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Remote, arid regions offer fields of scientific research and possibilities of training for Servicemen which are unobtainable elsewhere. The British Expedition to the Aïr Mountains, which was made up of civilians and Servicemen, chose part of Niger's Sahara for their studies. Work in the north at Adrar Bous revealed much geomorphological and archaeological information with a number of significant datations, while wider surveys were made of the botany and of locusts; and one of the major projects in the Ténéré was part of a study of the problems of sand-dune behaviour. Meanwhile physiological and psychological studies were made on members of the team to assess their reactions to the environment. Servicemen, granted special leave, organized the expedition, provided the administrative backing, and carried out surveys in support of the projects. The region was found to be a productive one for most of the studies, and conditions in Niger and the hospitality of its people make it suitable for further work in many fields.
The Geographical Journal © 1971 The Royal Geographical Society (with the Institute of British Geographers)