Earthquake monitoring gets boost from new satellite

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.

JE Napa

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.

You can read more here, and download the PDF here.

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