Dedicated to better understanding aeolian processes


Upcoming Meetings of Interest to ISAR Members


9th International Conference of Aeolian Research (ICAR) Mildura, Australia Sun 3rd to Fri 8th July, 2016.

Sessions typically include:

•   Mechanics of Aeolian Processes

•   Aeolian Geomorphology: Desert, Coastal

•   Anthropogenic Interactions with Aeolian Systems

•   Aeolian Deposits and Loess

•   Paleo-aeolian System, Environments and Responses to Global Change

•   Modelling Aeolian Transport

•   Extra-terrestrial Aeolian Research

“ICAR meetings bring together researchers interested in the many diverse areas of inquiry focusing on the entrainment, transport and deposition of sediment by wind including the wide ranging applied aspects of aeolian research. Researchers from any discipline interested in aeolian processes are encouraged to attend.”

EGU, Vienna, 12 - 17 April 2015

Abstracts due 7th January 2015 (28th November 2014 for support applications)

GM5.1: Aeolian Sediments, from processes to landforms

Aeolian processes are active at a myriad of spatial and temporal scales. What links these together and how important is process-form feedback in shaping these environments. This session brings together research traversing the spectrum, from long term landscape dating and evolution modelling to small-scale process studies. It will be of interest to researchers that study wind-blown sediment and associated bedforms in a range of environments, from coastal and semi-arid regions, to hyper arid deserts. Contributions that use novel instrumentation in field studies, remote sensing at the landscape scale or innovative numerical modelling methods, are encouraged, particularly those which attempt to elucidate feedback between surface properties and sediment transport.

Conveners: Jo Nield, Sebastian Engelstaedter and Jack Gillies (University of Southampton, University of Oxford, Desert Research Institute, Reno)


Fourth International Planetary Dunes Workshop— First Announcement Available Now!

The Fourth International Planetary Dunes Workshop will be held May 19–22, 2015, at Boise State University, Boise, Indiana.

The purpose of this meeting is to provide a forum for discussion and the exchange of new ideas and approaches to gaining new insights into the aeolian processes that form and maintain dune fields on Earth and other planetary bodies within the solar system.

The first announcement is now available on the conference website:

To be added to the mailing list to receive reminders and other pertinent information related to the meeting, please submit the Indication of Interest form by December 30, 2014.

NOTE: The indication of interest form is part of the USRA Meeting Portal, which requires users to set up a personal profile to access the electronic forms

(creating a profile is quick and easy, requiring only a few minutes of your time).

Further details regarding guidelines for abstract submission, meeting registration, and other logistical details will be included in future announcements.

EGU 2015, Vienna, April 12-17, 2015

Aeolian Dune Systems in Time and Space – a Quaternary Perspective

Convener: Nicholas Lancaster (
Co-Conveners: Joanna Nield (, Charlie Bristow (

Aeolian dune systems are prominent sedimentary and geomorphic systems in low- and mid-latitude deserts and some coastal areas. Quaternary tectonic, climate and sea level changes have had a significant effect on the supply, availability, and mobility of sand, giving rise to episodes of sand accumulation and dune development, separated by periods of stability and/or non-accumulation. The spatial and temporal patterns of such periods provide an archive of landscape response to Quaternary environmental change in low- and mid-latitudes, including unique information on past wind regimes from analysis of dune trends.

We invite presentations that: (1) provide regional and global syntheses of chrono-stratigraphic datasets relating to aeolian sand deposits; (2) discuss the interpretation of luminescence ages for aeolian sand deposits; (3) discuss forcing factors and boundary conditions for periods of aeolian accumulation and stability; and (4) report new datasets from local or regional studies of luminescence dated dune deposits and landforms. The deadline for submitting abstracts is January 7, 2015 (13:00 CET).

Dear Colleague,

It is a pleasure to invite you to participate in the first specific session on soil wind erosion, to be done within the framework of the General Assembly of the European Geosciences Union (April 2015) in Vienna. It is an event with a global reach involving several thousands of colleagues across the world.

More information about our session:

If you or any wind erosion specialists who you know are interested in contributing a paper to our macro-conference will be very pleasantly received. Of course, I'm open to any ideas you can point me to improve the studies diffusion of soil productivity loss by wind.

Each Session shows the link Abstract Submission. Using this link you are asked to log in to the Copernicus Office Meeting Organizer. You may submit the text of your contribution as plain text, LaTeX, or MS Word content.

Detailed information on how to submit an abstract can be found at:

The deadline for the receipt of Abstracts is 07 Jan 2015, 13:00 CET. In case you would like to apply for support, please submit no later than 14 Oct 2014.

