Using data collected from RADARSAT-1 of Richmond, B.C., Canada, Tele-Rilevamento Europa (T.R.E.) of Italy is creating Differential and Permanent Scatterer InSAR (Interferometric Synthetic Aperture Radar) land motion products for end-clients in Italy. These products map small-scale movement at the Earth's surface - in the order of millimeter accuracy - and reveal areas prone to land slippage, flooding, subsidence, and volcano or earthquake activity.

This T.R.E. InSAR project was finalized through Eurimage, the Italian RADARSAT-1 distributor. In total, 2000 RADARSAT-1 images are being collected over Italy to create an InSAR database of the entire country. In addition, InSAR data will be repeatedly collected over major Italian urban areas for monitoring purposes. This will be the first interferometric data set of RADARSAT-1 images at a national level. To date, more than 1,200 RADARSAT-1 images have been acquired.

With its 24-day repeat cycle, RADARSAT-1 collects the same image over the same location every 24 days. This type of data collection is required for InSAR work. The frequency of the satellite orbit provides the client with far more images than currently available from other radar satellites such as ERS or ENVISAT which operate on 35-day repeat cycles.

In addition, RADARSAT-1 is currently the only viable commercial satellite to collect data that is suitable for InSAR applications. In March 2001, the Canadian Space Agency (CSA), who owns and operates RADARSAT-1, implemented a new procedure whereby the orbit of the satellite is maintained at +/-2 km. This strict orbit configuration ensures that the data collected by RADARSAT-1 can be used to create InSAR products.

Simon Chesworth, RADARSAT International's Sales Director for Europe/ Middle East/ Africa commented, "We have a group of very sophisticated international clients who use RADARSAT-1 InSAR data for various investigations. These investigations include the use of InSAR to assess earthquake or landslide risk, to evaluate the stability of reservoir retaining walls, to monitor land subsidence in areas of oil extraction and to evaluate the structural movement of urban/manmade features such as buildings or bridges."

Source: RADARSAT, Nov. 10, 2003.