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Geological Remote Sensing Facility

Geological Remote Sensing/3D Modeling Lab and Tectonics Lab


The Geological Remote Sensing and 3D Modeling Lab, is the main facility where all members of the Active Tectonics Research Group conduct a significant part of their research.
The lab is also used by students who are carrying out small research projects (Studi_forscht@GEO), and Bachelor, Master, or PhD theses under the supervision of Geology staff. It is also used for courses that require the use of software that, for licensing reasons, cannot be installed in a CIP pool (e.g. the 3D modeling software Gocad, or the structure-from-motion software Agisoft Metashape). The lab has 5 PCs, one workstation, a wide-format integrated plotter/scanner, a high-resolution flatbed scanner, and a laminator (to prepare products like terrain maps and satellite images that may need to be taken to the field). A 3D printer and a terrestrial laser scanner (which has been used also by staff of other groups in the Department) are also part of the lab. All of these require regular maintenance, supplies, repairs, and periodic replacement.
Specialized commercial software for terrain analysis, image processing, and 3D geologic modeling and visualization includes ArcGIS, GlobalMapper, Erdas, Gocad, Petromod, and Metashape.

Members of Facility

Anke Friedrich

Sara Carena

Simon Kübler

Stefanie Rieger

Christina Plattner

Amir Abolghasem

Ulrich Münzer

Active Projects

Joint German-Tschec Science Foundation grant (DFG), 2020-2023/ongoing (Friedrich, Heuss-Aßbichler): Vertical Motion of Salt Diapirs in the southern Zagros, Iran, and formation of cap rock.

Bayerisch-Tschechische Hochschulagentur (BTHA) – Förderprogramm, BTHA-AP-2019-12 (Rieger), 2019: Salt diapirs in Iran as perfect laboratories of salt tectonics.

DFG Project no. 408273939 (Carena), 2018 - ongoing: 3D Geometry and Kinematics of the Taiwan Arc-Continent Collision from 3D Mapping.

DFG Project no. 415709844 (Friedrich), 2018 - 2019: Sample collection and processing of cuttings from the currently running geothermal deep-drilling well BRUCK-GT-001 (Quaternary to Upper Jurassic, Eastern Molasse Basin, Bavaria).

Bay. Staatsministerium für Wirtschaft, Infrastruktur, Verkehr u. Technologie, (Münzer), 2017 – ongoing: AlpSenseBench (Alpine Remote Sensing of climate-induced natural hazards).

Iranian Government, through the Faculty of Surveying and Geospatial Engineering, The University of Tehran, MoU (Friedrich, Abolghasem), 2015 – ongoing: Active Tectonics in the Makran Subduction Zone.

DFG Project no. 244750349 (Plattner), 2013 – ongoing: Analysis of tectonic and magmatic stresses controlling volcanic spreading over multiple time scales. A case study from Kilauea Volcano, Hawaii, USA.


Closed Projects

DLR GEO 0100 (Münzer), 2007 – 2018: Monitoring of glaciovolcanic interactions in Iceland utilizing TerraSAR-X - Continuation and enhancement of the existing SAR-based hazard observation.

BayFor project BayIntAn_LMU_2018_48, (Abolghasem), 2018: Erweiterung des neu installierten Iran-Makran GPS Permanent-Netzwerkes Richtung Oman zur Analyse tektonischer Bewegungsraten und der Untersuchung regionaler Erdbebengefährdung.

HGF Alliance, "Remote Sensing and Earth System Dynamics", Project WP-G9 (Friedrich), 2012 - 2017: Geological context of geodetically active and seismically inactive regions: earthquake recurrence, slip-rate variability and implications for potentially active faults and their associated hazards.

BayFor project BayIntAn_LMU_2017_95 (Abolghasem), 2017: Erweiterung des neu Installierten Iran-Makran GPS Permanent-Netwerks Richtung Oman zur Analyse tektonischer Bewegungsraten und der Untersuchung regionaler Erdbebengefährung.

BayFor project BayIntAn_LMU_2016_39 (Abolghasem), 2016: Bilateral Int. funding: Installation of a New Permanent GPS Network, SE Iran.

