Motion in Moscow

Many areas in the world can now be monitored remotely via spaceborne InSAR (Interferometric Synthetic Aperture Radar). Thanks to frequent observations of satellites like Sentinel-1, we are able to analyse ground motions over wide areas simultaneously and with high precision.

Subsidence patterns of more than 2 centimetres per year (red colour) have been detected in Moscow and its suburbs in our analysis of Sentinel-1 radar responses mostly from man-made objects. Deformation map covers area of 5600 square kilometres and can be updated approximately once or twice a week, based on satellite radar image availability.

Deformation Map of Moscow and its suburbs (Credits: ©2017, Background Images: Google Earth™)

There are plenty of points showing no significant movement (green colour). However, several areas are affected by subsiding motion shown in yellow (-10 mm/year) to red (-20 mm/year) colour. Very few points are uplifting (blue colour).

Subsidence in affected areas

Radar on-board satellite transmits pulses towards the Earth’s surface. In each of the backscattering target on the ground (buildings, roads, monuments, antennas, poles, etc.) we are able to extract very precise displacement time-series — a graph showing millimetric displacement (vertical axis) in each image acquisition date (horizontal axis).

Displacement time-series

Without even visiting site in person, we can already tell very much about the ground settlement in monitored area.

InSAR point clouds over Moscow area. Detected subsidence shown in red

Average economic loss per year only due to landslides is approximately 4.7 billion euros in Europe.

The most efficient way to reduce the risks, would be to respond to emergencies faster and more accurately.

InSAR may potentially reduce operating costs in several million of euros in monitoring structures, providing a more detailed and frequent surveillance which will result in better safety conditions.

InSAR point clouds over Moscow area

More areas affected by motion have been detected in Moscow (e.g. Zelenaya zona, Solntsevo district). For more results download our presentation HERE

Obtain DEFORMATION MAP for your area! Get in touch with us:, +421–2–3300 6847

Credits: ©2017, Background Images: Google Earth™

Sentinel-1 data were provided by European Space Agency (ESA) under free, full, and open data policy adopted for the Copernicus programme.

Disclaimer: The analysis provided here is purely informative. To the best of our knowledge, the information contained herein is accurate and reliable as of the date of publication; however, we do not assume any liability whatsoever for the completeness of the above information. No warranty, expressed or implied, is made regarding accuracy, adequacy, completeness, legality, reliability or usefulness of any information. Any information given in this statement does not constitute any warranty of merchantability or fitness for a particular use. It is the reviewers’ responsibility to inspect and to test our analysis in order to satisfy themselves as to the suitability of the analysis to their particular purpose. Detailed up-to date analysis as well as expert interpretation of the results is necessary. We are keen to provide our best practices and knowledge in order to help shaping a better, healthier and safer future for cities and countries worldwide.