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URBAN

Differential Interferometric Application in Urban Areas

Demonstration of the use of differential SAR interferometry to map Earth surface displacement in urban environment, with the perspective to define a service, to generate application demonstration material and to develop a user community in the research, public and private sector.

 
Project References
 Name URBAN
 Title Differential Interferometric Application in Urban Areas
 Programme DUP (Data User Programme)
 Theme Land
 Cost €320k
 Type Service Demonstration
 Status Completed (1997-2001)
 Sensors ERS-1/2 : SAR
 
Project Description
 Objectives

The objective of the URBAN project was to demonstrate the use of differential SAR interferometry to map Earth surface displacement in urban environment, with the perspective to define a service, generate application demonstration material and develop a user community in the research, public and private sector.

Land subsidence occurs in many parts of the world as result of natural compaction of sediments, extraction of underground resources (water, oil, coal, ...) and underground works. An accurate monitoring of land subsidence is required for the assessment of the deformation and to give recommendations for a wise use of underground resources.

Traditionally, land subsidence is determined with leveling surveys. Wide networks of benchmarks have been setup in most of the subsiding cities and lots of measurements are periodically repeated. Leveling allows monitoring of land subsidence along profiles with high precision. Nevertheless this method is time consuming and expensive. Recently, GPS stations were implemented in a few significant points of large subsiding areas in order to have a global, fast and cheap measurement of subsidence rates.

In the context of the traditional surveying techniques, differential SAR interferometry has the potential to provide very important subsidence information over urban areas because of the 2-dimensional coverage, the high temporal coverage, the availability of information in almost real time, the large existing data archive, the expected availability of many more new data in the near future (RADARSAT, ENVISAT, ALOS), and the competitive cost.

In order to prove the usefulness and reliability of differential SAR interferometry, land subsidence maps were generated for four different sites: Ruhrgebiet (Germany), Mexico City (Mexico), Bologna (Italy) and Euganean Geothermal Basin (Italy). These areas are characterized by high (m/year) to low (mm/year) subsidence rate. In all those case studies, very promising results were obtained by InSAR analysis, raising the interest of potential customers in this new and promising technique.

 
 Results Project final report (public part)
 
 
Project Consortium
 Prime contractor GAMMA : GAMMA REMOTE SENSING A.G.
 Subcontractors
 
User Partnership
 Users
 
Contact Points
 Project Manager Tazio Strozzi
GAMMA REMOTE SENSING
Thunstrasse 130
CH-3074 Muri BE
Switzerland
Tel: +41 91-8261406
Fax: +41 31-9517008
Email: strozzi@gamma-rs.ch
 Technical Officer Contact the DUP Programme Manager:
Dr Olivier Arino
European Space Agency
ESRIN D/EOP-SEP
Via Galileo Galilei C.P.94
I-00044 Frascati (RM)
ITALY
Tel: +39 06-941.80564
Fax: +39 06-941.80552
Email: olivier.arino@esa.int
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