Final Announcement — April 2015

Meeting Location and Date

The Fourth International Planetary Dunes Workshop:  Integrating Models, Remote Sensing, and Field Data will be held May 19–22, 2015, in the Student Union Building at Boise State University, 1901 University Drive, Boise ID 83706.

Purpose and Scope

The purpose of this meeting is to provide a forum for discussion and the exchange of new ideas and approaches to gaining new insights into the aeolian processes that form and maintain dune fields on Earth and other planetary bodies within the solar system.

Landforms and deposits created by the dynamic interactions between granular material and airflow (aeolian processes) occur on several planetary bodies, including Earth, Mars, Titan, and Venus. The recognition of landforms on other planetary bodies requires use of terrestrial analogs in a well-established methodology for interpretation of landforms observed on orbital and lander images of other planetary bodies. Based on the paradigm that morphologically similar landforms are formed in essentially the same manner on different planetary surfaces, this approach can indicate the types of surface processes and environments that occur on an unfamiliar landscape, provided that the fundamentals of the landforms and processes are well understood on Earth.

The workshop will incorporate oral and poster presentations as well as extended discussion dispersed around a one-day field trip to study aeolian features in the Bruneau Dunes State Park, Idaho. This year, the theme of the workshop will be the integration of models, remote sensing, and field data to increase our fundamental understanding of dune fields on other planetary bodies.

The workshop will bring together researchers with interests in planetary dunes from diverse backgrounds in image analysis, modeling, and terrestrial analog studies. A small group setting will facilitate intensive discussion of problems and issues in an attempt to identify the most promising approaches to understanding these dune systems and to develop a collaborative interdisciplinary research agenda.

Meeting Format

May 19 Oral presentations and evening poster session
May 20 Field trip:  Bruneau Dunes State Park
May 21 Oral presentations
May 22 Oral presentations; workshop will conclude at noon

The workshop program is now available.

For a quick way to find out the method of presentation and time assigned to a specific abstract, use the author index provided.

Field Trip

The workshop will include a full-day field trip to Bruneau Dunes State Park, May 20, 2014. The field trip will be led by Dr. James Zimbelman, who is conducting active field research studies in this location. Participants will depart at 7:30 a.m. from the TownePlace Suites parking lot at 1455 South Capitol Boulevard, Boise ID 83706-3012. This field trip is self-organized, so we will be depending on volunteers to drive their vehicles. Coordination of vehicles, drivers, and passengers will be conducted on Tuesday, May 19, 2015, to reduce the size of the convoy and to ensure everyone has a ride.

NOTE:  Attendees that elect to voluntarily go on the field trip must sign the liability waiver form and turn it in on the morning of the field trip.

Information For Presenters

Oral Presentations —
A PC laptop, LCD projector, and speaker remote will be available for presentation of oral presentations during the scientific sessions. In order to facilitate a smooth transition between speakers, all presentations will be preloaded and tested in advance. To aid the preloading process, create a folder on your flash drive/CD called “DUNES 2015” and place your PowerPoint presentation in that folder. Please include your last name in the naming of your presentation file.

Hardware and Software Specifications —
The plenary room will be equipped with the following minimum hardware and software:

PC Hardware: PC Software:
Sony Viao Core i5 2520M/2.5 GHz Operating System:  Windows 7 Professional 32-bit
Memory:  4 GB RAM Microsoft Office 2010 (including PowerPoint 2010)
Video:  1600 × 900 Internet Explorer 10, Windows Media Player 12, QuickTime 7, Adobe Acrobat Reader XI, FireFox 32

Poster Presentations —

All posters will be available for viewing on Tuesday, May 19, 2015.

Poster Setup: Tuesday, May  19, from noon to 4:00 p.m.
Poster Size: 44" × 44"(110 cm × 110 cm)
Materials Provided: Pushpins





Through April 22, 2015 April 23–May 5, 2015 Onsite
Professionals $225.00 $275.00 $325.00
Students $100.00 $125.00 $200.00

The registration fee for professionals and students includes the reception, technical sessions, coffee breaks, lunches, a printed program and abstract booklet, and the field trip.

Credit card registrations:  Participants registering by credit card MUST use the secure electronic registration form.

Other methods of payment:  Those registering using any other method of payment (check, money order, traveler’s check, or wire transfer) must contact the USRA Meeting Registrar for detailed instructions.

Note:  We now have a third-party payment page available. Participants required to register using a third party (e.g., SATERN for NASA civil servants) may still register in advance using the electronic registration form. The confirmation e-mail you receive after registering will include payment instructions to submit to the third party. Please be aware, however, that your registration will not be considered complete until the funds have been received.

Cancellations:  Requests for cancellation with a fee refund (less a 10% processing fee) will only be accepted through May 5, 2015. Those who fail to attend and do not notify USRA prior to May 5 will forfeit their full fee.


