Unsteady sediment discharge in earth flows: A case study from the Mount Pizzuto earth flow, southern Italy

Unsteady sediment discharge in earth flows: A case study from the Mount Pizzuto earth flow,... Surface mapping, GPS surveys, T-Lidar surveys, boreholes, seismic profiles, and HVSR measurements were used to study the mechanisms of sediment transport along the Mount Pizzuto earth flow in southern Italy. The earth flow has several kinematic zones, with transitional areas marked by changing structural styles, from compressional structures (thrusts) upslope to extensional structures (normal faults) downslope. We relate sediment discharge at these transitional zones to internal strain. The results suggest that during surge events, flow acceleration starts within the head and propagates downslope inducing a cascade effect between kinematic zones. During surge events, the average sediment discharge is nearly constant, and a change from sliding to flowing allows propagation of movement towards the toe. During slow movement, kinematic zones are independent and sediment discharge varies along the flow. In general, the velocity profile and the structural style are controlled by the basal slip surface. The implications are: i) sediment discharge is not constant but is a function of the earth flow activity, ii) during surge, earth flow material behaves similar to an incompressible fluid, and iii) the distribution of surface structures can provide information about the geometry of the slip surface and the velocity profile. Additionally, earth flows with a well-defined neck seem to be more likely to surge with respect to those without. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Geomorphology Elsevier

Unsteady sediment discharge in earth flows: A case study from the Mount Pizzuto earth flow, southern Italy

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Publisher
Elsevier
Copyright
Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V.
ISSN
0169-555X
eISSN
1872-695X
D.O.I.
10.1016/j.geomorph.2017.07.011
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Surface mapping, GPS surveys, T-Lidar surveys, boreholes, seismic profiles, and HVSR measurements were used to study the mechanisms of sediment transport along the Mount Pizzuto earth flow in southern Italy. The earth flow has several kinematic zones, with transitional areas marked by changing structural styles, from compressional structures (thrusts) upslope to extensional structures (normal faults) downslope. We relate sediment discharge at these transitional zones to internal strain. The results suggest that during surge events, flow acceleration starts within the head and propagates downslope inducing a cascade effect between kinematic zones. During surge events, the average sediment discharge is nearly constant, and a change from sliding to flowing allows propagation of movement towards the toe. During slow movement, kinematic zones are independent and sediment discharge varies along the flow. In general, the velocity profile and the structural style are controlled by the basal slip surface. The implications are: i) sediment discharge is not constant but is a function of the earth flow activity, ii) during surge, earth flow material behaves similar to an incompressible fluid, and iii) the distribution of surface structures can provide information about the geometry of the slip surface and the velocity profile. Additionally, earth flows with a well-defined neck seem to be more likely to surge with respect to those without.

Journal

GeomorphologyElsevier

Published: Oct 15, 2017

References

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