anthropogenic activities. An accurate quantitative assessment of the relationship between ADR and its determinants is beneficial for understanding the driving mechanisms of aeolian desertification and for controlling future desertification. Previous studies have failed to quantify the relative role of determinants driving ADR and have been limited in assessing their interactive impacts. In this study, a spatial variance analysis-based geographical detector methodology is used to quantify the effects of geological, physical, and human factors on the occurrence of ADR in an area characterized by mountains and hills in northern China. It is found that soil type, precipitation, and wind velocity are the major determinants of ADR, which implies that geological and physical elements (e.g., soil attribute) and climatic factors (e.g., precipitation and wind velocity) rather than human activities have played a greater role in the incidence of ADR. Particularly, the results show that the interaction of various determinants causes significant non-linearly enhanced impacts on the ADR. The findings of our study will assist local inhabitants and policy makers in developing measures for wind prevention and sand control to mitigate the effects of desertification in the region. PMID:26987114

  9. Measurement uncertainties in quantifying aeolian mass flux: evidence from wind tunnel and field site data.

    PubMed

    Poortinga, Ate; Keijsers, Joep G S; Maroulis, Jerry; Visser, Saskia M

    2014-01-01

    Aeolian sediment traps are widely used to estimate the total volume of wind-driven sediment transport, but also to study the vertical mass distribution of a saltating sand cloud. The reliability of sediment flux estimations from such measurements are dependent upon the specific configuration of the measurement compartments and the analysis approach used. In this study, we analyse the uncertainty of these measurements by investigating the vertical cumulative distribution and relative sediment flux derived from both wind tunnel and field studies. Vertical flux data was examined using existing data in combination with a newly acquired dataset; comprising meteorological data and sediment fluxes from six different events, using three customized catchers at Ameland beaches in northern Netherlands. Fast-temporal data collected in a wind tunnel shows that the median transport height has a scattered pattern between impact and fluid threshold, that increases linearly with shear velocities above the fluid threshold. For finer sediment, a larger proportion was transported closer to the surface compared to coarser sediment fractions. It was also shown that errors originating from the distribution of sampling compartments, specifically the location of the lowest sediment trap relative to the surface, can be identified using the relative sediment flux. In the field, surface conditions such as surface moisture, surface crusts or frozen surfaces have a more pronounced but localized effect than shear velocity. Uncertainty in aeolian mass flux estimates can be reduced by placing multiple compartments in closer proximity to the surface. PMID:25071984

  10. Geographical Detector-Based Identification of the Impact of Major Determinants on Aeolian Desertification Risk

    PubMed Central

    Du, Ziqiang; Xu, Xiaoming; Zhang, Hong; Wu, Zhitao; Liu, Yong

    2016-01-01

    Arid and semi-arid areas in North China are facing the challenge of a rising aeolian desertification risk (ADR) due to the intertwined effects of complex natural processes and intensified anthropogenic activities. An accurate quantitative assessment of the relationship between ADR and its determinants is beneficial for understanding the driving mechanisms of aeolian desertification and for controlling future desertification. Previous studies have failed to quantify the relative role of determinants driving ADR and have been limited in assessing their interactive impacts. In this study, a spatial variance analysis-based geographical detector methodology is used to quantify the effects of geological, physical, and human factors on the occurrence of ADR in an area characterized by mountains and hills in northern China. It is found that soil type, precipitation, and wind velocity are the major determinants of ADR, which implies that geological and physical elements (e.g., soil attribute) and climatic factors (e.g., precipitation and wind velocity) rather than human activities have played a greater role in the incidence of ADR. Particularly, the results show that the interaction of various determinants causes significant non-linearly enhanced impacts on the ADR. The findings of our study will assist local inhabitants and policy makers in developing measures for wind prevention and sand control to mitigate the effects of desertification in the region. PMID:26987114

  11. Measurement uncertainties in quantifying aeolian mass flux: evidence from wind tunnel and field site data

    PubMed Central

    Keijsers, Joep G.S.; Maroulis, Jerry; Visser, Saskia M.

    2014-01-01

    Aeolian sediment traps are widely used to estimate the total volume of wind-driven sediment transport, but also to study the vertical mass distribution of a saltating sand cloud. The reliability of sediment flux estimations from such measurements are dependent upon the specific configuration of the measurement compartments and the analysis approach used. In this study, we analyse the uncertainty of these measurements by investigating the vertical cumulative distribution and relative sediment flux derived from both wind tunnel and field studies. Vertical flux data was examined using existing data in combination with a newly acquired dataset; comprising meteorological data and sediment fluxes from six different events, using three customized catchers at Ameland beaches in northern Netherlands. Fast-temporal data collected in a wind tunnel shows that the median transport height has a scattered pattern between impact and fluid threshold, that increases linearly with shear velocities above the fluid threshold. For finer sediment, a larger proportion was transported closer to the surface compared to coarser sediment fractions. It was also shown that errors originating from the distribution of sampling compartments, specifically the location of the lowest sediment trap relative to the surface, can be identified using the relative sediment flux. In the field, surface conditions such as surface moisture, surface crusts or frozen surfaces have a more pronounced but localized effect than shear velocity. Uncertainty in aeolian mass flux estimates can be reduced by placing multiple compartments in closer proximity to the surface. PMID:25071984

  12. Depositional mechanisms controlling formation of coarse fluvial conglomerates in the lower triassic continental red beds of middle europe

