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Mapping, Remote Sensing, and Geospatial Data

The USGS provides the mapping and digital geospatial foundation for the Nation.

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Are there any costs or restrictions to usage of data downloaded from The National Map?

Data from The National Map is free and in the public domain. There are no restrictions on downloaded data; however, we request that the following statement be used when citing, copying, or reprinting data: "Data available from U.S. Geological Survey, National Geospatial Program."Learn more: USGS Copyrights and Credits Statement

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Are there any costs or restrictions to usage of data downloaded from The National Map?

Data from The National Map is free and in the public domain. There are no restrictions on downloaded data; however, we request that the following statement be used when citing, copying, or reprinting data: "Data available from U.S. Geological Survey, National Geospatial Program."Learn more: USGS Copyrights and Credits Statement

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Is there a user guide on how to download data using The National Map?

See the online National Map Viewer Quick Start Guide. For brief instructions, click on the "How to" link at the top of The National Map Downloader.Tutorial videos are also available.

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Is there a user guide on how to download data using The National Map?

See the online National Map Viewer Quick Start Guide. For brief instructions, click on the "How to" link at the top of The National Map Downloader.Tutorial videos are also available.

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How accurate are elevations generated by the Elevation Point Query Service in The National Map?

The National Map’s  Elevation Point Query Service returns elevations that are interpolated from the 1/3 arc-second 3D Elevation Program (3DEP) DEM dataset. These interpolated point elevations are not official and do not represent precisely measured ground surveyed values.     Elevations derived for a specific location using the Elevation Point Query Service might differ from monumented control...

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How accurate are elevations generated by the Elevation Point Query Service in The National Map?

The National Map’s  Elevation Point Query Service returns elevations that are interpolated from the 1/3 arc-second 3D Elevation Program (3DEP) DEM dataset. These interpolated point elevations are not official and do not represent precisely measured ground surveyed values.     Elevations derived for a specific location using the Elevation Point Query Service might differ from monumented control...

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How can I submit a question or report issues regarding The National Map products and services?

Submit questions or report issues to The National Map service desk at: tnm_help@usgs.gov

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Do all USGS 7.5 minute topographic maps show the UTM grid?

Historical Topographic Map Collection (1884-2006): Through time, policies have changed regarding whether or not a full UTM grid would appear on the 7.5-minute (1:24,000-scale) map series. Beginning in the mid 1950s, the grid was indicated by blue ticks around the map at 1,000-meter spacing. In 1979, the ticks were replaced with a full-line black UTM grid. This decision was reversed in 1992, then...

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Do all USGS 7.5 minute topographic maps show the UTM grid?

Historical Topographic Map Collection (1884-2006): Through time, policies have changed regarding whether or not a full UTM grid would appear on the 7.5-minute (1:24,000-scale) map series. Beginning in the mid 1950s, the grid was indicated by blue ticks around the map at 1,000-meter spacing. In 1979, the ticks were replaced with a full-line black UTM grid. This decision was reversed in 1992, then...

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Since the National Atlas Program has ended, is any data still available?

The online version of the National Atlas (officially known as the 1997-2014 Edition of the National Atlas of the United States) was removed from service in 2014. Some of its previous products and services are available from the following USGS sources:Some small-scale datasets have moved to The National Map Downloader and The National Map Services. Printable Maps developed for the National Atlas...

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Since the National Atlas Program has ended, is any data still available?

The online version of the National Atlas (officially known as the 1997-2014 Edition of the National Atlas of the United States) was removed from service in 2014. Some of its previous products and services are available from the following USGS sources:Some small-scale datasets have moved to The National Map Downloader and The National Map Services. Printable Maps developed for the National Atlas...

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What sources were used to produce the National Hydrography Dataset (NHD)?

The National Hydrography Dataset (NHD) is a combination of USGS hydrologic digital line graph (DLG) files and Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) reach files, version 3.0 (RF3). U.S. Forest Service Cartographic Feature Files (CFF) and USGS Tagged Vector Hydro (TVH) captured from 7.5-minute printed maps were also used.Some states also contributed their own stream layer data to the compilation of...

