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A New Landslide Inventory for the Armenian Lesser Caucasus: Slope Failure Morphologies and Seismotectonic Influences on Large Landslides

1
Renard Centre of Marine Geology, Department of Geology, Ghent University, 9000 Gent, Belgium
2
Institute of Geological Sciences, National Academy of Sciences, 0019 Yerevan, Armenia
3
Department of Geology, Liège University, 4000 Liège, Belgium
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Geosciences 2020, 10(3), 111; https://doi.org/10.3390/geosciences10030111
Received: 7 February 2020 / Revised: 13 March 2020 / Accepted: 13 March 2020 / Published: 20 March 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Seismically Induced Multi-Hazards)
Landslide hazard analyses in Armenia require consideration of the seismotectonic context of the Lesser Caucasus. As it is located near the center of the Arab-Eurasian collision, the Lesser Caucasus is characterized by its complex geology, dense fault network and mountainous relief; it is marked by recent volcanic and seismic activity largely influencing slope stability at different scales. We therefore sought to identify all major landslides in the Armenian Lesser Caucasus and to understand the environmental factors contributing to regional landslide susceptibility. We performed spatial and size-frequency analyses using two landslide catalogues as inputs: “Georisk”, provided by the Georisk Scientific Research Company, and “Matossian”, herein. Our spatial analyses show that landslide susceptibility depends on many factors according to the area considered: near faults, a tectonic influence on slope stability is clearly observable, whereas high concentrations of landslides in northern mountain regions, marked by a wetter climate and far from known active faults, show that climatic factors also strongly contribute to slope-failure potential. The influence of volcanoes and volcanic deposits on the development of mass movements is unclear and requires further analysis. The aforementioned inventories do not include any records of volcanic flank collapses, although we expect at least one case in the eastern Lesser Caucasus. View Full-Text
Keywords: large landslides; two catalogues; spatial distribution; size-frequency analysis; distance to faults; volcanic deposits large landslides; two catalogues; spatial distribution; size-frequency analysis; distance to faults; volcanic deposits
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Matossian, A.O.; Baghdasaryan, H.; Avagyan, A.; Igityan, H.; Gevorgyan, M.; Havenith, H.-B. A New Landslide Inventory for the Armenian Lesser Caucasus: Slope Failure Morphologies and Seismotectonic Influences on Large Landslides. Geosciences 2020, 10, 111.

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