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mader, Detlef

    Coarse fluvial conglomerates containing numerous cobbles and boulders occur in various formations within the Lower Triassic continental red beds of Middle Europe. The rudites mainly originate as longitudinal gravel bars in highly-braided river systems with narrowly-spaced and straight to slightly sinuous channels. The high-energy stream sedimentation and the frequent and rapid lateral shifting of the watercourses control origin, distribution and preservation of finer-grained substratum deposits, topstratum sediments, aeolian dune sands and palaeosols within the alluvial plain which are governed by both internal and external mechanisms. The main processes operating within the alluvial plain which result in stacking of coarse conglomerates from successive cyclothems to multistorey complexes are primary-depositional restriction and suppression of formation and secondary-erosional destruction of finer-grained channel sediments, floodplain deposits, aeolian dune sands and palaeosols. The internal processes leading to vertical superimposition and lateral amalgamation of polygenetic conglomerate complexes are elements working under control of various external mechanisms. These are mainly slow subsidence of the basin allowing effective vertical and lateral erosion to take place during sidewards shifting of channels as well as supply of large amounts of coarse detritus from the source areas by tectonic uplift keeping pace with or even slightly exceeding erosional downcutting of relief, leading to inhibition of advance of the evolution of fluvial style beyond the initial stages of the depositional history. In the early stages of infilling of marginal parts of the basin, the partially considerable relief of the pre-Triassic basement provides locally shelter for parts of the floodplains by blocking off winds and deflection of alluvial channels. Depending on distribution of source areas, configuration of the basin and palaeocurrent pattern, wedge-shaped or sheet

  13. 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.

  14. Numerical modeling of wind-blown sand on Mars.

    PubMed

    Huang, HaoJie; Bo, TianLi; Zheng, XiaoJing

    2014-09-01

    Recent observation results show that sand ripples and dunes are movable like those on Earth under current Martian climate. And the aeolian process on Mars therefore is re-attracting the eyes of scientific researchers in different fields. In this paper, the spatial and temporal evolution of wind-blown sand on Mars is simulated by the large-eddy simulation method. The simulations are conducted under the conditions of both friction wind speed higher and lower than the "fluid threshold", respectively. The fluid entrainment of the sand particles, the processes among saltation sand particles and sand bed, and the negative feedback of sand movement to flow field are considered. Our results show that the "overshoot" phenomenon also exists in the evolution of wind-blown sand on Mars both temporally and spatially; impact entrainment affects the sand transport rate on Mars when the wind speed is smaller or larger than the fluid threshold; and both the average saltation length and height are one order of magnitudes larger than those on Earth. Eventually, the formulas describing the sand transport rate, average saltation length and height on Mars are given, respectively. PMID:25236498

  15. Trajectories of saltating sand particles behind a porous fence

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Ning; Lee, Sang Joon; Chen, Ting-Guo

    2015-01-01

    Trajectories of aeolian sand particles behind a porous wind fence embedded in a simulated atmospheric boundary layer were visualized experimentally, to investigate the shelter effect of the fence on sand saltation. Two sand samples, one collected from a beach (d = 250 μm) and the other from a desert (d = 100 μm), were tested in comparison with the previous studies of a 'no-fence' case. A wind fence (ε = 38.5%) was installed on a flat sand bed filled with each sand sample. A high-speed photography technique and the particle tracking velocimetry (PTV) method were employed to reconstruct the trajectories of particles saltating behind the fence. The collision processes of these sand particles were analyzed, momentum and kinetic energy transfer between saltating particles and ground surface were also investigated. In the wake region, probability density distributions of the impact velocities agree well with the pattern of no-fence case, and can be explained by a log-normal law. The horizontal component of impact velocity for the beach sand is decreased by about 54%, and about 76% for the desert sand. Vertical restitution coefficients of bouncing particles are smaller than 1.0 due to the presence of the wind fence. The saltating particles lose a large proportion of their energy during the collision process. These results illustrate that the porous wind fence effectively abates the further evolution of saltating sand particles.

  16. Omissions about the sources of contaminant emissions and depositions - A reply to comments on Taylor, M.P., Davies, P.J., Kristensen, L.J., Csavina, J., 2014. Licenced to pollute but not to poison: The ineffectiveness of regulatory authorities at protecting public health from atmospheric arsenic, lead and other contaminants resulting from mining and smelting operations. Aeolian Research, 14, 35-52

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Taylor, M. P.; Kristensen, L. J.; Davies, P. J.; Csavina, J.; Mackay, A. K.; Munksgaard, N. C.; Hudson-Edwards, K. A.

    2015-06-01

    We would like to thank Dr Wilson for increasing the interest in our 2014 Aeolian Research study along with our other articles that he referred to in his letter to the journal. Before we tackle the specifics of his letter, we would like to inform the readers that our response is inclusive of several other authors whose Mount Isa research was referred to in Dr Wilson's letter.

  17. Dust and Sand Mixing

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2003-01-01

    [figure removed for brevity, see original site]

    Released 10 November 2003

    The bright and dark tones observed in this THEMIS image of part of an unnamed impact crater (85 km in diameter) near the larger impact crater Schiaparelli are due to variable amounts of bright dust and dark sand covering the surface. Wind Shadows observed around small impact craters at the top of the image and small grooves and ripple-like marks observed throughout the scene illustrate dynamic and continued aeolian processes on Mars.

