University of Twente Student Theses


Multi-temporal study of earthquake induced landslides: A comparative case study of Beichuan, China and Central Italy

Riguer, Darwin Edmund L. (2011) Multi-temporal study of earthquake induced landslides: A comparative case study of Beichuan, China and Central Italy.

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Abstract:Spatial relations and distribution on how landslides behave in response to a triggering factor have been analyzed by many researchers in which they have stated out that earthquake induced landslide (EIL) are related to geo-environmental precursors and seismic parameters such as fault type, displacement, earthquake depth and magnitude. However, most studies that relate the landslides caused by earthquakes to certain parameters were determined through comparing inventories from different study areas and therefore an area where different earthquakes occurred with such occasions are relatively rare. That is why Beichuan area offers opportunity to map a recent very large EIL event (2008, Mw=7.9) and a sub-recent lesser event (1958, Mw=6.2). Therefore, an investigation of different EIL inventories from the same area is useful because such investigation presents an opportunity for determining event-based landslide distributions triggered by two earthquakes of different magnitudes at different points in time within the same study region. The Beichuan area in China and Central Italy prove to be the suitable areas for such investigation. For the Beichuan area, the two events were the devastating earthquake that occurred with moment magnitude (Mw) 7.9 at Wenchuan adjacent to the Sichuan basin on 12 May 2008 (Zhang et al., 2008) and the earthquake of magnitude (Mw) 6.2 occurring in 1958. In Central Italy along the Apennine chains, the two seismic events that occurred in the same area were the Umbria-Marche earthquake that occurred on September 1997 (Mw 5.8) and the L’Aquila earthquake that happened on April 2009 (Mw 6.3). It can be concluded that, although earthquakes of different magnitudes may happen in the same area, they may create quite different landslide inventories, which are not clearly related to the same geo-environmental factors. Earthquakes that happen in different geo-environmental settings, such as Central Italy and the Sichuan mountains in China, may also produce EILs with entirely different characteristics. Different earthquakes may not have the same effect on the geo-environment such as in the maximum spatial relation to slope, slope aspect, and lithology. This study has shown that as far as the two study areas and four EILs that were studied are concerned, it is not possible to draw general conclusions that can be used for designed an improved method for earthquake induced landslide susceptibility assessment
Item Type:Essay (Master)
Faculty:ITC: Faculty of Geo-information Science and Earth Observation
Programme:Geoinformation Science and Earth Observation MSc (75014)
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