Bay. Staatsministerium für Wirtschaft, Infrastruktur, Verkehr u. Technologie, RESA ID 619 (Münzer) 2012 – 2016: IsViews (Iceland subglacial Volcanoes interdisciplinary early warning system). Anwendung neuer Methoden mit hochauflösenden Fernerkundungsdaten (TerraSAR-X; TanDEM-X, HRSC) zur Früherkennung erneuter subglazialer Vulkanausbrüche auf Island

DFG Project no. 30265520 (Carena), 2007 - 2013: The strength of faults derived from 3D fault imaging and tectonic computer simulations of the lithosphere.

DFG Project no. 5403579 (Friedrich), 2007 – 2013: Active intraplate deformation in central Europe: paleoseismology of the Lower Rhine Embayment.

ESA, AO-ID 3587 (Münzer), 2007-2012: SAR-based hazard monitoring in Iceland utilizing L, C-, and X-band data.

Bay. Staatsministerium für Wissenschaft, Forschung u. Kunst, Sonderprogramm „Forschungsförderung“ (Münzer), 2009: AlpGEOS (Alpine Geological Earth Observation System).

NASA RC 22 (Münzer), 2007 – 2009: GLIMS-Iceland, inventory and Web-GIS database of glacier dynamics using optical ASTER imagery.

ESA AO 4295 (Münzer), 2007 – 2009: GLIMS-Iceland, inventory and Web-GIS database of glacier dynamics using optical Spot imagery.

DFG Project no. 48513770 (Guest) 2007 – 2008: Spatial and temporal evolution of intracontinental shear zones: The Stateline fault system, Eastern California Shear Zone (USA).

ESA, AO-ID 142 (Münzer), 2003 - 2009: Hazard Assessment and Prediction – Long-term Observation of Icelandic Volcanoes and Glaciers Using ENVISAT-ASAR and Other Radar Data.


Publications and Theses

Below follows the list of products of Geological Remote Sensing and 3D Modeling Lab (publications and theses) between 2007 and 2020. Most of these products are related to one or more of the projects listed above. Information about the establishment of the field of geological remote sensing at the LMU by Professor Bodechtel may be found on his webpage (Link). 

Peer-reviewed publications (29), tagged with task the Geological Remote Sensing and 3D Modeling Lab was used for
(authors in bold are LMU staff, students, or visiting scientists).

Analysis of geological hiatus surfaces across Africa in the Cenozoic and implications for the timescales of convectively-maintained topography.
By: Carena, S., Bunge, H.-P., and Friedrich, A.M
Terrain analysis, 3D modeling & visualization

The effects of stress changes on time-dependent earthquake probabilities for the central Wasatch fault zone, Utah, USA.
By: Verdecchia, A., Carena, S., Pace, B., and DuRoss, C.B.
GEOPHYSICAL JOURNAL INTERNATIONAL, 219, 1065-1081. doi:10.1093/gji/ggz336, Published: 2019
3D modeling & visualization

Rift Dynamics and Archaeological Sites: Acheulean Land Use in Geologically Unstable Settings.
By: Kübler, S., Bailey, G., Rucina, S., Devés, M., and King, G.C.P. In press, ARCHAEOPRESS ARCHAEOLOGY.
Terrain analysis

Tectonic geomorphology and soil edaphics as controls on animal migrations and early human settlement and dispersal.
By: Kübler, S., King, G.C.P., Devés, M., Inglis, R., Bailey, G., InRasul and Stewart (eds.) Geological Setting, Palaeoenvironment and Archaeology of the Red Sea. Springer International. Published: 2019.
Terrain analysis

Vertical-displacement history of an active Basin and Range fault based on integration of geomorphologic, stratigraphic, and structural data
By: Carena, S.; Friedrich, A. M.
GEOSPHERE Volume: 14 Issue: 4 Pages: 1657-1676 Published: AUG 2018
Terrain analysis

Historical coseismic surface deformation of fluvial gravel deposits, Schafberg fault, Lower Rhine Graben, Germany
By: Kubler, S.; Friedrich, A. M.; Gold, R. D.; et al.
INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF EARTH SCIENCES Volume: 107 Issue: 2 Pages: 571-585 Published: MAR 2018
Terrain analysis; terrestrial Lidar data acqusition, processing and analysis

