Migration Dynamics and Internal Architecture of a Shifting Dune Field Margine, Algodones Dunes, Southeastern California
Dunes are an important sedimentary features globally, with significance as paleoclimate records, hydrocarbon reservoir analogues, and agents of sand encroachment. This study combines ground-penetrating radar data and aerial imagery to elucidate the internal architecture and migration dynamics of an area on the margin of the Algodones Dunes, a large erg in southeastern California. Radargrams of the subsurface stratigraphic structure of individual dunes are presented and related to morphological alterations to dune structure evident from comparisons of aerial imagery collected in 2012 and 2019. This study also presents an estimated volume of sand within the area of interest, based on a mapped contact between overlying aeolian and underlying alluvial fan units. Finally, a conceptual model of dune evolution with implications for the study area’s dune preservation potential is developed.