    Image information: VIS instrument. Latitude -1.4, Longitude 10.9 East (349.1 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. 3D numerical simulation of the evolutionary process of aeolian downsized crescent-shaped dunes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhou, Xiaosi; Zhang, Yang; Wang, Yuan; Li, Min

    2016-06-01

    A dune constitutive model was coupled with a large eddy simulation (LES) with the Smagorinsky subgrid-scale (SGS) model to accurately describe the evolutionary process of dunes from the macroscopic perspective of morphological dynamics. A 3D numerical simulation of the evolution of aeolian downsized crescent-shaped dunes was then performed. The evolution of the 3D structure of Gaussian-shaped dunes was simulated under the influence of gravity modulation, which was the same with the vertical oscillation of the sand bed to adjust the threshold of sand grain liftoff in wind tunnel experiments under the same wind speed. The influence of gravity modulation intensity on the characteristic scale parameter of the dune was discussed. Results indicated that the crescent shape of the dune was reproduced with the action of gravity during regulation of the saturation of wind-sand flow at specific times. The crescent shape was not dynamically maintained as time passed, and the dunes dwindled until they reached final decomposition because of wind erosion. The height of the dunes decreased over time, and the height-time curve converged as the intensity of modulation increased linearly. The results qualitatively agreed with those obtained from wind tunnel experiments.

  19. Palaeoclimatic implications of aeolian sediments on the Miaodao Islands, Bohai Sea, East China, based on OSL dating and proxies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xu, Shujian; Ding, Xinchao; Yu, Lupeng; Ni, Zhichao

    2015-12-01

    The loess-paleosol sequences in Shandong Province, East China, is an important aeolian archive, which can provide information for aeolian activity, palaeoclimatic change and sea level change in eastern coast of China since the last interglacial period. However, for so long, most of the studies about loess have been focused on the Chinese Loess Plateau, remaining many questions and disputes about the loess in East China. The Xianjingyuan (XJY) section on the TIA, Bohai Sea, is a representative aeolian section for islands off the eastern coast of China. In this study, optically stimulated luminescence (OSL) dating, particle size and magnetic susceptibility were applied to date and analysis the loess-paleosol sequences in this section. The results show that: (1) The OSL ages at the depths of 0.8 m, 2.5 m, and 3.9 m are 12.6 ± 1.0 ka, 19.2 ± 1.1 ka and 56.9 ± 2.6 ka, respectively, and the loess started to accumulate at ca. 86.5 ka according to the depositional rates (2) The loess accumulated mainly during the Marine Isotope Stage (MIS) 2, i.e., Last glacial maximum and deglaciation, MIS4 and MIS3b with higher depositional rate, coarser grain size, and higher magnetic susceptibility; while paleosol mainly developed during MIS3a, MIS3c and MIS5 with lower depositional rate, finer grain size and lower magnetic susceptibility. (3) The palaeoclimatic changes and aeolian sediments evolution were mainly controlled by the changes of East Asian summer monsoon and sea levels.

  20. Aeolian vertical mass flux profiles above a dry and moist sandy beach

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rotnicka, Joanna

    2013-04-01

    The vertical distribution of aeolian mass flux was investigated in a natural beach environment. Field experiments conducted on the beach of the Łeba Barrier, southern Baltic coast, Poland, measured the sand transport rate and the vertical mass flux distribution above dry rippled sand and a moist flat sandy surface. The experiments were intended to show the changes in the vertical distribution of sand with changing wind speed. All the data represent maximum flux conditions achieved during alongshore winds. Sand transport was measured using 0.5 m-high vertically segmented sand traps, the wind speed and direction were monitored at 1 m elevation. The obtained dataset comprises 65 measurements on dry surfaces and 51 measurements on moist sandy surfaces. The sand transport rate above the moist surface was higher than above the dry surface, but higher velocities gave smaller differences between the surfaces. The saltation layer was thicker above the moist surface than above the dry surface. All the vertical sand flux profiles are best described by exponential decay functions. Analysis of the normalised flux profiles grouped by wind velocity shows that the fitted curves are less inclined for moist surfaces than dry surfaces.The regression coefficients depict a marked trend in which the intercept decreases and the slope increases with increasing wind speed; this indicates that more sand is transported at higher elevations above the bed and less at lower elevations. The proportion of total transport seems to be independent of wind speed at elevations of approximately 35 mm and 50 mm above the dry and moist surfaces, respectively. Differences between the measured- and exponential-fit values of mass flux are particularly distinct close to the bed, where the exponential fit either over- or under-predicts the measured values. Over-predictions occur in weaker winds, whereas under-predictions become more pronounced as the wind becomes stronger and when the layer in which the

  1. Defrosting Sand

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2005-01-01

    19 June 2005 This Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC) image shows dark spots formed in carbon dioxide frost that covers the surfaces of patches of sand in the south polar region. As spring arrived this year in the martian southern hemisphere, so began the annual defrosting process. The fact that sand dunes begin to defrost earlier than other surfaces, and that the defrosting process involves the formation of spots like these, has been known since the earliest days of the MGS mission.

