Ground Feature Monitoring Using Satellite Imagery: How Interferometric Stacking of SAR Can Mitigate Geo-Disasters Along Transportation Corridors

by El Hachemi Bouali, Ph.D., PhD Candidate; Department of Geological and Mining Engineering and Sciences, Michigan Technological University, Houghton, MI, eybouali@mtu.edu,
Rüdiger Escobar-Wolf, Ph.D., Post-Doctoral Associate; Department of Geological and Mining Engineering and Sciences, Michigan Technological University, Houghton, MI, rpescoba@mtu.edu,
Thomas Oommen, Ph.D., (M.ASCE), Assistant Professor; Department of Geological and Mining Engineering and Sciences, Michigan Technological University, Houghton, MI, toommen@mtu.edu,


Serial Information: Geo-Strata —Geo Institute of ASCE, 2015, Vol. 19, Issue 4, Pg. 52-57


Document Type: Feature article

Abstract: Landslides, debris flows, and other types of ground movements are among the most common hazards to humans and infrastructure. According to the United States Geological Survey, annual domestic losses caused by landslides in recent years range between $2B and $4B. Even worse, they kill between 25 and 50 people each year. The 1983 Thistle landslide in Utah, considered the most expensive landslide in U.S. history, required more than $400M (adjusted to current value due to inflation) in repairs to road and railroad infrastructure, plus the cost of damage to a nearby town. In 1998, the San Francisco Bay area experienced damage due to landslides in excess of $210M. More recently, on March 22, 2014, a landslide in Oso, WA, killed 43 people and destroyed 30 houses and almost a mile of State Route 530.

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