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Significant crustal movements were caused by the 2011 Tohoku, Japan earthquake. A method for capturing the surface movements from pre- and postevent TerraSAR-X (TSX) intensity images is proposed in this letter. Because the shifts of unchanged buildings were considered as crustal movements in the two synthetic aperture radar images, we first extracted buildings from the pre- and postevent images using a segmentation approach. Then, the unchanged buildings were detected by matching the buildings in the pre- and postevent images at similar locations. Finally, the shifts were calculated by area-based matching. The method was tested on the TSX images covering the Sendai area. Compared with GPS observation records, the proposed method was found to be able to detect crustal movement at a subpixel level.
Date of Publication: Jan. 2013