3D Elevation Program (3DEP)


Elevation Theme – National Geospatial Data Asset

3DEP Governance

Governance structure of the National Geospatial Data Asset (NGDA) Elevation Theme

The Federal Geographic Data Committee (FGDC) is organized around National Geospatial Data Asset (NGDA) Themes. These themes are coordinated by theme subcommittees organized under the FGDC Coordination Committee. 


Theme Co-Leads

  • Terrestrial Elevation - U.S. Geological Survey
  • Bathymetric Elevation - National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration


Theme Definition

“The measured vertical position of the earth surface and other landscape or bathymetric features relative to a reference datum typically related to sea level. These points normally describe bare earth positions but may also describe the top surface of buildings and other objects, vegetation structure, or submerged objects. Elevation data can be stored as a three-dimensional point cloud or as a continuous surface such as a raster, triangulated irregular network, or contours. Elevation data may also be represented in other derivative forms such as slope, aspect, ridge and drainage lines, and shaded relief.”