How wind formed largest dust deposit on Earth
China-'s Loess Plateau, the largest dust deposit in Earth, was formed by wind alternately depositing dust or removing dust over the last 2.6 million...
Washington: China's Loess Plateau, the largest dust deposit in Earth, was formed by wind alternately depositing dust or removing dust over the last 2.6 million years, according to geoscientists from University of Arizona.
The study is the first to explain how the steep-fronted plateau formed. About the size of the state of Arizona, the Loess Plateau is the largest accumulation of dust on Earth. Deposits of wind-blown dust known as “loess” generally create good agricultural soil and are found in many parts of the world, including the US Midwest.
Just as a leaf blower clears an area by piling leaves up along the edge, the wind did the same thing with the dust that was once in the Mu Us Desert.
The team also found that, just as a leaf blower moves a pile of leaves away from itself, wind scours the face of the plateau so forcefully that the plateau is slowly moving downwind. Linear ridges on the top of the Loess Plateau are also sculpted by the wind, the researchers found.