Xie Hu

Title:Tenure-track Assistant Professor

Research Direction: SAR remote sensing | Geohazards | Surface/shallow processes

Department: Department of Physical Geography and Natural Resources


Self Introduction

I am the tenure-track Assistant Professor at Peking University. Before I came back to China, I was the tenure-track Assistant Professor at the University of Houston (2020-2021), a postdoc in the Active Tectonic group, UC Berkeley (2018-2020) led by Dr. Roland Bürgmann. I obtained my Ph.D in Spring 2018 from Dr. Zhong Lu's lab in Southern Methodist University (SMU) in Dallas, TX.

My research focuses on using geodetic tools, e.g., SAR and GPS, to characterize ground deformation associated with hydrologically driven geohazards and surface processes in various landscapes and geodynamic settings (e.g., landslides, aquifers, delta, dams, mines, and earthquakes). I am also engaged in investigating their natural or anthropogenic triggers and mechanisms using statistical, analytical, and numerical models. My interdisciplinary research spans the fields of geodesy, geophysics, hydrology, geology, tectonics, civil and environmental engineering.

Education and experience

2014-2018      Ph.D.    Geophysics               Southern Methodist Univ. (SMU), Dallas, TX, USA

2011-2013      M.E.     Remote Sensing       Wuhan Univ. (WHU), Wuhan, China

2007-2011      B.E.      GIS                           China Univ. of Geosciences (CUG), Wuhan, China

Work experience

7/2021-                  Tenure-track Assistant Professor       Peking University

8/2020-6/2021       Tenure-track Assistant Professor       University of Houston

9/2018-8/2020       Postdoctoral Researcher                    University of California, Berkeley

2014-2018             Graduate Research Assistant             Southern Methodist University

2013                      Research Assistant                             King Abdullah University of Science and Technology

Fund Project

2021             NASA New (Early Career) Investigator Program in Earth Science

2018             Chinese government award for outstanding self-finance students abroad

2018             Outstanding talk, Youth Forum of 2018 International Symposium on Geodesy and Geodynamics

2015             NASA Earth and Space Science Fellowship

Fund Project

2021-2024 NASA New (Early Career) Investigator Program in Earth Science ($375,000; solo investigator)

                  Four-dimensional landslide quantification in the Western U.S. using remote sensing big data

2020-2021 Southern California Earthquake Center (SCEC) ($20,217; senior participant)

                  Separation of tectonic, hydrological and anthropogenic sources of ground deformation in Southern California

2018-2021 California Energy Commission Program grant ($148,626; senior participant)

                  Development of an integrated methodology for assessing integrity of levees protecting natural gas infrastructure

2015-2019 NASA Earth Surface & Interior Program grant ($210,097; senior participant)

                  Environmental controls on landslide motion revealed by InSAR and pixel offset tracking

2015-2018 NASA Earth and Space Science Fellowship ($104,894; Co-PI)

                  Quantifying landslide dynamics using InSAR: applications to landslides in northwestern USA


CIVE 7397 SAR Remote Sensing (3 credits)           2020 Fall @ University of Houston

Research direction

I am looking for highly motivated undergraduate and graduate students and postdoctoral researchers who are intesrested in or have research experience in remote sensing | machine learning | numerical models | geophysical models. Research topics on landslides, coastal resilience, and other aspects of geohazards and surface/shallow processes are welcome and supported. The successful applicants should have a strong background in mathematics and have some programming skills. Please email me if you are interested and engaged to learn!



† Students/postdocs advisee in my lab *Corresponding for non-1st-author papers

Journal Publications

16. Hu, X., Xue, L., Yu, Y., Guo, S., Cui, Y., Li, Y., Qi, S., 2021, Remote sensing characterization of mountain excavation and city construction in loess plateau. Geophysical Research Letters.

15. Shi, X.G., Hu, X.*, Sitar, N., Kayen, R., Qi, S., Jiang, H., Wang, X., Zhang, L., 2021, Hydrological control shift from river level to rainfall in the reactivated Guobu Slope besides the Laxiwa hydropower station (China). Remote Sensing of Environment, 265, 112664.

14. Yu, H.†, Hu, X., 2021, Knowledge-aided InSAR phase unwrapping approach. IEEE Transactions on Geoscience and Remote Sensing. doi: 10.1109/TGRS.2021.3081039

13. Shi, G.Q., Ma, P., Hu, X., Song, X., Huang, B., Lin, H., 2021, Surface response and subsurface features during the restriction of groundwater exploitation in Suzhou (China) inferred from decadal SAR interferometry. Remote Sensing of Environment256, 112327.

