Reference Work Entry


Part of the series Encyclopedia of Earth Science pp 520-521

Hamada, reg, serir, gibber, saÏ

  • Rhodes W. Fairbridge

In hot desert regions a number of deflational relief or textural landforms are developed that have received specific names, mainly of Arabic origin, stemming from the Sahara or Arabia.

Hamada or hammada is a desert high plain or plateau where deflation has removed the finegrained surface materials and left behind a surface of sand-scoured bedrock with or without a veneer of pebbles or boulders (Gautier, 1935). The word hamada in Arabic means strictly a rocky plane surface, and the term rock plain is sometimes given as the English equivalent.

The terms Reg (in the western Sahara), or Serir (in the eastern Sahara) or Gibber Plain (Australia), or Saï (Tarim Desert, central Asia), apply to a sandy plain or broad depression largely covered by lag gravels or angular boulders, from which the finer soil and sediment has been stripped by eolian ablation. As noted by Termier (1963), the regs of the Sahara tend to be followed b ...

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