Monitoring slope deformations with InSAR and unmanned aerial vehicle photogrammetry

Short Description

Starting point / motivation

Slope Deformations often emerge as large-scale slope instabilities affecting entire valley flanks, reaching several hundreds of 100–300 m in depth. These slow movements may move only few millimetres per year and their activity status is often unknown.

Furthermore, over the last decade, research have identified the importance of studying these slope instabilities as long-term processes switching between periods of activity and inactivity, with the reactivations potentially causing localized catastrophic failures such as partial slope failure systems, rock falls, debris flows and rock avalanches out of mountain slope deformations.

Contents and goals

VIGILANS will develop and establish a monitoring system for active slope deformations based on spaceborne InSAR and UAV-P methods. We will quantify the accuracy and uncertainty of the novel monitoring systems and test complementary to existing instrumentation in geometrically difficult mountainous environments.

Expected results

A qualitative comparison of InSAR and UAV-P uncertainties applied to slope deformation monitoring is essential in the long term to achieve acceptance for these promising methods for market applications. The integration of stakeholder needs, responsible authorities and parties to improve risk management of slope deformations are an essential component of VIGILANS.

Project Partners


Sky4geo Unternehmenspartner

Project partner

  • Austrian Research Centre for Forests, Department of Natural Hazards (BFW)
  • Austrian Service for Torrent and Avalanche Control (WLV)
  • BOKU - University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences
  • Geological Survey of Austria

Contact Address

Sky4geo Unternehmenspartner
Dr. Anne Hormes
Planötzenhofstraße 29b/14
A-6020 Salzburg