Arabian Deserts: Nature, Origin and Evolution by H. Stewart Edgell

By H. Stewart Edgell

This is the 1st accomplished survey of the entire deserts of Arabia, dependent mostly at the author’s 50 years of expertise there. The textual content offers with all types of barren region within the quarter, from giant sand seas to clay pans and stony plains to volcanic flows. besides dune varieties specific to the zone the writer outlines climatic adjustments, present ecology and human effect on desertification.

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Pl). 32. View of Sadh harbour, an inlet on the southern Oman coast, structurally controlled by an eroded fault zone in Precambrian crystalline rocks (Photo by H. S. Edgell). 33. Sadh harbour, the deep inlet (lower mid centre). Note eroded fault zone determining its position. Image width is 6 km. pl). 34. 35. 36. 37. 38. 39. 40. 41. lv the Neogene Hadrukh Formation. From lower right to top middle inlets are Dawhat Manifa, Dawhat Bilbul, Dawhat Sulayq, and Khawr Musharrabah. Ra’s Tanaqib points south.

Sand relief forms, or dune types (After Fedorovich 1948, 1967) with explanation of types given below. A. Barchan sands (mostly of tropical deserts). I. Trade-wind type (with winds of the same or closely similar directions): 1 – sand shield; 2 – embryonic barchan; 3 – crescentic symmetrical barchan; 4 – nonsymmetrical barchan; 5 – rows of barchans parallel to the wind; 6 – compound longitudinal barchan chains. II. Monsoon-breeze type (with winds from opposite directions): 1 – groups of barchans; 2 – simple barchan chains; 3 – compound barchans; 4 – compound barchan chains.

11. The eastern Ramlat as Sab’atayn near the western Wadi Hadramawt showing the sinuous nature of dunes around topographical highs and the contribution to the development of dune sands made by widyan eroding the Tawilah Group sandstones. The two major NE flowing widyan seen are Wadi Duhur and Wadi Rakhya, whose sediments are seen to turn NW into the Ramlat as Sab’atayn. Wadi ‘Irma (lower left) near Shabwa can also be seen to contribute sandy sediment to the eastern Ramlat as Sab’atayn. The sinuous nature of the dunes is due to the way in which they avoid topographically high areas.

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