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Initiation and mobility of irrigation-induced loess flowslide recurrence on the Heifangtai area in China: Insights from hydrogeological conditions and liquefaction criteria
  • Fanyu Zhang,
  • Gonghui Wang,
  • Jianbing Peng
Fanyu Zhang
Lanzhou University

Corresponding Author:fanyuzhang@gmail.com

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Gonghui Wang
Kyoto University
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Jianbing Peng
Chang'an University
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The Heifangtai area is commonly known as the museum of loess landslides in China. Irrigation-induced loess flowslides frequently recur along the margin cliffs of the Hefaingtai terrace, causing 42 fatalities and significant economic losses, as well as major ecological and environmental problems, such as increased soil erosion rate. The initiation and mobility of these irrigation-induced loess flowslide recurrences remain undetermined. On three typical recurrences of the loess flowslides, we performed joint geophysical detection using electrical resistivity tomography (ERT) and multichannel analysis of surface waves (MASW), and also tested loess basic properties by field profile sampling. In addition, we examined the shear behaviors of saturated loess utilizing an undrained ring shear apparatus. The geophysical signatures and in-situ loess property profiles showed that hydrogeological conditions are key to the initiation of recurring loess flowslides. The results also demonstrated that liquefaction shear behaviors of saturated loess control the mobility of after-failure of the loess flowslides. Rapid criteria of liquefaction susceptibility evaluation are suggested to provide a better understanding of the dynamic mechanisms of loess flowslides. These findings shed substantial light on long-runout flowslides that occur in fine-grain soil and their implications for landslide hazard mitigation.