Highlighted Projects & Data


RAPID Supported Data

July 2019 - Ridgecrest, California earthquake, GEER Deployment | https://doi.org/10.17603/ds2-tyca-se83

Nov 2018 - Anchorage Alaska Earthquake, RAPID Rockfall Magnitude | https://doi.org/10.1007/s10346-020-01354-1

Nov 2018 - Indonesia Tsunami and Flowslide | https://doi.org/10.1007/s10346-020-01354-1

Oct 2018 - Hurricane Michael StEER Deployment | https://doi.org/10.17603/ds2-vmqv-rj36

Oct 2018 - Hurricane Michael RAPID: Large Volume Buildings | https://doi.org/10.17603/ds2-vmqv-rj36


COVID-19 Pandemic Street View Campaign, Seattle, Washington - 2020-2021

This project involves repeat street view surveys for 16 months across a broad and demographically diverse cross-section of Seattle. The data being collected will allow the team to assess: (1) the community impact of the pandemic on business operations, transportation networks, and other community assets, (2) the rate and quality of recovery following shelter-in-place, and how this varies locally based on a community's socioeconomic characteristics, and (3) the impact of shelter-in-place policy relaxation on communities following this disaster.


Hurricane Maria and the 2020 Earthquake Sequence, Ponce, Puerto Rico - February 2020

Grilliot deployed to Ponce, Puerto Rico in support of Principal Investigator, Arash Zaghi, and Co-PI's Alexandra Hain and Jamie Padgett's NSF funded RAPID grant to identify if the impacts of Hurricane Maria resulted in an increased level of damage or have caused unexpected modes of failure during the recent 2020 earthquake series. The team collected a comprehensive data set using standard and 360 degree geotagged photography, aerial images from a UAS, and structural scans of damaged buildings from the Leica RTC360 scanner.


E-Defense, Kobe, Japan - December 2019

Lowes, Berman, Lyda and Peltier deployed to Kobe, Japan, in support of Principal Investigator, Paulo Calvi's NSF funded research project, which is investigating the seismic performance of a full-scale three-story reinforced concrete building system. The team used an array of RAPID equipment, including the Leica RTC360 medium-range lidar scanner, Leica P50 long-range lidar scanner, Leica TS16I robotic total station, and Canon DSLR camera to collect data before and after each of the three testing events throughout the week.


BLWT Terraformer, Gainesville FL - November 2019

The RAPID Staff worked with Jennifer Bridge's team at the NHERI UF EF to deploy the Leica P50 ScanStation for taking measurements of various configurations of the Boundary Layer Wind Tunnel (BLWT) terraformer.


Terraclear Lidar Testing, Idaho - October 2019

Grilliot and Lyda deployed to Idaho County, ID, to conduct terrestrial, aerial, and mobile lidar surveys for agricultural research.


DUNEX Collaboration, Duck NC - October 2019

From October 7th to 11th, Wartman, Grilliot, Lyda and Peltier hosted a hands-on training and deployment workshop in collaboration with the During Nearshore Event eXperiment (DUNEX) at the U.S. Army's Field Research Facility in Duck, NC. They provided participants from the coastal engineering community with the opportunity to develop expertise in using RAPID equipment (z-boat, short and long-range scanners, various UAS, water level gauges, and grab sampler). Data was also gathered to support a number of research projects led by attendees.


StEER Hurricane Dorian Response, Bahamas - September/October 2019

  • Shortly after Hurricane Dorian, Lyda, along with the Applied Streetview system, deployed to the Great Abaco and Cay Islands of the Bahamas to join StEER's Field Assessment Structural Team Mission. Streetview data was processed and made available for distribution by StEER very soon after returning to the RAPID headquarters.
  • The Streetview system was deployed again to the Hurricane Dorian StEER FAST team for more extensive use in mapping and imaging storm surge damage at various landfall points across the archipelago.


Wellington, New Zealand - September 2019

An international collaboration between NHERI RAPID and QuakeCoRE (www.quakecore.nz) supported Lucas Hogan and Max Stephens, Assistant Professors at the University of Auckland, New Zealand, and their research to document the structural damage sustained in a modern instrumented building following the 2016 Kaikoura Earthquake. Data was collected using short-range scanners (Leica BLK360) and high-resolution cameras for structure from motion. This research is a part of a New Zealand project to improve the assessment guidelines and provide retrofit solutions for concrete buildings with precast floors, a common system damaged in the Kaikoura Earthquake.


Phase II Tomakomai, Hokkaido Earthquake, Japan - July 2019

As part of an NSF Award that supports post disaster reconnaissance, Rob Kayen, PhD, Senior Scientist at the USGS and Professor at UC Berkeley, and Alex Grant, PhD, Research Civil Engineer, traveled to Tomakomai, Hokkaido, Japan for Phase II of the GEER reconnaissance project initiated there in 2018 following the earthquake.


