Object-based method for estimating Tsunami-induced damage using TerraSAR-X data

Hideomi Gokon, Shunichi Koshimura, Masashi Matsuoka

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Citations (Scopus)


The object-based method we developed to estimate building damage uses high-resolution synthetic aperture radar (TerraSAR-X) data from the 2011 Tohoku earthquake and tsunami. The damage function we developed involves the relationship between changes in the sigma nought values of pre- and postevent TerraSAR-X data and the damage ratio of washed-away buildings. We confirmed that the function performed as expected by estimating the number of washed-away buildings in homogeneous areas, agreeing well with ground truth data verified by a Pearson fs correlation coefficient of 0.99. The same damage function applied at another test site yielded a Pearson’s correlation coefficient of 0.98. These results are sufficient to ensure transferability. We then simplified and semiautomated these processes in an ArcGIS environment, estimating building damage in the city of Sendai within 26 minutes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)225-235
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Disaster Research
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2016


  • Building damage
  • Object-based method
  • Remote sensing
  • SAR
  • Tsunami


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