Articles | Volume 14, issue 1
Research article
17 Jan 2020
Research article |  | 17 Jan 2020

Modeling snow slab avalanches caused by weak-layer failure – Part 1: Slabs on compliant and collapsible weak layers

Philipp L. Rosendahl and Philipp Weißgraeber

Model code and software

Weak layer anticrack nucleation model 2phi

Short summary
Dry-snow slab avalanche release is preceded by a fracture process within the snowpack. Recognizing weak layer collapse as an integral part of the fracture process is crucial and explains phenomena such as whumpf sounds and remote triggering of avalanches from low-angle terrain. In this first part of the two-part work we propose a novel closed-form analytical model for a snowpack that provides a highly efficient and precise analysis of the mechanical response of a loaded snowpack.