The role of mass wasting in glacial forelands of the Andes

Rock avalanche lobe in Patagonia
Photo: Tomáš Pánek
Rock avalanche lobe in Patagonia

Funding agency:

Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG)

International Research Training Group StRATEGy – Project G 1.2

 

Funding period:

10/2018 - 09/2021

Project description:


The Patagonian lowland is marked by volcanic tablelands scattered from the Andean Cordillera until the Atlantic Ocean. The rims of these mostly basaltic plateaus are affected by giant slope failures with sizes up to several kilometers. We study especially the Patagonian Andean foreland where glacial processes accelerate those failures. The weight of glaciers, meltwater, and thawing permafrost could play important roles in destabilizing slopes. Stratigraphic and lithological factors favor aquifers, creating springs in a mostly arid region. Those springs create wetlands with peat deposits of meter-thick size. At the Meseta del Lago Buenos Aires, a basaltic plateau near the Andean Cordillera and south of the Lake Lago Buenos Aires, several massive earthflows developed deforming peat deposits in the last 2000 years.

Using different dating techniques we are trying to reconstruct the evolution of landslides in this region. During field trips we sample peat deposits (14C), drill into kettle holes within the landslide deposit, or sample lacustrine deposits (OSL). We use drone surveys to make geomorphological maps and create DEMs for mass assessments. We use remote sensing to map landslides, earthflows and lateral spreads and are trying to detect automatically similar deposits.  

Cooperation partners:

Dr. Diego Winocur, University of Buenos Aieres

Dr. Tomáš Pánek , University of Ostrava

Rock avalanche lobe in Patagonia
Photo: Tomáš Pánek
Rock avalanche lobe in Patagonia

Project webpages

International esearch training school StRATEGyhttp://irtg-strategy.de/en/

PhD project G1.2: The role of mass wasting in glacial forelands of the Andes