Meaning of barchan in English:


Pronunciation /ˈbɑːk(ə)n/


  • A crescent-shaped shifting sand dune, as found in the deserts of Turkestan.

    ‘Now a team publishing in the 23 December print issue of PRL reports it has generated miniature replicas of crescent-shaped dunes known as barchans in a water tank.’
    • ‘Transverse ridges have a higher sand supply than barchans but also exist in unidirectional winds.’
    • ‘As he described them to the nomads of the Empty Quarter, they thought of the hard dark dunes found in their own desert called barchan dunes.’
    • ‘The pace of an offensive in the desert depends to a great extent on how well the troops can overcome natural obstacles, especially barchans and solonchaks, rock outcrops covered by the enemy fire.’


Late 19th century from Turkic barkhan.