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    Approaches to the study of hillslope development due to mass movement

    Brooks, Susan and Richards, K.S. and Anderson, M.G. (1993) Approaches to the study of hillslope development due to mass movement. Progress in Physical Geography 17 (1), pp. 32-49. ISSN 0309-1333.

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    Abstract

    Slope-angle histograms have traditionally provided a data base for the evaluation of changing angles over geological time. Ideas relating to hillslope development due to mass movement have considered a lowering in regolith shear resistance due to weathering, producing slope-angle decline. Decreasing values for angles of internal friction, along with increasing pore water pressures, have been suggested to explain slope-angle decline through time. These ideas have considered simple changes in undifferentiated regolith. This article considers the role of progressive pedogenesis in determining the changing stability of slopes. For this it is necessary to evaluate the changes which occur within individual horizons to produce an increasingly differentiated soil cover. Angles of internal friction alter at different rates and in different ways depending on whether the horizon is losing or gaining weathered material through translocation. Furthermore, the increasing internal differentiation of the soil cover has complex effects on its hydrological response. Instead of the two scenarios previously envisaged, one involving the water table below the slip surface and the other involving the water table at the ground surface, slope stability needs to be evaluated in the light of continually changing negative or positive pore water pressures. Each storm produces a different response, and this response alters with soil development, complicating the assessment of failure timing and depth. The study of evolving soil profiles is of fundamental significance to a range of geomorphological processes, requiring closer evaluation in the future.

    Metadata

    Item Type: Article
    Keyword(s) / Subject(s): hillslopes mass movement, soil profile, hydrology
    School: Birkbeck Schools and Departments > School of Social Sciences, History and Philosophy > Department of Geography
    Depositing User: Sarah Hall
    Date Deposited: 08 Nov 2016 13:50
    Last Modified: 08 Nov 2016 13:50
    URI: http://eprints.bbk.ac.uk/id/eprint/16618

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