    Location near: 66.8oS, 15.7oW Image width: 3 km (1.9 mi) Illumination from: upper left Season: Southern Spring

  2. Western Gas Sands Subprogram

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1983-12-01

    The Western Gas Sands Subprogram (WGSS) is a multidisciplinary research effort within the US Department of Energy program on Unconventional Gas Recovery. The subprogram, managed by DOE's Morgantown Energy Technology Center, is directed towards the development of tight (very low permeability) lenticular gas sands in the western United States. The purpose of the subprogram is to demonstrate the feasibility of economically producing natural gas from low-permeability reservoirs. The subprogram has two broad goals: (1) to reduce the uncertainty of the reservoir production potential and (2) to improve the extraction technology. With input from the gas industry, universities, and geologic and engineering consulting firms, the WGSS was broadened to include more fundamental research and development. Consequently, for the last five years it has focused on improving diagnostic instrumentation, geophysical and engineering interpretation, and stimulation techniques. Integrated geologic studies of the three priority basins containing tight sands and selected by DOE as research targets have also been pursued as part of this new effort. To date, the following tentative conclusions have evolved: Permeability of the tight gas sands can be as much as three to four orders of magnitude lower than conventional gas deposits. Nineteen western geologic basins and trends containing significant amounts of tight gas have been identified. Gas resources in the priority geologic basins are Piceance Basin, 49 tcf., Uinta Basin, 20 tcf., and Greater Green River Basin, 136 tcf. The presence of natural micro-fractures within the production zone of a reservoir and the effective propped length of hydraulically-induced fractures are the critical parameters for successful development of tight sand resources. 8 figures.

  3. Measuring sand flux on Mars using HiRISE Images

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2011-12-01

    As wind is the major agent of sediment transport on Mars, a quantitative estimate of aeolian processes is therefore essential to assess recent geological evolution and current climate. We adapted the Co-registration of Optically Sensed Image and Correlation (COSI-Corr) toolbox to the MRO HiRISE imager specifications to produce a dense map of the ripples migration on the surface of the Martian dunes on the Nili Patera area. The ripple migration rate, along with an estimate of the ripple height, were used to derive the sand flux, a key quantity that controls the style and rate of landscape evolution. Using the dunes shape, size, and height, which were extracted from a DEM of the dune field, we show that the dunes are near steady state, and we observe that dune migration rate varies inversely with size and position within the dune field. The time scale associated with the formation and evolution of the Nili Patera dune field, estimated from comparing the sand volume with the sand flux and the dunes migration rates with the length scale of the dune field, is on the order of 10s to 100s of thousands Earth years. However, sand fluxes at the dune crests are 0.7 - 4.8 m3 m-1 per Earth year, which is comparable to that of dunes in Victoria Valley, Antarctica. This implies that rates of landscape modification from aeolian abrasion on Mars may be comparable to that on Earth.

  4. Late Quaternary extraglacial cold-climate deposits in low and mid-altitude Tasmania and their climatic implications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McIntosh, P. D.; Eberhard, R.; Slee, A.; Moss, P.; Price, D. M.; Donaldson, P.; Doyle, R.; Martins, J.

    2012-12-01

    Many Tasmanian deposits previously described as 'periglacial' have been described in more detail, re-interpreted and dated. We suggest that 'periglacial' has little meaning when applied locally and the term 'relict cold-climate deposits' is more appropriate. In this paper we examine the origin and age of relict cold-climate slope deposits, fan alluvium and aeolian sediments in Tasmania, and infer the conditions under which they accumulated. Fan alluvium dating from the penultimate Glacial (OIS 6) and capped by a prominent palaeosol deduced to date to the Last Interglacial (OIS 5e) is present at Woodstock, south of Hobart. Many fan deposits formed before 40 ka or in a period c. 30-23 ka; only a few deposits date to the Last Glacial Maximum in Tasmania, which is defined as spanning the period 23.5-17.5 ka. Slope deposits indicate widespread instability down to present-day sea level throughout the Last Glacial, probably as a result of freeze-thaw in a sparsely vegetated landscape. Layered fine gravel and coarse sand colluvial deposits resembling grèzes litées, produced both by dry deposition and by the action of water, are locally common where jointed siltstone bedrock outcrops. These deposits occur from altitudes of 500 m to near sea level and also in caves and must have formed under sparse vegetation cover, probably by freeze-thaw in extremely dry conditions. They have been radiocarbon dated from 35 to 17.5 cal. ka. Relict dunes and sandsheets are widespread at the margin of the Bassian Plain that once provided a land bridge between Tasmania and the mainland. They are also found in western Tasmania and in areas of inland southern Tasmania that now support wet eucalypt forest and rainforest and receive mean annual rainfall > 1500 mm. In the south they have been dated > 87.5-19 ka and attest to a long period of semi-arid climate in an area extending well to the west and south of the present semiarid zone. We deduce that during most of the Last Glacial anticyclones

  5. Effect of Holocene sea level change on aeolian activity in the coastal plain of Ras El Hekma area, NW coast of Egypt

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Farghaly, Enas; Torab, Magdy

    2015-04-01

    Ras El Hekma area located in north western coast of Egypt, west of Alexandria city for about 220 km, in this area, environmental changes during the Holocene can be interpreted based on morphological and sedimentological similarities between Holocene geomorphic features such as cemented beaches and fossilized dunes with recent coastal features. Sand dunes and nebkhas are the most common aeolian landforms and they occur in semi-arid climatic conditions. The active separated coastal dunes and nebkhas dunes of Ras El-Hekma area are located between the swash zone and the coastal limestone ridges as well as in the coastal sabkhas. The effect of waves during storms reaches far beyond the actual beach and can cause great changes to sandy beaches at an exceptional speed. Sand accumulated by swash drifts with the wind on open beaches and bays. The aeolian sand, which originates from fluvial-marine sediments washed by sea waves. the available sediment depends on fluvial transport to the littoral zone and on biological activity in the carbonate environments as well as on longshore and cross-shore currents. This paper treats the coastal dunes in Ras El Hekma area in their entirety and defines the effects of sea level change on coastal sand dunes and sabkhas dunes, it depends upon field geomorphic surveying, sampling and mapping as well as satellite image interpretation using ENVI software and GIS techniques.

