Action TU1208

Civil Engineering Applications of Ground Penetrating Radar

COST Success Story

TU1208 Events


Final Conference of the COST Action TU1208, Warsaw, Poland, 25-27 September 2017


Our final event of COST Action is hosted by the National Institute of Telecommunications of Poland. The conference will bring together scientists, engineers and industry delegates from all over Europe and beyond, working in all GPR areas. Topics of the conference are:

  • novel developments of GPR systems and antennas (outcomes of TU1208 Working Group 1)
  • innovative procedures for testing the performance of GPR systems (outcome of TU1208 Working Group 1)
  • safety issues in GPR prospecting (outcome of TU1208 Working Groups 1 and 2)
  • guidelines for GPR inspection of roads and concrete structures (bridges, tunnels, building floors), and for GPR detection and localization of utilities and voids in urban areas (outcomes of TU1208 Working Group 2)
  • advanced civil-engineering case studies where GPR was used for investigating roads, bridges, tunnels, railways, airports, buildings, concrete and wood structures, and for detecting utilities and cavities (outcomes of TU1208 Working Group 2)
  • free software tools for electromagnetic modelling of GPR (outcomes of TU1208 Working Group 3)
  • free software tools for the processing of GPR radargrams (outcomes of TU1208 Working Group 3)
  • innovative forward- and inverse-scattering, imaging and data-processing methods for GPR (outcomes of TU1208 Working Group 3)
  • open database of radargrams (outcome of TU1208 Working Groups 2 and 3)
  • advanced case studies where GPR was used for archaeological prospection and cultural-heritage diagnostics (outcomes of TU1208 Working Group 4)
  • advanced case studies where GPR was integrated with complementary non-destructive testing methods (outcomes of TU1208 Working Group 4)
  • advanced case studies where GPR was applied in further areas (outcomes of TU1208 Working Group 4)
  • results of TU1208 Short-Term Scientific Missions
  • results of the TU1208 GPR Road Show and roundtable with industry delegates
  • results of the TU1208 training activities and presentation of the TU1208 Education Pack



Past TU1208 Events


Tu1208 GPR Road Show


The TU1208 GPR Road Show is a series of national events where stakeholders, private companies, professionals, students and interested citizens can find out what is Ground Penetrating Radar (GPR), discover how this technique can be used for seeing the unseen, and learn about the applications of GPR in in civil engineering and beyond. These events also are a great opportunity for fostering a stronger interaction between academia and industry.

So far, we organised successful Road Show editions in Lisbon (Portugal), Rome (Italy), Athens (Greece), Osijek (Croatia), Novi Sad (Serbia) and Pardubice (Czech Republic). Overall, 381 participants attended our GPR Roadshow. For more information about the Roadshow, please visit this page.



TU1208 Training Schools


The Action organized 16 Training Schools that were attended bymore than 430 Trainees. For more information please visit this page.



GPR 2014, 15th edition of the International Conference on Ground Penetrating Radar

The International Conference on Ground Penetrating Radar is a longstanding traditional event, making the premier forum of research and applications in the field of GPR.

GPR 2014, the 15th conference in the series that has been held biannually since 1986, was held in the Square Brussels Meeting Centre, in Brussels, Belgium. This successful event was co-organised by the COST Action TU1208, along with the Université Catholique de Louvain. The conference was attended by 283 participants and topics covered by the 210 presented papers included: developments of novel GPR systems and antennas, advanced data processing algorithms for improved subsurface imaging, radar data modeling approaches and inversion strategies for quantitative reconstruction of soil and material properties, data interpretation in a range of fields, including geology and sedimentology, glaciology, environmental and agricultural engeneering (e.g., hydrological monitoring, digital soil mapping, forestry), civil engineering (e.g., utility detection, monitoring of transport infrastructures, nondestructive testing), archaeology and cultural heritage, and planetary exploration, among others.

The conference proceedings are published on IEEE Xplore. A Special Issue was published on the IEEE Journal of Selected Topics in Applied Earth Observations and Remote Sensing (IEEE JSTARS). The photos of the conference are here.

More information about GPR 2014 can be found on the conference website.