Further information about the EGU General Assembly 2015 can be found at:

You can stay up-to-date with General Assembly information by subscribing to the EGU blog (

With the desire for prompt and favorable hearing from you, receive a warm greeting,

Carlos Asensio


Goldschmidt 2013; 25-30 August 2013, Florence, Italy

Atmospheric Dust

Convenors:Reto Giere and Natalie Mahowald
Keynote: Paul Ginoux And Bernard Grobety (NOAA and University of Fribourg)

Dust is ubiquitous in the atmosphere, because it is generated through a wide range of natural processes and human activities. This session will be centered on inorganic dust, which has major impacts on climate, glacial albedo, oceanic nutrient levels, human health as well as ground and air transportation. The session aims to present recent developments in mineralogical, geochemical and isotopic characterization of both anthropogenic (e.g., combustion, abrasion, construction) and natural inorganic dust (e.g., from volcanic eruptions or continental erosion). We invite contributions on topics, such as, single-particle mineralogical and chemical characterization; radiative properties; isotopic tracing; inorganic and organic particle interaction (e.g., adsorption); nutrient transport; quantitative distribution and source allocation of various particle types; as well as interaction of dust with soils, plants, glaciers, oceans and climate.   

For more information contact: Natalie Mahowald , email:


INQUALoess2013; 10-12 September 2013, Leicester, UK

Following the successful ‘Windy Day’ meeting at Leicester in 2012 the INQUA Loess Focus Group is organising a workshop at the Geography Department, Leicester University 10-12 September 2013.

Loess & Dust: Geography-Geology-Archaeology

Conveners: Dr Sue McLaren and Professor Ken O'Hara-Dhand or

A meeting dedicated to interfaces between the various involved disciplines; also focussing on new regions where loess exploration and investigation is happening, geotechnical aspects of loess and new techniques to date and characterise loess material, and in particular aiming to look at the human/loess interface. Loess had a critical role to play in the development of human society.

The meeting will be held in honour of Professor Ian Smalley for his outstanding contribution to loess research over more than fifty years. Ian “pioneered fundamental studies of loess origin, lithologic characteristics and depositional processes” (Dodonov and Zhou, 2008). It is a residential workshop lasting 2 days followed by a 1 day field trip to the UK's best examples of loess deposits in the SE of England.

Find a bit more detail at the Loess Focus Group website ( and top-up on your Loess Letter exposure at Please register your interest and start to prepare an abstract. We follow Walt Whitman and head ‘towards the unknown region.’

The cost of the 3-day meeting, which includes lunch, tea/coffee and a fieldtrip on 12th September is 225.00 UK Pound. The cost to register for one day is 80.00 UK Pound. If you wish to register please send an email to:


UK Aeolian Research Community; 23 October 2013, Southampton, UK.

The 19th Windy Day

Convener: Jo Nield

This informal meeting of the UK aeolian research community, will be held by Geography and Environment at the University of Southampton on Wednesday 23rd October 2013. This meeting will be of interest to any scientist undertaking research relating to drylands, deserts, coastal dunefields, playas and processes therein. Presentations covering the application of basic physics, methodological issues and techniques to these environments are also welcome, and presentations by research students are especially encouraged. Attendance is free to all registered participants and will include morning/afternoon refreshments and a buffet lunch. However, please let us know if you plan to attend so that we can organise sufficient catering.

For Windy Day registration and abstract submission details please refer to this web site:



Geological Society of America annual meeting, 27-30 October 2013 Denver, USA
Abstracts can be submitted as of now!

The following special sessions have an aeolian research theme: additional sessions may also welcome aeolian research presentations.

For more information contact Tom Gill, email:

T2 and P9. From the Sahara to Mars and Beyond; The History and Future of Aeolian Research

Conveners: Nicholas Lancaster, Alan F. Halfen

GSA Quaternary Geology and Geomorphology Division; International Society for Aeolian Research; Society for Sedimentary Research; GSA Sedimentary Geology Division; GSA Planetary Geology Division

Ralph A. Bagnold explored the deserts of Libya more than 75 years ago and effectively created the field of modern aeolian science, which today extends millions of miles beyond the dunes of the Sahara to Mars. This session will explore the history of aeolian research and highlight current advances and future research avenues within the field through a mixture of presentations by internationally renowned career scientists, early-career scientists, and students.

