Living Reference Work Entry

Encyclopedia of Planetary Landforms

pp 1-11

Date: Latest Version

Longitudinal Dunes (or Linear Dunes)

  • Jani RadebaughAffiliated withDepartment of Geological Sciences, Brigham Young University Email author 
  • , Priyanka SharmaAffiliated withJet Propulsion Laboratory
  • , Jarmo KorteniemiAffiliated withEarth and Space Physics, Department of Physics, University of Oulu
  • , Kathryn E. FitzsimmonsAffiliated withDepartment of Human Evolution, Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology


Elongated ridges of aeolian sediment, forming approximately parallel to the resultant vector of long-term sand-shifting winds or the prevailing wind direction.


A type of Aeolian sand deposit;dune; Linear ridge types (various origins).


Linear dune, linear ridge, and sand ridge. The terms seif and linear and longitudinal are sometimes used interchangeably, although longitudinal dune is a morphodynamic term, compared to linear (or seif) dune, which are morphologic-descriptive terms that can be used even when formative processes are not known (Rubin and Hunter 1985). The term “linear dune” refers to the group of straight and sinuous longitudinal dunes. However, straight longitudinal dunes are generally referred to as “linear dunes.” Less frequently, they are referred to as “linear ridges” (not recommended) or “sand ridges” to distinguish them from sinuous seif dunes. The term “Linear ridge types (various origins)” may also refer to any elongated, straight, positive ...

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