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Summary

Nubian sandstone exposures in sub-humid, semi-arid, and arid environments have given rise to red, sandy but in other respects very different soils. Soils have a fairly well developed profile only in the sub-humid zone, including a textural B horizon and are free of soluble salts and carbonates. In the semi-arid and arid zones, profile differentiation is weak or non-existent. Soils are shallow and contain carbonates, and in the arid zone also soluble salts, including gypsum. Kaolinite is the only clay mineral which is common to all the nubian sandstone parent materials. It is the major clay mineral in the sub-humid zone soil. In the semi-arid soils smectite is a second major clay component. In the arid zone both smectite and palygorskite, in minor amounts, accompany kaolinite. Both smectite and palygorskite are probably pedogenic neoformation products. Material of aeolian origin has probably been introduced into the silt and fine sand fractions of both the semi-arid and arid soils. Some contamination of the clay fractions may have also occurred.