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Volume 11, issue 1
The Cryosphere, 11, 217-228, 2017
https://doi.org/10.5194/tc-11-217-2017
© Author(s) 2017. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.
The Cryosphere, 11, 217-228, 2017
https://doi.org/10.5194/tc-11-217-2017
© Author(s) 2017. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.

Research article 27 Jan 2017

Research article | 27 Jan 2017

Snow fracture in relation to slab avalanche release: critical state for the onset of crack propagation

Johan Gaume et al.
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Cited articles  
Anderson, T.: Fracture Mechanics: Fundamentals and Applications, CRC Press, 640 pp., 2005.
Bair, E. H., Simenhois, R., Birkeland, K., and Dozier, J.: A field study on failure of storm snow slab avalanches, Cold Reg. Sci. Technol., 79, 20–28, 2012.
Bair, E. H., Simenhois, R., van Herwijnen, A., and Birkeland, K.: The influence of edge effects on crack propagation in snow stability tests, The Cryosphere, 8, 1407–1418, https://doi.org/10.5194/tc-8-1407-2014, 2014.
Bartelt, P. and Lehning, M.: A physical SNOWPACK model for the Swiss avalanche warning: Part I: numerical model, Cold Reg. Sci. Technol., 35, 123–145, 2002.
Brun, E., David, P., Sudul, M., and Brunot, G.: A numerical model to simulate snow-cover stratigraphy for operational avalanche forecasting, J. Glaciol., 38, 13–22, 1992.
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Based on DEM simulations we developed a new model for the onset of crack propagation in snow slab avalanche release. The model reconciles past approaches by considering the complex interplay between slab elasticity and the mechanical behavior of the weak layer including its structural collapse. The model agrees with extensive field data and can reproduce crack propagation on low-angle terrain and the decrease in critical crack length with increasing slope angle observed in numerical experiments.
Based on DEM simulations we developed a new model for the onset of crack propagation in snow...
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