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Tropical storm-induced landslide potential using combined field monitoring and numerical modeling

October 31, 2018

When heavy rainfall, such as that associated with tropical storms, falls on steep hillsides, shallow landslides are often one of the damaging consequences. To assess landslide potential from heavy rainfall, a strategy of combined numerical simulation and field monitoring of variably saturated hillslope conditions is developed. To test the combined method, hillslope hydrologic data from paired field monitoring sites in western North Carolina are examined. The hydrologic data collected from the field monitoring site where no shallow landslide has occurred is used to identify and calibrate the hydromechanical parameters used in a numerical ground water flow model. The identified parameters are then used to simulate landslide potential at the two hillslopes during heavy rainfall associated with hurricanes Frances and Ivan (HFI) that impacted western North Carolina in 2004. Results identify the timing of instability at the shallow landslide site and show that the stable site remains stable during rainfall associated with the HFI tropical storms. Thus, the results demonstrate the effectiveness of combined numerical modeling and field monitoring to evaluate landslide potential under variably saturated conditions.

Citation Information

Publication Year 2018
Title Tropical storm-induced landslide potential using combined field monitoring and numerical modeling
DOI 10.1061/(ASCE)GT.1943-5606.0001969
Authors Pan Chen, Ning Lu, Giuseppe Formetta, Jonathan W. Godt, Alexandra Wayllace
Publication Type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Series Title Journal of Geotechnical and Geoenvironmental Engineering
Index ID 70200758
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse
USGS Organization Office of the AD Hazards

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