Monitoring and Analysis of Frozen Debris Lobes Using Remote Sensing

Frozen debris lobes (FDLs) are slow-moving landslides along permafrost-affected slopes. Within the Dalton Highway corridor in the southern Brooks Range, Alaska, the project identified 43 FDLs, with 23 occurring less than one mile uphill of the Dalton Highway. The closest FDL to the highway, FDL-A, was just over 136 ft away from the embankment when measured in August 2014. Should the rate of FDL-A increase to match those measured on other, faster-moving FDLs, it could cover the distance to the highway in about a year. When it does reach the highway, the project estimates it will place 60 tons of debris on the highway each day. This research project will employ remotely sensed data using multiple data acquisition methods to monitor and analyze FDLs at different temporal scales, thereby increasing the understanding of rates and episodes of movement of these potential geohazards. The project will evaluate each technique for its overall cost, ease of use, and applicability to assessing the flow dynamics of FDLs. The results produced from this study are critical for stakeholders to make informed future decisions regarding the infrastructure and mitigation strategies.


  • English


  • Status: Completed
  • Funding: $500000.00
  • Contract Numbers:



  • Sponsor Organizations:

    Department of Transportation

    Office of the Assistant Secretary for Research and Technology
    1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE
    Washington, DC  United States  20590
  • Project Managers:

    Singh, Caesar

  • Performing Organizations:

    University of Alaska, Fairbanks

    Department of Mineral & Geological Engineering
    P.O. Box 755800
    Fairbanks, AK  United States  99775-5800
  • Principal Investigators:

    Darrow, Margaret

    Meyer, Franz

    Cunningham, Keith

  • Start Date: 20140923
  • Expected Completion Date: 0
  • Actual Completion Date: 20161231
  • Source Data: RiP Project 38142

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01560599
  • Record Type: Research project
  • Source Agency: University of Alaska, Fairbanks
  • Contract Numbers: OASRTRS-14-H-UAF-B, G00009752
  • Files: RiP
  • Created Date: Apr 18 2015 1:00AM