Scoops3D: software to analyze 3D slope stability throughout a digital landscape

Techniques and Methods 14-A1
By: , and 



The computer program, Scoops3D, evaluates slope stability throughout a digital landscape represented by a digital elevation model (DEM). The program uses a three-dimensional (3D) method of columns approach to assess the stability of many (typically millions) potential landslides within a user-defined size range. For each potential landslide (or failure), Scoops3D assesses the stability of a rotational, spherical slip surface encompassing many DEM cells using a 3D version of either Bishop’s simplified method or the Ordinary (Fellenius) method of limit-equilibrium analysis. Scoops3D has several options for the user to systematically and efficiently search throughout an entire DEM, thereby incorporating the effects of complex surface topography. In a thorough search, each DEM cell is included in multiple potential failures, and Scoops3D records the lowest stability (factor of safety) for each DEM cell, as well as the size (volume or area) associated with each of these potential landslides. It also determines the least-stable potential failure for the entire DEM. The user has a variety of options for building a 3D domain, including layers or full 3D distributions of strength and pore-water pressures, simplistic earthquake loading, and unsaturated suction conditions. Results from Scoops3D can be readily incorporated into a geographic information system (GIS) or other visualization software. This manual includes information on the theoretical basis for the slope-stability analysis, requirements for constructing and searching a 3D domain, a detailed operational guide (including step-by-step instructions for using the graphical user interface [GUI] software, Scoops3D-i) and input/output file specifications, practical considerations for conducting an analysis, results of verification tests, and multiple examples illustrating the capabilities of Scoops3D. Easy-to-use software installation packages are available for the Windows or Macintosh operating systems; these packages install the compiled Scoops3D program, the GUI (Scoops3D-i), and associated documentation. Several Scoops3D examples, including all input and output files, are available as well. The source code is written in the Fortran 90 language and can be compiled to run on any computer operating system with an appropriate compiler.

Publication type Report
Publication Subtype USGS Numbered Series
Title Scoops3D: software to analyze 3D slope stability throughout a digital landscape
Series title Techniques and Methods
Series number 14-A1
DOI 10.3133/tm14A1
Year Published 2015
Language English
Publisher U.S. Geological Survey
Publisher location Reston, VA
Contributing office(s) Volcano Science Center
Description Report: xiv, 218 p.; Readme; Windows install package; Mac install disk image; examples folder
Larger Work Type Report
Larger Work Subtype USGS Numbered Series
Larger Work Title Section A: Modeling methods in Book 14 Landslide and Debris-Flow Assessment
Public Comments This report is Chapter 1 of Section A: Modeling methods in Book 14 Landslide and Debris-Flow Assessment
Online Only (Y/N) Y
Additional Online Files (Y/N) Y
Google Analytic Metrics Metrics page
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