Desert arches

Geologists now have explained how these remarkable desert sandstone arch structures form. It was thought to be mostly wind but as it turns out it is the nature of rock itself that allows these to form. 

According to the report in Nature news, Alan Mayo, a hydrogeologist explains "that as erosion undercuts the material in ways that would normally cause it to collapse, pressure mounts along the remaining rock where the greatest amount of material has been removed. Eventually, a critical pressure is reached at which the sand grains lock together and become “incredibly stable”


Delicate arch sunset in Arches National Park, Utah, USA. image: wikipedia

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