Rainfall-Induced Landslides: Influencing, Modelling and Hazard Assessment

A special issue of Water (ISSN 2073-4441). This special issue belongs to the section "Hydrogeology".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (15 May 2024) | Viewed by 14672

Special Issue Editors


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Guest Editor
Department of Geotechnical Engineering, College of Civil Engineering, Tongji University, Shanghai, China
Interests: engineering geology; rock mass and slope engineering; tunnels and underground works

E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Institute of Geotechnical Engineering, College of Civil Engineering and Architecture, Zhejiang University, Hangzhou, China
Interests: landslide dam; stability analysis; rapid assessment; rock mass structural plane; shear seepage; constitutive model

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Rainfall of different intensities is the main factor triggering both shallow and deep-seated landslides. Shallow landslides, especially soil slips, are usually triggered by intense short-duration rainfall, whereas landslides in clayey soils and deep-seated landslides are more sensitive to long and moderate intensity rainfall. In history, rainfall-induced landslides have posed risks to constructed facilities, and have led to fatalities. As a consequence, the causes, modelling and hazard assessment of rainfall-induced landslide disasters have been, and remain, some of the most important challenges in the field of engineering geology. Thus, further research on the topic of landslides is crucial. In addition to geological surveys, comprehensive field monitoring, laboratory physical modelling, theoretical analyses and numerical simulations can also advance landslide hazard mitigation.

Dr. Qingzhao Zhang
Dr. Danyi Shen
Guest Editors

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Keywords

  • Rainfall;
  • Landslides;
  • Influencing;
  • Modeling;
  • Hazard assessment

Published Papers (13 papers)

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Research

27 pages, 32827 KiB  
Article
Dynamic Hazard Assessment of Rainfall-Induced Landslides Using Gradient Boosting Decision Tree with Google Earth Engine in Three Gorges Reservoir Area, China
by Ke Yang, Ruiqing Niu, Yingxu Song, Jiahui Dong, Huaidan Zhang and Jie Chen
Water 2024, 16(12), 1638; https://doi.org/10.3390/w16121638 - 7 Jun 2024
Viewed by 365
Abstract
Rainfall-induced landslides are a major hazard in the Three Gorges Reservoir area (TGRA) of China, encompassing 19 districts and counties with extensive coverage and significant spatial variation in terrain. This study introduces the Gradient Boosting Decision Tree (GBDT) model, implemented on the Google [...] Read more.
Rainfall-induced landslides are a major hazard in the Three Gorges Reservoir area (TGRA) of China, encompassing 19 districts and counties with extensive coverage and significant spatial variation in terrain. This study introduces the Gradient Boosting Decision Tree (GBDT) model, implemented on the Google Earth Engine (GEE) cloud platform, to dynamically assess landslide risks within the TGRA. Utilizing the GBDT model for landslide susceptibility analysis, the results show high accuracy with a prediction precision of 86.2% and a recall rate of 95.7%. Furthermore, leveraging GEE’s powerful computational capabilities and real-time updated rainfall data, we dynamically mapped landslide hazards across the TGRA. The integration of the GBDT with GEE enabled near-real-time processing of remote sensing and meteorological radar data from the significant “8–31” 2014 rainstorm event, achieving dynamic and accurate hazard assessments. This study provides a scalable solution applicable globally to similar regions, making a significant contribution to the field of geohazard analysis by improving real-time landslide hazard assessment and mitigation strategies. Full article
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20 pages, 20471 KiB  
Article
Rainfall-Triggered Landslides and Numerical Modeling of Subsequent Debris Flows at Kalli Village of Suntar Formation in the Lesser Himalayas in Nepal
by Diwakar KC, Mohammad Wasif Naqvi, Harish Dangi and Liangbo Hu
Water 2024, 16(11), 1594; https://doi.org/10.3390/w16111594 - 2 Jun 2024
Viewed by 542
Abstract
Hazardous debris flows are common in the tectonically active young Himalayas. The present study is focused on the recurrent, almost seasonal, landslides and debris flows initiated from Kalli village in Achham District of Nepal, located in the Lesser Himalayas. Such geological hazards pose [...] Read more.
