Aerodynamics and morphodynamics of sand fences: A review

Bailiang Li*, Douglas J. Sherman

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

137 Citations (Scopus)


This paper reviews literature on the aerodynamics and morphodynamics of sand fences. We consider both wind fences for reducing wind erosion, and sand-trapping fences for controlling sand deposition. There has been substantial trial-and-error research based upon installations of sand fences, but only limited research on the fence and site attributes that provide the main aerodynamic and morphodynamic controls of interactions between aeolian systems and the fences. Such attributes include: fence porosity, height, length, width, opening size and geometry, porosity distribution, and external factors such as incoming flow characteristics, roughness length, atmospheric stability, grain size and local landform change. Considerations for the optimal design for both wind fences and sand-trapping fences are presented.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)33-48
Number of pages16
JournalAeolian Research
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2015


  • Aeolian geomorphology
  • Coastal dunes
  • Fence geometry
  • Shelter effect
  • Wind-blown sand


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