Sensors (2020-11-01)

Precise Topographic Model Assisted Slope Displacement Retrieval from Small Baseline Subsets Results: Case Study over a High and Steep Mining Slope

  • Lianhuan Wei,
  • Qiuyue Feng,
  • Feiyue Liu,
  • Yachun Mao,
  • Shanjun Liu,
  • Tianhong Yang,
  • Cristiano Tolomei,
  • Christian Bignami,
  • Lixin Wu

Journal volume & issue
Vol. 20, no. 6674
p. 6674


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Due to the intrinsic side-looking geometry of synthetic aperture radar (SAR), time series interferometric SAR is only able to monitor displacements in line-of-sight (LOS) direction, which limits the accuracy of displacement measurement in landslide monitoring. This is because the LOS displacement is only a three dimensional projection of real displacement of a certain ground object. Targeting at this problem, a precise digital elevation model (DEM) assisted slope displacement retrieval method is proposed and applied to a case study over the high and steep slope of the Dagushan open pit mine. In the case study, the precise DEM generated by laser scanning is first used to minimize topographic residuals in small baseline subsets analysis. Then, the LOS displacements are converted to slope direction with assistance of the precise DEM. By comparing with ground measurements, relative root mean square errors (RMSE) of the estimated slope displacements reach approximately 12–13% for the ascending orbit, and 5.4–9.2% for the descending orbit in our study area. In order to validate the experimental results, comparison with microseism monitoring results is also conducted. Moreover, both results have found that the largest slope displacements occur on the slope part, with elevations varying from −138 m to −210 m, which corresponds to the landslide area. Moreover, there is a certain correlation with precipitation, as revealed by the displacement time series. The outcome of this article shows that rock mass structure, lithology, and precipitation are main factors affecting the stability of high and steep mining slopes.