Integration of geophysical, hydrogeological and geotechnical methods to aid monitoring landslide in Nordic countries: A 4D approach for landslide risk assessment

Geoscientists Without Borders
Landslide Preparedness Projects

Landslides are one of the most commonly occurring natural disasters. Global damages range in the billions of dollars and cost hundreds of lives each year.

This project focused on quick clay or rapid earth flow landslides in Sweden. These landslides are not particularly constrained to steep slopes and have been known to slide even in low-to-moderate angle slopes. Undisturbed quick clay resembles a water-saturated gel. When a mass of quick clay undergoes sufficient stress, it instantly turns into a flowing ooze, a process known as liquefaction.

Investigations involved 2D and 3D p and S wave source and receiver surveys, geoelectrics, controlled-source and radio-magnetotellurics, ground gravity, GPR and magnetic surveys. These data in combination with existing geotechnical information and hydrogeological investigations were processed or modeled to provide better insights into the mechanism(s) governing clay-related landslides and to provide high resolution images of the subsurface structures down to the bedrock

Status Complete

Statement of Work

Results from this project are being used by community and governmental groups in infrastructure planning and risk assessments. More than 40 students and senior geoscientists from five universities and three governmental institutions participated in this project. Six PhD students and four MSc students worked on this project and will use the results in their theses.

Dr. Krawcyk's paper "Quick clay Landslides in Sweden – Insights from Shear-wave Reflection Seismics and Geothechnical Integration" was selected as one ov the best presented at the Near Surface 2013 conference and invited to present at SAGEEP 2014.

Dr Malehmir is slated as a keynote during the ASEG 2015 conference to talk about his work on this project.

Project results and methodologies were shared at international conferences, and workshops. Project participants have been consulting with many other scientists interested in applying their methods to their localities.

Principal Investigator

Professor Alireza Malehmir, Uppsala University  

Team members

Uppsala University – Mehrdad Bastani, Christopher Juhlin, Allan Rodhe, Emil Lundberg, Saeid Cheraghi, Zhang Fengijio, Ian Snowball, Christopher Juhlin, Silvia Salas Romero
Geological Survey of Sweden – Lena Persson, Mehrdad Bastani
Polish Academy of Sciences – Michal Malinowski
Leibniz Institute for Applied Geophysics – Charlotte Krawczyk, Ulrich Polom and 2 MSC Students
University of Cologne – Bulent Tezkan, Marcus Gurk and 1 MSc Student
Syiah Kuala University – Nazli Ismail
Swedish Geotechnical Institute – Karin Lundstrom
Norwegian Research Institute – Isabelle Lecomte

Final Report 2011-2013

Conference publications (available upon request)
  • Salas-Romero et al. (Downhole and property measurements, submitted to EGU2014)
  • Krawczyk et al. (SH experiment and comparisons, Near Surface Geoscience 2013)
  • Adamczyk et al. (Waveform tomography, SEG2013)
  • Malehmir et al. (2D seismics and drilling results, project overview, SEG2013)
  • Salas-Romero et al. (New surface and downhole geophysical data, SEG2013)
  • Shan et al. (3D RMT inversion, SEG2013)
  • Adamczyk et al. (Waveform tomography, EGU2013)
  • Krawczyk et al. (SH experiment, EGU2013)
  • Adamczyk et al. (2D traveltime & waveform tomography, SEG/EAGE velocity model building workshop 2012)
  • Lundberg et al. (3D P-wave seismics- SEG2012)
  • Krawczyk et al. (SH experiment, Seismix2012, Beijing)
  • Adamczyk et al. (Full-waveform inversion, Seismix2012, Beijing)
  • Bastani et al. (Joint RMT, ERT and seismics-Near surface Geoscience 2012)
  • Malehmir (2D P-wave seismics, EAGE2012)
  • Adamczyk et al. (2D traveltime & waveform tomography, EAGE2012)
  • Sauvin et al. (Quick clays, geophysics in Norway and Sweden, EAGE2012)
  • Malehmir et al. (SEG-GWB project and progress, EGU2012)
  • Lundberg et al. (3D P-wave survey, EGU2012)
  • Polom et al. (SH 2D survey, EGU2012).
  • Shan, et al. (2D modeling quick clays at a landslide site in southwest Sweden)
  • Andersson (Berggrund och kvicklera mäts med vibrationer, in Swedish in Husbyggaren)
  • MyNewsDesk (March 2013) by the Geological Survey of Sweden about the project and the 2013 geophysical campaign
  • Geological Survey of Sweden, geophysics open house (March 2013) by Bastani et al.
  • Invited oral presentation-Public policies for landslides prediction and disasters prevention, Rio de Janeiro-Brazil.
Scientific journal publications
  • Malehmir, A., Bastani, M., Krawczyk, C., Gurk, M., Nazli, I., Polom, U., and Persson, L., 2013. Geophysical assessment and geotechnical investigation of quick-clay landslides - a Swedish case study. Near Surface Geophysics, 11, 341-350.
  • Malehmir, A., Saleem, U.M., and Bastani, M., 2013. High-resolution reflection seismic investigations of quick-clay and associated formations at a landslide scar in southwest Sweden. Journal of Applied Geophysics, 92, 84-102.
  • Adamczyk, A., Malinowski, M., and Malehmir, A., 2013. Application of first-arrival tomography to characterize a quick-clay landslide site in southwest Sweden. Acta Geophysica, 61, 1057-1073.
  • Kamm, J., Becken, M., Pedersen, L.B., 2013. Inversion of slingram electromagnetic induction data using a Born approximation. Geophysics, 78, E201-E212.
  • Polom, U., et al., 2013. Surveying near-surface depocentres by means of shear wave seismics. First Break, August 2013, 67-79.
  • Lundberg, E., et al., 2014. High-resolution 3D reflection seismic investigation over a quickclay landslide scar in southwest Sweden. In press in Geophysics.
  • Shan, C., et al., 2014. Integrated 2D interpretation of geophysical and geotechnical data to image quick-clays at a landslide site in southwest Sweden. In revision in Geophysics.
  • Adamczyk, A., et al., 2014. High resolution near surface velocity model building using full waveform tomography-a case study from southwest Sweden. In revision in Geophysical Journal International.
  • Kamm, J., et al., 2014. Joint refracted arrivals and ERT inversion. Submitted to Geophysics.
  • Shan, C., et al., 2014. 3D RMT results. To be submitted.
  • Salas-Romero et al., 2014. Downhole logging and property measurements and their correlation with surface geophysical data. In preparation.
  • Malehmir et al., 2014. A multidisciplinary geophysical, geotechnical and property investigation of quick clay landslides in Sweden. Planned for a special issue of the Geological Society of America (GSA).


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