Interpreting Aerial Photographs to Identify Natural Hazards

Interpreting Aerial Photographs to Identify Natural Hazards

1st Edition - August 14, 2013

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  • Author: Karl Glass
  • eBook ISBN: 9780124200289
  • Paperback ISBN: 9780124200180

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Authored by a world-renowned aerial photography and remote sensing expert, Geographic Aerial Photography: Identifying Earth-Surface Hazards Through Image Interpretation is the most practical and authoritative reference available for any professional or student looking for a reference on how to recognize, analyze, interpret and avoid – or successfully plan for – dangerous contingencies. Whether they are related to natural terrain, geology, vegetation, hydrology or land use patterns – it’s critical for you to be able to recognize dangerous conditions when and where they exist. Failure to adequately recognize and characterize geomorphic, geologic, and hydrologic dangers on the ground using aerial photography is one of the major factors contributing to due to natural hazards and disasters, damage to architectural structures, and often the subsequent loss of human life as a result. Aerial photographs provide one of the most prevalent, inexpensive and under-utilized tools to those with the knowledge and expertise to interpret them.

Key Features

  • Authored by one of the world’s experts in aerial photography and remote sensing, with more than 35 years of experience in research and instruction
  • Features more than 100 color photographs to vividly explore the fundamental principles of aerial photography
  • Chapter tables underscore key concepts including channel size and shape characteristics, image scales, reverse fault values, and strike-slip fault systems


Students, scientists, and engineers, real estate executives, developers, construction personnel, land use planners, lawyers, archaeologists, federal, state, and local policy makers and regulators

Table of Contents

  • List of Figures

    List of Tables

    Part I: Establishing Baselines: Look for the Butterfly

    Part I. Establishing Baselines: Look for the Butterfly

    Chapter 1. Getting Started

    1.1 Interpretation Begins with the Sun

    1.2 Film

    1.3 Target Interactions

    1.4 More About Resolution than You Probably Care to Know

    1.5 Seeing the World in 3-D

    1.6 Colors and Patterns and Shapes—Oh My

    1.7 Reading Aerial Photographs

    1.8 Summary

    Chapter 2. More About Photographs Than You Ever Cared to Know

    2.1 Photographs

    2.2 How Big is Big?

    2.3 Photographs Versus Maps

    2.4 What is Stereoscopic Vision?

    2.5 How Many Aerial Photographs Do I Need?

    2.6 Choice of Color Vis a Vis Panchromatic

    Chapter 3. Textural Information

    3.1 Stream Pattern

    3.2 Stream Density

    3.3 Gully Analysis


    Chapter 4. Color Information

    4.1 Sedimentary Rocks

    4.2 Igneous Rocks

    4.3 Metamorphic Rocks

    4.4 Soils

    4.5 Structural Patterns

    Part II: Recognizing Hazards on the Ground

    Part II. Recognizing Hazards on the Ground

    Chapter 5. Dangers from Earthquakes and Faults

    5.1 Identification of Faults

    5.2 Low Sun-Angle Enhancement of Scarps

    5.3 Fault Scarp Enhancement by Stream Erosion

    5.4 Dip-Slip Faults

    5.5 Identification of Ground Shaking Hazard

    5.6 Identification of Landslide Hazard

    5.7 Identification of Liquefaction Hazard

    5.8 Identification of Tsunami and Seiche Hazard


    Chapter 6. Dangers from Landslides

    6.1 Landslides in Soil

    6.2 Landslides in Rock

    6.3 Some Final Comments on Landslides


    Chapter 7. Dangers from Floods

    7.1 Stream Flow Data and the Myth of the 100 Year Flood

    7.2 Always Give Some Thought to the Possibility of Catastrophic Flood Events


    Chapter 8. Dangers from Ground Subsidence

    8.1 Ground Subsidence Due to Groundwater Withdrawal

    8.2 Ground Subsidence Due to Collapsing Soils

    8.3 Ground Subsidence Due to “Growth Faults”


    Part III: Spectral Ranges Beyond Visible

    Part III. Spectral Ranges Beyond Visible

    Chapter 9. The Ultraviolet

    Chapter 10. The Near Infrared

    Chapter 11. The Thermal Infrared

    11.1 Scanners

    11.2 Summary

    Chapter 12. The Microwave

    Chapter 13. Obtaining Aerial Photographs

    13.1 US Department of Agriculture

    13.2 US Department of Commerce

    13.3 National Archives and Record Service

    13.4 US Department of the Interior

    13.5 Canadian Aerial Photography

    13.6 Mexican Aerial Photography

    13.7 Foreign Aerial Photography

    13.8 Google™ Earth

    13.9 Other Sources

    Appendix. A Selection of Aerial Photographs for You to Interpret

Product details

  • No. of pages: 184
  • Language: English
  • Copyright: © Elsevier 2013
  • Published: August 14, 2013
  • Imprint: Elsevier
  • eBook ISBN: 9780124200289
  • Paperback ISBN: 9780124200180

About the Author

Karl Glass

Affiliations and Expertise

University of Arizona, USA

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