Sensing Geohazards in Pittsburgh

About this Project

Penn State University researchers are working with the City of Pittsburgh’s Department of City Planning and other partners to assess a potential tool for monitoring earth and water disturbance below the surface that might pre-empt landslides and other geohazards. Geological hazards, or “geohazards” are adverse geologic conditions capable of causing damage or loss of property or life. Geohazards include landslides, rockfalls, erosion, and subsidence.

This project, in collaboration with the Penn State Extension, Carnegie Mellon University, and Pittsburgh Water and Sewer Authority, is researching the effectiveness of fiberoptic cables as a monitoring tool.

This research requires visiting affected neighborhoods to better understand changes residents may see prior to sinkholes or landslides forming.

The project is being funded by a National Science Foundation (NSF) Civic Innovation Challenge (CIVIC) grant.