Hazardous debris flows are common in the tectonically active young Himalayas. The present study is focused on the recurrent, almost seasonal, landslides and debris flows initiated from Kalli village in Achham District of Nepal, located in the Lesser Himalayas. Such geological hazards pose a significant threat to the neighboring communities. The field survey reveals vulnerable engineering geological conditions and adverse environmental factors in the study area. It is found that a typical complete debris transport process may consist of two stages depending on the rainfall intensity. In the first stage, debris flows mobilized from a landslide have low mobility and their runout distance is quite modest; in the second stage, with an increase in water content they are able to travel a longer distance. Numerical simulations based on a multi-phase flow model are conducted to analyze the characteristics of the debris flows in motion, including the debris deposition profiles and runout distances in both stages. Overall, the numerical results are reasonably consistent with relevant field observations. Future debris flows may likely occur again in this area due to the presence of large soil blocks separated by tension cracks, rampant in the field; numerical simulations predict that these potential debris flows may exhibit similar characteristics to past events. Full article
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17 pages, 5053 KiB  
Article
Research on the Prediction of Infiltration Depth of Xiashu Loess Slopes Based on Particle Swarm Optimized Back Propagation (PSO-BP) Neural Network
by Pan Xiao, Bingyue Guo, Yi Wang, Yujian Xian and Faming Zhang
Water 2024, 16(8), 1184; https://doi.org/10.3390/w16081184 - 22 Apr 2024
Viewed by 684
Abstract
The Xiashu loess exhibits expansion when in contact with water and contraction when water is lost, making it highly susceptible to the influence of rainfall. Therefore, it is essential to investigate the infiltration behavior of rainwater in Xiashu loess slopes under various conditions. [...] Read more.
The Xiashu loess exhibits expansion when in contact with water and contraction when water is lost, making it highly susceptible to the influence of rainfall. Therefore, it is essential to investigate the infiltration behavior of rainwater in Xiashu loess slopes under various conditions. The depth of infiltration in slopes directly affects the depth of landslide failure and serves as an important indicator for studying slope infiltration characteristics; only a handful of academics have delved into its study. This article is based on on-site rainfall experiments on Xiashu loess slopes, using three main factors, rainfall intensity, rainfall duration, and slope angle, as discrimination indicators for the infiltration depth of Xiashu loess slopes. The particle swarm optimization algorithm is employed to optimize the BP neural network and establish a PSO-BP neural network prediction model. The experimental data are accurately predicted and compared with the multivariate nonlinear regression model and traditional BP neural network models. The results demonstrate that the PSO-BP neural network model exhibits a better fit and higher prediction accuracy than the other two models. This model provides a novel approach for rapidly determining the infiltration depth of Xiashu loess slopes under different rainfall conditions. The results of this study lay the foundation for the prediction of the landslide damage depth and infiltration of Xiashu loess slopes. Full article
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22 pages, 6352 KiB  
Article
An Integration of Logistic Regression and Geographic Information System for Development of a Landslide Hazard Index to Land Use: A Case Study in Pingtung County in Southern Taiwan
by Chih-Ming Tseng, Yie-Ruey Chen, Ching-Ya Tsai and Shun-Chieh Hsieh
Water 2024, 16(7), 1038; https://doi.org/10.3390/w16071038 - 4 Apr 2024
Viewed by 675
Abstract
In Taiwan, mountainous areas account for approximately two-thirds of the total area. The steep terrain and concentrated rainfall during typhoons cause landslides, which pose a considerable threat to mountain settlements. Therefore, models for analyzing rainfall-induced landslide hazards are urgently required to ensure adequate [...] Read more.
