MATIST: Monitoring Alpine Transportation Infrastructure using Space Techniques

Rockfalls and landslides are natural hazards of special relevance to mountainous areas with severe human and economic consequences. The densely inhabited Alps, with its large network of transport infrastructures, are particularly sensitive to these types of hazards. An efficient survey of the movement of unstable slopes above infrastructures and of the stability of the infrastructures themselves is of high importance.

Hence, the scope of this feasibility study is to evaluate the technical feasibility and economic viability of services to the Alpine Transportation Infrastructure which are based on the integration of the space techniques SAR Interferometry and GPS/GNSS. The main information to be provided is ground motion, which can include motion of the transportation infrastructure (railway, roads, ...), motion of rocks or terrain slopes above transportation infrastructure, and motion caused by tunneling. The users proposed for this feasibility study are considered key users among the railway and road infrastructure operators for Switzerland (Swiss Federal Railways SBB, ASTRA) and Austria (Austrian Federal Railways, OeBB, ASFINAG).

MATIST aims to provide a variable temporal and spatial resolution for detecting movements by integrating satellite SAR interferometry, terrestrial radar interferometry and GPS/GNSS measurements. The implementation and the processing of cost effective single-frequency GPS data observations is conducted by INAS using a Wireless Sensor Network (WSN). Within this integrated system, the following services can be associated:

  • Wide-area investigations using satellite SAR interferometry
  • Repeat monitoring with terrestrial radar interferometry and GPS/GNSS
  • Real time monitoring using terrestrial radar interferometry and GPS/GNSS

With the proposed integrated system many of the present limitations of currently used methods can be overcome to obtain a cost benefit (economic and non-economic) with the new service. Consequently the key users among the railway and road infrastructure operators confirm their interest and a high potential relevance of the proposed service.


Logo of the European Space Agency

This project was funded by the European Space Agency (ESA) within the programme line "Integrated Applications Promotion" (IAP).


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Norbert K├╝htreiber
Steyrergasse 30/III
8010 Graz
Tel: +43/316/873-6352
Fax: +43/316/873-8888

Manfred Wieser
Steyrergasse 30/III
8010 Graz
Tel: +43/316/873-6348
Fax: +43/316/873-8888