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This study investigates aeolian, i.e. wind-blown, deposits preserved in the Coral Pink Sand Dunes, Utah. Deposits are dated with optically stimulated luminescence (OSL) to determine when aeolian activity has occurred in the past. Deposit ages are compared to paleoclimate records to understand how climate controls on aeolian activity have changed over time. New OSL ages from this study provide the first evidence of aeolian activity during the last major interglacial period for the Colorado Plateau. Understanding how these landscapes responded to past climate variability is important for predicting how they will respond to projected climate change.
Burnham Research Grant, Department of Geosciences, Boise State University