AERIAL LiDAR TECHNOLOGY IN SUPPORT TO AVALANCHES PREVENTION AND RISK MITIGATION: AN OPERATIVE APPLICATION AT “COLLE DELLA MADDALENA” (ITALY)
- 1DIST - Interuniversity Department of Regional and Urban Studies and Planning, Politecnico of Turin, Italy
- 2ITHACA - Information Technology for Humanitarian Assistance Cooperation and Action, Turin, Italy
- 3CNR – IRPI (Italian National Research Council – Research Institute for Hydrogeological Prevention and Protection), Turin, Italy
Keywords: Aerial LiDAR, High-resolution 3D models, Controlled Avalanches, Risk Mitigation, Data Integration, Geomorphological Characterization
Abstract. Snow avalanches are the result of unstable snow masses that detach from steep slopes as consequence of changes in snowpack structure. Nowadays, remote sensing technologies can improve the knowledge of avalanches phenomenon. This work focuses on the use of high point density aerial LiDAR (Light Detection And Ranging) technology as support to avalanche events prevention and risk mitigation, by presenting an operative application at Colle della Maddalena (Italy), along the road SS n. 21, nearby the French state border. The area is often involved in intense avalanche events that adversely impact on traffic and freight transport. For this reason, regional administrations will activate the Avalanche Artificial Detachment Intervention Plan (PIDAV, 2012) in order to prevent and manage the avalanche risk in the study area, also adopting artificial detachment systems. Main aim of the present work was to generate high resolution information related to geomorphological characterization (i.e. digital elevation models, slope and aspect) of avalanche sites derived from LiDAR data processing, that will help involved authorities in the management of the avalanche control plan. Digital elevation models at 0.5 m of spatial resolution were generated together with relative tridimensional models. Secondly, a preliminary investigation about capabilities and limits of LiDAR technology was done in the identification of avalanche sites only relying on geomorphological information directly derived by LiDAR data processing. Results showed that position of avalanche sites were correctly identified while no information could be obtained about the extension of the sliding area and identification of detachment areas.