On 25 April, a 7.8-magnitude earthquake struck Nepal, claiming over 8,000 lives and affecting millions of people.
Images from ESA’s Sentinel-1A satellite clearly showed the effects of the earthquake, including the maximum land deformation only 17km from Nepal’s capital, Kathmandu. This explains the extremely high damage to the area.
By combining Sentinel-1A imagery from before and after the quake, COMET scientists have been able to interpret the rainbow-coloured interference patterns in the image (known as an interferogram), and interpret them as changes on the ground. COMET scientists have also been analysing the 12 May aftershock. You can read more here.
Europe’s Sentinel-1A spacecraft and its extraordinary images of slip from the South Napa earthquake herald a new era of space-based surveillance of faults.
On 24 August 2014, the San Francisco Bay area shook in an Mw = 6.0 earthquake, the region’s largest in 25 years. The tremors injured roughly 200 people, killed 1 person, and damaged buildings near the quake’s epicenter in the southern reaches of California’s Napa Valley. It also set off a scientific scramble to measure the fault’s movement and marked the dawn of a new age of earthquake satellite monitoring thanks to a recently launched spacecraft: the European Space Agency’s Sentinel-1A satellite.
COMET scientists explain why in an article published in EOS, the Earth and space science journal of the American Geophysical Union.