T17. Coupling Interactions between Fluvial and Aeolian Processes in Drylands: Assessment and Quantification of Their Role in Geomorphological Change and in an Era of Climatic Uncertainty

Conveners: Margaret Hiza Redsteer, Amy E. Draut, Rian Bogle

GSA Sedimentary Geology Division

Interactions between aeolian and fluvial processes play a fundamental role in geomorphological change affecting dryland regions around the world. Although these processes can be strongly coupled in dryland systems, conventional studies have examined them separately, making it difficult to assess and quantify the relative importance of fluvial and aeolian interactions. In this session we will present studies that highlight processes of landscape mobility and land degradation by erosion that may be affected through the coupling of transport by wind and water. We will also draw attention to how these interactions may become increasingly important in studies of climate change and land use impacts.

T25. Deserts: Quaternary Hydro-Geomorphic, Climatic, and Environmental Changes in the World's Deserts Honoring Prof. Farouk El-Baz

Conveners: Yehouda Enzel, Stephen G. Wells

GSA Quaternary Geology and Geomorphology Division

Changes and processes in the world's deserts at all temporal and spatial scales using data gathered through methodologies derived from Quaternary geology, geomorphology, hydrology, and ecology. The session will honor Prof. Farouk El-Baz.



2013 American Geophysical Union Annual Meeting, 9-13 December 2013, San Francisco, USA

For more information see:

The following special sessions have an aeolian research theme: additional sessions may also welcome aeolian research presentations.

A044. Mineral Dust Aerosols: From Small-Scale Insights to Large-Scale Understanding

Conveners: Jasper F. Kok, Ted M. Zobeck, Kerstin Schepanski, Chun Zhao

Interactions of the dust cycle with other components of the Earth system produce a wide range of complex effects on, for instance, ecosystems, climate, and atmospheric composition. To better understand and simulate these effects, advances are needed in field and laboratory measurements, representation of dust source areas, remote sensing techniques, and models of the physical and chemical properties of dust. This session invites contributions from both atmospheric scientists and geoscientists addressing any aspect of the dust cycle, including dust properties, dust source region measurements, the up-scaling of dust emission processes, and modeling of the dust cycle and its impacts on the Earth system.

For more information see:


PP002. Aeolian Dust in Earth's Climate System

Conveners: Bjoern Machalett, Helen Roberts, Eric Oches, Zhongping Lai¬

Rapid advances in the application of highly resolved sedimentological and geochemical studies, in combination with geochronometric techniques and chronostratigraphic tools, have opened up new vistas in the investigation of (paleo)records of atmospheric dust loading using aeolian sediments. As these sediments are widespread on the continents, novel multi-proxy investigations enhance our understanding of long-term aeolian dust dynamics and climate variability. Innovative contributions are welcome on the application of new and established methodological approaches; including stratigraphy, geochronology, paleoclimatology, paleoenvironmental assessment, dust in climate models, and geoarchaeology of aeolian deposits in the Northern and Southern Hemispheres.

For more information see:



International Conference on Atmospheric Dust, 1-6 June 2014, Castellaneta Marina, Italy

The Italian Association for the Study of Clays (AISA) and the Institute of Methodologies for Environmental Analysis Associazione (IMAA-CNR) are pleased to invite you to DUST 2014, an International Conference on Atmospheric Dust. The main themes of the Conference are:

1. Transport & Deposition
2. Modelling & Field Studies
3. Instrumentations & Measurements
4. Chemical & Mineralogical Studies
5. Impact on Health & Environment
6. Extraterrestrial Provenance

DUST2014 provides an unique opportunity for mineralogists, physicists, geochemists, engineering, volcanologists, chemists and for many other specialists to share ideas and knowledge on the boundless world of the atmospheric particles.
Pre-register using the conference website and we will inform you when it is updated.

Abstracts may be submitted from 12 August untill 20 December 2013

For information and submission of abstracts, go to the website

Saverio Fiore (Conference Chair); e-mail



8th International Conference on Aeolian Research, 20-25 July 2014, Lanzhou, China


The 8th International Conference on Aeolian Research (ICAR VIII) will be held at the University of Lanzhou, China from Sunday July 20 to Friday July 25, 2014. The conference will include technical sessions on the following themes:

1. Mechanics of aeolian processes
2. Aeolian geomorphology: desert, coastal and planetary
3. Aeolian deposits and loess
4. Paleo-aeolian system, environmental and responses to global change
5. aeolian dust and health
6. Desertification and its control: Anthropogenic interactions with aeolian systems
7. Modelling aeolian transport
8. Extraterrestrial aeolian research

The registration fee will include conference abstracts, a CD with full submitted texts, welcome and farewell banquets, a one-day, mid-conference field trip (including lunch) to the Badain Jaran Desert, home of the tallest megadunes on the Earth. We invite you to consider submitting a poster or oral paper for presentation at the meeting.  The conference web site is available at This meeting is sponsored by the International Society for Aeolian Research. 

