Flowslides in granular soils pose a major threat to life and the environment. Their initiation in unsaturated soils is regulated by rainfall infiltration which reduces the matric suction and hence shear strength. Analysis of such phenomena is of strategic importance especially when it aims to mitigate landslide risk by means of early warning systems (EWSs). In this framework, physically-based models need to reproduce the hydro-mechanical behaviour of the slopes through numerical analyses, whose main uncertainty concerns the hydraulic conditions at the boundaries of the studied domain and hydraulic conductivity functions of unsaturated soils. Hence consummate knowledge of both these factors is absolutely necessary for efficient predictions. In this paper hydraulic boundary conditions and hydraulic conductivity functions are investigated at the scale of the slope through an application of soil water balance based on in-situ monitoring at the test site of Monteforte Irpino (southern Italy). Meteorological data, matric suction and soil water content measurements were collected over four years at the test site. The soil water balance was analysed on a seasonal time scale with regard to the whole pyroclastic cover resting on the steep limestone substratum. Infiltration and runoff are estimated, interaction between the soil cover and the substratum is investigated, and the hydraulic conductivity functions operative at the site scale are defined. © 2015 Elsevier B.V.

Soil water balance in an unsaturated pyroclastic slope for evaluation of soil hydraulic behaviour and boundary conditions

PIRONE, MARIANNA;PAPA, RAFFAELE;NICOTERA, MARCO VALERIO;URCIUOLI, GIANFRANCO
2015

Abstract

Flowslides in granular soils pose a major threat to life and the environment. Their initiation in unsaturated soils is regulated by rainfall infiltration which reduces the matric suction and hence shear strength. Analysis of such phenomena is of strategic importance especially when it aims to mitigate landslide risk by means of early warning systems (EWSs). In this framework, physically-based models need to reproduce the hydro-mechanical behaviour of the slopes through numerical analyses, whose main uncertainty concerns the hydraulic conditions at the boundaries of the studied domain and hydraulic conductivity functions of unsaturated soils. Hence consummate knowledge of both these factors is absolutely necessary for efficient predictions. In this paper hydraulic boundary conditions and hydraulic conductivity functions are investigated at the scale of the slope through an application of soil water balance based on in-situ monitoring at the test site of Monteforte Irpino (southern Italy). Meteorological data, matric suction and soil water content measurements were collected over four years at the test site. The soil water balance was analysed on a seasonal time scale with regard to the whole pyroclastic cover resting on the steep limestone substratum. Infiltration and runoff are estimated, interaction between the soil cover and the substratum is investigated, and the hydraulic conductivity functions operative at the site scale are defined. © 2015 Elsevier B.V.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11588/609691
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