School of Engineering

Staff Profile

Professor Zhenhong Li

Professor of Imaging Geodesy


Call for papers:

Special Issue of Remote Sensing - Earth Observations for Precision Farming in China (EO4PFiC, closing date: 31 December 2017)

Special Issue of Sensors - First Experiences with Chinese Gaofen-3 SAR Sensor  (closing date: 31 December 2017)

Special Issue of Remote Sensing - Earth Observation to Support Disaster Preparedness and Disaster Risk Management (closing date: 30 June 2018)

Special Issue of Remote Sensing -  Radar Interferometry for Geohazards (closing date: 30 June 2018)

Special Issue of Remote Sensing -  Imaging Geodesy and Infrastructure Monitoring  (closing date: 1 June 2018)

Special Issue of Remote Sensing - Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) Technology Advance for Cultural Heritage Applications  (closing date: 31 December 2018)


BSc (Distinction) in Geodesy, Wuhan Technical University of Surveying & Mapping (now Wuhan University), China, 1993.09-1997.07

PhD in Space Geodesy and Remote Sensing, University College London, United Kingdom, 2001.09-2005.04

Chevening Technology Enterprise Fellow, Business Technology Transfer Course in London Business School, Imperial College London, and University of Cambridge, United Kingdom, 2004.09-2005.06

Postgraduate Certificate in Academic Practice, University of Glasgow, United Kingdom, 2008.09-2010.08

Professional Experience

Professor of Imaging Geodesy, Newcastle University, United Kingdom, 2014.04-present

Guest Professor, the Geospatial Information Collaborative Innovation Centre, Wuhan University, China, 2015-2016

Luojia Guest Professor, Wuhan University, China, 2012-2015

Affiliated Scientist, Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology (Caltech), United States, 2009-2012

Senior Lecturer, University of Glasgow, United Kingdom, 2011.08-2014.03

Lecturer, University of Glasgow, United Kingdom, 2008.04-2011.07

COMET Research Fellow, University College London, United Kingdom, 2005.06-2008.03

Professional Affiliation

Elected Fellow of the International Association of Geodesy (IAG), 2015

Elected Fellow of the Royal Astronomical Society (RAS), 2014

Elected Fellow of the Remote Sensing and Photogrammetry Society (FRSPSoc), 2010 

Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (FHEA), 2010

Member of the Committee on Collaboration, International Society for Digital Earth, 2013-present

Member of the NERC Geophysics and Space Geodesy Facilities Steering Committee (2010-2016)

Member of NERC Peer Review College (2014-2015)

Senior Member of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), 2013

President of the International Association of Geodesy (IAG) sub-commission 4.4: Applications of Satellite & Airborne Imaging System (2011-2015).

Council Member of the RSPSoc (2010-2016) and Chairman of RSPSoc SIGs (2011-2016)

Co-Chair of the International Society of Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing (ISPRS) WG III/2 Microwave Remote Sensing (2016-2020)

Co-Chair of the European Association of Remote Sensing Laboratories (EARSeL) Special Interest Group on Radar (2016-2020)

Member of American Geophysical Union (AGU)

Member of the International Association of Geodesy (IAG)

Peer Review Activities

Associate Editor for Advances in Space Research (ASR) (2016 - present)

Associate Editor for Remote Sensing (2017 - present)

Guest Editor for Special Issue of Remote Sensing - Earth Observations for Geohazards  (March 2016)

Guest Editor for Special Issue of International Journal of Distributed Sensor Networks - New Advances on Environment Monitoring with Wireless Sensor Network (October 2015)

Editorial Board Member for Earthquake ScienceSurvey Review, and Journal of Global Positioning System

Paper reviewer for more than 30 international journals including JGR, GRL, GJI, RS, BSSA, IEEE TGRS, IJRS, and Scientific Reports

Grant reviewer for 6 national and international research councils including the UK NERC, the Portuguese FCT, the Romanian NRC and the EU FP7 Marie Curie Individual Fellowships

Acting as PhD examiners: University of Nottingham (November 2012, External; October 2016, External); Imperial College London (November 2012, External); University of Glasgow (January 2013, Internal); University of Alicante (March 2014, External); The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (August 2014, External); University of Liverpool (October 2014, External for MSc Dissertation); Newcastle University (December 2014; November 2015); Reading University (December 2015).