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What sources were used to produce the National Hydrography Dataset (NHD)?

The National Hydrography Dataset (NHD) is a combination of USGS hydrologic digital line graph (DLG) files and Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) reach files, version 3.0 (RF3). U.S. Forest Service Cartographic Feature Files (CFF) and USGS Tagged Vector Hydro (TVH) captured from 7.5-minute printed maps were also used.Some states also contributed their own stream layer data to the compilation of...

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Why are the NAD 83 position values so far from the NAD 27 values? Were the old coordinates wrong?

The old coordinates were not wrong, just different.Positions obtained using the North American Datums of 1927 (NAD 27) and 1983 (NAD 83) are based on different earth shapes--or ellipsoids--and used the best technology available at the time. Mathematically, NAD 83 is a stronger datum because all previously existing horizontal stations and newer GPS surveyed stations were adjusted simultaneously...

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Why are the NAD 83 position values so far from the NAD 27 values? Were the old coordinates wrong?

The old coordinates were not wrong, just different.Positions obtained using the North American Datums of 1927 (NAD 27) and 1983 (NAD 83) are based on different earth shapes--or ellipsoids--and used the best technology available at the time. Mathematically, NAD 83 is a stronger datum because all previously existing horizontal stations and newer GPS surveyed stations were adjusted simultaneously...

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What is the National Geologic Map Database?

The National Geologic Map Database (NGMDB) is an archive of geoscience maps (including geology maps), reports, and stratigraphic information for the United States. The NGMDB contains information on more than 90,000 maps and related geoscience reports published from the early 1800s to the present day, by more than 630 agencies, universities, associations, and private companies. Much of the content...

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What is the National Geologic Map Database?

The National Geologic Map Database (NGMDB) is an archive of geoscience maps (including geology maps), reports, and stratigraphic information for the United States. The NGMDB contains information on more than 90,000 maps and related geoscience reports published from the early 1800s to the present day, by more than 630 agencies, universities, associations, and private companies. Much of the content...

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What is the positional accuracy of the National Hydrography Dataset (NHD)?

Original hydrographic data were compiled to meet National Map Accuracy standards. These standards have been maintained in the process of creating the NHD. At 1:100,000 scale, ninety percent of well-defined features are within 167 feet (0.02 inches at map scale) of their true geographic position. When higher resolution data are created and submitted, the positional accuracy may vary due to...

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What is the positional accuracy of the National Hydrography Dataset (NHD)?

Original hydrographic data were compiled to meet National Map Accuracy standards. These standards have been maintained in the process of creating the NHD. At 1:100,000 scale, ninety percent of well-defined features are within 167 feet (0.02 inches at map scale) of their true geographic position. When higher resolution data are created and submitted, the positional accuracy may vary due to...

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What download formats are available for boundaries, structures, and transportation data products in The National Map?

Boundaries, structures, and transportation data products are currently available in Esri File Geodatabase 10.1 or Shapefile format. Use The National Map Downloader, The National Map Services, or download files staged at the below sites.USGS National Boundary DatasetUSGS National Structures DatasetUSGS National Transportation Dataset

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What download formats are available for boundaries, structures, and transportation data products in The National Map?

Boundaries, structures, and transportation data products are currently available in Esri File Geodatabase 10.1 or Shapefile format. Use The National Map Downloader, The National Map Services, or download files staged at the below sites.USGS National Boundary DatasetUSGS National Structures DatasetUSGS National Transportation Dataset

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What is a geographic information system (GIS)?

A Geographic Information System (GIS) is a computer system that analyzes and displays geographically referenced information. It uses data that is attached to a unique location.Most of the information we have about our world contains a location reference: Where are USGS streamgages located? Where was a rock sample collected? Exactly where are all of a city's fire hydrants?If, for example, a rare...

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What is a geographic information system (GIS)?

A Geographic Information System (GIS) is a computer system that analyzes and displays geographically referenced information. It uses data that is attached to a unique location.Most of the information we have about our world contains a location reference: Where are USGS streamgages located? Where was a rock sample collected? Exactly where are all of a city's fire hydrants?If, for example, a rare...

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