  6. Feedbacks between aeolian processes and ecosystem change in a degraded desert grassland in the southwestern US

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Junran

    2015-04-01

    The desert grassland in the southwestern US has undergone dramatic vegetation changes with many areas of grassland becoming shrublands in the last 150 years. A principle manifestation of such a land degradation is the wide distribution of fertile islands in once-homogenous landscapes, which changed soil resource redistributions through the movement of resources from plant interspaces to the area beneath plant canopies. A great deal of work has examined the role of water in nutrient reduction and enforcement of islands of fertility in the semiarid landscapes. However, little is known on the role of wind in the removal or redistribution of soil resources, and further the feedbacks between wind and ecosystem change in this area. In spring 2004, a vegetation removal experiment was established in the northern Chihuahuan Desert, southern New Mexico, where vegetation cover on the experimental plots were manually reduced to various levels to study the entire suite of aeolian processes, including erosion, transport, and deposition in creating and enforcing patchy distribution of vegetation. This experiment has been continually maintained for more than ten years, with the sampling and observation of vegetation cover, soil nutrients, sediment flux, topography, and plant physiology. The experimental results highlighted that the aeolian processes in the Chihuahuan Desert are able to change soil properties and community composition in as short as 3 three years. Further, the removal of grasses by 75% may trigger a very substantial increase of wind erosion and the removal of grass by 50% could cause significant amount of C and N loss due to wind erosion. Last but not least, the change of the spatial distribution of soil C and the micro-topography both point to the fact that aeolian processes contribute substantially to the dynamics of fertile islands in this desert grassland.

  7. Aeolian dust as a transport hazard

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baddock, M. C.; Strong, C. L.; Murray, P. S.; McTainsh, G. H.

    2013-06-01

    The effects of blowing dust on transport operations are often mentioned as one of the significant impacts of aeolian processes on human welfare. However, few studies have been presented to demonstrate this impact. This research examined official air traffic incident reports in Australia for inclusively 1969-2010 to characterise the hazard of blowing dust to aviation in the country, the first such study of its kind. For the 42 year record, 61 incidents were identified (mean 1.4 per annum), with the large majority occurring in the first half of the 1970s. Only 20% of incidents occurred from 1984 onwards. Australian dust activity has not decreased over time, and the reduction in incidents is partly explained by improvements in aviation technology. The centralisation of Air Traffic Control operations to major coastal cities may however have reduced pilot reporting of dust-induced aviation incidents. By type of dust activity, dust storms were associated with nearly half of the reported incidents and dust hazes produced around a quarter. Only 5% of incidents resulted in any physical damage to aircraft and only one case involving personal injury was reported. The majority of the adverse effects on aviation due to dust (nearly 60% of reported incidents) were related to difficulties for navigation and completion of scheduled journey. Since aircraft damage and bodily harm were rare, the impact of dust in Australia is mostly that of inconvenience and associated raised economic costs. From 1990, the temporal pattern of incidents does not show any significant increase despite several intensely dusty years associated with recent droughts. This suggests that Australian aviation safety may be relatively resistant to the adverse effects of atmospheric dust as a hazard.

  8. The extraction of bitumen from western tar sands. Annual report, July 1990--July 1991

    SciTech Connect

    Oblad, A.G.; Bunger, J.W.; Deo, M.D.; Hanson, F.V.; Miller, J.D.; Seader, J.D.

    1992-04-01

    Contents of this report include the following: executive summary; characterization of the native bitumen from the Whiterocks oil sand deposit; influence of carboxylic acid content on bitumen viscosity; water based oil sand separation technology; extraction of bitumen from western oil sands by an energy-efficient thermal method; large- diameter fluidized bed reactor studies; rotary kiln pyrolysis of oil sand; catalytic upgrading of bitumen and bitumen derived liquids; ebullieted bed hydrotreating and hydrocracking; super critical fluid extraction; bitumen upgrading; 232 references; Appendix A--Whiterocks tar sand deposit bibliography; Appendix B--Asphalt Ridge tar sand deposit bibliography; and Appendix C--University of Utah tar sands bibliography.

  9. Records of human occupation from Pleistocene river terrace and aeolian sediments in the Arneiro depression (Lower Tejo River, central eastern Portugal)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cunha, Pedro P.; Almeida, Nelson A. C.; Aubry, Thierry; Martins, António A.; Murray, Andrew S.; Buylaert, Jan-Pieter; Sohbati, Reza; Raposo, Luis; Rocha, Leonor

    2012-09-01

    In the uppermost reach of the Lower Tejo River (eastern central Portugal), where the river crosses two quartzite ridges that separate the Ródão (upstream) and Arneiro (downstream) depressions, Palaeolithic artefacts have been recovered from three lower river terrace levels and a cover unit of aeolian sands. This paper presents data on the discovery of archaeological artefacts from the terrace levels and the aeolian sands that can be linked to Middle and Upper Palaeolithic industries from new field sites at Tapada do Montinho and Castelejo. The archaeological data when placed in a geomorphological, sedimentary and chronological framework, contribute new information on the understanding of human occupation in western Iberia during cold-climate episodes of the last 62 to 12 ka; and especially during the cooler and driest conditions that occurred between 32 and 12 ka, when the climate favoured aeolian sediment transport. In the Lower Tejo River, the integration of absolute age datasets with archaeological, geomorphological and sedimentary data indicate that in westernmost Iberia the first appearance of artefacts in river terrace sediments suggests that the earliest marker for human occupation dates from the lower Acheulian (Lower Palaeolithic), probably corresponding to an age of ~ 340 ka. Data also suggest, for the first time, that Acheulian lithic industries were replaced by Middle Palaeolithic ones (namely the Levallois stone knapping technique) by ~ 160 ka (~ MIS6). Middle Palaeolithic industries were later replaced by Upper Palaeolithic industries at 32 ka. The post 32 ka period, dominated by aeolian sediment transport, is related to the onset of cold-dry climate conditions which resulted in low river flow discharges, floodplain exposure and reworking by NW winds. This cold-dry period is coeval with the disappearance of Megafauna and associated Neanderthal communities, and the replacement of the Middle Palaeolithic industries by Upper Palaeolithic ones in this

