The seismic vulnerability analysis of urban environments is an operational issue that concerns the comprehensive knowledge of both building structural features and soils geophysical parameters, especially when considering areas that are prone to hydrogeological and seismic disasters. The protection of such environments, together with the population growth and the urbanization processes, requires a multi-disciplinary approach aiming at providing both an effective assessment of urban resources and synthetic parameters for managing post crisis events, restoration activities and search & rescue operations. Within such a framework, airborne Light Detection and Ranging (LiDAR) and Hyperspectral sensors have demonstrated to be powerful remote sensing instruments, whose jointly use allow providing meaningful parameters to describe both the topographic settings of urbanized areas and the buildings properties, in terms of geometrical, spectral and structural features. Based on this rationale, in this study, the operational benefits obtained by combining airborne LiDAR and Hyperspectral measurements are provided to support the seismic vulnerability assessment of urban seismic areas. The digital elevation model as well as the building height and the shape of the observed area are gathered by using airborne LiDAR measurements. Spectral and structural information of urban buildings are provided through the supervised classification of IMSpectorV10E VNIR (wavelength range between 400 and 1000nm subdivided into 503 bands) measurements acquired by the IPERGEO sensor. The objective is to combine the different products provided by LiDAR and Hyperspectral image processing analysis within a Geographic Information System (GIS) platform, to evaluate the intrinsic properties of buildings (e.g. perimeter, covered area, height and type of roofs) together with the topographic features of the surrounding area (e.g. the surface height and slope) for providing synthetic parameters and thematic maps useful for seismic assessment and mitigation purposes, such as: (i) the identification of steep slope areas, (ii) the analysis of building roof typology for supporting the evaluation of structural load conditions, (iii) the detection of critical structures (e.g. asbestos buildings), (iv) the identification of primary roads (in terms of escape or access routes) for supporting search and rescue operations, (v) the analysis of main road conditions after building collapses. Meaningful experimental results, gathered for the historical center of Cosenza city (Italy), allow demonstrating the benefits of the proposed approach for both seismic assessment and mitigation purposes.
The present work is supported and funded by Ministero dell'Università, dell'Istruzione e della Ricerca (MIUR) under the project PON01-02710 "MASSIMO" - "Monitoraggio in Area Sismica di SIstemi MOnumentali".