A new type of stationary dunes: dunes combs

In the framework of the Associated International Laboratory SALADYN (1), between CNRS and the Chinese Academy of Sciences, and thanks to the latest theoretical advances in dune growth methods, a Franco-Chinese team has just revealed the existence of a “ A new type of stationary dunes.

These are the dunes in the form of combs which extend over 2400 km² in the Kumtagh desert in northwestern China and consist of long linear structures and a succession of indentations repeated periodically Their backs on only one side of the crest. It seems indeed that these comb dunes can only occur under very particular wind regimes, which are those especially encountered in the Kumtagh desert. These results led researchers to conclude that climatic conditions had remained stable over the past 5 millennia in this remote region of Central Asia.


Dunes from the Kumtagh desert. © Clément Narteau, IPGP



Unravelling raked linear dunes to explain the coexistence of bedforms in complex dunefields, Lü Ping, Clément Narteau, Zhibao Dong, Olivier Rozier & Sylvain Courrech du Pont, Nature Communications, 2017, vol. 8, no 14239, doi:10.1038/ncomms14239.


Clément Narteau, IPGP (CNRS, Paris Diderot, Sorbonne Paris Cité)
narteau@ipgp.fr, 01 83 95 74 23

Source : Actualités du CNRS-INSU