Pure and Applied Geophysics

, Volume 172, Issue 8, pp 2179–2193 | Cite as

Short-Term Surface Deformation on the Northern Hayward Fault, CA, and Nearby Landslides Using Polarimetric SAR Interferometry (PolInSAR)

  • Samira Alipour
  • Kristy F. Tiampo
  • Sergey V. Samsonov
  • Pablo J. González


In this study, we analyze 25 RADARSAT-2 images from ascending and descending geometries to study the creep rate on the Hayward fault and landslide motions near Berkeley, CA. We applied a coherence optimization technique from polarimetric synthetic aperture radar interferometry (PolInSAR) to increase the accuracy of the measurements. We resolve 3–5 mm/year of motion along the Hayward fault, in agreement with earlier creep estimates. We identify a potential motion on secondary fault, northeast and parallel to the Hayward fault, which is creeping at a lower rate of ~1.5 mm/year. In addition, we identify a number of landslides along the hills east of the fault that agree with earlier results from advanced interferometric synthetic aperture radar (SAR) analysis and field investigations. We investigate four particular slope instabilities, one of which was marked as moderately active, and three as highly active, by earlier field investigations. The resolved along-hill slope displacement is estimated at ~23 mm/year. Our results demonstrate that PolInSAR is an effective method to increase the interferometric coherence and provide improved resolution of deformation features associated with natural hazards.

Key words

Polarimetric SAR interferometry coherence optimization 



Images were acquired under SOAR-E project 5024 from the Canadian Space Agency. This research was funded by the NSERC and Aon Benfield/ICLR IRC in Earthquake Hazard Assessment, an NSERC Discovery Grant, and an Ontario Early Researcher Award. PJG also acknowledges support from a Banting postdoctoral fellowship (Government of Canada). We thank the Canadian Space Agency for help planning RADARSAT-2 acquisitions. GMT software (Wessel and Smith 1998) was used to create the figures.


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Copyright information

© Springer Basel 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Samira Alipour
    • 1
  • Kristy F. Tiampo
    • 1
  • Sergey V. Samsonov
    • 1
    • 2
  • Pablo J. González
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Earth SciencesUniversity of Western OntarioLondonCanada
  2. 2.Canada Centre for Remote Sensing, Natural Resources CanadaOttawaCanada

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