EROS CalVal Center of Excellence (ECCOE)


With years of multi-scale optical system geospatial and radiometric calibration and characterization experience, the EROS Cal/Val Center of Excellence (ECCOE) is a global leader in performing traceable measurements of data quality to support credible science. ECCOE works with partners to extend the processes that create Landsat’s “gold standard” calibration to improve data quality worldwide. 

ECCOE-Supported Projects

ECCOE Staff provide technical support to a number of USGS projects that are important in Earth Observation discovery and data characterization: 


ECCOE maintains the primary responsibility for radiometric and geometric characterization and calibration of the Landsat instruments and spacecrafts. The Joint Agency Commercial Imagery Evaluation (JACIE) team assesses the quality and capabilities of newly launched commercial high-resolution satellites. Requirements Capabilities & Analysis for Earth Observations (RCA-EO) works to understand user needs for Earth observation, measurement, and monitoring.



Lidar data and their derivative metrics are fundamental inputs to many areas of scientific research,  including flood, erosion, and coastal modeling. Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) allow for new opportunities for gathering data essential to land management and Earth science. The Test Site Catalog Contains worldwide calibration sites used for post launch characterization and calibration of space-based optical imaging sensors.




Date published: June 17, 2020

Calibration Test Site Becomes Agricultural Hotspot

The Landsat satellites were designed to detect landscape changes over time. However, sometimes what Landsat needs to see on the Earth’s surface is no change at all.

Date published: May 12, 2020

Data Quality, Geometric Accuracy are Key Topics for 2020 JACIE and ECCOE Workshops

In a world where observing Earth’s landscapes from space has become more common for government agencies and commercial ventures, there is a question currently getting a lot of attention: Is there a way to make images from all those different and varied systems usable with each other?

Date published: December 13, 2019

Landsat, EROS Factor Heavily in New National Policy Plan for Earth Observation

The Landsat program and the USGS Earth Resources Observation and Science (EROS) Center have long held and important place in the nation’s Earth observation (EO) policy.


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Year Published: 2019

General external uncertainty models of three-plane intersection point for 3D absolute accuracy assessment of lidar point cloud

The traditional practice to assess accuracy in lidar data involves calculating RMSEz (root mean square error of the vertical component). Accuracy assessment of lidar point clouds in full 3D (dimension) is not routinely performed. The main challenge in assessing accuracy in full 3D is how to identify a conjugate point of a ground-surveyed...

Kim, Minsu; Park, Seonkyung; Danielson, Jeffrey J.; Irwin, Jeffrey; Stensaas, Gregory L.; Stoker, Jason M.; Nimetz, Joshua

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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

2019 Joint Agency Commercial Imagery Evaluation—Land remote sensing satellite compendium

The Joint Agency Commercial Imagery Evaluation (JACIE) is a collaboration between five Federal agencies that are major users and producers of satellite land remote sensing data. In recent years, the JACIE group has observed ever-increasing numbers of remote sensing satellites being launched. This rapidly growing wave of new systems creates a need...

Christopherson, Jon B.; Ramaseri Chandra, Shankar N.; Quanbeck, Joel Q.
Christopherson, J.B., Ramaseri Chandra, S.N., and Quanbeck, J.Q., 2019, 2019 Joint Agency Commercial Imagery Evaluation—Land remote sensing satellite compendium: U.S. Geological Survey Circular 1455, 191 p.,