Amazon Quiz (November 15): What is the most populated area with these conditions?

Arabian Desert

Kalahari Desert

Thar Desert

Taklamakan Desert

Answer: Thar Desert

Thar Desert, also known as the Great Indian Desert, is an arid region on the Indian subcontinent with rolling sand hills. It is split between Rajasthan state in northwestern India and Punjab and Sindh provinces in eastern Pakistan.

The Thar Desert spans an area of 77,000 square miles (200,000 square kilometres). It is bounded on the west by the irrigated Indus River plain, on the north and northeast by the Punjab Plain, on the southeast by the Aravalli Range, and on the south by the Rann of Kachchh. At that latitude, the subtropical desert climate is caused by persistent high pressure and subsidence. The summer monsoon winds that bring rain to much of the subcontinent tend to bypass the Thar to the east.

Thar derives its name from thul, the general term for the region’s sand ridges. The desert sands of the Thar are overlain by Archean (early Precambrian) gneiss (metamorphic rocks formed between 4 billion and 2.5 billion years ago), Proterozoic (later Precambrian) sedimentary rocks (formed between 2.5 billion and 541 million years ago), and more recent alluvium (material deposited by rivers). The surface is composed of 1.8 million years of aeolian (wind-deposited) sand accumulation.

The surface of the desert is undulating, with high and low sand dunes separated by sandy plains and low barren hills, or bhakars, that rise abruptly from the surrounding plains. The dunes are constantly moving and changing shape and size. Older dunes, on the other hand, are semi-stabilized or stabilized, and many rise to a height of nearly 500 feet (150 meters) above the surrounding areas. Several playas (saline lake beds), locally known as dhands, dot the landscape.

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