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Monitoring of the March 11, 2011, Off-Tohoku 9.0 Earthquake With Super-Tsunami Disaster by Implementing Fully Polarimetric High-Resolution POLSAR Techniques

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4 Author(s)
Singh, G. ; Grad. Sch. of Sci. & Technol., Niigata Univ., Niigata, Japan ; Yamaguchi, Y. ; Boerner, W.-M. ; Sang-Eun Park

This paper reflects the polarimetric synthetic aperture radar (POLSAR) data utilization for near-real-time earthquake and/or tsunami damage assessment in urban areas. In order to show the potential of the fully polarimetric high-resolution polarimetric SAR (POLSAR) image data sets, a four-component scattering power decomposition scheme has been developed and applied to monitor near-real-time earthquake and tsunami disaster damages. The test site for natural disaster damages has been selected: parts of the coastal area affected by the March 11, 2011, 9.0 magnitude earthquake that struck off Japan's northeastern coast and triggered a super-tsunami. The color-coded images of the scattering power decomposition scheme are a simple and straightforward tool to interpret the changes over the earthquake/tsunami affected urban areas and man-made infrastructures. This method also holds other types of natural (typhoon or tornado) and man-made disaster assessment applications. It is found that the double-bounce scattering power is the most promising of the input parameters to detect automated disaster affected urban areas at pixel level. It is also observed that the very-high-resolution POLSAR images are required for superior urban area monitoring over the oriented urban blocks with respect to the illumination of radar.

Published in:

Proceedings of the IEEE  (Volume:101 ,  Issue: 3 )