In Taiwan, mountainous areas account for approximately two-thirds of the total area. The steep terrain and concentrated rainfall during typhoons cause landslides, which pose a considerable threat to mountain settlements. Therefore, models for analyzing rainfall-induced landslide hazards are urgently required to ensure adequate land use in mountainous areas. In this study, focusing on Pingtung County in southern Taiwan, we developed a landslide hazard index (IRL) to land use. Using FORMOSA-2 and SPOT-5 satellite images, data were collected before and after four typhoons (one in 2009 and three in 2013). The ArcGIS random tree classifier was used for interpreting satellite images to explore surface changes and disasters, which were used to analyze slope disturbances. The product of the maximum 3-h rolling rainfall intensity and effective accumulated rainfall was used as a rainfall trigger index (IRT). Considering environmental and slope disturbance factors, an index of slope environmental strength potential (ISESP) was developed through logistic regression (LR). Landslide hazard to land use was estimated using IRT and ISESP. The average coefficient of agreement (Kappa) was approximately 0.71 (medium to high accuracy); the overall accuracy of slope environmental strength potential analysis was approximately 80.4%. At a constant ISESP, IRT increased with the increasing hazard potential of rainfall-induced landslides. Furthermore, IRT and ISESP were positively correlated with landslide occurrence. When large ISESP values occur (e.g., fragile environment and high land development intensity), small IRT values may induce landslides. Full article
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15 pages, 22820 KiB  
Article
Parameter Sensitivity Analysis of a Korean Debris Flow-Induced Rainfall Threshold Estimation Algorithm
by Kyung-Su Choo, Jung-Ryel Choi, Byung-Hyun Lee and Byung-Sik Kim
Water 2024, 16(6), 828; https://doi.org/10.3390/w16060828 - 12 Mar 2024
Viewed by 929
Abstract
With the increase in both rainfall and intensity due to climate change, the risk of debris flows is also increasing. In Korea, the increasing damage caused by debris flows has become a social issue, and research on debris-flow response is becoming increasingly important. [...] Read more.
With the increase in both rainfall and intensity due to climate change, the risk of debris flows is also increasing. In Korea, the increasing damage caused by debris flows has become a social issue, and research on debris-flow response is becoming increasingly important. Understanding the rainfall that induces debris flows is crucial for debris-flow response, and methods such as the I-D method have been used to evaluate and predict the risk of debris flows. However, previous studies on debris flow-induced rainfall analysis have been limited by the subjective decision of the researcher to select the impact meteorological stations, which greatly affects reliability. In this paper, in order to establish an objective standard, various maximum allowable distances between debris-flow disaster areas and meteorological stations were adjusted to 1, 3, 5, 7, 9, 11, 13, and 15 km using the CTRL-T automatic calculation algorithm, and the optimal maximum allowable distance suitable for Korean terrain was derived through parameter sensitivity analysis. Based on this, we developed a nomogram for sediment disaster risk prediction and warning in Gangwon-do, and applied it to past disaster cases, and found that, although the prediction time for each stage varies depending on the maximum allowable distance, on average, it is possible to predict the risk of sediment flows 4 to 5 h in advance. It is believed that the results of this study can be used to reduce sediment flow damage in advance. Full article
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16 pages, 8115 KiB  
Article
Research on Spatial Distribution Pattern of Stability Inter-Controlled Factors of Fine-Grained Sediments in Debris Flow Gullies—A Case Study
by Qinjun Wang, Jingjing Xie, Jingyi Yang, Peng Liu, Wentao Xu and Boqi Yuan
Water 2024, 16(5), 634; https://doi.org/10.3390/w16050634 - 21 Feb 2024
Viewed by 749
Abstract
Studies on the stability inter-controlled factors of fine-grained sediments in debris flow gullies play an important role in predicting the scale and danger of debris flows. However, up to the present, few studies have been carried out on the spatial distribution pattern and [...] Read more.
