We present precise deformation velocity maps for the two year period from September 2011 to July 2013 of the northern Taiwan area, Taipei, by using persistent scatterer interferometry (PSI) technique for processing 18 high resolution X-band synthetic aperture radar (SAR) images archived from COSMO-SkyMed (CSK) constellation. According to the result, the highest subsidence rates are found in Luzou and Wuku area in which the rate is about 15 mm/yr and 10 mm/yr respectively in the whole dataset. However, dramatic change from serve subsidence to uplift in surface deformation was revealed in the Taipei Basin in two different time spans: 2011/09–2012/09 and 2012/09–2013/07. This result shows good agreement with robust continuous GPS measurement and precise leveling survey data across the central Taipei Basin. Moreover, it also represents high correlation with groundwater table. From 8 well data in the Taipei basin, the storativity is roughly constant across most of the aquifer with values between 0.5 × 10− 4 and 1.6 × 10− 3 in Jingmei Formation and 0.8 × 10− 4 and 1.4 × 10− 3 in Wuku Formation. This high correlation indicated that one meter groundwater level change could induce about 9 and 16 mm surface deformation change in Luzou and Wuku area respectively, which is about eight times faster the long-term tectonic deformation rate in this area. Thus, to access the activity of the Shanchiao Fault, it is important to discriminate tectonic movement from anthropogenic or seasonal effect in the Taipei Basin to better understand the geohazards and mitigation in the Taipei metropolitan area.
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