The effect of inflation on the morphology-derived rheological parameters of lava flows and its implications for interpreting remote sensing data - A case study on the 2014/2015 eruption at Holuhraun, Iceland.
By: Kolzenburg, S., Jaenicke, J., Münzer, U., Dingwell, D.B.
Image analysis, terrain analysis

Apparent Late Quaternary Fault-Slip Rate Increase in the Southern Lower Rhine Graben, Central Europe
By: Gold, R. D.; Friedrich, A.M; Kuebler, S.; et al.
BULLETIN OF THE SEISMOLOGICAL SOCIETY OF AMERICA Volume: 107 Issue: 2 ,Pages: 563-580 Published: APR 2017
Terrain analysis; terrestrial Lidar data acqusition, processing and analysis

Pulsed strain release on the Altyn Tagh fault, northwest China
By: Gold, R. D.; Cowgill, Eric; Arrowsmith, J. Ramon; et al.
EARTH AND PLANETARY SCIENCE LETTERS Volume: 459 Pages: 291-300 Published: FEB 1 2017
Terrain analysis

Coulomb stress evolution in a diffuse plate boundary: 1400 years of earthquakes in eastern California and western Nevada, USA.
By: Verdecchia, A., and S. Carena
TECTONICS, 35. DOI: 10.1002/2015TC004091. Published 2016
3D Modeling

Nepal at Risk: Interdisciplinary Lessons Learned from the April 2015 Nepal (Gorkha) Earthquake and Future Concerns.
By: Catlos, E. J., Friedrich, A. M., Lay, T., Elliott, J., Carena, S., Upreti, B. N., DeCelles, P., Tucker, B. and Bendick, R.
GSA TODAY, Volume 26, Issue 6, Pages 42–43. Published 2016.
3D modeling & visualization, GPS and interferometry data analysis

Edaphic and Topographic Constraints on Exploitation of the Central Kenya Rift by Large Mammals and Early Hominins.
By: Kübler, S., Rucina, S, Reynolds, S, Owenga, P, Bailey, G., and King, G. C. P.
OPEN QUATERNARY, Volume 2, Issue 5, pages 1–18, Published 2016.
Terrain analysis

Active faulting in a populated low-strain setting (Lower Rhine Graben, Central Europe) identified by geomorphic, geophysical and geological analysis. GEOLOGICAL SOCIETY OF By: Kübler, S., Streich, R., Lück, E., et al., 2016
Terrain analysis; terrestrial Lidar data acqusition, processing and analysis

Animal movements in the Kenya Rift and evidence for the earliest ambush hunting by hominins
By: Kübler, S.; Owenga, P.; Reynolds, S. C.; et al.
SCIENTIFIC REPORTS Volume: 5 Article Number: 14011 Published: SEP 15 2015
Terrain analysis

Space geodetic observation of the deformation cycle across the Ballenas Transform, Gulf of California
By: Plattner, C.; Malservisi, R.; Amelung, F., Dixon, T.H., Hackl, M., Verdecchia, A., et al.
JOURNAL OF GEOPHYSICAL RESEARCH-SOLID EARTH Volume: 120 Issue: 8 Pages: 5843-5862 Published: AUG 2015
Satellite radar interferometry; GPS data acquisition, processing and analysis

Insights from Earth Sciences into Human Evolution studies: The example of prehistoric landscape use in Africa and the Levant
By: Deves, Maud H.; Reynolds, Sally; King, G. C. P.; et al.
COMPTES RENDUS GEOSCIENCE Volume: 347 Issue: 4 Pages: 201-211 Published: JUL-AUG 2015
Terrain analysis

One hundred and fifty years of Coulomb stress history along the California-Nevada border, USA
By: Verdecchia, A., and S. Carena
TECTONICS, 34(2), 213-231. doi:10.1002/2014TC003746. Published: 2015.
3D modeling & visualization

Remote Sensing of mountain glaciers and ice caps in Iceland.
By: Sigurdsson, O., Williams, R.S., Martinis, S., Münzer, U.
In. Kargel, J.S. et al (eds) Global Lande Ice Measurements from Space, Chapter 18, Springer Praxis Books, doi: 10.1007/978-3-540-798187_18. Published: 2014.
Image analysis, terrain analysis

