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Laboratory of Avalanche and Mudflow Processes Research

Research Staff:

Dr. Nikolay A. Kazakov, Head of Laboratory

Dr. Yury V. Gensiorovskiy, Researcher

Darja A. Bobrova, Junior Researcher

Ekaterina N. Kazakova, Junior Researcher

Valentina A. Lobkina, Junior Researcher


Technical Staff:

Ivan A. Kononov, Leading Engineer

Semion P. Zhiruev, Leading Engineer

Valentina K. Stavniychuk, Senior Engineer

Svetlana V. Rybal’chenko, Senior Engineer

Alexandra A. Muzychenko, Engineer


Sakhalin Branch of Far East Geological Institute

Far East Branch, Russian Academy of Sciences

25, Gorky Street, Yuzhno-Sakhalinsk, 693023, Russia

Tel: +7-4242-751335; Fax: +7-4242-751336

E-mail: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

The Laboratory of Avalanche and Mudflow Processes Research was formed in 2002. Since the laboratory’s inception it has been run by Dr. Nikolay A. Kazakov.

Major research directions

The laboratory researches evolution of nival, avalanche, and mudflow complexes in geoecological systems of the Russian Far East, as well characteristics of related processes and their influence on geoecological systems.


1. Investigations has been carried out into the genesis and dynamics patterns of snow cover, avalanches, mudflows, and other exogenous geodynamic processes found in the mid- and low-mountain relief of the Russian Far East. These studies have resulted in a method to quantitatively describe snow thickness texture as a deterministic fractal. This approach of describing snow thickness texture through fractal dimensionality permits mathematical modeling in order to elaborate methods of forecasting snow thickness characteristics of strength dynamics in different landscapes complementing the methods of crystal-morphological analysis of snow thickness structure.

2.  The laboratory has developed quantitative descriptions of avalanche, debris-flow and mudflow as solitare waves – solitons.

3. The laboratory has researched nival-glacier processes found in the mid- and low-mountain relief of the Russian Far East.

4. The laboratory has created physical and mathematical models of nival, avalanche, and mudflow processes; avalanche and mudflow wave dynamics; and avalanche and mudflow front as wave solitons. Specifically, the following topics have been analyzed: 
snow cover as an electrodynamic system; the fractal dimensionality of snow cover texture;  avalanche and mudflow complexes as trigger geosystems;  snow cover metamorphism as an energy-informational process; the self organization of dissipative structures in forming and developing of nival, avalanche, and mudflow complexes.

5. The laboratory has developed methods for mapping nival, avalanche, and mudflow processes and methods of building up mid-scale maps showing the intensity

of nival, avalanche, and mudflow processes in unstudied regions for application in engineering research and construction projects.

6. The laboratory has determined the theoretical bases and methodological principles of avalanche and mudflow processes control, as well as long-term forecasting principles
for determining the intensity or degree of avalanche and mudflow events. These permit setting up zones predicting intensity of expected avalanche and mudflow based solely on geological, geomorphological and landscape structure and climate data of the region. 

7. The laboratory has developed theoretical bases and methods for calculating the dynamic characteristics of catastrophic avalanches and mudflows as they apply

to engineering and construction.

8. The laboratory has studied anthropogenic transformations and their impact on nival, avalanche, and mudflow complexes and subsequent influence on the evolution of geoecological systems. 

9. The laboratory has been able to describe the formation of hill mountains of Sakhalin Island as the result of extreme volumes of debris-flow activity (more than 300 000 m3).