Space-geodetic monitoring of coastal structures | ULINK: Laboratory for Integrative Knowledge | University of Miami

Space-geodetic monitoring of coastal structures



The tragic collapse of the Champlain South condominium tower in Surfside, Florida in June 2021 killed 98 residents. This unfortunate event also brought attention to the questions of (1) the structural safety of Florida’s aged (>30years) beach condominium buildings, (2) how sea level rise, coastal erosion and corrosive sea breezes affect beach front structures, (3) the need for new technology to monitor and assess the structural health of condominium high rises, and (4) how county protocols for building recertification can be improved. This project proposes a multidisciplinary study to investigate the use of satellite geodesy to monitor buildings in Miami Dade County. This team will employ the interferometric synthetic aperture radar (InSAR) technique that combines hundreds of SAR images to measurements of the distance between the ground and the satellite at millimeter-scale accuracy. The proposed project has three objectives: 1) to conduct a detailed case study at a currently subsiding building to validate the satellite measurement; 2) to understand the causes and consequences of the observed subsidence; 3) to effectively communicate the findings of this investigation to community stakeholders in order to inform and eliminate the unnecessary mental distress which the news about building subsidence may imply.


Falk Amelung (Marine Geosciences), Esber Andiroglu (Civil & Architectural Engineering), Antonio Nanni (Civil & Architectural Engineering), Amin Sarafraz (Institute for Data Science and Computing), Imelda Moise (Geography)