Our programs produce accurate geologic maps and 3-D geologic frameworks that provide critical data for sustaining and improving the quality of life and economic vitality of the Nation. They also organize, maintain, and publish the geospatial baseline of the Nation's topography, natural landscape, built environment and more.
These are general-use maps at medium scales that present elevation (contour lines), hydrography, geographic place names, and a variety of cultural features. Current-generation topographic maps are created from digital GIS databases, and are branded "US Topo." Historic maps originally published as paper documents in the period 1884-2006 are available as scanned images.
We produce digital geologic maps of the United States with consistent lithology, age, GIS database structure, and format. Check out the National Geologic Mapping Database, developing a distributed archive of standardized geoscience information for the Nation.
USGS is a primary source of geographic information system (GIS) data. Our data and information is presented in spatial and geographic formats, including The National Map, Earth Explorer, GloVIS, LandsatLook, and much more.
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 Internet, as products and services, and as downloadable data.
The Geographic Names Information System (GNIS) is the Federal standard for geographic names. 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 for the Federal Government and the source for applying geographic names to Federal electronic and printed products.