Spaceborne SAR based assessment of nuclear test effects: the case of North Korea

Nicomino Fiscante, Filippo Biondi, Pia Addabbo, Carmine Clemente, Gaetano Giunta, Danilo Orlando

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution book

1 Citation (Scopus)
12 Downloads (Pure)


This study aims at estimating the Earth deformations due to the nuclear test carried out by North Korea on the 3rd of September 2017 by processing a time series of synthetic aperture radar images acquired by the COSMO-SkyMed satellite constellation. For active satellite sensors working in the Xband, phase information can be unreliable if scenarios with dense vegetation are observed. This uncertainty makes difficult to correctly estimate both the interferometric fringes and the information phase delay generated by the variation in the space-time domain of the atmospheric parameters. To this end, in our research we apply the Sub-Pixel Offset Tracking technique, so that the displacement information is extrapolated during the coregistration process. The results reveal an accurate estimate of the spatial displacement of similar pixels due to the nuclear explosion. The work also reveals a hypothetical underground tunnel network.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication2021 Sensor Signal Processing for Defence Conference (SSPD)
Place of PublicationNew York
Number of pages4
ISBN (Electronic)9781665433143
ISBN (Print)9781665433150
Publication statusPublished - 23 Sept 2021
Event2021 Sensor Signal Processing for Defence Conference (SSPD) - University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, United Kingdom
Duration: 14 Sept 202115 Sept 2021


Conference2021 Sensor Signal Processing for Defence Conference (SSPD)
Abbreviated titleSSPD 2021
Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom
Internet address


  • displacement-field
  • nuclear tests
  • persistent scatterers interferometry
  • SAR interferometry
  • synthetic aperture radar (SAR)
  • sub-pixel correlation
  • sub-pixel offset tracking


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