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costa concordia tragedy ship displacement monitoring system
“Costa Concordia” tragedy – ship displacement monitoring system

On 13/01/2012 at Giglio island a 400 long ship “Costa Concordia” having about 4000 people on board shipwrecked. Since then, it has been constantly moving downward the sea bottom. Additionally, the unusual ship position, the weather conditions and the rescue operations impose on the construction additional forces, not taken into consideration in its engineering design, which may consequently jeopardize the rescue teams and the environment. Aiming maximal safety of the rescue operations, continuous monitoring of the ship displacement has been launched. This tragedy results to analysis about the preparation and the possibility of adequate crisis reactions. The presentation reveals the ship displacement monitoring system, putting into practice MIMO radar interferometer – a scientific work of the Joint Research Centre - Italy and personal impressions of the ship rescue activities


Protezione civile

Information flow

Information flow

  • Displacement bulletin /every 12h, next 24/
  • Emergency monitoring in dangerous situations /every 2h/


Monitoring center

Guardia di finanza

Private companies


Mutual funds

Guardia foresteria






The only one experimental device



Phase interferogram, displacement vs. the reference point





CW chirp, 2sm wavelength, 2sec acquisition

Full Remote control and monitoring



Major Faced problems

  • “on line” programming
  • -Fast programming on various task,
  • Continuously changing requirements
  • Bug fix
  • Writing/changing own standards
  • New signal processing
  • Computational problems
  • Rapid prototyping
  • Changing something in the hw, requires changing the software
  • Physical reinforcement

results presentation to the end user

  • Team work
  • 24h stand by
  • Solving problems without team information 
  • Resource sharing everybody helps with cameras, internet, information about the typical wind conditions etc.
  • Visibility
  • -press
  • papers
  • presentations

From -…… - TO

No time, everything calculated on hand and by eye 

End user happy , clear visibility

Data format changing, new software, ,

Title of figure, points of observation 