For further information please contact:

Dr. Zhibao Dong
Key Laboratory of Desert and Desertification
Chinese Academy of Sciences



XIIth Congress of the International Association of Engineering Geology and the Environment; 15-19 September 2014, Torino, Italy


Conveners: Brian Marker and Sabina Michnowicz

Dust is generated through wind erosion of exposed soils on construction sites, during preparations for quarrying and from tips and settling ponds. It is produced during drilling blasting, transport and processing of minerals and mineral products as well as in demolition and recycling. It can be a nuisance or a hazard, affecting the health of workers and the public as well as causing adverse effects on crops, wildlife and sensitive equipment and processes. Dust emissions can be mitigated through use of well maintained plant and equipment with appropriate measures for containment of emissions; by minimising exposed surfaces; and by moistening or strengthening surfaces. Regulation is undertaken variously through planning, environmental permitting, health and safety and public nuisance legislation and provisions. It is important that mitigation and regulation should be effective but mitigation can be difficult in arid or seasonally arid environments or during droughts. Past patterns of problems are not necessarily a guide to the future because of environmental change and changes in exposure of populations and land uses. The effects of dust on the atmospheric energy budget is a significant uncertainty in climate modelling and that of radiative effects in weather forecast models. Contributions on problems, prospects and good practices are invited.   

Call for abstracts:

The call for abstracts is now open. The deadline for abstract submission is April 15th, 2013.

The abstracts must be uploaded on the website at the address:



Recent Meetings of Interest to ISAR Members


European Geosciences Union - General Assembly 2013, 07 – 12 April 2013 at Vienna, Austria

GM5.1 Aeolian Processes and Landforms

Convener: J.M. Nield; Co-Convener: J. King 

Aeolian processes are active at a myriad of spatial and temporal scales. What links these together and how important is process-form feedback in shaping these environments. This session brings together research traversing the spectrum, from long term landscape dating and evolution modelling to small-scale process studies. It will be of interest to researchers that study wind-blown sediment and associated bedforms in a range of environments, from coastal and semi-arid regions, to hyper arid deserts. Contributions that use novel instrumentation in field studies, remote sensing at the landscape scale or innovative numerical modelling methods, are encouraged, particularly those which attempt to elucidate feedback between surface properties and sediment transport.


CL4.2/AS3.15/GM5.2 Aeolian dust: Initiator, Player, and Recorder of Environmental Change

Convener: Jan-Berend¬ Stuut; Co-Conveners: Peter¬ Knippertz, Sue¬ McLaren¬

The interactions between aerosols, climate, and weather are among the large uncertainties of current climate and atmospheric research. Mineral dust is an important natural source of aerosol with significant implications on radiation, cloud microphysics, atmospheric chemistry and the carbon cycle via the fertilization of marine and terrestrial ecosystems. In addition, properties of dust deposited in sediments and ice cores are important (paleo-)climate indicators. This interdivision session is open to contributions dealing with: (1) measurements of all aspects of the dust cycle (emission, transport, deposition, size distribution, particle characteristics) with in situ and remote sensing techniques, (2) numerical simulations of dust on global and regional scales, (3) meteorological conditions for dust storms, dust transport and deposition, (4) interactions of dust with clouds and radiation, (5) influence of dust on atmospheric chemistry, (6) fertilization of ecosystems through dust deposition, (7) any study using dust as a (paleo-)climate indicator including investigations of Loess, ice cores, lake sediments, ocean sediments and dunes. We especially encourage our colleagues to submit papers on the integration of different disciplines and/or modeling of past, present and future climates.


SSP3.1 From the Mountains to the Sea: Significance of Grain-Size Distributions in Stratigraphy, Sedimentology & Paleoclimatology - Analyses, Application, and Interpretation

Convener: Bjoern Machalett; Co-Conveners: Jan-Berend Stuut , Inka Meyer , Rick Oches , P. Thompson Davis

Geological landscapes are shaped by processes that produce, transport and deposit mixtures of particles. Information on how sediment has been produced and modified is encoded in grain-size distributions, which evolve after sediment production by mixing from different sources, size reduction by physical and chemical attack, and sorting during transport and deposition. The detailed investigation of particle size distributions of sediments, suspended load, or aerosols is an increasingly used approach in assessing those environmentally driven geophysical processes in sedimentary systems. This session aims to provide a lively forum to review all aspects of particle size investigations applied to terrestrial, coastal, marine, lacustrine, or atmospheric environments, e.g. material sorting, land-atmosphere processes, sediment dispersal studies, advances in measurement techniques and data analysis, as well as statistical characterization and modeling of particle size distributions.

