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Environmental Geology

, Volume 35, Issue 2–3, pp 100–114 | Cite as

Field variability of landslide model parameters

  • A. Burton
  • T. J. Arkell
  • J. C. Bathurst
Research Articles

Abstract

 A data set of parameters (slope, soil depth and soil shear strength) relevant to spatially distributed modelling of shallow landslides triggered by rain and snowmelt events was determined from field measurements in 250 grid elements of dimensions 25 m (downslope)×10 m (across slope) in an area of 250 m×250 m on a hillslope in Scotland. These data provide an unusually detailed basis for the evaluation of spatial variability and uncertainty in model parameterisation. The variations in slope and soil strength are represented adequately by normal distributions; a Weibull distribution is suggested for the soil depth data. The factor of safety calculated at each point in the grid was shown partially to identify observed landslides, with a number of false predictions of occurrence. Trend analysis and semivariogram analysis of the data set suggest that the use of kriging could improve upon this approach to landslide prediction by providing areal estimates of parameters at the grid element scale with associated error bounds.

Key words Field study Landslide data Landslide model Model uncertainty Parameter distributions Spatial variability 

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1998

Authors and Affiliations

  • A. Burton
    • 1
  • T. J. Arkell
    • 1
  • J. C. Bathurst
    • 1
  1. 1.Water Resource Systems Research Laboratory, Department of Civil Engineering, University of Newcastle, Newcastle upon Tyne, NE1 7RU, UKGB

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