Erosion processes in black marl soils at the millimetre scale: preliminary insights from an analogous model
- 1University of Lausanne, Risk-group – ISTE – Institute of Earth Sciences, Lausanne, Switzerland
- 2IRSTEA Grenoble, Unité de recherche Erosion Torrentielle, Neige et Avalanches, BP 76, 38402 Saint Martin d'Hères, France
- †Deceased on 28 March 2015
Abstract. To investigate the millimetre-scale surface processes caused by natural rainfall, an undisturbed sample of badlands soil (1 m long, 0.5 m wide and 0.15 m thick) was carefully extracted. The sample is composed of black marl soil from a badlands area of the Draix Observatory (SE France). After extraction, the undisturbed sample was placed at the same slope angle (45°) as its original orientation and was then monitored for several processes via a terrestrial laser scanner (TLS) with millimetre-scale accuracy and resolution. This experiment identified several surface processes interpreted as micro-landslides, swelling of the black marl material and lateral expansion that closed desiccation cracks. These micro-processes illustrate the complexity of the surface micro-topography changes that control erosion and infiltration rates over time.