A simple and efficient GIS tool for volume calculations of submarine landslides.

Völker, David (2010) A simple and efficient GIS tool for volume calculations of submarine landslides. Geo-Marine Letters, 30 . pp. 541-547. DOI 10.1007/s00367-009-0176-0.

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Abstract

A numeric tool is presented for calculating volumes of topographic voids such as slump scars of landslides, canyons or craters (negative/concave morphology), or alternatively, bumps and hills (positive/convex morphology) by means of digital elevation models embedded within a geographical information system (GIS). In this study, it has been used to calculate landslide volumes. The basic idea is that a (singular) event (landslide, meteorite impact, volcanic eruption) has disturbed an intact surface such that it is still possible to distinguish between the former (undisturbed) landscape and the disturbance (crater, slide scar, debris avalanche). In such cases, it is possible to reconstruct the paleo-surface and to calculate the volume difference between both surfaces, thereby approximating the volume gain or loss caused by the event. I tested the approach using synthetically generated land surfaces that were created on the basis of Shuttle Radar Topography Mission data. Also, I show the application to two real cases, (1) the calculation of the volume of the Masaya Slide, a submarine landslide on the Pacific continental slope of Nicaragua, and (2) the calculation of the void of a segment of the Fish River Canyon, Namibia. The tool is provided as a script file for the free GIS GRASS. It performs with little effort, and offers a range of interpolation parameters. Testing with different sets of interpolation parameters results in a small range of uncertainty. This tool should prove useful in surface studies not exclusively on earth.

Document Type: Article
Keywords: GIS, volume calculation, submarine mass wasting, slump
Research affiliation: OceanRep > SFB 574 > A1
OceanRep > SFB 574
OceanRep > GEOMAR > FB4 Dynamics of the Ocean Floor > FB4-GDY Marine Geodynamics
Refereed: Yes
Open Access Journal?: No
DOI etc.: 10.1007/s00367-009-0176-0
ISSN: 0276-0460
Contribution Number:
ProjectNumber
SFB 574178
Date Deposited: 09 Dec 2009 16:00
Last Modified: 19 May 2017 12:38
URI: http://oceanrep.geomar.de/id/eprint/3079

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