October 27, 2011: Booming Dunes and Beyond

In the southwestern United States and at approximately 40 locations around the world, large sand dunes can generate a loud booming sound during a natural or induced avalanche. The sound builds over time to a single frequency varying from 75 to 105 Hz plus harmonics depending on the dune location and time of the year. This talk will outline the historical references to this phenomenon, as well as our field work involving seismic refraction, ground penetrating radar and sand sampling. In addition, the talk will describe some of our related work on flows of granular materials.

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