Siting and design of major structures such as nuclear power plants, waste repositories, dams, and so forth require a thorough evaluation of earthquake hazard, including an assessment of the tectonic regime in the site region. All available data sources such as geologic maps, geophysical maps, and synoptic remote sensing images should be fully utilized for regional tectonic evaluations. Nearly all lineaments mapped on synoptic-scale images, however, are expressions of topographic features. It seems desirable, therefore, to include analysis of digital elevation data in regional phases of tectonic evaluations. These data have higher spatial resolution than Landsat and are less expensive than both Landsat and SLAR. Digital elevation data are inherently geometrically correct and, although of lower resolution than SLAR, are more versatile in accentuating geologic structure with less cultural and vegetation interference. Digital elevation data in the form of synthetic relief images and stereo pairs provide ideal data bases for guiding aerial reconnaissance and acquisition of large-scale images for detailed evaluations.

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