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In March, the USGS Community for Data Integration announced their FY16 awarded projects.

More than 30 statements of interest were submitted, of which only 13 were funded after review of full proposals. Two of the 13 awarded projects are led by USGS Woods Hole Science Center scientists: 

“Evaluating a new open-source, standards-based framework for web portal development in the geosciences” is led by Rich Signell (USGS Woods Hole Science Center) with a team including Soupy Dalyander (USGS St. Petersburg Coastal and Marine Science Center), Jordan Walker (USGS Center for Integrated Data Analytics), and collaborators from NOAA, Florida Fish and Wildlife,, and the Australian Government (CSIRO). The team will assess a new open-source framework for developing geospatial web portals. Although there are numerous portals with geospatial content throughout the USGS and the geoscience community, most of these are developed at relatively high effort and cost, with web developers working with highly skilled data specialists on custom solutions to meet user needs. In 2015, the Australian National Government funded the development of an open-source framework for building web portals called TerriaJS, which consumes web map services from both ESRI and the Open Geospatial Consortium and is easily configured for custom applications. This means that basic portals based on web map services can be created by non-developers such as scientists, environmental managers, and emergency response support personnel. It also means they can be constructed rapidly, in hours or days instead of weeks or months. This project will assess the capabilities of the framework by building several portals, and assess the accessibility of the code base by attempting to enhance the framework to better handle web map services produced by oceanographic models, using a combination of USGS and TerriaJS developer resources. 

“Integration of National Soil and Wetland Datasets: A Toolkit for Reproducible Calculation and Quality Assessment of Imputed Wetland Soil Properties” is led by Eric Sundquist (USGS Woods Hole Coastal and Marine Science Center) with a team including scientists from the U.S. Department of Agriculture Natural Resources Conservation Service and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service National Wetlands Inventory. The team will develop a national geospatial dataset of imputed wetland soil properties, including carbon storage, and a toolkit to enable other investigators to reproduce and modify the dataset and the imputation methods. Wetland soils are vital to the Nation because of their role in sustaining water resources, supporting critical ecosystems, and sequestering significant concentrations of biologically produced carbon. The U.S. has the world’s most detailed continent-scale maps of soils and wetlands, yet scientists and land managers have long struggled with the challenge of combining the information from these maps in ways that can be used for research and resource management. The difficulties include differences in the types of features depicted in the different maps, and uncertainties in the locations of wetlands and the soil types that are associated with wetlands. This project is developing methods to estimate and map the characteristics of wetland soils by combining information from maps distributed by the U.S. Department of the Interior and the U.S. Department of Agriculture. The derived maps will be available to the public with a set of tools that can be used independently to check the results and to develop methods to map other important properties of wetland soils. 

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