- Quick clay and landslides of clayey soils
- Physical Review Letters
- Volume | Issue number
- 103 | 18
- Number of pages
- Document type
- Faculty of Science (FNWI)
- Van der Waals-Zeeman Institute (WZI)
We study the rheology of quick clay, an unstable soil responsible for many landslides. We show that above a critical stress the material starts flowing abruptly with a very large viscosity decrease caused by the flow. This leads to avalanche behavior that accounts for the instability of quick clay soils. Reproducing landslides on a small scale in the laboratory shows that an additional factor that determines the violence of the slides is the inhomogeneity of the flow. We propose a simple yield stress model capable of reproducing the laboratory landslide data, allowing us to relate landslides to the measured rheology.
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