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Sci Rep. 2016 Jul 12;6:29797. doi: 10.1038/srep29797.

Optimized volume models of earthquake-triggered landslides.

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Key Laboratory of Active Tectonics and Volcano, Institute of Geology, China Earthquake Administration, Beijing, 100029, China.
Beijing Meteorological Information Center, Beijing Meteorological Service, Beijing, 100089, China.
China Earthquake Networks Center, Beijing, 100045, China.
Earth Observatory of Singapore, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore, 639798, Singapore.


In this study, we proposed three optimized models for calculating the total volume of landslides triggered by the 2008 Wenchuan, China Mw 7.9 earthquake. First, we calculated the volume of each deposit of 1,415 landslides triggered by the quake based on pre- and post-quake DEMs in 20 m resolution. The samples were used to fit the conventional landslide "volume-area" power law relationship and the 3 optimized models we proposed, respectively. Two data fitting methods, i.e. log-transformed-based linear and original data-based nonlinear least square, were employed to the 4 models. Results show that original data-based nonlinear least square combining with an optimized model considering length, width, height, lithology, slope, peak ground acceleration, and slope aspect shows the best performance. This model was subsequently applied to the database of landslides triggered by the quake except for two largest ones with known volumes. It indicates that the total volume of the 196,007 landslides is about 1.2 × 10(10) m(3) in deposit materials and 1 × 10(10) m(3) in source areas, respectively. The result from the relationship of quake magnitude and entire landslide volume related to individual earthquake is much less than that from this study, which reminds us the necessity to update the power-law relationship.

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