Remote Sensing for Resilient Multi-Hazard Disaster Response, Volume IV: A Study of Multi-Temporal and Multi-Resolution SAR Imagery for Post-Katrina Flood Monitoring in New Orleans

A. McMillan, J.G. Morley, B.J. Adams and S. Chesworth

MCEER-08-0023 | 11/17/2008 | 96 pages

Keywords: Remote sensing. Multi-hazard disaster response. Disaster resiliency. Cloud-penetrating radar. New Orleans. Case histories. Hurricane Katrina. Multi-resolution SAR imagery. Urban areas. Floods.

Abstract: This report investigates the use of cloud-penetrating radar to assess the extent of flooding throughout storm-ridden areas. Multi-resolution SAR data using fine-beam and standard beam Radarsat-1 scenes was investigated through a case study of the New Orleans flood following Hurricane Katrina. Few prior studies have addressed urban flood detection using SAR, because of complicating double and triple bounce effects that commonly affect urban SAR response. In the case of New Orleans, initial exploratory assessments of Radarsat imagery acquired at the time of flooding indicated that the flooded urban area showed increased backscatter. This is Volume IV of a five part series of reports that investigate the use of remote sensing techniques for resilient multi-hazard disaster response.