The 2017 Christiaan Huygens Medal is awarded to Riccardo Lanari for his groundbreaking work in developing data evaluation algorithms for high-resolution synthetic aperture radar images.
Riccardo Lanari is the leading inventor of the small baseline subset (SBAS) algorithm, today’s reference method for the data evaluation of differential interferometric synthetic aperture radar satellite (SAR) data. Thanks to his work, the first highresolution digital elevation model of the Earth was generated from Space Shuttle Radar Topography Mission data in 2000, covering more than 80% of the globe. He extended the analysis and modelling techniques to a wide range of geoscience communities like geodesy, volcano monitoring, retrieval of anthropogenic and hydrological signatures in surface images and monitoring of the Earth crust’s fine-scale thermal expansions. Due to his continuous efforts SAR data can nowadays also be used for Earth environmental monitoring and disaster management. By transferring his analysis algorithms to the cloud environment he made them available for general use. Lanari’s ongoing inventiveness and creativity in applying his interpretation methods of satellite radar data to a broad range of geoscience applications make him a deserving recipient of the EGU Christiaan Huygens Medal.