Recent ground deformation of Taiyuan basin (China) investigated with C-, L-, and X-bands SAR images

Wu Zhu, Qin Zhang, Xiaoli Ding, Chaoying Zhao, Chengsheng Yang, Wei Qu

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

27 Citations (Scopus)


C-, L- and X-bands Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) images acquired from November 2006 to June 2011 were processed with Small BAseline Subset DInSAR (SBAS-DInSAR) technique to investigate spatial and temporal variations in deformation over Taiyuan basin, China. The annual deformation rate, created by integrating C-, L- and X-bands interferograms, revealed severe subsidence regions in the basin, where the average subsidence exceeded 10. cm/y and the maximum subsidence reached to 24. cm/y. Meanwhile, it was found that shapes of these subsidence areas were characterized as either subsiding bowls or elongated subsiding belts, implying an intimate connection among groundwater exploration, ground subsidence and faults. Additionally, significant differences in displacement were identified near the faults. This phenomenon could be explained that faults acted as barriers to groundwater flow, impeding the horizontal propagation of fluid-pressure changes and therefore creating groundwater level difference across them. Furthermore, the time series of deformation maps presented inconspicuous nonlinear periodic variations, which might be caused by the seasonal groundwater level fluctuations. In view of the poor water resource and presented features of subsidence over the study area, we deduced that excessive pumping of groundwater was the dominant process driving land subsidence. Our results could provide scientific evidence on a sound management of ground water pumping to mitigate potential damages on infrastructures and environments.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)28-35
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Geodynamics
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2013


  • Interferometric SAR (InSAR)
  • Subsidence
  • Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR)
  • Taiyuan faulted basin

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Earth-Surface Processes
  • Geophysics


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