Participants are responsible for making their own travel and hotel arrangements. For your convenience, a list of hotels near the workshop venue  is listed below:

Residence Inn Boise Downtown
TownePlace Suites by Marriott
Hampton Inn and Suites
Courtyard by Marriott

Roommate Search

Workshop participants looking for a roommate to share housing expenses can post a notice on the meeting bulletin board provided.

For privacy and security reasons, the bulletin board has been moved into the USRA Meeting Portal, so users will need to log into the Portal in order to view the available listings or post a message.

Before submitting a posting, attendees should check the board to see if there are any current postings that match their specifications. To contact the poster, simply click on their name to the left of the listing. Individuals can edit or remove their own postings by clicking on the “Edit” button and then resubmitting the modified post. (To remove a posting, simply delete the text and then resubmit.)

USRA/LPI is not responsible for the content of these postings, matching up roommates, or mediating disputes that arise from such arrangements, and reserves the right to remove postings that are deemed inappropriate.

Click here to access the Dunes 2015 Bulletin Board

Getting Around

Airport Ground Transportation —

Boise State and downtown Boise are ~4 miles from the airport. Taxi fare should be ~$10–$15 + tip. There is also a free shuttle to downtown hotels. For more information, visit the Boise Shuttle website.

If you choose to rent a car, there are parking garages downtown and at Boise State. For the workshop, the Lincoln Avenue Parking Garage is across the street from the Student Union and is $10/day. The car rental facility is onsite at the airport and is quick and easy. For more details, refer to the Boise Area map provided.

The meeting will be held in the Lookout Room on the third floor of the Student Union Building at Boise State. Both the campus and downtown are within less than 1 mile walking distance of the hotels listed in this announcement. Weather is usually very pleasant in late May, although there is always a chance for rain. For exercise, the Boise River Greenbelt and adjacent parks are close by and are a great resource for walking/running. Trailheads for the Boise Foothills is within1 mile north of downtown.

There are plenty of choices for food and beverages near downtown (see area on the map). There are several nice breweries and restaurants with a variety of beverage options.

Campus Map

The campus map provided shows the overall layout of the campus. Use the parking map provided to locate parking nearest to the Student Union Building.

Optional Excursions

Post-Workshop Field Trip to Southern Utah —

Gerald Bryant of Dixie State University has offered to organize a field trip to aeolian dunes and sandstones in southern Utah and northern Arizona during the week following the workshop (May 24–30). The duration and locations to be visited are flexible and dependent on the interests and availability of the group. Possible locations include Zion National Park, Coral Pink Sand Dunes State Park, Kanab Canyon, and possibly White Pocket at the Vermillion Cliffs National Monument. The current plan is to meet in St. George, Utah, on May 23, spend half a day in Snow Canyon, and then stay the night in St. George. Dixie State has a field station adjacent to Zion National Park that would be used as a base for the duration of the trip, although there are also hotel options available. The field station is in a beautiful, quiet, and convenient location. It has showers, a kitchen, and bunk rooms, as well as space for tent camping at a cost of $5/day/person. Additional costs would include transportation and hotel. The easiest way to get to St. George is to fly to Las Vegas and take the St. George Shuttle (round-trip tickets can be purchased on the web for ~$80). Those wishing to stay on and do additional exploring would be welcome to use the field station until the end of the week.

Those interested in participating or who have questions should contact Gerald Bryant or Lori Fenton.

Whitewater Rafting —

An informal rafting trip is being organized for the Friday afternoon/early evening immediately following the workshop. The plan is to run the Lower South Fork Payette River. The trip will be run by Cascade Raft and Kayak. It is a 45-minute drive from Boise and the plan is to rely on those with rental cars for transportation. The cost is $55 (+ tip for the guide — usually ~10%) and includes all necessary coldwater gear (wet suit, PFD, splash jackets, helmets, etc.). Be prepared to bring clothes that can get wet (e.g., swimsuit and non-cotton layers). Although the weather is likely to be warm, the river is fed by snowmelt and the water will be very cold.

This run will include Class IV rapids, which are quite thrilling. There is no need for previous rafting experience (or even knowing how to swim), but there is always a risk of getting tossed out of the raft and it can be a less than comfortable experience. Some physical exertion is required to keep yourself in position and paddling in the raft through the rapids. The raft guides are well-trained and a safety kayaker will be present to help rescue any swimmers. More details are available on the Cascade Raft and Kayak website.

Those interested in participating or who have questions should contact Josh Bandfield.


For further information regarding the scientific content of the meeting, contact:

Timothy Titus
U.S. Geological Survey
Phone:  928-556-7201
E-mail:  [email protected]

For further information regarding meeting details or announcements, contact:

Ingrid Dudley
Meeting and Publication Services
Phone:  281-486-2151
E-mail:  [email protected]

For further information regarding abstracts or registration, contact:

Linda Tanner
Meeting and Publication Services
Phone:  281-486-2142
E-mail:  [email protected]


Deadline for registration at the reduced rate April 22, 2015
Fourth International Planetary Dunes Workshop May 19–22, 2015


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