Landslides

Posted by Freddy on May-8-2010

Landslide frequently occurs in mountainous areas and can cause serious damage. Roads, bridges, and houses may be destroyed and involve huge financial resources to repair. Landslides are caused due to geological factors, morphological factors, physical factors and factors associated with human activity. The causes of landslide may be considered to be factors that made the slope vulnerable to failure, that predispose the slope to becoming unstable. Trigger is just a single event that finally initiates the landslide.
A landslide is primarily a combination of several geological processes that include earth movements like extensive slope failures, rocks falling, and debris flow. These ground movements may take place in a coastal, offshore, and onshore environment. Gravity is the main force that causes landslides, in addition to other features that affect the ground stability.
Normally, the ground characteristics develop particular sub-surface soil conditions that cause the slope failure. However, the real landslide needs a trigger before it can be initiated. It is normally feasible to recognize the main landslide origin and the landslide triggers. The trigger may be a process concerning the weather, or a stimulation that produces instant slope reaction. Usually, such a movement is generated due to an alteration in the slope stresses. These types of geological formations are common in mountainous areas. Slope stabilization will be necessary to reduce the probability of landslides.
Sensors have been developed that are used for the landslide warning and detection by monitoring slope, displacement, rainfall, and flow. A careful analysis of this data can assist in the determination of the weak spots, and the ground water pressures. Data regarding the rate of slide movement is available that can forecast the state of the landslide process. Geotechnical analysis, including the study of slope stability, seismic behavior, and assessment of the site can be useful to provide an early warning of the landslide. The sensors can also provide early information regarding the harsh weather, and the slope conditions that are unsafe.

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