Space-based geodetic measurement techniques such as Interferometric Synthetic Aperture Radar (InSAR) and Continuous Global Positioning System (CGPS) are now critical elements in the toolset for monitoring earthquake-generating faults, volcanic eruptions, landslides, glacial ablation, reservoir subsidence, and other natural and man-made hazards. Geodetic imaging’s unique ability to capture surface deformation with high spatial and temporal resolution has revolutionized both earthquake science and volcanology. Continuous monitoring of surface deformation and surface change before, during, and after natural hazards allows for better forecasts, increased situational awareness, and more informed recovery. Combining high-spatial-resolution InSAR products with high-temporal-resolution GPS products, and automating this data preparation and processing across global-scale areas of interest, is an untapped science and monitoring opportunity.

The Advanced Rapid Imaging and Analysis for Monitoring Hazards (ARIA-MH) Science Data System (SDS) was developed for hazard monitoring and rapid processing, leveraging NASA-funded algorithms and data system capabilities to enable both science and decision-making communities to monitor areas of interest via seamless data management, processing, discovery, access, and distribution. The science data system:

  • Enables high-volume and low-latency automatic generation of NASA Solid Earth science data products (InSAR and GPS) to support hazards monitoring and research.
  • Facilitates NASA-USGS collaborations to share NASA InSAR and GPS data products for decision support related to disasters.
  • Enables interoperable discovery, access, and sharing of NASA observations and derived actionable products, and between the observation and decision- making communities.
  • Employs NASA’s first hybrid cloud science data system supporting on-premise processing of near real-time data streams and bursting out to public cloud resources (e.g. AWS) for processing when demand exceeds local capacity.
  • Retires risks of future science data systems for NASA Earth Radar mission(s).

ARIA-MH aims to bring geodetic imaging capabilities to a level that will enable NASA scientists and technologists to support local, national, and international hazard response communities. Through development of a science data system, technological innovations such as hybrid cloud-based computing and distribution, faceted navigation of resources, and faceted-based monitoring and triggering for automated processing have been applied.

This work was done by Hook Hua, Susan E. Owen, Gerald John M. Manipon, Gian Franco Sacco, Piyush S. Agram, Angelyn W. Moore, Sang Ho Yun, Eric J. Fielding, Paul R. Lundgren, Paul A. Rosen, Frank H. Webb, Zhen Liu, Alexander Smith, Brian D. Wilson, Michael D. Starch, and Mark Simons of Caltech; and Michael Poland and Peter Cervelli of the United States Geological Survey for NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory.

This software is available for commercial licensing. Please contact Dan Broderick at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Refer to NPO-49479.


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This article first appeared in the July, 2015 issue of NASA Tech Briefs Magazine.

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