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On the characterization of seismic signals generated by snow avalanches for monitoring purposes

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Abstract:

Seismic signals from artificially released avalanches were studied in an attempt to characterize them for avalanche-monitoring purposes. The seismic signals generated by different sizes and types of avalanches were recorded and analyzed in the time and frequency domains. Synchronized recordings of the corresponding seismic signals and the video images of the evolution of the avalanches were obtained together with a detailed cartography. Characteristic signatures in the frequency and time domains were found to depend on the characteristics of the avalanche path and measuring location, but to be mostly independent of avalanche size. The source of the different parts of the recorded seismic signals was determined. A relationship was observed between the avalanche size and the amplitude of the signals. Given the presence of local site effects, a prior seismic characterization of the avalanche path in relation to the recording sites is necessary for monitoring purposes. Moreover, it was found that sliding slabs in the early phase of acceleration produce little seismic energy, resulting in a time lapse between the observable start of the avalanche and the arrival of the detectable seismic waves at the receiving station.

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.3189/172756401781819634

Publication date: January 1, 2001

More about this publication?
  • The Annals of Glaciology is a peer-reviewed, thematic journal published 2 to 4 times a year by the International Glaciological Society (IGS). Publication frequency is determined and volume/issue numbers assigned by the IGS Council on a year-to-year basis and with a lead time of 3 to 4 years. The Annals of Glaciology is included in the ISI Science Citation Index from volume 50, number 50 onwards.

    Themes can be on any aspect of the study of snow and ice. Individual members can make a suggestion for a theme for an Annals issue to the Secretary General, who will forward it to the IGS Publications Committee. The IGS Publication Committee will make a recommendation for an individual themed Annals issue, together with a potential Annals Chief Editor for that issue, to IGS Council. The IGS Council will make the decision whether to proceed, taking into account the spread of topics and the overall capacity for publication of pages in Annals.

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