Fidest – Agenzia giornalistica/press agency

Quotidiano di informazione – Anno 33 n° 338

The fingerprint of earthquakes identified with satellite interferometry

Posted by fidest press agency su venerdì, 21 Maggio 2021

From the analysis of satellite images, the areas with the greatest seismic intensity of an earthquake are recognized. Through the images obtained by means of satellite interferometry technique, a team of researchers from the Sapienza University of Rome and the Istituto Nazionale di Geofisica e Vulcanologia (INGV) analyzed the “fingerprint” of earthquakes through the recognition of the ground deformation that accompanies a seismic event. Scientists, in fact, have been able to estimate its dimensions and recognize the area where the most violent shaking accompanying earthquakes are concentrated. The study “The epicentral fingerprint of earthquakes marks the coseismically activated crustal volume” has just been published in ‘Earth Science Reviews’. The InSAR (Interferometric Synthetic Aperture Radar) data allow to detect the coseismic deformation (that is, the instantaneous and permanent deformation caused by the earthquake) delimiting the epicentral area where the greatest displacement is concentrated, through the analysis of the deformation of the ground around the fault activated during an earthquake. “Since 1993, with the images given by InSAR, a long list of seismic events has been analyzed; this list is always growing thanks to the increase in the number of satellites and to the improvement of the quality of SAR sensors and InSAR techniques in continental areas”, the researchers Patrizio Petricca (Sapienza University) and Christian Bignami (INGV) state. “With them it is possible to detect the coseismic deformation, delimiting the epicentral area where most of the displacement is concentrated. Outside this area, apart from phenomena of local amplification, the ground displacement decreases, resulting in the attenuation of the seismic shaking”. “Knowing these Earth manifestations helps to focus more specifically on seismic prevention in future epicentral areas, helping to calibrate the assessment of seismic hazard in which vertical movement plays a relevant role in increasing greater horizontal shaking and therefore greater damage. Earthquakes will return: on average, in Italy about 20 destructive earthquakes are generated per century”, concludes President Carlo Doglioni. font: The epicentral fingerprint of earthquakes marks the coseismically activated crustal volume” Patrizio Petricca, Christian Bignami, Carlo Doglioni (2021). Earth Science Reviews. doi:


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