  10. Luminescence chronology of the inland sand dunes from SE India

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reddy, Dontireddy Venkat; Singaraju, Vuddaraju; Mishra, Rakesh; Kumar, Devender; Thomas, Puthusserry Joseph; Rao, Karra Kameshwa; Singhvi, Ashok Kumar

    2013-09-01

    Records of past climate changes have been preserved variously on the earth's surface. Sand dunes are one such prominent imprint, and it is suggested that their presence is an indicator of periods of transition from arid to less arid phases. We report inland sand dunes from Andhra Pradesh (SE India) spread over an area of ~ 500 km2, ~ 75 km inland from the east coast. The dune sands are examined to understand their provenance, transportation, timing of sand aggradation and their relationship to past climates. The dune distribution, grain morphology and the grain-size studies on sands suggest an aeolian origin. Physiography of the study area, heavy mineral assemblage, and abundance of quartz in the parent rocks indicate that the dune sands are largely derived from first-order streams emanating from hills in the region and from weathering of the Nellore schist belt. It appears that the geomorphology and wind direction pattern both facilitated and restricted the dune aggradation and preservation to a limited area. OSL dating of 47 dune samples ranged from the present to ~ 50 ka, thereby suggesting a long duration of sand-dune aggradation and/or reworking history.

  11. Mechanics of aeolian processes: Soil erosion and dust production

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mehrabadi, M. M.

    1989-01-01

    Aeolian (wind) processes occur as a result of atmosphere/land-surface system interactions. A thorough understanding of these processes and their physical/mechanical characterization on a global scale is essential to monitoring global change and, hence, is imperative to the fundamental goal of the Earth observing system (Eos) program. Soil erosion and dust production by wind are of consequence mainly in arid and semi arid regions which cover 36 percent of the Earth's land surface. Some recent models of dust production due to wind erosion of agricultural soils and the mechanics of wind erosion in deserts are reviewed and the difficulties of modeling the aeolian transport are discussed.

  12. Industrial sand and gravel

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Dolley, T.P.

    2011-01-01

    Domestic production of industrial sand and gravel in 2010 was about 26.5 Mt (29.2 million st), a 6-percent increased from 2009. Certain end uses of industrial sand and gravel, such as sand for container glass, golf course sand, recreational sand, specialty glass and water filtration, showed increased demand in 2010.

  13. Western gas sands

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1985-03-01

    The purpose of this research is to demonstrate the feasibility of economically producing natural gas from low-permeability reservoirs. Two broad research goals have been defined: (1) reducing the uncertainty of the reservoir production potential, and (2) improving the extraction technology. These goals are being pursued by conducting research and encouraging industrial efforts in developing the necessary technology, including: (1) providing fundamental research into the nature of tight, lenticular gas sands and the technologies for diagnosing and developing them: (2) developing and verifying the technology for effective gas production; and (3) promoting the transfer of research products and technology advances to the gas industry in usable forms. The focus of the research for the last several years has been improving diagnostic instrumentation for reservoir and stimulation performance evaluation, geophysical and engineering interpretation, and stimulation techniques. Integrated geologic studies of three basins containing tight lenticular sands, which were selected by DOE as priority research targets, have also been pursued as part of this new effort. To date, the following tentative conclusions have been formed: Permeability of the tight gas sands can be as much as three to four orders of magnitude lower than that of conventional gas deposits. Nineteen western geologic basins and trends containing significant volumes of tight gas have been identified. Gas resources in the priority geologic basins have been estimated - Piceance Basin 49 Tcf.; Greater Green River Basin, 136 Tcf.; Uinta Basin, 20 Tcf. Presence of natural micro-fractures within a reservoir and the effective propped length of hydraulically induced fratures are the critical parameters for successful development of tight sand resources. Stimulation technology at the present time is insufficient to efficiently recover gas from lenticular tight reservoirs. 8 figs., 3 tabs.

