Landslide susceptibility mapping of Penang Island, Malaysia, using remote sensing and multi-geophysical methods

Siti Nurkhalidah Husainy, Andy Anderson Bery*, Ismail Ahmad Abir, Wien Lestari, Adedibu Sunny Akingboye

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Malaysia is one of the countries in the world that experiences landslides yearly due to natural events and human activities. Penang Island is Malaysia’s second most developed state and the largest by population. It is prone to landslides with devastating environmental impacts. Hence, the need to characterize its near-surface soil-rock conditions. This study uses remotely sensed data, with frequency ratio (FR) analysis, to identify landslide-prone areas based on different categories of landslide causative factors. To further understand the conditions and hy-drodynamics of the soil-rock profiles causing landslides, electrical resistivity tomography and seismic refraction tomography were carried out at a landslide-suspected section in the study area. Also, satellite-derived Bouguer gravity anomaly modeling was performed to map the varied gravity anomalies associated with landslide-trigge-ring factors in lithologic units. The multi-geophysical models offer strongly correlated results with the remote sensing causative factor maps and the landslide susceptibility index (LSI) map. The likelihood of landslides oc-curring in the area, as suggested by the area under curve modeling of LSI data, yielded a high predicted success rate of 83.47%. Hence, prospective landslides were identified in the hilly and elevated sections, while the less susceptible sections were identified on flat reliefs. Landslides may also be triggered, for instance, at steep sections with varied contractive soil bodies and shallow structures. Most importantly, leveraging the LSI map would help the necessary agencies forestall and mitigate future landslide occurrences in the area.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)93-107
Number of pages15
JournalEarth Sciences Research Journal
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 16 Aug 2023


  • Electrical resistivity tomography (ERT)
  • Landslide susceptibility mapping
  • Penang Island
  • Remote sensing
  • Satellite-derived gravity mapping
  • Seismic refraction tomography (SRT)


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