I am always looking for enthusiastic and professionally curious PhD students with an academic background on geomatics/geoinformatics, geophysics, geology, electrical engineering, mathematics or physics. If you are interested in Satellite Geodesy and its geophysical and engineering applications, please contact me:

If you have a PhD and are interested in joining my research group, I am also happy to discuss and assist with applications for fellowships (e.g. NERC, EPSRC, Royal Society, and Newton International).

UK-China Science and Innovation Forum, Royal Society, London, 6 December 2018: INNOGST, SINA.

United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNISDR): Can satellites be used as an early warning system for landslides (03 July 2017, also see UK COMET, Science Newsline, Space DailyChina Dailythe Nation (Thailand)

European Space Agency: Success in Chinese radar mission: First interferograms from Gaofen-3 (also see CASC, Economic DailySciTech Daily,, COMET, 25 March 2017) 

Theguardian: Beijing has fallen: China's capital sinking by 11cm a year, satellite study warns (24 June 2016) 

BBC News: Mapping the planet's ups and downs (22 August 2013)

The Herald Scotland:
Mountain growth measured (7 May 2012)

Research in‌terests

My principal research interests include the use of Interferometric Synthetic Aperture Radar (InSAR) and Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) for monitoring changes in the Earth’s surface for geophysical and engineering applications such as earthquakes, volcanoes, landslides and city subsidence. I specialize in development of advanced space geodesy techniques for precise deformation mapping.

  • InSAR atmospheric correction models: Generic Atmospheric Correction Online Service for InSAR (GACOS)
  • Advanced InSAR time series techniques
  • Ground based SAR (GB-SAR)
  • High-rate GNSS data processing
  • Remote Sensing
  • Satellite Gravity: GRACE for coseismic gravity changes
  • Earthquake: fault geometry and slip distribution constrained by geodetic measurements
  • Continental deformation
  • Landslides (Slope instability)
  • Ground subsidence in River Deltas 
  • Structural deformation of dams, buildings, railways, and motorways
  • Atmospheric water vapour spatio-temporal variations
  • Environmental changes (e.g. Lake water level change, coastal erosion, flood mapping and aerosol monitoring)
  • Earth Observations (GNSS, Remote Sensing and Sensors) for Precision Agriculture

Free online services 

Research Team

Current postgraduate students

Research Associates/Fellows/Scientists

  • Dr Jing Guo (PAFiC PDRA, Nov 2016 - present)
  • Dr Zhenhai Li (PAFiC PDRA, Jan 2017 - present)
  • Dr Bingqian Chen (Jan 2017 - Jan 2018)
  • Dr Haibin Luo (Mar 2017 - Mar 2018)
  • Dr Ka Zhang (Mar 2017 - Mar 2018)
  • Dr Andrew Singleton (October 2014 - present, Affiliated RA)

Past Research Fellows/Assosciates/Assistants

  • Dr Jianqi Zhuang (CEDRRiC PDRA, Jan 2017 - Oct 2017; Associate Professor at Chang'an University)
  • Dr Paola Crippa (COMET PDRA, October 2014 - July 2017; Assistant Professor at University of Notre Dame, Aug 2017 - present)
  • Mr Andrew Singleton (University of Glasgow)
  • Mr David Milodowski (University of Edinburgh)
  • Dr Cem Kincal (Lecturer, Dokuz Eylül University, Turkey)

Past PhD Students

  • Dr Keren Dai (2017; Co-Supervisor)
  • Dr Haval A. Sadeq (2015)
  • Dr Wanpeng Feng (2014)
  • Dr Andrew Singleton (2014)
  • Dr Zhiwei Zhou (2013)
  • Dr Peng Li (2013; Co-Supervisor)
  • Dr Peng Liu (2012)
  • Dr Yangmao Wen (2009; Co-Supervisor)

