A Hydro-Chemo-Mechanical Analysis of the Slip Surface of Landslides in the Three Gorges Area of China

  • Ashok Gaire
  • Yu Zhao
  • Liang-Bo Hu
Conference paper


Landslides in the Three Gorges area of China are often triggered by rainfalls of significant acidity which potentially lead to wetting effects by rainfall precipitation and mineralogical changes induced by adverse chemical reactions. This paper presents a hydro-chemo-mechanical analysis of slope stability in this context. It first surveys typical landslide events that occurred in the Three Gorges area where mineralogical changes were identified and further simulated in the laboratory; both field and laboratory evidences strongly suggest that these changes contributed to the weathering and strength decline of sliding masses. Subsequently numerical simulations are conducted to investigate possible scenarios of strength evolution due to rainfall induced wetting as well as mineralogical changes. The factor of safety of potential slip surfaces is computed under different combinations of hydrological and chemical scenarios. The results of a parametric study indicate the potential consequences of hydro-mechanical and chemo-mechanical processes that may play an important role in the landslides in the Three Gorges area.


Landslides Mineral transformation Rainfall Three Gorges 


  1. Anson, R.W.W., Hawkins, A.B.: Movement of the Soper’s Wood landslide on the Jurassic Fuller’s earth, bath, England. Bull. Eng. Geol. Environ. 61(4), 325–345 (2002)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Chai, B., Yin, K., Du, J., Xiao, L.: Correlation between incompetent beds and slope deformation at Badong town in the Three Gorges reservoir. China. Environ. Earth Sci. 69(1), 209–223 (2013)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Gajo, A., Cecinato, F., Hueckel, T.: A micro-scale inspired chemo-mechanical model of bonded geomaterials. Int. J. Rock Mech. Min. Sci. 80, 425–438 (2015)Google Scholar
  4. Liu, J.G., Mason, P.J., Clerici, N., Chen, S., Davis, A., Deng, H., Liang, L.: Landslide hazard assessment in the Three Gorges area of the Yangtze river using ASTER imagery: Zigui-Badong. Geomorphology 61(2), 171–187 (2004)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. McBride, M.B.: Environmental Chemistry of Soils. Oxford University Press, NewYork (1994)Google Scholar
  6. Moon, V.G.: Microstructure control on the geomechanical behaviour of ignimbrite. Eng. Geol. 35(1), 19–31 (1993)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Shuzui, H.: Process of slip-surface development and formation of slip-surface clay in landslide in tertiary volcanic rocks, Japan. Eng. Geol. 61(4), 199–219 (2001)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Vanapalli, S.K., Fredlund, D.G., Pufahl, D.E., Clifton, A.W.: Model for the prediction of shear strength with respect to soil suction. Can. Geotech. J. 33(3), 379–392 (1996)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Udvardi, B., Kovacs, I.J., Szabo, C., Falus, G., Ujvari, G., Besnyi, A., Bertalan, E., Budai, F., Horvath, Z.: Origin and weathering of landslide material in a loess area: a geochemical study of the Kulcs landslide, Hungary. Environ. Earth Sci. 75, 1299 (2016)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Zhao, Y., Cui, P., Hu, L.B., Hueckel, T.: Multi-scale chemo-mechanical analysis of the slip surface of landslides in the Three Gorges, China. Sci. China Ser. E: Technol. Sci. 54(7), 1757–1765 (2011)CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of ToledoToledoUSA
  2. 2.Institute of Mountain Hazards and EnvironmentChinese Academy of SciencesChengduChina

Personalised recommendations