Evaluation of Coherent and Incoherent Landslide Detection Methods Based on Synthetic Aperture Radar for Rapid Response: A Case Study for the 2018 Hokkaido Landslides

Publication type

Journal Article

Research Area



Damage mapping using Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) imagery has been studied in recent decades to support rapid response to natural disasters. Many researches have been developing coherent and incoherent change detection. However, their performances can vary depending on the types of the damages, the characteristics of the scatterers and the corresponding capability of algorithms. In particular, the coherence-based methods have been used as promising detectors over urban areas where high coherences are observed, but their detection accuracies still remain controversial over the area where low coherences are mainly observed such as the 2018 Hokkaido landslides. In order to understand the characteristics of landslide (damage) detectors for low-coherence areas and find an alternative and complementary method, we designed the coherence difference, coherence normalized difference, log-ratio, intensity correlation difference, and normalized differences of the intensity correlation assuming limited availability of dataset, and also developed multi-temporal algorithms using the coherence, intensity, and intensity correlation. They were tested and evaluated using multiple polygons extracted from aerial photos. We were able to observe that the multi-temporal intensity correlation method has the potential to detect the landslides over the low coherence region and all types of land uses.


coherent change detection; incoherent change detection, landslide detection, natural disaster, synthetic aperture radar


Publication Details


Remote Sensing





Date Published



Article Number


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