Articles | Volume 13, issue 2
Research article
08 Feb 2013
Research article |  | 08 Feb 2013

Technical Note: Use of remote sensing for landslide studies in Europe

V. Tofani, S. Segoni, A. Agostini, F. Catani, and N. Casagli

Abstract. Within the framework of FP7, an EU-funded SafeLand project, a questionnaire was prepared to collect information about the use of remote sensing for landslide study and to evaluate its actual application in landslide detection, mapping and monitoring. The questionnaire was designed using a Google form and was disseminated among end-users and researchers involved in landslide studies in Europe. In total, 49 answers from 17 different European countries were collected. The outcomes showed that landslide detection and mapping is mainly performed with aerial photos, often associated with optical and radar imagery. Concerning landslide monitoring, satellite radars prevail over the other types of data. Remote sensing is mainly used for detection/mapping and monitoring of slides, flows and lateral spreads with a preferably large scale of analysis (1:5000–1:25 000). All the compilers integrate remote sensing data with other thematic data, mainly geological maps, landslide inventory maps and DTMs and derived maps. According to the research and working experience of the compilers, remote sensing is generally considered to have a medium effectiveness/reliability for landslide studies.

The results of the questionnaire can contribute to an overall sketch of the use of remote sensing in current landslide studies and show that remote sensing can be considered a powerful and well-established instrument for landslide mapping, monitoring and hazard analysis.