Systematic assessment of atmospheric uncertainties for InSAR data at volcanic arcs using large-scale atmospheric models: Application to the Cascade volcanoes, United States

Amy L. Parker*, Juliet Biggs, Richard J. Walters, Susanna K. Ebmeier, Tim J. Wright, Nicholas A. Teanby, Zhong Lu

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

45 Citations (Scopus)
485 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

Satellite Radar Interferometry (InSAR) is suited to monitoring ground deformation on the scale of volcanic arcs, providing insight into the eruptive cycle over both long and short time periods. However, these measurements are often contaminated with atmospheric artefacts caused by changes in the refractivity of the atmosphere. Here, we test the use of two large-scale atmospheric models, ERA-Interim (ERA-I) and North American Regional Reanalysis (NARR), to correct atmospheric uncertainties in InSAR data from the Cascades Volcanic Arc, United States. At Lassen Volcanic Center, we find that NARR reduces interferogram standard deviation in 79% of cases by an average of 22%.

Using NARR, we develop a strategy to produce a priori estimates of atmospheric uncertainties on an arc-wide basis. We show that in the Cascades, the RMS variation in range change is dependent upon volcano topography and increases by 0.7 cm per kilometre of relief. We use this to estimate detection thresholds for long-term monitoring of small magnitude (1 cm/yr) deformation signals, and short-term monitoring of ground deformation associated with pre-eruptive unrest. This new approach of assessing atmospheric uncertainties a priori is widely applicable to other volcanic arcs, and provides realistic estimates of atmospheric uncertainties suitable for use in near-real-time analysis of InSAR data during periods of volcanic unrest.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)102-114
Number of pages13
JournalRemote Sensing of Environment
Volume170
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2015

Bibliographical note

Date of Acceptance: 18/09/2015

Keywords

  • InSAR
  • Volcano monitoring
  • Atmospheric correction
  • Sentinel
  • Cascades
  • NARR
  • ERA-I

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