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Waves are used for the detection and imaging of objects for many years. The radar uses electromagnetic waves, the sonar is based on acoustic waves and the medical ultrasound combines the use of acoustic and elastic waves.

Other applications less known to the public, concern seismic imaging, ie, the imaging of subsurface geological formations, and the use of ultrasonic waves for the non-destructive testing of materials.

Dr. Chrysoula Tsogka, Associate Professor in the Department of Applied Mathematics at the University of Crete and Researcher at the Institute of Applied and Computational Mathematics (IACM) received funding by the European Research Council for her research project ‘ADAPTIVES’, which aims to develop and study algorithms in order to solve the problem of imaging through wave propagation. While the research is still in progress, the accuracy and stability in existing results both theoretical and computational have already been studied.

Imaging the Planet


In most of these applications the materials encountered in practice are often complex and their properties are not known - and cannot be estimated - in every detail. The propagation medium is, therefore, modeled as a random process for which some statistical properties are known, such as for example, the average value of the propagation speed and the size of inhomogeneities.

The goal of the is to solve the imaging problem in such "random" propagation mediums, where the waves in order to go from one place to another, they can follow multiple paths and not just one.

This makes the imaging problem particularly difficult, and for its solution very different methods are required in relation to those used so far in homogeneous or other known means. The challenge is to produce reliable, i.e., statistically stable results, especially when there is not any a priori knowledge about the propagation medium.

In recent years, the research team has developed a coherent interferometric imaging methodology (CINT) that produces statistically stable results in noisy environments. In the project ‘ADAPTIVES’ the mathematical and numerical extend of this methodology is suggested as appropriate as far as novel types of applications are concerned (such as underwater acoustics and seismic imaging), and the extent and limits of its applicability is being estimated.

European Research Council 2010 - 2015

An important European distinction for the Foundation for Research and Technology (FORTH) is the recent funding of € 690.000 for a period of 5 years of the research project of Dr. Chrysoula Tsogka entitled: «ADAPTIVES / Algorithmic Development and Analysis of Pioneer Techniques for Imaging with waVES» by the European Research Council (ERC).

The mission of the ERC is to encourage the highest quality research in Europe through competitive funding and to support investigator-driven frontier research across all fields, on the basis of scientific excellence.


Team Leader: Chrysoula Tsogka, Associate Professor, Department of Applied Mathematics, University of Crete & Researcher at the Institute of Applied and Computational Mathematics.

Research team: Michalis Apostolopoulos and Eftychia Karasmani, PhD students, Dimitris Mitsoudis, Associate Researcher, Department of Applied Mathematics, University of Crete and Collaborating Researcher of FORTH, Adrien Semin, postdoctoral Researcher.