Flying avalanches

Kristin Martha Hákonardóttir*, Andrew J. Hogg, Jenny Batey, Andrew W. Woods

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

32 Citations (Scopus)


Rapidly flowing avalanches are highly destructive natural phenomena, especially when they interact with buildings or other man-made structures. Here we report a new experimental study of the interaction of a rapid granular flow with a solid barrier, which is of a comparable height to the flow depth. Our experiments show that the flow detaches from the top of the obstacle as a coherent granular jet, the motion of which is well described by theory for an inviscid jet of fluid. As well as giving fundamental new insights into the behaviour of granular flows, the results have important practical consequences for the design of dams used to provide protection from snow avalanches.
Translated title of the contributionFlying avalanches
Original languageEnglish
Article numberart. no. 2191
JournalGeophysical Research Letters
Issue number23
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2003

Bibliographical note

Publisher: Amer Geophysical Union
Other identifier: IDS number 756MD

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