Large landslides on passive continental margins: processes, hypotheses and outstanding questions

Masson, D.G.; Wynn, R.B.; Talling, P.J.. 2010 Large landslides on passive continental margins: processes, hypotheses and outstanding questions. In: Mosher, D.C.; Shipp, C.; Moscardelli, L.; Chaytor, J.; Baxter, C.; Lee, H.; Urgeles, R., (eds.) Submarine mass movements and their consequences: 4th International Symposium, Austin, Texas, 9th-11th November 2009. Dordrecht, Netherlands, Springer, 153-165, 786pp. (Advances in Natural and Technological Hazards Research, 28).

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The volume, area affected, and runout of submarine landslides can exceed those of terrestrial events by two orders of magnitude. The Storegga Slide off Norway affected an area the size of Scotland and moved enough sediment to bury the entire country to a depth of 80 m. Modern geophysics provides a clear picture of large landslides and what their source and depositional areas look like. From this, we can deduce the processes that operated during downslope transport. However, our understanding of many aspects of landslide processes is based on hypotheses that are difficult to test. Elevated pore pressures are essential for landslide initiation on low continental margin slopes, yet understanding of how high pressures are generated or how fluid migration affects slope stability is limited. Sediments may be pre-conditioned for failure by the processes that originally deposited them, e.g., through creation of weak layers, but the processes and parameters that might control this are largely unknown.

Item Type: Publication - Book Section
Digital Object Identifier (DOI):
ISBN: 9789048130702
Date made live: 02 Feb 2010 +0 (UTC)

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