The late Miocene to Holocene erosion pattern of the Alpine foreland basin reflects Eurasian slab unloading beneath the western Alps rather than global climate change
By: Baran, R.; Friedrich, A. M.; Schlunegger, Fritz
LITHOSPHERE Volume: 6 Issue: 2 Pages: 124-131 Published: APR 2014
Terrain analysis; terrestrial Lidar data acqusition, processing and analysis

Crust-mantle boundaries in the Taiwan-Luzon arc-continent collision system determined from local earthquake tomography and 1D models: Implications for the mode of subduction polarity reversal .
By: Ustaszewski, K., Wu, Y.-M., Suppe, J., Huang, H.-H., Huang, C.-H., Carena, S.
TECTONOPHYSICS Volume: 578 Special Issue: SI Pages: 31-49 Published: NOV 20 2012
3D modeling & visualization

Tectonic erosion and the removal of forearc lithosphere during arc-continent collision: Evidence from recent earthquake sequences and tomography results in eastern Taiwan
By: J.B.H. Shyu, YM Wu, CH Chang, HH Huang
JOURNAL OF ASIAN EARTH SCIENCES, Volume 42, Issue 3, Pages 415-422, Published 2011
Terrain analysis

High-resolution spatial rupture pattern of a multiphase flower structure, Rex Hills, Nevada: New insights on scarp evolution in complex topography based on 3-D laser scanning
By: Baran, R.; Guest, B.; Friedrich, A. M.
GEOLOGICAL SOCIETY OF AMERICA BULLETIN Volume: 122 Issue: 5-6 Pages: 897-914 Published: MAY-JUN 2010
Terrain analysis; terrestrial Lidar data acqusition, processing and analysis

NRT-Monitoring am Vulkanausbruch Eyjafjallajökull (Island) mit TerraSAR-X.
By: Münzer U, Mayer C, Reichel L, Runge H, Fritz T, Rossi C, Gudmundsson Á PHOTOGRAMMETRIE, FERNERKUNDUNG, GEOINFORMATION PFG 5:339 - 354, DOI: 10.1127/1432-8364/2010/0060. Published 2010.
SAR processing and analysis

The strength of faults in the crust in the western United States
By: Carena, S.; Moder, C.
EARTH AND PLANETARY SCIENCE LETTERS Volume: 287 Issue: 3-4 Pages: 373-384 Published: OCT 15 2009
3D modeling & visualization

Feed forward neural network and interpolation function models to predict the soil and subsurface sediments distribution in Bam, Iran.
By: Rezaei, K., Guest, B., Friedrich, A., Fayazi, F., Nakhaei, M., Beitollahi, A., and Aghda, S. M. F.
ACTA GEOPHYSICA, v. 57, no. 2, p. 271-293. Published 2009.
3D modeling

Soil and sediment quality and composition as factors in the distribution of damage at the December 26, 2003, Bam area earthquake in SE Iran (M (s)=6.6)
By: Rezaei, K.; Guest, B.; Friedrich, A.; et al.
JOURNAL OF SOILS AND SEDIMENTS Volume: 9 Issue: 1 Pages: 23-32 Published: FEB 2009
Image analysis

Geomorphology of the southernmost Longitudinal Valley fault: Implications for evolution of the active suture of eastern Taiwan
By: J.B.H. Shyu, K Sieh, YG Chen, RY Chuang, Y Wang, LH Chung
TECTONICS, Volume 27, Issue 1, Published 2008.
Terrain analysis

Imprints of subglacial volcanic activity on a glacier surface – SAR study of Katla volcano (Iceland).
By: Scharrer, K., Spieler, O., Mayer, Ch., Münzer, U.
BULL. VOLCANOL., DOI 10.1007/s00445-007-0164-z, Published 2007.
SAR processing and analysis, image analysis

Effects of ashlayers of the 2004 Grímsvötn eruption on SAR backscatter in the accumulation area of Vatnajökull.
By: Scharrer, K., Mayer, Ch., Nagler, T., Münzer, U., Gudmundsson, A.,
ANNALS OF GLACIOLOGY 45: 189- 196, Published 2007.
SAR processing and analysis, image analysis