With the increase of human engineering activities, global climate change and active plate tectonics movement, the giant landslide frequently occurred in southwest China, which caused huge property and human losses. Besides, the potential landslides pose severely threaten to the construction and operation of airports, railways, highways and power stations etc. In order to provide accurate guidance for the landslide investigation, stability analysis and mitigation, the giant landslide is redefined according to landslide volume, depth of slip surface, complexity of landslide mechanisms, and degree of landslide mitigation difficulty, and classified with the typological classification approach based on the twofold attributes of landslide behavior including formation mechanisms and reactivation features. Finally, the threefold particularity of the giant landslide is also summarized, which enables a more effective landslide mitigation design.


With the increase of anthropogenic activities, global climate change and active plate tectonics movement such as continual uplifting of Qinghai-Tibet plateau and strong earthquakes, the occurrence of giant landslides was in ascending trend in southwest China (Huang, 2009), which caused serious destruction, and greatly endangers such engineering construction from safety, time and economic aspects as airports, railways, highways, power stations, etc. Giant landslides have huge scale, complex formation/reactivation mechanisms and mechanical behavior. They may not be identified during the hazard investigation, but may be firstly initiated or reactivated due to the following engineering activities, heavy rainfall or strong earthquakes. Consequently, the landslide mitigation is inevitable and costly. However, it is difficult to control the deformation of giant landslide with lack of a correct understanding of genetic mechanisms (Marui, 2012; Zhang, 2000) and the excessive large sliding forces of the slide blocks calculated by the conventional limit equilibrium method. For instance, the failure of anchored pile wall for the No.102 giant ancient landslide (Zhu et al., 2012) and stabilization measures for the Sidi Rached viaduct landslide(Guemache et al., 2011); four rows of piles had not prevented the occurrence of the No.12 landslide in a high fill slope in the Panzhihua airport (Li et al., 2012).

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