Phase II: Google Earth/Street Level Imagery for Rock Cut Slope Inventory and Rockfall Hazard Rating

Project No: 125814

Target Completion Date: May 31, 2025 Pavements

About the project:

Rock cut slope inventory and corresponding rockfall hazard are one of the main components of geotechnical asset management along US roadways. In 2018, the Virginia Transportation Research Council awarded a research grant (No. 114221) to Dr. Yonathan Admassu (PI) on ‘Using Google Earth and Google Street View for Cut Slope Inventory and Rockfall Hazard Rating’. During the last phase of the project, it was discovered that Google Inc. prohibits the use of Google Street View for any form of data collection. Therefore, it was necessary to replace all data collected by Google Street View with other street level imagery providers such as Mapillary and/or IVISION.

The aim of this continuation- research is to finalize the original project which proposed to test:

  1. How accurate is it to visually locate rock cut slopes along highways using Google Earth and Google Street View?
  2. Can we evaluate at least preliminarily rockfall hazard associated with rock cut slopes? The majority of geometric and geologic factors promoting rockfall generation can visually be evaluated or measured in Google Earth/street level imagery.

The continuation-research will replace all data collected using Google Street View with Mapillary and /or IVISION imagery. It will also add the use of LiDAR derived high resolution (1m) digital elevation model (DEM). For rockfall hazard rating, methods outlined by the FHWA’s USMP (unstable slope management program) will be used.

Project Team

Project Manager

Other Investigators

  • Yonathan Admassu, James Madison University

Last updated: July 2, 2024

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