Satellite Monitoring of The Bell Towers in The Historic Centre of Venice and its Estuary

Client: MIBACT - Archaeology, Fine Arts and Landscape Superintendence for the Municipality of Venice and the Lagoon
Period: July 2020 - in progress
Location: Venice, Italy
Technologies: Satellite SAR Interferometry, Terrestrial RAR Interferometry


The customer aims to verify on a territorial scale the possible deformations affecting the bell towers of Venice that could be a symptom of structural instability which has to be monitored with interventions and detailed studies in order to support the evaluations on the intervention priorities.

The monitoring project will focus on accurate and high precision data acquisition. This will be possible thanks to the satellite data collection and the subsequent integration with information provided by traditional monitoring systems. In addition, the analysis can be further supplemented through the use of satellite images acquired in X-band.


The displacement monitoring activity, that will be carried out for the next two years, mainly foresees the use of the advanced satellite interferometry technique (A-DInSAR) applied to the Bell Towers and the historical center of Venice. In order to deepen the study, the following on-site monitoring activities will be included:

● topographic monitoring;

● continuous monitoring using wireless clinometers;

● monitoring of the dynamic behavior using Terrestrial RAR Interferometry.

The project will be divided into two phases. The first one is characterized by a historical analysis carried out by processing all the images acquired in the last ten years by COSMO-SkyMed satellite constellations concerning all the towers located in the historical center of Venice; the second one includes an InSAR monitoring of the territory and the in-depth study and analysis of the data acquired during the first phase.

The calibration of the satellite detection systems and of the monitoring installations on site will allow a better acquisition of the data by improving and optimizing the level of control and safety of the bell towers.