Abstract

The quartz-grain surface features of twelve Recent sediment samples from the desert plain and coastal areas of northern Kuwait were examined by scanning electron microscopy. The results of this study reveal the existence of several surface features that reflect the effect of mechanical and chemical action on the studied quartz grains. Recent desert sand grains show an abundance of relict and recent mechanical surface features developed during transportation of the grains in the subaqueous and eolian environments respectively. On the other hand, sand grains from coastal sediments, especially sabkhas, are characterized by the dominance of chemical surface features. Among chemically produced surface features, those originating from silica dissolution are considerably more numerous than those due to silica precipitation. Relative frequency distribution of the various surface features recorded on quartz grains from different environments indicates migration of the desert plain sand to coastal areas and vice versa.

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