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Earth observation and InSAR technology for civil infrastructure (RP1121)

Project Summary
The overall objective is to produce a guidance report on the application of Earth Observation and InSAR (Interferometric Synthetic Aperture Radar) to civil engineering infrastructure assets. The report will detail current practices and the respective advantages and limitations of the various techniques for the purpose of asset management and construction. 

Earth observation is the gathering of information about the physical, chemical, and biological systems of the planet via remote-sensing technologies, supplemented by Earth surveying techniques, which encompasses the collection, analysis, and presentation of data. Earth observation satellites can be used in a variety of ways to map the Earth's surface from orbiting satellites. InSAR is a technique for mapping ground deformation using radar images of the Earth's surface. 

The use of InSAR for civil infrastructure is growing steadily with applications to date involving broad assessments of terrain and linear infrastructure assets, such as highways, railways, pipelines and power-lines. With ageing and new linear infrastructure assets spanning many types of terrain there are many advantages and limitations that need to be communicated clearly in order for the technology to be specified in the appropriate way.

There is also a need to inform and realise the full potential of the various Earth observation techniques used for research and commercial purposes when combined with (but not limited to) modern geospatial techniques, structural health and ground monitoring methods.
CIRIA will develop a standalone high-level guidance document that will provide context, evidence and recommendations on the application of Earth observation techniques to civil engineering infrastructure assets.
The guide will demonstrate the value and impact of Earth observation, and clarify its role as part of an overall structural/ground monitoring and asset management strategy.

Opportunities and benefits of involvement
  • Thought leadership and industry positioning promoted through CIRIA’s marketing campaign.
  • Direct learning from leading industry professionals across many disciplines.
  • Engagements and relationship building with fellow stakeholders.
  • Potential to partner with CIRIA and other guests for follow-on events and collaborative activities.

Project Status
The project started in 2020 with guidance due for publication in 2022.