Studies on the stability inter-controlled factors of fine-grained sediments in debris flow gullies play an important role in predicting the scale and danger of debris flows. However, up to the present, few studies have been carried out on the spatial distribution pattern and causes of stability inter-controlled factors of fine-grained sediments in debris flow gullies, leading to difficulty in finding the dangerous section of debris flow gullies to be monitored and controlled to reduce disaster losses. Therefore, the objective of this paper is to analyze the spatial distribution pattern and causes of stability inter-controlled factors (grain size, permeability coefficient, shear strength, and porosity), taking the Beichuan Debris Flow Gully, China, as a case. After collecting soil samples in the field, we carried out experiments to measure the stability inter-controlled factors and, from these, the results show that (1) fine-grained sediments in this case are mainly silty loams, which are stable under non-heavy rains; (2) the grain size of silty loams is mainly concentrated between 10 and 20 μm, with a spatial distribution pattern of fine in the middle and coarse at both ends; (3) the permeability coefficient of silty loams is concentrated between 1.15 and 2.17 m/d, with a spatial distribution pattern of high in the middle and low at both ends; (4) the average cohesion of silty loams is mainly concentrated between 20 and 30 kPa, with a spatial distribution pattern of low in the middle and high at both ends; and (5) the internal friction angle of silty loams is concentrated between 18.98 and 21.8°, with a spatial distribution pattern of high in the middle and low at both ends. The main reasons for these spatial distribution patterns are analyzed from three aspects of shear strength, water flow velocity, and terrain, which can provide a scientific basis for the prediction of debris flow disasters in such areas. Full article
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24 pages, 31904 KiB  
Article
Evolution Process of Ancient Landslide Reactivation under the Action of Rainfall: Insights from Model Tests
by Xiang Li, Ruian Wu, Bing Han, Deguang Song, Zhongkang Wu, Wenbo Zhao and Qijun Zou
Water 2024, 16(4), 583; https://doi.org/10.3390/w16040583 - 16 Feb 2024
Viewed by 987
Abstract
Under rapid global climate change, the risk of ancient landslide reactivation induced by rainfall infiltration is increasing significantly. The contribution of cracks to the reactivation of ancient landslides, as an evolutionary product, is a topic that deserves attention; however, current research on this [...] Read more.
Under rapid global climate change, the risk of ancient landslide reactivation induced by rainfall infiltration is increasing significantly. The contribution of cracks to the reactivation of ancient landslides, as an evolutionary product, is a topic that deserves attention; however, current research on this issue remains insufficient. In this study, taking the Woda landslide in the upper Jinsha River as a case study, we investigated the reactivation mechanisms of ancient landslides with and without cracks under rainfall based on model tests. The study showed that cracks influence the reactivation range and depth of ancient landslide. In cases where no cracks develop on ancient landslides, rainfall can only cause shallow sliding with failure concentrated at its front edge. Conversely, when cracks develop on ancient landslides, rainwater can quickly infiltrate into the sliding zone along the cracks and induce overall reactivation of the ancient landslide. Furthermore, the reactivation mechanism of ancient landslides without cracks is that the failure of ancient landslide foot results in progressive failure at the front of the ancient landslide. When cracks have developed at ancient landslides, the reactivation mechanism of which involves mid-rear ancient landslide creeping, tensile cracks develop on the mid-rear ancient landslide, with localized sliding at the front edge, tensile cracks extending, local sliding range extending, accelerated creeping, and progressive failure of the mid-rear ancient landslide. These findings shed light on how cracks influence rainfall-induced mechanisms of ancient landslide reactivation and hold great significance for advancing our understanding regarding these mechanisms. Full article
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22 pages, 32566 KiB  
Article
Failure Prediction of Open-Pit Mine Landslides Containing Complex Geological Structures Using the Inverse Velocity Method
by Yabin Tao, Ruixin Zhang and Han Du
Water 2024, 16(3), 430; https://doi.org/10.3390/w16030430 - 29 Jan 2024
Viewed by 1029
Abstract
In the field of open-pit geological risk management, landslide failure time prediction is one of the important topics. Based on the analysis of displacement monitoring data, the inverse velocity method (INV) has become an effective method to solve this issue. To improve the [...] Read more.