Past Visiting Professors/Scientists/Researchers/Interns

  • Prof Yanxiong Liu (First Institute of Oceanography, SOA, China, 2008)
  • Dr William Hammond (University of Neveda, Reno, 2010)
  • Dr Xiaoqing Pi (Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Caltech, 2010)
  • Dr Yangmao Wen (Associate Professor, Wuhan University, 2008-2009, 2013-2014)
  • Dr Wei Qu (Lecturer, Chang'an University, 2010)
  • Dr Chengsheng Yang (Lecturer, Chang'an University, 2010)
  • Dr Yang Liu (PhD student, Wuhan University, 2010)
  • Dr Roberto Tomás Jover (Associate Professor, University of Alicante, Spain, Jun-Oct 2011)
  • Ms Marie-Laure Bachschmidt (MSc Intern, University of Strasburg, 2012)
  • Mr Simon Taussig (MSc Intern, ENSG, 2012)
  • Dr Sergio Fernandez (Postdoc, DLR, 2012)
  • Ms Qiong Li (PhD Intern, Wuhan University, 2012)
  • Dr Yongsheng Li (PhD student, Institute of Crustal Dynamic, China Earthquake Administration, 2012)
  • Dr Peng Li (PhD student, Wuhan University, 2012)
  • Prof Jingfa Zhang (Institute of Crustal Dynamic, China Earthquake Administration, Nov 2012 - May 2013)
  • Dr Dominique Derauw (Centre Spatial de Liège, Belgium, April 2013)
  • Prof Peijun Du (Nanjing University, August - September 2013)
  • Dr Juqing Zhang (Chang'an University, September - December 2013)
  • Dr Lianying Li (Wuhan University, March 2013 - March 2014)
  • Dr Xiaolan Xu (Wuhan University, March 2013 - March 2014)
  • Prof Jingfa Zhang (Institute of Crustal Dynamic, China Earthquake Administration, August - September 2014)
  • Dr Mahdi Motagh (Helmholtz Center Potsdam, GFZ, November 2014)
  • Prof Tao Li (Wuhan University, January - December 2014)
  • Dr Mi Chen (Capital Normal University, July 2014 - July 2015)
  • Dr Guifang Zhang (Institute of Geology, China Earthquake Administration, August 2014 - August 2015) 
  • Mr Leyin Hu (Earthquake Administration of Beijing Municipality, CEA, September 2014 - August 2015)
  • Dr Roberto Tomás Jover (Associate Professor, University of Alicante, Spain, June - August 2015)
  • Dr Jing Guo (PUMiC PDRA, Nov 2015 - Mar 2016)
  • Dr Yang Hao (PUMiC PDRA, Nov 2015 - Mar 2016)
  • Dr Lixia Gong (Institute of Crustal Dynamic, China Earthquake Administration, Jan 2016 - Jan 2017)
  • Dr Anxi Yu (National University of Defence Technology, Aug 2016 - Jan 2017)
  • Dr Yang Liu (Wuhan University, Mar 2016 - Mar 2017)
  • Dr Tengteng Qu (Tongji University, Dec 2016 - Mar 2017; Aug 2017 - Sep 2017)
  • Dr Na Li (Beihang University, Dec 2016 - Dec 2017)

Research Grants

Sentinels of Wheat, the STFC-NSFC Newton Agri-Tech Joint Programme, 2017-2019.

PAFiC: Precision Agriculture for Family-farms in China, the STFC-NSFC Newton Agri-Tech Joint Programme, 2016-2019.

Community-based earthquake disaster risk reduction in China (CEDRRiC): integrating local and scientific knowledge for planning and preparedness, the NERC-ESRC-NSFC Newton Fund - Increasing Resilience to Natural Hazards in Earthquake Prone Regions of China (IRNHiC), 2016.01-2018.12.

Dragon-4: Earth observations for geohazard monitoring and risk assessment, European Space Agency and the Ministry of Science and Technology (MOST), China, 2016-2020.

Building REsilience to Multi-source Flooding in South/Southeast Asia through a Technology-informed Community-based approacH (REMATCH), NERC Global Challenges Research Fund: Building Resilience, 2016-2017.

