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San Francisco Bay Delta Bathymetric/Topographic digital elevation model (DEM) - 2016 SF Bay Delta DEM 10-m

March 1, 2017

A high-resolution (10-meter per pixel) digital elevation model (DEM) was created for the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta using both bathymetry and topography data. This DEM is the result of collaborative efforts of the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) and the California Department of Water Resources (DWR). The base of the DEM is from a 10-m DEM released in 2004 and updated in 2005 (Foxgrover and others, 2005) that used Environmental Systems Research Institute (ESRI), ArcGIS Topo to Raster module to interpolate grids from single beam bathymetric surveys collected by DWR, the Army Corp of Engineers (COE), the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), and the USGS, into a continuous surface. The Topo to Raster interpolation method was specifically designed to create hydrologically correct DEMs from point, line, and polygon data (Environmental Systems Research Institute, Inc., 2015). Elevation contour lines were digitized based on the single beam point data for control of channel morphology during the interpolation process. Checks were performed to ensure that the interpolated surfaces honored the source bathymetry, and additional contours and (or) point data were added as needed to help constrain the data. The original data were collected in the tidal datum Mean Lower or Low Water (MLLW) or the National Geodetic Vertical Datum of 1929 (NGVD29). All data were converted to NGVD29.

The 2005 USGS DEM was updated by DWR, first by converting the DEM to the current modern datum of National Geodetic Vertical Datum of 1988 (NGVD88) and then by following the methodology of the USGS DEM, established for the 2005 DEM (Foxgrover and others, 2005) for adding newly collected single and multibeam bathymetric data. They then included topographic data from lidar surveys, providing the first DEM that included the land/water interface (Wang and Ateljevich, 2012).

The USGS further updated and expanded the DWR DEM with the inclusion of USGS interpolated sections of single beam bathymetry data collected by the COE and USGS scientists, expanding the DEM to include the northernmost areas of the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta, and by making use of a two-meter seamless bathymetric/topographic DEM from the USGS EROS Data Center (2013) of the San Francisco Bay region.

The resulting 10-meter USGS DEM encompasses the entirety of Suisun Bay, beginning with the Carquinez Strait in the west, east to California Interstate 5, north following the path of the Yolo Bypass and the Sacramento River up to Knights Landing, and the American River northeast to the Nimbus Dam, and south to areas around Tracy. The DEM incorporates the newest available bathymetry data at the time of release, as well as including, at minimum, a 100-meter band of available topography data adjacent to most shorelines. No data areas within the DEM are areas where no elevation data exists, either due to a gap in the land/water interface, or because lidar was collected over standing water that was then cut out of the DEM.

Environmental Systems Research Institute, Inc., 2015, Topo to Raster: http://desktop.arcgis.com/en/desktop/latest/tools/3d-analyst-toolbox/to…

Foxgrover, A., Smith, R.E., and Jaffe, B.E., 2005, Suisun Bay and Delta Bathymetry: http://sfbay.wr.usgs.gov/sediment/delta/index.html

USGS EROS Data Center, 2013, 2 m Coastal National Elevation Dataset: http://topotools.cr.usgs.gov/topobathy_viewer/

Wang, R-F., and Ateljevich, E., 2012, A continuous surface elevation map for modeling, chapter 6 in California Department of Water Resources, Methodology for flow and salinity estimates in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta and Suisun Marsh, 33rd Annual Progress Report to the State
Water Resources Control Board: California Department of Water Resources, Bay-Delta Office, Delta Modeling Section, http://baydeltaoffice.water.ca.gov/modeling/deltamodeling/AR2012/Chapte…