TU1208 Editorial activities


TU1208 Special Issue on "Recent Progress in Electromagnetic Theory and its Applications"


Journal of Telecommunications and Information Technology

This open access journal is indexed on SCOPUS, INSPEC, Copernicus, and many more databases. The Special Issue is going to be published by September 2017 and all accepted papers will be available in open access on the website of the journal. The Guest Editors are: Prof. Hovik Baghdasaryan, Prof. Marian Marciniak and Prof. Lara Pajewski. Download the manuscript template on the website of the journal and submit your manuscript via email to:,,



TU1208 Special Issue on "Civil engineering applications of Ground Penetrating Radar"


International Journal for Engineering Modelling

The deadline for paper submission is 15 June 2017. You can download the call for paper here. The journal is indexed on SCOPUS and INSPEC (and on many more databases). The Special Issue is going to be published in September 2017 and all accepted papers will be available in open access on the website of the journal. The Guest Editors are: Prof. Antonios Giannopoulos, Prof. Dragan Poljak and Prof. Lara Pajewski. Submit your (double-spaced one-column) manuscript via email to:,



TU1208 Special Session on "Ground Penetrating Radar for archaeological prospection and cultural-heritage management"


Metro Archeo 2017

We are looking forward to seeing you in Lecce, Italy, on 23-25 October 2017!

This Special Session will be an international forum of discussion where scientists will exchange and share experience on GPR, present advancements of their research activities and recent case studies, and identify challenges and opportunities for the GPR technique in archaeology and cultural-heritage management. The deadline for abstract submission is 30 June 2017. Contributions on the following topics are welcome:

1. Design, realization and testing of innovative GPR systems for archaeological prospection and cultural-heritage diagnostics.

2. GPR investigation of archaeological sites and landscapes: Methodology and case studies.

3. GPR inspection of monuments, ancient buildings, roads and bridges, columns, statues, decorations and other manmade structures of historical value: Methodology and case studies.

4. GPR assessment of natural structures of historical, geological, biological or landscape-conservation value: Methodology and case studies.

5. Electromagnetic-modelling techniques for GPR.

6. Signal-processing, inversion and imaging approaches for GPR.

7. Combined use of GPR and complementary NDT techniques: Methodology, case studies and integrated data interpretation.



GI3.1 Session "Civil engineering applications of Ground Penetrating Radar"


2018 EGU General Assembly


We are looking forward to seeing you in Vienna, Austria, on 8-13 April 2018. The GI3.1 Session has become a consolidated tradition for our Members. In 2018 we will organize it again, although the Action will be already ended.

The EGU General Assembly 2018 will bring together geoscientists from all over the world to one meeting covering all disciplines of the Earth, planetary and space sciences. The GI3.1 session will represent a wonderful opportunity for disseminating the final outcomes of the COST Action TU1208 and for sharing knowledge and ideas on the GPR technique.



The GPR Imaging Challenge


In connection with IWAGPR 2017, the 9th edition of the International Workshop on Advanced Ground Penetrating Radar, a realistic 3D GPR model was created by Antonis Giannopoulos, Iraklis Giannakis and Craig Warren by using the new version of gprMax, which offers a challenge for testing GPR processing, imaging, and inversion algorithms.

The idea of using a numerical model to test imaging, inversion, and processing algorithms is not new. It is well established in seismic modelling with, for example, the Marmousi model. However, to our knowledge, no such detailed and realistic 3D model exists for GPR. The use of a realistic model for testing GPR algorithms can offer several advantages:

- algorithms can be tested in a much more robust manner than when using simplistic and clinical models that do not effectively represent the real complex environments and targets that are encountered with GPR;

- there is accurate knowledge of the composition of the targets, their precise location, and the exact makeup of the hosting media. Such detailed knowledge is not possible with experimental or field testing.

Before releasing information on the detailed construction and composition of the model (to be used by the GPR research community) the modelled data are offered as an imaging and interpretation challenge to GPR researchers. A session has been scheduled in the IWAGPR 2017 conference programme, in which we hope that some results can be presented.

The dataset and a full set of instructions can be found at the GitHub repository of gprMax.

Join us!

Participating will embark you upon a wide range of opportunities.

Discover more!


There are several ways to be involved in a COST Action. For general information on how to participate, please refer to the relevant page on the COST website.

By joining the COST Action TU1208, you will have the possibility to participate to the networking activities and scientific projects carried out within the Action. You will meet several scientists working on GPR, establish new cooperations and have the possibility to build the critical mass for follow up activities in the EU Framework Programme Horizon2020 or other competitive international programmes.

