National Geospatial Program

Components of NGP

There are many components of the National Geospatial Program (NGP) and most of the significant ones are listed below.

The National Map

The National Map

The National Map includes orthoimagery (aerial photographs), elevation, geographic names, hydrography, boundaries, transportation, structures, and land cover.

Get Data

3DEP Elevation

3DEP Elevation

3DEP is a cooperative program that is accelerating the rate and quality of 3D elevation data collection to address a wide range of critical needs. The goal of 3DEP is to complete national data coverage in 8 years.

Get Data

Components of NGP

The National Geospatial Program (NGP) provides a foundation of digital geospatial data representing the topography, natural landscape, and manmade environment of the United States. Customers can incorporate NGP geospatial products and services into their decisionmaking and operational activities. NGP data and derived products and services can be accessed through The National Map Data Download and Visualization Services (TNM Viewer).  These products and services are developed by working with partners and organizations whose activities align with those of NGP. Additionally, NGP works to increase the efficiency of the Nation’s geospatial community by improving communications about geospatial data, products, services, projects, needs, standards, and best practices. and here are some of the components of the NGP.

The National Map

As one of the cornerstones of the U.S. Geological Survey's (USGS) National Geospatial Program, The National Map is a collaborative effort among the USGS and other Federal, State, and local partners to improve and deliver topographic information for the Nation. It has many uses ranging from recreation to scientific analysis to emergency response. The National Map is easily accessible for display on the Web, as products and services, and as downloadable data. The geographic information available from The National Map includes orthoimagery (aerial photographs), elevation, geographic names, hydrography, boundaries, transportation, structures, and land cover. Other types of geographic information can be added within the viewer or brought in with The National Map data into a Geographic Information System to create specific types of maps or map views. The National Map is a significant contribution to the National Spatial Data Infrastructure (NSDI) and currently is being transformed to better serve the geospatial community by providing high quality, integrated geospatial data and improved products and services including new generation digital topographic maps. To learn more about The National Map an introduction video is provided.

3D Elevation Program (3DEP)

The 3D Elevation Program (3DEP) initiative is being developed to respond to growing needs for high-quality topographic data and for a wide range of other three-dimensional representations of the Nation's natural and constructed features. The primary goal of 3DEP is to systematically collect enhanced elevation data in the form of high-quality light detection and ranging (lidar) data over the conterminous United States, Hawaii, and the U.S. territories, with data acquired over an 8-year period. Interferometric synthetic aperture radar (IfSAR) data will be collected over Alaska, where cloud cover and remote locations preclude the use of lidar over much of the State. 

User Engagement

The National Map partnership network cultivates and maintains long-term relationships with partners and develops agreements for The National Map and other initiatives that support USGS science. Partnerships are the foundation of The National Mapbecause they leverage funding across organizations as a way to provide significant cost savings, reduce redundancy in geospatial data acquisition and stewardship, and ensure the availability of common base data to a broad range of users and applications.

Board on Geographic Names

The Geographic Names Information System (GNIS) is the Federal and national standard for geographic nomenclature. The U.S. Geological Survey developed the GNIS in support of the U.S. Board on Geographic Names as the official repository of domestic geographic names data, the official vehicle for geographic names use by all departments of the Federal Government, and the source for applying geographic names to Federal electronic and printed products.

The National Map Viewer

The National Map provides easy access to topographic information. The geographic information available from The National Map includes orthoimagery (aerial photographs), elevation, geographic names, hydrography, boundaries, transportation, structures, and land cover. Other types of geographic information can be added within the viewer or brought in with The National Map data into a Geographic Information System to create specific types of maps or map views. 

The National Geospatial Technical Operations Center (NGTOC)

The U.S. Geological Survey National Geospatial Technical Operations Center (NGTOC) provides leadership and world-class technical expertise in the acquisition and management of trusted geospatial data, services, and map products for the Nation. NGTOC supports The National Map as part of the National Geospatial Program. 

CEGIS

The U.S. Geological Survey Center of Excellence for Geospatial Information Science (CEGIS) was created in 2006 and since that time has provided research primarily in support of The National Map. The presentations and publications of the CEGIS researchers document the research accomplishments that include advances in electronic topographic map design, generalization, data integration, map projections, sea level rise modeling, geospatial semantics, ontology, user-centered design, volunteer geographic information, and parallel and grid computing for geospatial data from The National Map

National Hydrography

The National Hydrography Dataset (NHD) and Watershed Boundary Dataset (WBD) are digital geospatial datasets that map the surface water of the United States and are a part of The National Map. The NHD represents the nation’s drainage networks and related features, including rivers, streams, canals, lakes, ponds, glaciers, coastlines, dams, and streamgages. The NHD High Resolution, at 1:24,000 scale or better, is the most up-to-date and detailed hydrography dataset for the nation (please visit the NHD Medium Resolution page for information about accessing the legacy 1:100,000 scale dataset). The WBD represents drainage areas of the country in eight nested levels.

Alaska Mapping

The Alaska Mapping Initiative is a U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) program to support and improve maps and digital map data for Alaska, bringing Alaska topographic map and digital map data quality in line with the conterminous United States. The goal of the Alaska Mapping Initiative (AMI) is to acquire and enhance foundational digital map layers such as elevation, surface water, and boundaries that will be used to produce new US Topo maps for Alaska. This multi-year mapping initiative will improve The National Map's Alaska data to benefit high-priority applications in safety, planning, research, and resource management.