Modelling Creeping and Catastrophic Failure of Thermomechanically Driven Landslides

  • A. ZervosEmail author
  • E. Alonso
  • N. Pinyol
Conference paper
Part of the Springer Series in Geomechanics and Geoengineering book series (SSGG)


Frictional heating of the slip zone is a possible explanation for why some catastrophic landslides moved so fast and so far. The transition from a creeping phase to catastrophic collapse governed by frictional heating is also a pertinent problem: what governs it and why does it occur in some landslides but not others? Here we consider the possibility that frictional heating combined with non-linear velocity-dependent friction hardening suffices to explain both phenomena as well as the transition. The paper outlines the relevant theoretical considerations and a numerical treatment. It discusses the integration of the governing equations with adequate temporal resolution for both regimes and the assumed location of the far boundaries, which needs to strike a balance between accuracy and cost.


Pore Water Pressure Catastrophic Failure Excess Pore Pressure Excess Pore Water Pressure Frictional Heating 
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© Springer International Publishing AG 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Engineering and the EnvironmentUniversity of SouthamptonSouthamptonUK
  2. 2.Department of Geotechnical Engineering and GeosciencesUniversitat Politecnica di Catalunya (UPC)BarcelonaSpain

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