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ISPRS Int. J. Geo-Inf. 2012, 1(1), 69-88; doi:10.3390/ijgi1010069
Article

Exposure Estimation from Multi-Resolution Optical Satellite Imagery for Seismic Risk Assessment

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Received: 10 April 2012 / Revised: 11 May 2012 / Accepted: 17 May 2012 / Published: 29 May 2012
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Space-Based Technologies for Disaster Risk Management)
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Abstract

Given high urbanization rates and increasing spatio-temporal variability in many present-day cities, exposure information is often out-of-date, highly aggregated or spatially fragmented, increasing the uncertainties associated with seismic risk assessments. This work therefore aims at using space-based technologies to estimate, complement and extend exposure data at multiple scales, over large areas and at a comparatively low cost for the case of the city of Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan. At a neighborhood scale, an analysis of urban structures using medium-resolution optical satellite images is performed. Applying image classification and change-detection analysis to a time-series of Landsat images, the urban environment can be delineated into areas of relatively homogeneous urban structure types, which can provide a first estimate of an exposed building stock (e.g., approximate age of structures, composition and distribution of predominant building types). At a building-by-building scale, a more detailed analysis of the exposed building stock is carried out using a high-resolution Quickbird image. Furthermore, the multi-resolution datasets are combined with census data to disaggregate population statistics. The tools used within this study are being developed on a free- and open-source basis and aim at being transparent, usable and transferable.
Keywords: remote sensing; disaster/risk management; exposure estimation; earthquakes remote sensing; disaster/risk management; exposure estimation; earthquakes
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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Wieland, M.; Pittore, M.; Parolai, S.; Zschau, J. Exposure Estimation from Multi-Resolution Optical Satellite Imagery for Seismic Risk Assessment. ISPRS Int. J. Geo-Inf. 2012, 1, 69-88.

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