Project title: Enhancing Ireland’s InSAR Processing Capacity with Application to Assessment of Peatland Restoration
Researcher: Dr Alexis Hrysiewicz
Recent work at UCD (Fiaschi et al., 2019) and internationally (e.g. Alshammari et al., 2019; Hoyt et. al. 2020) has shown that surface displacements in peatland may be detected and monitored over time by InSAR from Sentinel-1 images. In addition, Hoyt et al. (2020) argue that such data can be used directly to estimate carbon loss from tropical peatlands on very large spatial scales. The current gap is in linking satellite-derived displacement data robustly to measurements of eco-hydrological variables on the ground. It is unclear, for example, whether assumptions linking peatland subsidence to water level drop (which leads to peat oxidation and carbon loss) in tropical peatlands are transferable to temperate peatlands such as in Ireland.
The main objects of the project are:
- To test whether InSAR can be used to monitor the restoration progress at a raised peatland (Clara Bog test site) by using ground motion as a proxy and by establishing linkages to in-situ variables such as water levels and CO2 flux.
- To install temporary cGNSS stations at the Clara Bog test-site, and/or at sites of known ground instability, for in-situ validation of localised ground motions in Ireland derived by InSAR (local-scale and national-scale mapping).
- To work with ICHEC partners toward enabling HPC-based mapping of ground displacement at a national scale.