  14. Identifying sources of aeolian mineral dust: Present and past

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Muhs, Daniel R; Prospero, Joseph M; Baddock, Matthew C; Gill, Thomas E

    2014-01-01

    Aeolian mineral dust is an important component of the Earth’s environmental systems, playing roles in the planetary radiation balance, as a source of fertilizer for biota in both terrestrial and marine realms and as an archive for understanding atmospheric circulation and paleoclimate in the geologic past. Crucial to understanding all of these roles of dust is the identification of dust sources. Here we review the methods used to identify dust sources active at present and in the past. Contemporary dust sources, produced by both glaciogenic and non-glaciogenic processes, can be readily identified by the use of Earth-orbiting satellites. These data show that present dust sources are concentrated in a global dust belt that encompasses large topographic basins in low-latitude arid and semiarid regions. Geomorphic studies indicate that specific point sources for dust in this zone include dry or ephemeral lakes, intermittent stream courses, dune fields, and some bedrock surfaces. Back-trajectory analyses are also used to identify dust sources, through modeling of wind fields and the movement of air parcels over periods of several days. Identification of dust sources from the past requires novel approaches that are part of the geologic toolbox of provenance studies. Identification of most dust sources of the past requires the use of physical, mineralogical, geochemical, and isotopic analyses of dust deposits. Physical properties include systematic spatial changes in dust deposit thickness and particle size away from a source. Mineralogy and geochemistry can pinpoint dust sources by clay mineral ratios and Sc-Th-La abundances, respectively. The most commonly used isotopic methods utilize isotopes of Nd, Sr, and Pb and have been applied extensively in dust archives of deep-sea cores, ice cores, and loess. All these methods have shown that dust sources have changed over time, with far more abundant dust supplies existing during glacial periods. Greater dust supplies in

  15. A late Pleistocene record of aeolian sedimentation in Blanche Cave, Naracoorte, South Australia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Darrénougué, Nicolas; De Deckker, Patrick; Fitzsimmons, Kathryn E.; Norman, Marc D.; Reed, Liz; van der Kaars, Sander; Fallon, Stewart

    2009-12-01

    We provide geochemical analyses and grain size data for a clearly layered, 80 cm thick sedimentary deposit close to a roof collapse in Blanche Cave near Naracoorte in SE South Australia. This deposit contains aeolian material deposited between ˜40 ka and 14 ka cal BP and which yields airborne sediments spanning the Last Glacial Maximum, a period of time with little information for the Australian continent. The deposit also contains abundant vertebrate fossil material derived from owl pellets, accumulation and pitfall entrapment. Below the studied profile, large vertebrate remains are found but are not discussed here. No Holocene sedimentation occurred at the site examined in the cave, and the top of the sequence is capped with a layer that has been anthropologically disturbed and contains exotic Pinus pollen. Chronologies of the deposit were obtained using two dating techniques: single stage accelerator mass spectrometer (SSAMS) 14C analysis of 23 charcoal samples and optically stimulated luminescence (OSL) dating of quartz from 6 sediment samples. The 14C chronology is preferred to describe the history of the deposits since the OSL chronology, which consistently overestimates the associated radiocarbon dates, may be inaccurate due to complexities in calculating dose rates, and may in addition represent the timing of sediment deposition through the cave opening rather than sediment transport to the deposit site. Morphological analysis of single quartz grains and grain size analysis indicate different provenance that is confirmed through the geochemical analyses of bulk sediment. Major elements were measured by X-ray Fluorescence (XRF), trace and rare earth elements by Laser Ablation Inductively Coupled Plasma Mass Spectrometry (LA ICP-MS), and Neodymium isotopic ratios were obtained using a Thermal Ionisation Mass Spectrometer (TIMS). Our results indicate that the aeolian material deposited in Blanche Cave over the 40-14 ka cal BP period originated from different

  16. Sand Diver

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Scott, Alan J.

    2005-01-01

    A few years ago, I was preparing to teach a summer enrichment program for middle school students at the University of Wisconsin-Stout. With swimming on the minds of most kids during the summer, I thought buoyancy would be a fun topic to discuss. An interesting way to introduce this concept is by discussing the beer-drinking balloonist who, in a lawn chair, floated to 11,000 feet above Los Angeles in 1997. However, I needed a hands-on project and was not about to go purchase some lawn chairs to duplicate this experiment. A simple submersible called the "Sand Diver" was designed and is now used as a hands-on activity for my introductory physics course.

  17. Aeolian sediment transport over gobi: Field studies atop the Mogao Grottoes, China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tan, Lihai; Zhang, Weimin; Qu, Jianjun; Wang, Junzhan; An, Zhishan; Li, Fang

    2016-06-01

    This paper reports on field studies of aeolian sediment transport over a rough surface-gobi atop the Mogao Grottoes, China, in relation to sediment entrainment, saltation mass flux and transport rate prediction. Wind speeds were measured with five cup anemometers at different heights and sediment entrainment and transport measured with horizontal and vertical sediment traps coupled to weighing sensors, where sediment entrainment and transport were measured synchronously with wind speeds. Four sediment transport events, with a measurement duration ranging between 2.5 and 11 h, were studied. The entrainment threshold determined by the horizontal sediment trap varied between 0.28 and 0.33 m s-1, and the effect of non-erodible roughness elements-gravels increased the entrainment threshold approximately by 1.8 times compared to a uniform sand surface. Unlike the non-monotone curve shape of sediment flux density profile over gobi measured in wind tunnels, the flux density profile measured in the field showed an exponential form. Aeolian sediment transport over gobi could be predicted by an Owen-type saltation model: q = Aρ /gu∗ (u∗2 - u∗t2) , where q is sediment transport rate, A is a soil-related dimensionless factor, u∗ is the friction velocity, u∗t is the threshold friction velocity, g is the gravitational acceleration, ρ is the air density. This study indicates that the sediment flux sampling using horizontal and vertical sediment traps coupled to weighing sensors provides a practical method to determine values for A in this model that can provide good estimates of sediment transport rates in gobi areas.

  18. Altitude of the top of the Sparta Sand and Memphis Sand in three areas of Arkansas

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Pugh, Aaron L.; Westerfield, Paul W.; Gonthier, Gerard J.; Poynter, David T.

