Earth Resources Observation and Science (EROS) Center


At the USGS EROS Center, we study land change and produce land change data products used by researchers, resource managers, and policy makers across the nation and around the world. We also operate the Landsat satellite program with NASA, and maintain the largest civilian collection of images of the Earth’s land surface in existence, including tens of millions of satellite images. 

What's New at EROS?


The 2019 Joint Agency Commercial Imagery Evaluation— Land Remote Sensing Satellite Compendium is the sum of three years of data collection on the global status of Earth imaging satellite platforms.

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Image of the Week

Image of the Week

Before landing on the surface of the moon, Apollo astronauts needed a training ground that matched their destination’s cratered surface. In the U.S., that turned out to be northern Arizona.

Moon Craters


Date published: July 11, 2019

Improved Forecasting Tools Offer Early Warning for Drought

There are 2.2 million people in Somalia at risk for malnutrition this year.

The reasons are myriad, but the ravages of drought – crop failures, food shortages, spiking food prices - are primary drivers of that risk.

Date published: June 25, 2019

Water Consumption Work at EROS Important Asset to Colorado River Concerns

Western states looking at critical water shortages along the Colorado River got a reprieve this past April when President Trump approved legislation allowing the Interior Secretary—through the Bureau of Reclamation (BOR)—to oversee an updated water conservation plan along the river’s Lower Basin.

Date published: June 21, 2019

Disaster Management Training at EROS Prepares Volunteers for Duty

A deadly series of California wildfires set thousands of firefighters and first responders into action in late 2018.


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Year Published: 2019

Bundle adjustment using space based triangulation method for improving the Landsat global ground reference

There is an ever-increasing interest and need for accurate geo-registration of remotely sensed data products to a common global geometric reference. Although the geo-registration has improved significantly in the last decade, the lack of an accurate global ground reference dataset poses serious issues for data providers seeking to make...

Choate, Michael; Storey, James C.; Rengarajan, R.; Choate, Michael J.

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Year Published: 2019

Long-term (1986–2015) crop water use characterization over the Upper Rio Grande Basin of United States and Mexico using Landsat-based evapotranspiration

The evaluation of historical water use in the Upper Rio Grande Basin (URGB), United States and Mexico, using Landsat-derived actual evapotranspiration (ETa) from 1986 to 2015 is presented here as the first study of its kind to apply satellite observations to quantify long-term, basin-wide crop consumptive use in a large basin. The rich archive of...

Senay, Gabriel; Schauer, Matthew (Contractor); Velpuri, Naga Manohar (Contractor); Singh, Ramesh (Contractor); Kagone, Stefanie (Contractor); Friedrichs, MacKenzie (Contractor); Litvak, Marcy; Douglas-Mankin, Kyle R.

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Year Published: 2019

LANDFIRE remap prototype mapping effort: Developing a new framework for mapping vegetation classification, change, and structure

LANDFIRE (LF) National (2001) was the original product suite of the LANDFIRE program, which included Existing Vegetation Cover (EVC), Height (EVH), and Type (EVT). Subsequent refinements after feedback from data users resulted in updated products, referred to as LF 2001, that now served as LANDFIRE’s baseline datasets and are the basis for all...

Picotte, Joshua J.; Dockter, Daryn; Long, Jordan; Tolk, Brian L.; Davidson, Anne; Peterson, Birgit