DRIER-China: Drought Resilience In Ecosystem services and Rural communities in China, NERC Global Challenges Research Fund: Building Resilience, 2016-2017.

Centre for the Observation and Modelling of Earthquakes, Volcanoes and Tectonics (COMET), Natural Environment Research Council (NERC), 2014-2019.

Looking inside the Continents from Space (LiCS): Insights into Earthquake Hazard and Crustal Deformation, Natural Environment Research Council (NERC) Large Grant, Lead PIs: Prof Barry Parsons and Tim Wright, PI: Z. Li, 2013-2018.

Urban Big Data Research Centre, Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) Large Grant, 2014-2019.

Exploring the potential for precision nutrient management in China (PUMiC), the STFC Newton Agri-Tech Fund, 2015-2016.

RApID: Resilient Application of Intelligent Disaster management, the STFC Newton Agri-Tech Fund, 2014-2015.

Exemplar Smart Farming in Newcastle, the STFC Newton Agri-Tech Pathfinder programme, 2014-2015.

Ground Based Synthetic Aperture Radar (GB-SAR), NERC Strategic Environmental Science Capital Call, 2014.

RAE Distinguished Visiting Fellowship (to support Dr Maorong Ge from GFZ): GNSS Seismology for responding to large earthquakes and monitoring infrastructure stability, Royal Academy of Engineering, 2014-2015.    

Assessing the performances of Terrestrial Imaging Systems for Topographic Mapping, NERC National Centre for Earth Observation (NCEO), United Kingdom, 2013-2014.

Using high resolution topographic data to detect regions of high seismic hazard from space, Carnegie Trust (Larger Grant), 2012

Polarimetric synthetic aperture radar image processing for rapid assessment of earthquake hazard damage, the RSE-NCFS International Joint Project, PI: Z. Li, 2012-2014.

Field investigation of landslides identified by radar interferometry in the Three Gorges region (China), Carnegie Trust, PI: Z. Li, 2012.

GAS: Generic Atmosphere Solutions for radar measurements. NERC, PI: Z. Li, 2009-2011.

National Centre for Earth Observation (NCEO): Centre for the Observation and Modelling of Earthquakes, Volcanoes and Tectonics (COMET+), Natural Environment Research Council (NERC), Associated Investigator: Z. Li, 2008-2012.

Use of advanced InSAR time series techniques to map city subsidence in Jiangsu Province, China. PI: Z. Li, 2010-2012

Multi-wavelength PS InSAR techniques and their applications to land subsidence in Eastern China, National Natural Science Foundation of China (NSFC), PI: Guoxiang Liu, 2011-2013.

Sediment compaction over the Yellow River Delta, China, with Radar Interferometry Time Series Analysis, Carnegie Trust, PI: Z. Li, 2010-2011.

Use of InSAR to map surface cracks in Xi’an City, China, PI: Z. Li, 2009-2010

Use of InSAR to map city subsidence in Jiangsu Province, China. PI: Z. Li, 2009-2010

OSCAR: Online Services for Correcting Atmosphere in Radar, NASA, PI: Paul von Allmen; 2009-2012

Monitor active faults in Tibet using GPS/InSAR integrated techniques, China 863 programme (ID: 2009AA12Z317), PI: Caijun Xu, 2009-2010.

Using space geodesy techniques (i.e. GPS and InSAR) to monitor deformation over the Yellow River Delta, National Natural Science Foundation of China (NSFC). PI: Xinghua Zhou, 2006-2008.

Conference Grant for the 2008 AGU Fall Meeting, San Francisco, CA, USA. The Royal Society. PI: Z. Li, 2008.

Travel Award for an excellent paper presented at the 2008 ISPRS Congress, Beijing, China, the International Society for Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing (ISPRS). PI: Z. Li, 2008.


  • CEG2703: Observation Processing Analysis (10 credits)
  • CEG2710: GNSS theory and practice (10 credits)
  • CEG3707: Geohazards and Deformation of the Earth (10 credits)