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Geoscientific Model Development An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
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Volume 9, issue 9
Geosci. Model Dev., 9, 2909–2923, 2016
https://doi.org/10.5194/gmd-9-2909-2016
© Author(s) 2016. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.
Geosci. Model Dev., 9, 2909–2923, 2016
https://doi.org/10.5194/gmd-9-2909-2016
© Author(s) 2016. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.

Model description paper 31 Aug 2016

Model description paper | 31 Aug 2016

DebrisInterMixing-2.3: a finite volume solver for three-dimensional debris-flow simulations with two calibration parameters – Part 1: Model description

Albrecht von Boetticher1,3, Jens M. Turowski2, Brian W. McArdell3, Dieter Rickenmann3, and James W. Kirchner1,3 Albrecht von Boetticher et al.
  • 1Department of Environmental Systems Science, ETH Zentrum, CHN H41, 8092 Zürich, Switzerland
  • 2Helmholtz-Centre Potsdam GFZ German Research Center for Geosciences, Telegrafenberg, 14473 Potsdam, Germany
  • 3Swiss Federal Research Institute WSL, Zürcherstrasse 111, 8903 Birmensdorf, Switzerland

Abstract. Here, we present a three-dimensional fluid dynamic solver that simulates debris flows as a mixture of two fluids (a Coulomb viscoplastic model of the gravel mixed with a Herschel–Bulkley representation of the fine material suspension) in combination with an additional unmixed phase representing the air and the free surface. We link all rheological parameters to the material composition, i.e., to water content, clay content, and mineral composition, content of sand and gravel, and the gravel's friction angle; the user must specify only two free model parameters. The volume-of-fluid (VoF) approach is used to combine the mixed phase and the air phase into a single cell-averaged Navier–Stokes equation for incompressible flow, based on code adapted from standard solvers of the open-source CFD software OpenFOAM. This effectively single-phase mixture VoF method saves computational costs compared to the more sophisticated drag-force-based multiphase models. Thus, complex three-dimensional flow structures can be simulated while accounting for the pressure- and shear-rate-dependent rheology.

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Debris flows are characterized by unsteady flows of water with different content of clay, silt, sand, gravel, and large particles, resulting in a dense moving mixture mass. Here we present a three-dimensional fluid dynamic solver that simulates the flow as a mixture of a pressure-dependent rheology model of the gravel mixed with a Herschel–Bulkley rheology of the fine material suspension. We link rheological parameters to the material composition. The user must specify two free model parameters.
Debris flows are characterized by unsteady flows of water with different content of clay, silt,...
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