Ridgecrest Earthquakes, California - July 2019

RAPID deployed two of its expert field technicians - Andrew Lyda and Sean Yeung - to Ridgecrest, CA following the earthquakes that occurred on July 4th and 5th. Bringing with them RAPID’s DJI Matrice 210 drones, Leica GS18T GPS Receivers, and a couple of iPads to support the GEER team already in place, they collected aerial imagery of the fault ruptures for the purpose of creating orthomosaics and DSM models.

UCLA Students greatly supported RAPID Field Technicians to collect data in the scorching desert weather. Left to Right: Zhengxiang Yi (UCLA), Sean Yeung (UW), Andrew Lyda (UW), Omar Issa (UCLA), and Tristan Buckreis (UCLA). (Photo Credit: Zhengxiang Yi)

Data Processing at RAPID HQ: A screen capture of Ridgecrest orthomosaic image overlaid in Google Earth.

Data Processing at RAPID HQ: Structure from Motion Pointcloud of the same section (to the left) featuring 4.29 million points.


Phase II of Hooskanaden Landslide - June 2019

RAPID deployed several of its field technicians, along with its Phoenix Lidar miniRanger drone system to coastal Oregon, to characterize the rate and behavior of movement for two highly-active, coastal landslides that are subject to bluff erosion.

Operations Director, Jake Dafni, PhD, setting up the Spike Mounted GPS Receiver, and then protecting the ready-to-fly miniRanger drone against inclement weather.


Anchorage Earthquake, Alaska - May 2019

In support of a NSF-supported GEER project, RAPID’s Jake Dafni, PhD, trained field researcher Fikret Atalay (GA Tech) on its ATOM Seismic Data Acquisition System and its Nanometrics Trillium Seismometers. Atalay performed multi-channel analysis of surface waves (MASW) surveys at several sites across Anchorage five months following the earthquake.


EERI/QuakeCore Training, New Zealand - May 2019

RAPID’s Technical Director, Michael Olsen, Associate Professor of Geomatics at Oregon State University, traveled to the Kaikoura Region of New Zealand to take part in a training offered to 24 graduate students and young professionals from around the world. Hosted by EERI and QuakeCore - New Zealand’s Centre for Earthquake Resilience - it was an opportunity for emerging leaders to gain hands-on experience, whilst using RAPID equipment, in collecting LIDAR data and tracking the evolution of landslides triggered by the 2016 earthquake. Dr. Olsen brought with him a long range scanner (Maptek I-Site XR3), survey GPS Receivers (Leica GS18T), and a few short range scanners (Leica BLK360).


Alaska Deployments - 2019

On four separate deployments, from April to August, the facility sent equipment and/or field technicians to capture perishable spatial data on a series of rock slopes near Palmer, AK. The objectives were in line with the objectives of a NSF RAPID grant sponsoring research to quantify temporal changes in rockfall magnitude for well characterized slopes shaken by the 2018 Anchorage Earthquake. Equipment used included a long range scanner (Maptek I-Site LR3) and survey GPS receivers (Leica GS18T).

RAPID’s Operations Engineer, Andrew Lyda, setting up the Maptek LR3 and GPS Receiver. And that stunning Alaska scenery never disappoints.


Hooskanaden Landslide, Oregon - March 2019

Sean Yeung (UW) and Jake Dafni deployed to coastal Oregon along highway 101 bringing with them the Phoenix Lidar miniRanger drone system. Collecting data for ODOT, the intent was to characterize the rate and behavior of movements for two highly-active, coastal landslides that are subject to bluff erosion.

Cracking resulting from landslide event seen above highway 101 along Oregon coast.

Jake Dafni, PhD, flying RAPID’S Phoenix Lidar miniRanger drone system.


Camp Wildfire, Paradise, California - March 2019

Joining Erica Fischer’s (OSU) research team, RAPID deployed technical staff and equipment to Paradise, CA in late March to survey hospitals and schools that had been affected by the Camp Wildfire, which occurred in late 2018 and destroyed an estimated 18,800 buildings. The objective was to collect data on wildfire performance of engineered buildings, and on any effective mitigation that was performed prior to the wildfire.

The Research Team surveying a burnt portion of an Elementary School (a wooden structure). Embers entered the kitchen through the vent in the roof to start the fire.

Aerial images captured by RAPID’s Matrice 210 drone.

Michael Grilliot (left), RAPID’s Site Operations Engineer, and Sean Yeung collecting aerial images of areas affected by wildfire.

RAPID’s BLK360 Scanners surveying how a steel structure - previously a Charter School - fared after the entire building burnt.


E-Defense, Kobe, Japan - January 2019

Maria Koliou, PhD, Assistant Professor of Civil Engineering at Texas A&M University, employed RAPID’s technicians and equipment to support her NSF-funded Earthquake Research Project at E-Defense in Kobe, Japan.

