ESR6: Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zurich (ETHZ), Switzerland

Grain scale modelling of triggering mechanisms of rainfall induced slope failures

Supervisor: Prof. Hans-Jürgen Herrmann

Objective: Modelling hydrologically-driven slope failure at grain scale

Methodology: The unsteady infiltration of water into an initially unsaturated granular material will be investigated by discrete approach. The capillary forces and contact forces will be modelled. The fingering at the wetting front will be studied considering the inhomogeneity and structure (fabric) of granular medium. Among others the influence of initial void ratio (density) and initial water content are taken into consideration. The loss of matric suction, crack formation and formation of compaction bands are on the agenda. The outcomes will provide valuable insight into the failure mechanisms of unsaturated soil under water infiltration.

Deliverable: Discrete model of rainfall induced slope failure

Secondments: ITAS: 12 p-ms (software coding), INPG: 2 p-ms (micro macro link)