Activity of the Yakatabari mudslide complex, Porgera, Papua New Guinea

R. J. Blong*, R. C M Goldsmith

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


The Yakatabari mudslide complex, formed on overconsolidated mudrocks in Enga Province, Papua New Guinea, has a volume of about 16 × 106 m3. Detailed examination during 17 years as part of a mining development indicates a variety of colluvium types with variable properties, but average peak shear strength values of φ′p = 24.5° and cp′ = 11 kPa. Simple models using the infinite slope stability assumptions suggest a probability of failure of ∼ 22%. Several historic failures have occurred within the mudslide complex since 1974 and rates of movement of 40-240 mm/month have been documented on a number of survey lines. Prehistoric failures are indicated by arcuate scarps across the complex. Twenty 14C dates from the mudslide indicate a failure history spanning more than 40,000 years. The Yakatabari mudslide complex appears to be a very long-lived landslide. Landslides of similar longevity appear to have not been described in the literature but it is unlikely that the Yakatabari example is unique.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-17
Number of pages17
JournalEngineering Geology
Issue number1-2
Publication statusPublished - 1993

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