In the field of open-pit geological risk management, landslide failure time prediction is one of the important topics. Based on the analysis of displacement monitoring data, the inverse velocity method (INV) has become an effective method to solve this issue. To improve the reliability of landslide prediction, four filters were used to test the velocity time series, and the effect of landslide failure time prediction was compared and analyzed. The results show that the sliding process of landslide can be divided into three stages based on the INV: the initial attenuation stage (regressive stage), the second attenuation stage (progressive stage), and the linear reduction stage (autoregressive stage). The accuracy of the INV is closely related to the measured noise of the monitoring equipment and the natural noise of the environment, which will affect the identification of different deformation stages. Compared with the raw data and the exponential smoothing filter (ESF) models, the fitting effect of the short-term smoothing filter (SSF) and long-term smoothing filter (LSF) in the linear autoregressive stage is better. A stratified prediction method combining SSF and LSF is proposed. The prediction method is divided into two levels, and the application of this method is given. Full article
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16 pages, 4596 KiB  
Article
Comparing Different Coupling and Modeling Strategies in Hydromechanical Models for Slope Stability Assessment
by Shirin Moradi, Johan Alexander Huisman, Harry Vereecken and Holger Class
Water 2024, 16(2), 312; https://doi.org/10.3390/w16020312 - 17 Jan 2024
Viewed by 838
Abstract
The dynamic interaction between subsurface flow and soil mechanics is often simplified in the stability assessment of variably saturated landslide-prone hillslopes. The aim of this study is to analyze the impact of conventional simplifications in coupling and modeling strategies on stability assessment of [...] Read more.
The dynamic interaction between subsurface flow and soil mechanics is often simplified in the stability assessment of variably saturated landslide-prone hillslopes. The aim of this study is to analyze the impact of conventional simplifications in coupling and modeling strategies on stability assessment of such hillslopes in response to precipitation using the local factor of safety (LFS) concept. More specifically, it investigates (1) the impact of neglecting poroelasticity, (2) transitioning from full coupling between hydrological and mechanical models to sequential coupling, and (3) reducing the two-phase flow system to a one-phase flow system (Richards’ equation). Two rainfall scenarios, with the same total amount of rainfall but two different relatively high (4 mm h−1) and low (1 mm h−1) intensities are considered. The simulation results of the simplified approaches are compared to a comprehensive, fully coupled poroelastic hydromechanical model with a two-phase flow system. It was found that the most significant difference from the comprehensive model occurs in areas experiencing the most transient changes due to rainfall infiltration in all three simplified models. Among these simplifications, the transformation of the two-phase flow system to a one-phase flow system showed the most pronounced impact on the simulated local factor of safety (LFS), with a maximum increase of +21.5% observed at the end of the high-intensity rainfall event. Conversely, using a rigid soil without poroelasticity or employing a sequential coupling approach with no iteration between hydromechanical parameters has a relatively minor effect on the simulated LFS, resulting in maximum increases of +2.0% and +1.9%, respectively. In summary, all three simplified models yield LFS results that are reasonably consistent with the comprehensive poroelastic fully coupled model with two-phase flow, but simulations are more computationally efficient when utilizing a rigid porous media and one-phase flow based on Richards’ equation. Full article
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33 pages, 13938 KiB  
Article
A Case Study for Stability Analysis of Toppling Slope under the Combined Action of Large Suspension Bridge Loads and Hydrodynamic Forces in a Large Reservoir Area
by Jian Huang, Shixiong Tang, Zhiqing Liu, Faming Zhang, Menglong Dong, Chang Liu and Zinan Li
Water 2023, 15(23), 4037; https://doi.org/10.3390/w15234037 - 21 Nov 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1228
Abstract
The foundation of a large river crossing bridge is often located on high and steep slopes in mountainous area, and the stability of the slope has a significant impact on the safety of the bridge. Not only the bridge load, but also the [...] Read more.
