Desert and Its Types: Hot Desert, Cold Desert, Semi-Arid Desert and Coastal Desert

In this tutorial, we will go through desert and its different types: Hot Desert, Cold Desert, Semi-Arid Desert and Coastal Desert. Deserts are usually the regions with less precipitation. All of the major deserts you will see is between 15° and 30° north and south of the equator because of the characteristics of the atmospheric circulation of our planet. One of the important role in the air transportation is played by a large scale atmospheric convection cell called Hadley Cell. It features the rise of warmer air near the equator, flowing poleward at a height of 10-15 KM above the earth surface, descending in the sub-tropics and then returning towards equator near the surface.

As the warm air follows the Hadley cell and continue moving polewards in northern and southern direction it continues to rain during transit and on reaching around 30° N and 30° S it will loose all of its water contents and becomes much dryer hence forming the ideal condition for the desert.

What is Desert

  • It is an area of land with very less precipitation and sparse vegetation.
  • A desert usually receives less than 10 inches(25 centimeters) of rain every year.
  • About 1/5th of Earth Land area are deserts.

Where does Deserts Forms

  • It usually formed in the less precipitation region.
  • It forms near 30° N and 30° S of the equator.
  • It can also be formed in the interior of the continents.
  • Some of the deserts may be formed in the Rain Shadow region of the large mountain belts.

What is True Desert

Desert which are having very less or sparse precipitation due to limited moisture is Known as True Desert. It usually located at the edge of the desert and in continental dry areas. Phoenix and Arizona deserts which receives less than 250 mm of rainfall is the best example of True Desert.

Cold Desert

Types of Desert

Also Read: Aeolian Erosional Landforms: Deflation, Mushroom, Zeugen, Yardangs, Mesas, Buttes

1. Hot/Warm Desert

  • Aeolian Landforms are found here.
  • Hot deserts are found in the tropical and sub-tropical region between 15° N to 30° N and 15° S to 30° S latitudes.
  • It lies in the offshore trade wind belts in the western continent region.
  • Sahara and Thar Desert are the best example of hot/warm desert.

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2. Cold Desert

  • Glacial Landforms are found here.
  • Cold deserts receive rainfall less than 25 cm in a year.
  • These deserts are found in high altitude or in high flat areas called plateaus or in mountainous regions.
  • Cold deserts will have hot summers and extremely cold winters.
  • Gobi Desert in Central Asia is the best example of Cold desert.

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3. Semi-arid Desert

  • Semi-arid deserts are bit colder than hot/warm deserts.
  • The summers are usually long and dry and winter are little bit cooler.
  • Plant are usually spiny that helps prevents water loss due to transpiration.
  • Sagebrush of Utah, Montana and Great Basin are some of the examples of Semi-arid Desert.

4. Coastal Desert

  • Coastal deserts are bit more colder than hot deserts and semi-arid deserts.
  • It is found in the western part of the Continent near the Tropics of Cancer and Capricorn.
  • In these deserts local wind are usually prevalent over the trade wind.
  • Atacama Desert on the pacific shores of Chile is the best example of Coastal Desert.





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