Comparison of horizontal ground displacements in Avonside area, Christchurch from air photo, LiDAR and satellite measurements regarding pipeline damage assessment

  • S. Toprak
  • E. Nacaroglu
  • A. C. Koc
  • T. D. O’Rourke
  • M. Hamada
  • M. Cubrinovski
  • S. Van Ballegooy
Original Research Paper


Recent earthquakes show that pipeline damage is severe in the areas where permanent ground deformations (e.g., liquefaction zones) occur. Ground movement hazard to pipeline systems can be assessed by using ground displacement measurements around the location of pipelines. There are many different ways of measuring ground displacements after an earthquake occur. This paper compares displacements measured in Avonside area, Christchurch, NZ, by using four different ways with respect to their effects on pipeline damage assessments. They are air photo, satellite, high resolution light detection and ranging (LiDAR) surveys data presented at 4- and 56-m grids acquired before and after the Mw6.2 22 February 2011 earthquake. Avonside area was in the liquefaction zones of the 22 February 2011 earthquake. Where possible, benchmark measurements were also included in the comparisons. In this study, the focus was on asbestos cement and cast iron water pipelines as the length of the pipelines and the number of damages in the study area was much higher compared to other pipe materials, providing sufficient repair rate data passing the screening criteria to develop linear regressions. The correlations between pipeline damage and lateral ground strains were developed by calculating the horizontal strains from these four different type displacements. The comparisons show that satellite imagery is good for estimating total movements but not so good for estimating lateral strains and conversely LiDAR surveys are not so good for estimating total movements, but much better for estimating lateral strains. Hence, pipeline damage correlations with LiDAR calculated strains provide higher determination coefficient (r2) value. The results of comparisons are presented and discussed.


Air photo Lateral ground strains LiDAR Liquefaction Pipeline damage Satellite 22 February 2011 earthquake 



The Scientific and Technological Research Council of Turkey (TUBITAK) supported the research presented herein under Project No. 114M258. The Christchurch Earthquake Recovery Authority (CERA), Stronger Christchurch Infrastructure Rebuild Team (SCIRT), Christchurch City Council (CCC), Earthquake Commission (EQC), Contact Energy, and Tonkin and Taylor Ltd. are acknowledged for their assistance. Special thanks are extended to John Noonan of SCIRT, Prof. Dr. Sang-Soo Jeon, Dr. Dimitra Bouziou, and Prof. Dr. Ellen Rathje of University of Texas. EQC and CERA provided all LiDAR survey and liquefaction observation data. Prof. Rathje and her team provided satellite measurements.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V., part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Global Construction Ltd.TekirdagTurkey
  2. 2.Civil Engineering DepartmentPamukkale UniversityDenizliTurkey
  3. 3.School of Civil and Environmental EngineeringCornell UniversityIthacaUSA
  4. 4.Department of Civil and Environment EngineeringWaseda UniversityTokyoJapan
  5. 5.Department of Civil EngineeringUniversity of CanterburyChristchurchNew Zealand
  6. 6.Tonkin + Taylor LtdAucklandNew Zealand

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