The foundation of a large river crossing bridge is often located on high and steep slopes in mountainous area, and the stability of the slope has a significant impact on the safety of the bridge. Not only the bridge load, but also the hydro-dynamical action in the reservoir area has a significant impact on the stability of the bank slope where the bridge foundation is located, especially for the toppling bank slope. This paper takes the stability of the toppling bank slope where the one major bridge foundation is located at on the Lancang River in China as an example. Through on-site exploration, drilling data and core conditions, and television images of the borehole, the geological structure of the on-site bank slope were conducted. Based on the development of the dumping body obtained from on-site exploration, corresponding indicators have been proposed from the perspectives of rock inclination, deformation, and rock quality to clarify the degree of dumping along the depth of the bank slope. The failure mechanism of the overturned bank slope under the action of a bridge was analyzed from a mechanical perspective. Numerical simulations were conducted using GeoStudio 2018:SEEP/W and FLAC3D 6.0 software to analyze the failure modes of bridge loads and hydrodynamic forces under different water levels and rainfall conditions. The seepage field characteristics, failure modes, and stability characteristics were analyzed from a two-dimensional perspective, while the displacement characteristics, plastic zone, and stress–strain characteristics were explored from a three-dimensional perspective, which revealed the evolution mode of overturned deformation under the action of bridge foundation loads. Finally, the stability of the wide slope was numerically calculated using the strength reduction method, and the stability calculation data was combined with the numerical simulation results to determine the optimal location of the bridge foundation. Full article
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25 pages, 10587 KiB  
Article
Evaluation of a Tilt-Based Monitoring System for Rainfall-Induced Landslides: Development and Physical Modelling
by Abhishek Prakash Paswan and Amit Kumar Shrivastava
Water 2023, 15(10), 1862; https://doi.org/10.3390/w15101862 - 14 May 2023
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 2228
Abstract
Landslides in northern India are a frequently occurring risk during the rainy season resulting in human, animal, and property losses as well as obstructing transportation facilities. Usually, numerical and analytical approaches are applied to predicting and monitoring landslides, but the unpredictable nature of [...] Read more.
Landslides in northern India are a frequently occurring risk during the rainy season resulting in human, animal, and property losses as well as obstructing transportation facilities. Usually, numerical and analytical approaches are applied to predicting and monitoring landslides, but the unpredictable nature of rainfall-induced landslides limits these methods. Sensor-based monitoring is an accurate and reliable method, and it also collects accurate and site-specific required data for further investigation with a numerical and analytical approach. This study developed a low-cost tilt-based rainfall-induced landslide monitoring system using the economical and precise MEMS sensor to record displacement and volumetric water content. A self-developed direct shear-based testing setup was used to check the system’s operational performance. A physical slope model was also prepared to test the monitoring system in real scenarios. A debris failure occurred at Kotrupi village in the Mandi district of Himachal Pradesh, India, which was chosen for the modelling to investigate the failure mechanism. A rainfall generator was developed to simulate the rainfall, equipped with a flow sensor for better simulation and data recording. The tilt angle records the deviation in terms of angle with a least count of 0.01 degrees, and the moisture content was recorded in terms of percentage with a least count of 1. The results show that the developed system is working properly and is very effective in monitoring the rainfall-induced landslide as it monitors the gradual and sudden movement effectively. This study explains the mechanism behind the landslide, and it can be helpful in monitoring the slope to enable the implementation of preventative actions that will mitigate its impact. Full article
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14 pages, 5755 KiB  
Article
Cross-Correlation Analysis of the Stability of Heterogeneous Slopes
by Yukun Li, Faming Zhang, Tian-Chyi Jim Yeh, Xiaolan Hou and Menglong Dong
Water 2023, 15(6), 1050; https://doi.org/10.3390/w15061050 - 9 Mar 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1703
Abstract
Geologic material properties of hillslopes are inherently heterogeneous, with complex layering structures due to geological deposition processes. Lacking detailed sampling of the properties’ spatial distribution has led to the stochastic representation of the properties to address uncertainty in the hillslope stability evaluation. This [...] Read more.
