Apr 16, 2009

Satellite helps us see how the Earth moves during an Earthquake

Scientists have released a very amazing image, provided by the European Space Agency's ENVISAT satellite. It analyzes the difference between an image of the medieval town of L'Aquila before the April 6th earthquake that hit that area, with an image taken on the 12th of April. Using . . .

. . . a technique known as SAR Interferometry (InSAR), a sophisticated version of 'spot the difference'. InSAR involves combining two or more radar images of the same ground location in such a way that very precise measurements – down to a scale of a few millimetres – can be made of any ground motion taking place between image acquisitions. - ( Science Daily )

By doing this, scientists have created an interferogram image which shows the movement of the Earth as colored "fringes" detailing just how much the ground moved. In some places it moved as much as 25 centimeters! Amazing. Click the image below to enlarge.

Here is the interpreted image, with superfluous info taken out. (Click to enlarge, and click HERE for a better explanation of the image.)

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