    1998-01-01

    The Sparta Sand and Memphis Sand form the second most productive aquifer in Arkansas. The Sparta Sand and Memphis Sand range in thick- ness from 0 to 900 feet, consisting of fine- to medium-grained sands interbedded with layers of silt, clay, shale, and minor amounts of lignite. Within the three areas of interest, the top surface of the Sparta Sand and Memphis Sand dips regionally east and southeast towards the axis of the Mississippi Embayment syncline and Desha Basin. Local variations in the top surface may be attributed to a combination of continued development of structural features, differential compaction, localized faulting, and erosion of the surface prior to subsequent inundation and deposition of younger sediments.

  19. Sedimentary structures and textures of Rio Orinoco channel sands, Venezuela and Colombia

    SciTech Connect

    McKee, E.D.

    1989-01-01

    The majority of the sedimentary structures in the channel sands of the Orinoco River are planar cross-strata that are products of sand-wave deposition. Sands in these deposits are mostly medium-grained. Eolian dunes form on top of the sand waves when they are exposed to the trade winds at low river stages. The windblown sands are typically fine-grained.

  20. 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.

  1. Aeolian desertification from the mid-1970s to 2005 in Otindag Sandy Land, Northern China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Shulin; Wang, Tao

    2007-01-01

    Aeolian desertification in Otindag Sandy Land has expanded dramatically during the past 50 years. This research explored processes and causes of aeolian desertification in the study area. The results showed that aeolian desertification development in Zhenglan Qi of typical region located at the center in the study area can be divided into three stages including rapid occurrence before 1987, parts of rehabilitation and most of deterioration from 1987 to 2000 and little rapid rehabilitation occurrence from 2000 to 2005, according to remote sensing images and field investigations. Gradually declining MI indicated that climate change was not the major cause of aeolian desertification development during the last 40 years, while increasing population should be the underlying cause of local aeolian desertification. Irrational human activities mainly including unsuitable reclamation in the 1960s and lasting over-grazing after 1980 are direct causes contributing to local aeolian desertification, especially over-grazing, while climate change often played a revealer of irrational human activities mainly through drought events. Over-grazing and undesirable climate have different functions during the whole aeolian desertification process. Over-grazing gradually changed grasslands to slight aeolian desertified lands at the initial stage, while climate with windy days or droughts often accelerated formation of serious aeolian desertified lands. Aeolian desertification in the study area both possesses occurrence possibility and great rehabilitative potential. At present, more integrated countermeasures combating local aeolian desertification still are expected.

  2. Coupled changes in sand grain size and sand transport driven by changes in the upstream supply of sand in the Colorado River: relative importance of changes in bed-sand grain size and bed-sand area

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Topping, D.J.; Rubin, D.M.; Melis, T.S.

    2007-01-01

    Sand transport in the Colorado River in Marble and Grand canyons was naturally limited by the upstream supply of sand. Prior to the 1963 closure of Glen Canyon Dam, the river exhibited the following four effects of sand supply limitation: (1) hysteresis in sediment concentration, (2) hysteresis in sediment grain size coupled to the hysteresis in sediment concentration, (3) production of inversely graded flood deposits, and (4) development or modification of a lag between the time of a flood peak and the time of either maximum or minimum (depending on reach geometry) bed elevation. Construction and operation of the dam has enhanced the degree to which the first two of these four effects are evident, and has not affected the degree to which the last two effects of sand supply limitation are evident in the Colorado River in Marble and Grand canyons. The first three of the effects involve coupled changes in suspended-sand concentration and grain size that are controlled by changes in the upstream supply of sand. During tributary floods, sand on the bed of the Colorado River fines; this causes the suspended sand to fine and the suspended-sand concentration to increase, even when the discharge of water remains constant. Subsequently, the bed is winnowed of finer sand, the suspended sand coarsens, and the suspended-sand concentration decreases independently of discharge. Also associated with these changes in sand supply are changes in the fraction of the bed that is covered by sand. Thus, suspended-sand concentration in the Colorado River is likely regulated by both changes in the bed-sand grain size and changes in the bed-sand area. A physically based flow and suspended-sediment transport model is developed, tested, and applied to data from the Colorado River to evaluate the relative importance of changes in the bed-sand grain size and changes in the bed-sand area in regulating suspended-sand concentration. Although the model was developed using approximations for steady

  3. Optical Properties of Aeolian Dusts Common to West Texas

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Both recent models and historical events such as the Dust Bowl and volcanic eruptions have illustrated aerosols can play a significant role in climate change through direct and indirect optical effects. Soil dust aerosols generated by Aeolian processes represent a significant fraction of the total ...

  4. Laboratory Simulations of Martian and Venusian Aeolian Processes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Greeley, Ronald

    1999-01-01

    The objective of this work was to conduct research in the Planetary Aeolian Facility (PAF) at NASA-Ames Research Center as a laboratory for the planetary science community and to carry-out experiments on the physics and geology of particles moved by winds, and for the development of instruments and spacecraft components for planetary missions.

  5. Sand resistance of sunscreens.

    PubMed

    Caswell, Michael; Wood, Caryl; Martinez, Alexa

    2012-01-01

    Like water resistance in sunscreens, sand resistance in sunscreens is the ability of the sunscreen to retain its effectiveness while undergoing sand treatment. The influence of the type of sand on the sand resistance of sunscreens has not been described. The sand resistance of a control standard sunscreen, P2, and data on three grades of Quickrete commercial grade sand, #1961, #1962, and #1152, are described. These sands represent a fine sand, a medium