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Volume 11, issue 7 | Copyright
Geosci. Model Dev., 11, 2841-2856, 2018
© Author(s) 2018. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Development and technical paper 13 Jul 2018

Development and technical paper | 13 Jul 2018

EDDA 2.0: integrated simulation of debris flow initiation and dynamics considering two initiation mechanisms

Ping Shen1, Limin Zhang1, Hongxin Chen2, and Ruilin Fan1 Ping Shen et al.
  • 1Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, Clear Water Bay, Hong Kong
  • 2Key Laboratory of Geotechnical and Underground Engineering of Ministry of Education, Department of Geotechnical Engineering, Tongji University, China

Abstract. Climate change is resulting in more frequent rainstorms and more rain-induced debris flows in mountainous areas. The prediction of likely hazard zones is important for debris flow risk assessment and management. Existing numerical methods for debris flow analysis often require the input of hydrographs at prescribed initiation locations, ignoring the initiation process and leading to large uncertainties in debris flow initiation locations, times, and volumes when applied to regional debris flow analysis. The evolution of the flowing mixture in time and space is also barely addressed. This paper presents a new integrated numerical model, EDDA 2.0, to simulate the whole process of debris flow initiation, motion, entrainment, deposition, and property changes. Two physical initiation mechanisms are modelled: transformation from slope failures and surface erosion. Three numerical tests and field application to a catastrophic debris flow event are conducted to verify the model components and evaluate the model performance. The results indicate that the integrated model is capable of simulating the initiation and subsequent flowing process of rain-induced debris flows, as well as the physical evolution of the flowing mixture. The integrated model provides a powerful tool for analysing multi-hazard processes, hazard interactions, and regional debris flow risk assessment in the future.

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Short summary
A rainstorm can trigger numerous debris flows. A difficult task in debris flow risk assessment is to identify debris flow initiation locations and volumes. This paper presents a new model to solve this problem by physically simulating the initiation of debris flows by hillslope bed erosion and transformation from slope failures. The sediment from these two initiation mechanisms joins the flow mixture, and the volume of the flow mixture increases along the flow path due to additional bed erosion.
A rainstorm can trigger numerous debris flows. A difficult task in debris flow risk assessment...