RAPID’s Jake Dafni standing on the balcony of a 3-story wooden building constructed atop E-Defense’s shake table, the largest in the world. The buildings were designed to emulate actual houses and building codes currently common in Japan.

Damage to building can be seen after shake table simulates seismic excitation similar to earthquakes that have occurred in Japan in recent years.

The wooden buildings were scanned before and after seismic excitation. Pictured here: Jake Dafni (right) and Mohammed Aghababaei, PhD Student, Texas A&M University, working with RAPID’s Maptek I-site LR3 scanner.

Maptek I-site LR3 Scanner


Anchorage Earthquake, Alaska - December 2018

Alex Grant, Research Civil Engineer of the USGS, utilized RAPID’s Canon DSLR camera to inspect surface cracks and lateral spreading cracks near Anchorage, AK following the earthquake on Dec. 9th.

Slumping and lateral spreading failures near the Matanuska River in front of the Chugach Range, AK.

Extensive surface cracks due to liquefaction along the Matanuska River, AK.

RAPID shipped Grant one of its two Canon 7D Mark II DSLR cameras just days following the Anchorage earthquake.

Adrian Bender (USGS) inspecting lateral spreading cracks along the Matanuska River, AK.


Forest Restoration Project, Oregon - December 2018


Spangler Landslide, Oregon - December 2018

RAPID’s Operations Manager, Jake Dafni, PhD, traveled to Oregon during the first week of December to collect data for mitigation efforts of the Spangler landslide located near Molino, OR. This is a collaborative project headed by Professor Mike Olsen’s team at OSU’s College of Engineering, as well as Oregon Department of Transportation. Dafni was greatly supported during this field mission by Chase Simpson, Civil Engineering Master’s student at OSU with a specialty in Geomatics.

Jake and Chase readying the Phoenix miniRanger drone lidar system.

Phoenix miniRanger drone lidar system set and ready to fly!


Sulawesi Earthquake, Indonesia - November 2018

Director of RAPID, Joe Wartman, traveled to Indonesia as part of an NSF/GEER-funded post-earthquake reconnaissance project. The team spent time in Palu, Sulawesi with the aim of mapping and characterizing large ground failures using RAPID equipment such as, UAV’s and a Leica GNSS.

GEER supported a post earthquake and tsunami reconnaissance mission to Palu, Indonesia in November 2018.

The reconnaissance team spent time in Palu, Sulawesi, mapping and characterizing large ground failures using RAPID UAVs and GPS equipment.


Hurricane Michael, Florida - November 2018

Researchers from University of Washington and Auburn University traveled to the Panhandle of Florida in early November following Hurricane Michael, which made landfall in Mexico Beach, FL on October 10th. A project funded by the National Science Foundation, its primary focus was to assess the damage done to large-scale industrial buildings. The team utilized RAPID’s extensive equipment portfolio bringing with them numerous cameras (DJI Osmo, Insta360, Canon DSLR, and Flir), DJI Phantom and Matrice 210 drones, the Leica TS16 and Maptek XR3 long-range scanner.

Aerial photograph of wind damage to a large-scale industrial building.

Jeff Berman, PhD, Operations Director of the RAPID Facility

Jake Dafni, PhD, Operations Manager of the RAPID Facility

Justin Marshall and David Roueche, Researchers and Professors at Auburn University


Phase I: Tomakomai, Hokkaido Earthquake, Japan - September 2018

Alex Grant, Research Civil Engineer with the U.S.Geological Survey, traveled to Tomakomai, Hokkaido, Japan following the Earthquake to compile an inventory of landslides and lateral spreads. He brought with him RAPID Facility’s Leica BLK360 Scanner and Maptek XR3 laser scanner to collect point cloud data.

Alex Grant, Research Civil Engineer with the U.S.Geological Survey

Point cloud data Alex collected from one of the landslides

Alex brought to Japan RAPID’s Maptek XR3 (shown here).


Hurricane Florence, North Carolina - September 2018

Following Hurricane Florence, the StEER/RAPID team used RAPID Facility’s Applied Streetview, as well as Mavic Air and Matrice 210 drones to assess flooding and wind damage in and around Elizabethtown, North Carolina in late September.

Sean Yeung and Jake Dafni from the NHERI RAPID Facility at UW

Left to Right: Andre Barbosa, PhD, Associate Professor in Structural Engineering at OSU; Jake Dafni, PhD, Geotechnical Engineer and Operations Manager of the RAPID at UW; Sean Yeung, Instrumentation Specialist at UW; Christine Wittich, PhD, Assistant Professor in Civil Engineering Depart. at UNL; Daniel Smith, PhD, Senior Research Fellow at JCU (Australia).