Semester of Graduation

Summer 2018


Master of Science (MS)


Geography and Anthropology

Document Type



Predictions made by aeolian transport models often do not match well with measured data. The poor predictive capability of these models remains a fundamental problem in aeolian geomorphology. This study evaluates the effectiveness of the recently proposed mass-weighted frequency distribution (Edwards and Namikas 2015) and the apparent von Kármán parameter proposed by Li et al. (2010) to improve transport rate predictions. The evaluation consists of comparisons of predicted transport rates versus a large dataset of measured field and lab transport rates collected from the literature. The transport rate predictions are made both with and without recalibration of model empirical coefficients. The mass-weighted frequency distribution produces a small but statistically significant degree of improvement in agreement between observed and predicted transport rates. The greatest increase in R2value occurs with the Hsu (1971) model (from 0.485 to 0.564). The disparity in predictions between different models is also reduced significantly. Use of the apparent von Kármán parameter is found to be limited to a particular range of sediment transport rates (Q < 0.028 kgm-1s-1). The apparent von Kármán parameter provides the largest degree of predictive improvement with the Kadib (1965) model.



Committee Chair

Steven Namikas