The COST Action TU1208 is active through a range of networking tools: meetings, workshops, conferences, training schools, short-term scientific missions, dissemination activities. The Action is a wide bottom-up interdisciplinary science and technology network, open to researchers from universities, public and private research institutions, as well as to NGOs, industry and SMEs.

For further information or to join TU1208 scientific activities, please take contact with the Action Chair, Dr. Lara Pajewski.


Welcome on our website!


The COST Action TU1208 started on 4 April 2013 and is ending on 3 October 2017. The website will continue being updated and enriched after the end of the Action. If you wish to receive our updates via email, please fill in the contact form.


The main objective of TU1208 is to exchange and increase scientific-technical knowledge and experience of Ground Penetrating Radar (GPR) techniques in civil engineering, whilst promoting a wider and more effective use of this safe and non-destructive method in the monitoring of structures.


Our research activities include all aspects of the GPR technology and methodology: development and testing of radar systems and antennas; design and application of surveying procedures for the inspection of natural and manmade structures, in civil and environmental engineering, cultural heritage and beyond; integration of GPR with complementary non-destructive testing methods; development of advanced electromagnetic modelling, inversion and data-processing techniques for radargram analysis and interpretation.

TU1208 Awards


TU1208 Praised as a

COST Success Story

("The Cities of Tomorrow: the Challenges of Horizon 2020")

TU1208 has been recognised among the running Actions as a COST Success Story and has been praised with the following statement: TU1208 "Civil engineering applications of Ground Penetrating Radar" (Chair: Lara Pajewski, Roma Tre University, IT) - This interdisciplinary Action represents a milestone in GPR research, being the first European network ever existed in this field, in line with the spirit and goals of the ERA. In June 2014, it co-organised the 15th International Conference on Ground Penetrating Radar, the premier forum on GPR" ("The Cities of Tomorrow: The Challenges of Horizon 2020," September 17-19, 2014, Torino, IT - A COST strategic workshop on the development and needs of the European cities). For more information on the event, please visit this page.





The Action published several international books, journal special issues, book chapters, journal papers and conference papers. For a complete list of publications and relevant statistics, please visit this page. In the following, instead, you will find some information about two books published by the Action with Springer and with the European Association of Geoscientists and Engineers.



TU1208 published the Springer book "Civil Engineering Applications of Ground Penetrating Radar"


The book describes the most up-to-date applications of GPR in civil engineering, with documentation of instrumentation, methods and results. It explains clearly how GPR can be employed for the surveying of critical transport infrastructure, such as roads, pavements, bridges and tunnels, and for the sensing and mapping of underground utilities and voids. Detailled attention is also devoted to the use of GPR in the inspection of geological structures and construction materials, including reinforced concrete, steel reinforcing bars and pre/post-tensioned stressing ducts. Information on the design of GPR systems and antennas is provided. Advanced methods for solution of electromagnetic scattering problems and new data processing techniques are also presented. Readers will come to appreciate that GPR is a safe, effective, non destructive and noninvasive imaging technique that can be effectively used for the inspection of composite structures and the performance of diagnostics relevant to the entire life cycle of civil engineering works. For more information visit this page!

TU1208 published the EAGE book "Recommendations for the Safety of People and Instruments in Ground-Penetrating Radar and Near-Surface Geophysical Prospecting"!


The book offers an in-depth overview on the risks associated to Ground-Penetrating Radar and Near-Surface Geophysical Prospecting, providing the Reader with practical recommendations for the safety of people and instruments. Among the main topics dealt with in the book, the Reader will find:

- general recommendations for a safe prospecting and minimal safety equipment to be brought in the field;

- specific advice for experimental campaigns carried out in challenging environmental situations;

- appropriate precautions related to specific kinds of GPR applications;

- dangers associated to electromagnetic emissions and European regulations for GPR manufacturers and end-users.

The book includes a short medical first aid guide as well, which is specifically conceived for near-surface geophysical prospecting. Suggestions for correct use and safe transport of the equipment are finally provided. For more information visit this page!

For information concerning the COST Action TU1208, please take contact with the Chair of the Action, Dr. Lara Pajewski - This website is supported by COST, European COoperation in Science and Technology - COST is supported by the EU RTD Framework Programme Horizon2020.

TU1208 Members are deeply grateful to COST for funding and supporting the COST Action TU1208.