Journal of Mountain Science

, Volume 16, Issue 2, pp 414–427 | Cite as

Numerical investigation of effects of “baffles - deceleration strip” hybrid system on rock avalanches

  • Yu-zhang BiEmail author
  • Si-ming He
  • Yan-jun Du
  • Jie Shan
  • Shuai-xing Yan
  • Dong-po Wang
  • Xin-po Sun


Arrays of baffles are usually installed in front of protection site to attenuate the flow energy of rock avalanches in mountainous areas. Optimization design is crucial for efficiency promotion in hazard energy dissipation engineering. In this study, a deceleration strip was added in the baffles protection system to optimize the traditional baffles system. The effects of the "baffles - deceleration strip" hybrid protection system was discussed in detail with the nails number and nails angle. This study presents details of numerical experiments using the discrete element method (DEM). The effect of the optimization of hybrid protection system (nail angle and nail number) were investigated specifically, especially the impact force that avalanches exerted on structures. The results show that the maximum impact forces and kinetic energy of the rock avalanches decreases with the increase of the number and angle of the nail. Moreover, the distance between the toe and the bearing structure (Lm) is also a key factor. The shorter the distance Lm (30m) is, the higher the maximum impact force are. The longer the distance Lm (70m) is, the lower the maximum impact force are. Under the same size of the nails, increasing the numbers can enhance the dissipation ability of the hybrid protection system. Meanwhile, increasing its angle can also enhance the dissipation ability. There are three key ways for nails attenuate rock avalanches: (i) block the fine particles directly; (ii) form the particles bridge between nails and baffles; (iii) dissipate the coarse particles energy directly. The effect of segregation in rock avalanches is crucial for the energy dissipation mechanism, which is a key factor to optimize the traditional baffle system.

Key words

Rock avalanches Baffles Hybrid system Energy dissipation Impact force 


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The authors thank all anonymous reviewers for helpful suggestions. This work was supported by the Major Program of the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant No. 41790433; Grant No. 41772312; Grant No. 41472325), the NSFC-ICIMOD Collaborative Project (Grant No. 41661144041), Key Research and Development Projects of Sichuan Province (2017SZ0041), Scientific Research Foundation of Graduate School of Southeast University (YBJJ 1844), and Postgraduate Research & Practice Innovation Program of Jiangsu Province (KYCX17_0130). A special acknowledgement should be expressed to Prof. SONG Dongri for his helpful discussions.

Supplementary material

11629_2018_4908_MOESM1_ESM.pdf (4.7 mb)
Supplementary material, approximately 4769 KB.


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Copyright information

© Science Press, Institute of Mountain Hazards and Environment, CAS and Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institute of Geotechnical Engineering of Southeast UniversityNanjingChina
  2. 2.School of Transportation Southeast UniversityNanjingChina
  3. 3.Key Laboratory of Mountain Hazards and Surface ProcessChinese Academy of SciencesChengduChina
  4. 4.Institute of Mountain Hazards and EnvironmentChinese Academy of SciencesChengduChina
  5. 5.Chinese Academy of Sciences Center for Excellence in Tibet Plateau Earth SciencesBeijingChina
  6. 6.University of Chinese Academy of SciencesBeijingChina
  7. 7.State Key Laboratory of Geohazard Prevention and Geoenvironment ProtectionChengdu University of TechnologyChengduChina
  8. 8.College of civil engineeringSichuan University of Science and EngineeringZigongChina

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