Related Research Areas
Earth Surface & Interior

Hurricanes Katrina and Rita focused attention on the fact that subsidence in New Orleans and along the Gulf Coast is incompletely understood and inadequately monitored. Our overarching objective is to provide a unified geophysical framework to understand subsidence of the Gulf Coast, particularly at the Mississippi delta region. We will extend our recent work (Ivins, et. al., 2007) integrating geodetic observations and geophysical modeling to advance understanding of crustal processes operating along the Gulf Coast, particularly at the Mississippi Delta. We will additionally incorporate InSAR measurements using both C and L band radar data, providing geographically comprehensive coverage. We have demonstrated an improved persistent scatterer method under development for existing and new C-band data. We will also use standard InSAR methods on newly available ALOS L-band data. Airborne radar interferometry from UAVSAR will be tested where high spatial/temporal resolution will provide essential data. This combination will allow us to generate InSAR coverage over time for key areas. The geodetic observations will include calibrated historical geodetic data (Shinkle and Dokka, 2004), and ongoing GPS observations. Model results can be quantitatively tested and compared against the geodetic data, GPS, and InSAR, and model inputs revised. The combination of geodetic data tied to a verified vertical datum (NAVD 88) and InSAR observations constraining geophysical models of the Gulf Coast will be a powerful framework from which to evaluate regional to local subsidence effects including sediment compaction, oxidation, salt evacuation, fluid withdrawal, sea level rise, and other processes. This will provide a rigorous scientific basis for local planning, and will result in significantly improved geophysical understanding of subsidence processes.

Project PI: Ronald Blom/Jet Propulsion Laboratory

Jet Propulsion Laboratory M/S 300-233 4800 Oak Grove Drive Pasadena, CA 91109

Phone: (818)354-4681

Fax: (818)354-9476



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Started: Aug 09, 2010

Last Activity: Dec 10, 2010


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