Journal cover Journal topic
Natural Hazards and Earth System Sciences An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
doi:10.5194/nhess-2015-341
© Author(s) 2016. This work is distributed
under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.
Research article
18 Jan 2016
Review status
This discussion paper is under review for the journal Natural Hazards and Earth System Sciences (NHESS).
A modified tank model including snowmelt and infiltration time lags for deep-seated landslides in Alpine Environments (Aggenalm, Germany)
W. Nie1, M. Krautblatter1, K. Leith1, K. Thuro2, and J. Festl3 1Landslide Research, Faculty of Civil Geo and Environmental Engineering, Technische Universität München, Munich, Germany
2Engineering Geology, Faculty of Civil Geo and Environmental Engineering, Technische Universität München, Munich, Germany
3Baugeologisches Büro Bauer GmbH, Domagkstraße 1a, 80807 München, Germany
Abstract. Deep-seated landslides are an important and widespread natural hazard within alpine regions, and can have a massive impact on infrastructure. Pore water pressure plays an important role in determining the stability of hydro-triggered deep-seated landslides. We improve current methods of groundwater level prediction by introducing a means to account for time lags associated with groundwater supply caused by snow accumulation, snowmelt, and infiltration in deep-seated landslides. In this study, we demonstrate a simple method to improve the estimation of these time lags using a modified tank model to calculate groundwater levels. In a deep-seated landslide in Bavaria, Germany, our results predict daily changes in pore water pressure ranging from -1 to 1.6 kPa depending on daily rainfall and snowmelt. The inclusion of time lags improves the results of standard tank models by ~36% (linear correlation with measurement) after heavy rainfall and, respectively, by ~82% following snowmelt in a 1-2 day period. For the modified tank model, we introduced a representation of snow accumulation and snowmelt, based on a temperature index and an equivalent infiltration method, i.e. the melted snow water equivalent. This compares well to the in situ measurement for the same time interval which reflect changes of pore water pressure with 0-8% relative error in rainfall season (standard tank model: 2-16% relative error) and with 0-7% relative error in snowmelt season (standard tank model: 2-45% relative error). Here we demonstrate a modified tank model for deep-seated landslides that includes snow and infiltration effects and can effectively predict changes in pore water pressure in alpine environments.

Citation: Nie, W., Krautblatter, M., Leith, K., Thuro, K., and Festl, J.: A modified tank model including snowmelt and infiltration time lags for deep-seated landslides in Alpine Environments (Aggenalm, Germany), Nat. Hazards Earth Syst. Sci. Discuss., doi:10.5194/nhess-2015-341, in review, 2016.
W. Nie et al.
W. Nie et al.
W. Nie et al.

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Short summary
Deep-seated landslides are an important and widespread natural hazard within alpine regions, and can have a massive impact on infrastructure. Pore water pressure plays an important role in determining the stability of hydro-triggered deep-seated landslides. Here we demonstrate a modified tank model for deep-seated landslides that includes snow and infiltration effects and can effectively predict changes in pore water pressure in alpine environments.
Deep-seated landslides are an important and widespread natural hazard within alpine regions, and...
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