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Journal of Arid Land  2015, Vol. 7 Issue (5): 599-611    DOI: 10.1007/s40333-015-0126-9
Research Articles     
Blown sand motion within the sand-control system in the southern section of the Taklimakan Desert Highway
CHENG Hong1,2, HE Jiajia1,2, XU Xingri1,2,3, ZOU Xueyong1,2, WU Yongqiu1,2, LIU Chenchen1,2, DONG Yifan1,2, PAN Meihui1,2, WANG Yanzai1,2, ZHANG Hongyan1,2
1 State Key Laboratory of Earth Surface Processes and Resource Ecology, Beijing Normal University, Beijing 100875, China;
2 MOE Engineering Center of Desertification and Blown-sand Control at Beijing Normal University, Beijing 100875, China;
3 Lushunkou Trading Center of Land Reserve, Dalian 116041, China
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Abstract  Although scientists have performed many studies in the Taklimakan Desert, few of them have reported the blown sand motion along the southern edge of the Taklimakan Desert Highway, which differs significantly from the northern region in terms of aeolian sand geomorphology and formation environment. Based on the field observation data of airflow and aeolian sand transport, continuous monitoring data of erosional and depositional processes between 14 April 2009 and 9 April 2011 and data of surface sand grains from the classical section along the southern edge of the Taklimakan Desert Highway, this paper reported the blown sand motion within the sand-control system of the highway. The main results are as follows: 1) The existing sand-control system is highly effective in preventing and controlling desertification. Wind velocities within the sand-control system were approximately 33%–100% of those for the same height above the mobile sand surface. Aeolian sand fluxes were approximately 0–31.21% of those of the mobile sand surface. Sand grains inside the system, with a mean diameter of 2.89 φ, were finer than those (2.15 φ) outside the system. In addition, wind velocities basically followed a logarithmic law, but the airflow along the classical section was mainly determined by topography and vegetation. 2) There were obvious erosional and depositional phenomena above the surface within the sand-control system, and these phenomena have very consistent patterns for all observation points in the two observed years. The total thicknesses of erosion and deposition ranged from 0.30 to 14.60 cm, with a mean value of 3.67 cm. In contrast, the deposition thicknesses were 1.90–22.10 cm, with a mean value of 7.59 cm, and the erosion thicknesses were 3.51–15.10 cm, with a mean value of 8.75 cm. The results will aid our understanding of blown sand within the sand-control system and provide a strong foundation for optimizing the sand-control system.

Key wordsHaloxylon      seedling recruitment      root distribution      biomass allocation      species distribution     
Received: 07 August 2014      Published: 05 October 2015
Corresponding Authors: HE Jiajia     E-mail:
Cite this article:

CHENG Hong, HE Jiajia, XU Xingri, ZOU Xueyong, WU Yongqiu, LIU Chenchen, DONG Yifan, PAN Meihui, WANG Yanzai, ZHANG Hongyan. Blown sand motion within the sand-control system in the southern section of the Taklimakan Desert Highway. Journal of Arid Land, 2015, 7(5): 599-611.

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