Geologic material properties of hillslopes are inherently heterogeneous, with complex layering structures due to geological deposition processes. Lacking detailed sampling of the properties’ spatial distribution has led to the stochastic representation of the properties to address uncertainty in the hillslope stability evaluation. This study treats the spatial distributions of the shear strength parameters, the cohesion (c), and the internal friction angle (φ), in a synthetic two-dimensional slope as stochastic random fields characterized by their means, variances, and correlation scales. This study then evaluates the cross-correlation between these parameters and the factor of safety (FS) using unconditional Monte Carlo simulation (MCS). Different from classical sensitivity analyses, the cross-correlation analysis of FS and the stochastic parameter fields stresses the importance of the orientation of the large-scale geological layering, the correlation between the geological media’s cohesion, and the internal friction angle at the local scale on the probability and uncertainty of failure of the heterogeneous hillslope. The analysis further guides the field sampling strategy to reduce uncertainty in the slope stability analysis due to unknown heterogeneity. More importantly, it suggests the location of stability reinforcement measures. The results of this study provide cost-effective tools for geoengineers to deal with field slope stability analysis under uncertainty. Full article
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23 pages, 167916 KiB  
Article
Hazard Mitigation of a Landslide-Prone Area through Monitoring, Modeling, and Susceptibility Mapping
by Meen-Wah Gui, Hsin-An Chu, Chuan Ding, Cheng-Chao Lee and Shu-Ken Ho
Water 2023, 15(6), 1043; https://doi.org/10.3390/w15061043 - 9 Mar 2023
Viewed by 1566
Abstract
Indigenous tribes living in the mountainous areas account for about one-fifth of the extreme poor of the world, and this has made their lives more vulnerable to climate change impacts and natural hazards. After a series of earthquakes and very strong typhoons, the [...] Read more.
Indigenous tribes living in the mountainous areas account for about one-fifth of the extreme poor of the world, and this has made their lives more vulnerable to climate change impacts and natural hazards. After a series of earthquakes and very strong typhoons, the tilting and cracking of dwellings, localized slope failure, and severe subgrade settlements, together with damages of retaining structures and drainage ditches along a section of the Provincial Highway No. 7A on the west wing of the Central Mountain Range in central Taiwan, have raised concerns to the safety of a nearby Indigenous settlement, which is situated at an elevation of about EL. +1800 m. This study investigated and identified the possible causes for a large-scale landslide-prone area on the Central Mountain Range by employing multi-temporal satellite and aerial images, site investigation, field instrumentation, geophysics tests, and uncoupled hydromechanical slope stability analyses. The results were then applied to deduce a sliding susceptibility map and remedial plans to prevent or mitigate the sliding in the vicinity of an Indigenous settlement. The infiltration of rainwater, an upraised river-bed elevation, and the erosion of the river bank at the toe of the large-scale slope were found to be the main triggering factors in inducing sudden and localized failures. Meanwhile, the process of mass rock creep was deduced to have activated the process of large-scale deep-seated gravitational slope deformation (DSGSD) on the study slope; the DSGSD could eventually turn into a huge and catastrophic landslide. The findings of this study would be valuable for formulating detailed countermeasures to protect and maintain the stability and safety of the Indigenous settlement located at the crest of the slope. Full article
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