2009
DOI: 10.1029/2007jf000941 View full text |Buy / Rent full text
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Abstract: [1] Dry slab avalanches release by a sequence of propagating fractures. In this paper, I provide field measurements of the important length parameters resulting from fractures for hundreds fallen slabs including depth, length, and width. The field data show wide variations in these parameters. Probability plots of all dimensions (length, width, and depth) suggest they approximately obey log normal probability density functions. Given slab dimensions, two applications are considered on the basis of the field da… Show more

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“…A measurement of short critical length implies only an unstable snow pack without the potential size of the avalanche expected taken into account. McClung [2008] has given estimates of how avalanche volume and destructive potential increase as D increases.…”
Section: Data Characteristicsmentioning
“…However, the procedure chosen is highly speculative. A more realistic description of the release conditions, including the most recent developments concerning the size distribution of snow avalanches (McClung, 2009) could easily be included in our framework.…”
Section: French Avalanche Database Data Transformation and Stopping mentioning
“…For agglomerates, the strength of an agglomerate is expected to depend on the bonding mechanism as discussed by [Mishra and Thornton, 2001]. Indeed, the densification during tumbler rotation (Figure 4.7) plays a role since fracture toughness of snow depends on density [Bazant et al, 2003;McClung, 2009]. Hapgood et al [2007] observed that the extent of consolidation depends on the intensity of agitation in the tumbler and resistance of the granule to deformation.…”
Section: Discussionmentioning
“…Bažant et al (2003) suggested the length of the zones is L & D where D is slab thickness. It is shown by McClung (2009) that both the typical length and width of slab avalanches are on the order of 100D. Thus, from these two simple scaling laws, if it is assumed that one imperfection is under a snow slab, the total area is about 10,000D 2 , and the imperfection size is about 1D 2 , the snowpack is stable over an area of about 99.99% of the total area under the slab.…”
Section: Release Of Dry Snow Slab Avalanchesmentioning
“…[44] Tensile slab fractures in slab avalanches [McClung, 2009b] occur, on average, at a distance of 50D about upslope from the point of initiation which is long after weak layer propagation. Thus, the initial slab fractures seen in some of the propagation saw tests (tensile fracture at 1D) seem to be an artifact of the gap created by the saw rather than having much relation to avalanche tensile fractures.…”
Section: Appendix A: Some Features Of the Propagation Saw Tests In Rementioning