Submissions by students and young scientists are particularly encouraged!¬

Printer friendly session flyer:



American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting, 3 - 7 December 2012, San Francisco

At the American Geophysical Union’s 45th annual Fall Meeting a number of sessions that are fully or partly devoted to aeolian processes have been proposed. Proposed sessions may not appear in the final scientific program. The final scientific program will be published by the end of September. See website:

EP001. Earth and Planetary Surface Processes General Contributions

Conveners: Leonard S Sklar, Michael P Lamb and Toby Minear

We welcome contributions to this general poster session related to physical, chemical and/or biological processes that shape the surface of Earth and other planetary bodies. This session provides the opportunity for contributions that fall within the broad spectrum of Earth and Planetary Surface Processes including, but not limited to, fluvial, hillslope, tectonic, glacial, coastal, marine, and aeolian process geomorphology.

EP005. Aeolian Processes and Desert Landscape Development: Feedbacks Among Atmospheric Boundary Layer Turbulence, Sediment Transport and Morphodynamics

Conveners: Raleigh L. Martin, Christopher Hugenholtz, Michele Guala and William C Anderson

Recent advances in field, experimental, theoretical, and modeling studies have recognized that deserts are sculpted by complex interactions, extending from the grain to the landscape scale, among turbulent boundary layer flows, topography, biota, transport, and bed forms. We invite abstracts on these aeolian morphodynamics interactions, and on the sedimentary, fluid mechanical, and biological processes contributing to these feedbacks. We also welcome submissions on related studies of particle transport in other turbulent fluids (e.g., water or extraterrestrial atmospheres) relevant to understanding landscape evolution.

EP010. Coastal Aeolian Processes and Landforms

Conveners: Jean Ellis and Chris Houser 

Research focused on aeolian processes and landforms that span all temporal and spatial scales are invited in this session, especially those focused in coastal environments. We encourage innovative research on dune morphology and migration, grain-scale sand transport, and interactions between sand transport and vegetation, and surface crusting. Recent advances comparing laboratory and field-based data, and modeling studies are also encouraged. We hope the research will highlight the diversity of methods employed to understand coastal aeolian processes and landforms, including laboratory experiments, long- and short-term field deployments, modeling, and satellite observations.

EP028. Roughness Controls on Landscape Process and Form

Conveners: Joel P Johnson and Elowyn M Yager

Topography and bathymetry can be parameterized in terms of various surface roughness metrics. Surface roughness influences fluvial, hillslope, coastal, glacial, aeolian, and seafloor processes across a wide range of length scales. Surface roughness impacts flow hydraulics, sediment transport, bedrock incision, and flow and contaminant diffusion. Roughness metrics can also be used for pattern/feature identification and time series analysis. However, mechanistic connections between roughness development and process often remain elusive. We hope to foster interactions among researchers who quantify roughness and use roughness concepts to understand process, form and feedbacks in hydrological, erosional and depositional systems.

NH018. Remote Sensing and Modeling Resources for Airborne Dust Research over the Pan-American Region

Conveners: William A Sprigg, Hesham Mohamed El-Askary, Anup Krishna Prasad and Menas Kafatos

We invite presentations demonstrating new, existing, upcoming resources, capabilities, interactive tools, web mapping, decision support and public health systems for study and advancement of airborne dust research globally with special focus over the Pan-American region. Aeolian dust research using aerial, unmanned aerial vehicles, satellite observations and modeling simulations (forecast and outlooks) that are specially tailored for dust and wind research and Online web mapping solutions are invited. Presenters may also exhibit ground network of stations collecting physical, biological and chemical data on dust such as dust samplers (PM1, PM2.5, PM10), sun-photometer, and Lidar systems.

P026. Recent Advances in Planetary Aeolian Studies

Conveners: Nicholas Lancaster, James R Zimbelman and Lori K Fenton

The combination of laboratory and field experiments, together with spacecraft data analysis, has proven to be a very fruitful approach for studying aeolian processes on a variety of planetary surfaces. Investigations of both terrestrial and planetary aeolian settings hold great potential for advancing our understanding of how sediments are mobilized, transported, and deposited by winds under diverse environmental conditions. This session invites submissions on recent important findings in any aspect of planetary aeolian studies. Papers that consider aeolian landform development, sediment transport, wind tunnel experiments, modeling of sediment transport by wind, remote sensing of aeolian features, and field observations are particularly welcome.