12. Shi, Z.M., Hu, X., Wang, C.-Y., 2020, Hydro-mechanical coupling in the shallow crust – insight from groundwater level and satellite radar imagery in a mining area. Journal of Hydrology125649.

11. Hu, X., Bürgmann, R., Schulz, W., Fielding, E.J., 2020, Four-dimensional surface motions of the Slumgullion landslide and quantification of hydrometeorological forcing. Nature Communications11, 2792.

10. Hu, X., Bürgmann, R., 2020, Aquifer dynamics in the seismically hazardous Salt Lake Valley, Utah, USA. Earth and Planetary Science Letters547.

9. Hu, X., Bürgmann, R., Fielding, E.J., Lee, H., 2020, Internal kinematics of the Slumgullion landslide (USA) from high-resolution UAVSAR InSAR data. Remote Sensing of Environment251.

8. Hu, X., Bürgmann, R., 2020, Rheology of a debris slide from the joint analysis of UAVSAR and LiDAR data. Geophysical Research Letters, 47, e2020GL087452.

7. Hu, X., Bürgmann, R., Lu, Z., Handwerger, A. L., Wang, T., Miao, R., 2019, Mobility, thickness, and hydraulic diffusivity of the slow-moving Monroe landslide in California revealed by L-band satellite radar interferometry. Journal of Geophysical Research: Solid Earth124.

6. Hu, X., Lu, Z., Wang, T., 2018, Characterization of hydrogeological properties in Salt Lake Valley, Utah using InSAR. Journal of Geophysical Research: Earth Surface, 123.

5. Hu, X., Lu, Z., Pierson, T. C., Kramer, R., George, D. L., 2018, Combining InSAR and GPS to determine transient movement and thickness of a seasonally active low‐gradient translational landslide. Geophysical Research Letters, 45, 1453–1462.

4. Hu, X., Oommen, T., Lu, Z., Wang, T., Kim, J. W., 2017, Consolidation settlement of Salt Lake County tailings impoundment revealed by time-series InSAR observations from multiple radar satellites. Remote Sensing of Environment, 202, 199–209.

3. Hu, X., Wang, T., Pierson, T. C., Lu, Z., Kim, J. W., Cecere, T. H., 2016, Detecting seasonal landslide movement within the Cascade landslide complex (Washington) using time-series SAR imagery. Remote Sensing of Environment, 187, 49–61.

2. Kim, J.W., Lu, Z., Qu, F., Hu, X., 2015, Pre-2014 mudslides at Oso revealed by InSAR and multi-source DEM analysis. Geomatics, Natural Hazards and Risk, 6(3), 184–194.

1. Hu, X., Wang, T, Liao, M., 2014, Measuring coseismic displacements with point-like targets offset tracking. IEEE Geosci. Remote Sens. Lett., 11(1), 283–287.

Under Review

6. Hu, X., Bürgmann, R., Fielding, E.J., Creeping faults and mobile landslides shoulder to shoulder in the East Bay Hills, California.

5. Hu, X., Xue, L., Bürgmann, R., Fu, Y., Wang, T., Stress perturbations from elastic loads and seismicity in the Salt Lake City region. Under review in Journal of Geophysical Research: Solid Earth.

4. Hu, X., Bürgmann, R., Fielding, E.J., Xu, X., Zhen, L., Machine-learning characterization of tectonic, hydrological and anthropogenic sources of ground deformation in California. Under review in Journal of Geophysical Research: Solid Earth.

3. Zhou, C., Cao, Y., Hu, X., Yin, K., Enhanced dynamic landslide hazard assessment using MT-InSAR method in the Three Gorges Reservoir Area. Under review in Landslides.

2. Li, Y., Cui, Y., et al., Glacier retreat in Eastern Himalaya drives catastrophic glacier hazard chain.

1. Zhang, Y., Fu, L., Sun, X., Yu, X., Hu, X., Yang, Q., Continuous vertical leakage (ground subduction) incurred by fractures in a deep well - Depth of 3500 meters might not be sealed, cautions for deep waste burial.

Peking University

College of Urban and Environmental Sciences

  • 86-10-62751172
  • 86-10-62751174
  • hjjf@pku.edu.cn