Spaceborne Environmental Monitoring of Alpine Processes

Short Description

The availability of very high resolution satellite images opens new possibilities for the detection of changes in natural environments over large areas and their quantification on a spatial and temporal scale. The project SE.MAP (Spaceborne Environmental Monitoring of Alpine Processes) aims at a multitemporal detection and quantification of gravitational and cryogenic processes in high mountain environments, based on very high resolution Digital Surface Models and georeferenced images based in Pléiades Tri-Stereo Satellite data.

Especially the shading effects as well as the occurrence of snow- firn- and glaciated areas place a specific demand on the time of the data acquisition in high mountain areas as well as on the methods used during the analysis. The resulting horizontal and vertical accuracies under consideration of ground control points (GCPS) will be calculated and documented.

The verification of the data will be done using established tools based on airborne laser scanning data, which have already been applied in successfully finished projects. This direct comparison of technologies will provide valuable information on the quality and possibilities of use for satellite based, multitemporal monitoring of all kinds of changes in alpine environments. Furthermore, the smallest possible changes which can be detected with Pléiades data will be defined.

The ideas for applications and accuracy analysis in mountain areas of the Institutions interested in the project (see attached LOIs) can be achieved during the project. After the successful completion of the project, the project partners will have gained a tool which is applicable worldwide and allows the quantification of a variety of environmental changes and to quantify the results of those changes.

The strengthening of the scientific competence for the analysis of processes in high mountain environments as well as the enhancement of the expertise on remote sensing, especially very high resolution optical satellite data, techniques is expected for the project partners. This will also be very valuable for the consulting and services provided by the partner GRID-IT GmbH to its customers.

Project Partners


University of Innsbruck

Project partner

GRID-IT Gesellschaft für angewandte Geoinformatik mbH

Contact Address

University of Innsbruck
Innrain 52
A-6020 Innsbruck