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Long-term development of slope-type debris flows in Horlachtal, Austria based on historical and recent data


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Rom, Jakob ; Haas, Florian ; Heckmann, Tobias ; Altmann, Moritz ; Fleischer, Fabian ; Betz-Nutz, Sarah ; Camillo, Ressl ; Becht, Michael:
Long-term development of slope-type debris flows in Horlachtal, Austria based on historical and recent data.
Veranstaltung: Mid-European Geomorphology Meeting 2021, 06.-09.11.2021, Munich.
(Veranstaltungsbeitrag: Kongress/Konferenz/Symposium/Tagung, Poster)


Climate change and the resulting changes in climate parameters influence high alpine processes severely. In order to understand the effects on single processes, long-term studies are necessary.
This work investigates the development of debris flow activity in the Horlachtal, a small catchment (~ 55 km²) in the Stubai Alps, Austria. Based on historical and recent orthophotos (available from 1947 to 2020 in eleven time steps), debris flow process areas are mapped precisely and their respective age can be determined. This resulted in a large data set with more than 820 dated debris flow processes in the Horlachtal, which allows us to draw conclusions about changes in frequencies as well as alterations of debris flow starting zones. Due to their high spatial resolution, two LiDAR data sets from 2006 and 2017 are used to determine the deposition volume of debris flows in the corresponding period. Using a volume-area relationship, magnitudes of debris flows that did not occur in the period between the LiDAR data sets can be calculated. This allows the comparison of process magnitudes with a large debris flow sample size over a long period of time. In addition, a calculation of the hydrological catchment area for each debris flow starting zone enables us to compare frequencies and magnitudes in relation to catchment parameters as well.
Preliminary results do not show a significant increase or decrease in debris flow process activity over time, but rather indicate phases of increased and phases of low activity. In particular, the period between 1990 and 2009 shows an increased frequency of debris flows. The process mapping in Horlachtal also provides evidence that extreme precipitation events triggering debris flows can sometimes occur very locally. Furthermore, there is a positive correlation between the size of the hydrological catchment area of a starting zone and the number of triggered processes. In addition, the debris flow channels show a trend towards increased incision of the transport zones into the underlying material, which leads to deeply incised and locally fixed channels.
The presented work is part of the DFG / FWF funded research group SEHAG (Sensitivity of High Alpine Geosystems in relation to climate change since 1850).

Weitere Angaben

Publikationsform:Veranstaltungsbeitrag (unveröffentlicht): Kongress/Konferenz/Symposium/Tagung, Poster
Sprache des Eintrags:Englisch
Institutionen der Universität:Mathematisch-Geographische Fakultät > Geographie > Lehrstuhl für Physische Geographie
Titel an der KU entstanden:Ja
Eingestellt am: 07. Dez 2021 09:05
Letzte Änderung: 07. Dez 2021 09:05
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