Uncertainty pattern in landslide susceptibility prediction modelling: Effects of different landslide boundaries and spatial shape expressions

Faming Huang, Jun Yan, Xuanmei Fan, Chi Yao (Korresp. Autor*in), Jinsong Huang, Wei Chen, Haoyuan Hong

Veröffentlichungen: Beitrag in FachzeitschriftArtikelPeer Reviewed


In some studies on landslide susceptibility mapping (LSM), landslide boundary and spatial shape characteristics have been expressed in the form of points or circles in the landslide inventory instead of the accurate polygon form. Different expressions of landslide boundaries and spatial shapes may lead to substantial differences in the distribution of predicted landslide susceptibility indexes (LSIs); moreover, the presence of irregular landslide boundaries and spatial shapes introduces uncertainties into the LSM. To address this issue by accurately drawing polygonal boundaries based on LSM, the uncertainty patterns of LSM modelling under two different landslide boundaries and spatial shapes, such as landslide points and circles, are compared. Within the research area of Ruijin City in China, a total of 370 landslides with accurate boundary information are obtained, and 10 environmental factors, such as slope and lithology, are selected. Then, correlation analyses between the landslide boundary shapes and selected environmental factors are performed via the frequency ratio (FR) method. Next, a support vector machine (SVM) and random forest (RF) based on landslide points, circles and accurate landslide polygons are constructed as point-, circle- and polygon-based SVM and RF models, respectively, to address LSM. Finally, the prediction capabilities of the above models are compared by computing their statistical accuracy using receiver operating characteristic analysis, and the uncertainties of the predicted LSIs under the above models are discussed. The results show that using polygonal surfaces with a higher reliability and accuracy to express the landslide boundary and spatial shape can provide a markedly improved LSM accuracy, compared to those based on the points and circles. Moreover, a higher degree of uncertainty of LSM modelling is present in the expression of points because there are too few grid units acting as model input variables. Additionally, the expression of the landslide boundary as circles introduces errors in measurement and is not as accurate as the polygonal boundary in most LSM modelling cases. In addition, the results under different conditions show that the polygon-based models have a higher LSM accuracy, with lower mean values and larger standard deviations compared with the point- and circle-based models. Finally, the overall LSM accuracy of the RF is superior to that of the SVM, and similar patterns of landslide boundary and spatial shape affecting the LSM modelling are reflected in the SVM and RF models.

FachzeitschriftGeoscience Frontiers
PublikationsstatusVeröffentlicht - März 2022

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