Core Science Systems
Mission Areas L2 Landing Page Tabs
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 Web, as products and services, and as downloadable data.
This U.S. Geological Survey project consists of two primary studies about long-term land-cover change in the Delaware River Basin, particularly in Pennsylvania. The objectives for these projects were to address and quantify predominant affects and outcomes of land-surface change in urbanizing areas.
The U.S. Geological Survey National Geospatial Technical Operations Center (NGTOC) provides leadership and world-class technical expertise in the acquisition and management of trusted geospatial data, services, and map products for the Nation. NGTOC supports The National Map as part of the National Geospatial Program.
U.S. Geological Survey: a History of the National Program for Topographic Mapping (1884–2009) Topographic maps became a signature product of the USGS because the public found them - then and now - to be a critical and versatile tool for viewing the nation's vast landscape.
The CDI is a collaboration of USGS scientists, data managers, policy experts, and other organizations that promote data integration capabilities and data management best practices. It is an instrumental community of practice for leveraging expertise and resources to test new technologies and institutionalize best practices.
Standards and specifications are essential to facilitate the development and sharing of geospatial data and products. The USGS standards and specifications define the requirements to ensure that all products and data prepared by the USGS under the National Geospatial Program are consistent in accuracy, structure, format, style, and content.
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.
USGS topographic maps originally published on paper in the period 1884-2006 have been scanned and published as PDF documents. This collection is of topographic quadrangle maps with scales between 1:10,000 and 1:250,000. These historic documents are downloadable free of charge through several interfaces.
Using crowd-sourcing techniques, the US Geological Survey’s Volunteered Geographic Information project known as “The National Map Corps (TNMCorps)” encourages citizen volunteers to collect and edit data about man-made structures in an effort to provide accurate and authoritative spatial map data for the USGS National Geospatial Program’s web-based The National Map and US Topo Maps.
US Topo maps are modeled on the familiar 7.5-minute, 1:24,000-scale quadrangle maps of the period 1947-1992, but are mass-produced from national GIS databases on a 3-year cycle.The maps are layered PDF documents with geospatial extensions. They are downloadable free of charge through several interfaces.
The National Hydrography Dataset (NHD) represents surface waters of the United States including, rivers, streams, lakes, and coastal features. The Watershed Boundary Dataset (WBD) is comprised of hierarchical polygons called hydrologic units that represent surface area over which water drains to a point. Both datasets are updated by stewards and are available by subsets of the United States.
The mission of NFHP is to protect, restore and enhance the nation's fish and aquatic communities through partnerships that foster fish habitat conservation and improve the quality of life for the American people. To fulfill the mission, science-based assessments are conducted. Results and data are accessible in the USGS developed “Through a Fish’s Eye” report and NFHP Data System.
ITIS is the authoritative taxonomic information on plants, animals, fungi, and microbes of North America and the world. We are a partnership of U.S., Canadian, and Mexican agencies (ITIS-North America); other organizations; and taxonomic specialists. ITIS data is used in thousands of databases in industry, academia and government.
The GAP Species Viewer provides nation-wide range maps and distribution models for amphibians, birds, mammals, and reptiles occurring in the continental U.S., Alaska, Hawaii, Puerto Rico, and U.S. Virgin Islands. These kinds of maps and data are fundamental to assessing patterns of species richness and planning for the management of the nation's biological diversity.
The Biocomplexity Thesaurus is an online resource supporting terms in a 'broader than' and 'narrower than' structure in ecological and biological sciences.
Orthoimagery data typically are high resolution aerial images that combine the visual attributes of an aerial photograph with the spatial accuracy and reliability of a planimetric map. The National Map offers public domain, 1-meter orthoimagery for the conterminous United States with many urban areas and other locations at 2-foot or finer resolution.
The National Map offers a collection of small-scale datasets, most of which are at 1:1,000,000. The National Map publishes two data collections at one million-scale: one for Global Map users and one for National Map users. In terms of vector geometry, the lines, points, and areas in these data collections are identical. The difference is in the attributes assigned to these features.
OBIS-USA is the US Node of the Ocean Biogeographic Information System, providing the collection and distribution point to OBIS of marine biogeographic records in U.S. waters or collected with U.S. funding. Using the Darwin Core standard, OBIS-USA integrates and makes accessible data on marine species presence, absence, and abundance to aid scientists, resource managers, and decisions makers....
Data and web services from NFHP’s 2010 and 2015 assessments of streams and estuaries, as well as other data contributed by Fish Habitat Partnerships, are available for download and use via the NFHP Data System. The results of the national assessment can also be viewed online using the National Assessment Results Viewer.
Mandated by Congress, all states and U.S. territories must develop a State Wildlife Action Plan every ten years, outlining the steps that are needed for conservation in their state or territory before wildlife and habitats become too rare or costly to restore. The Species Conservation Analysis Tool provides a national look at Species of Greatest Conservation Need as reported in those plans....
The USGS Data Release Workbench provides a user-friendly view of USGS data release requirements, in line with with Federal Open Data and Open Access goals, and allows USGS researchers to track progress toward releasing their data.
The USGS Science Data Catalog serves as a single access point for public USGS scientific datasets and as a conduit to external catalogs in response to Federal Open Data requirements. The SDC allows the public to access USGS datasets through text and GIS-based search; topical browse, and keyword, mission area, data source, and scientist faceting.
The ARC activity’s mission is to provide high-performance computing (HPC) capabilities and expertise to USGS scientists for the acceleration and expansion of scientific discovery. Machine access, training workshops, and project consultations are provided to USGS researches in need of these advanced computing capabilities.
myUSGS offers an access-controlled online suite of science collaborative tools, ideal for use by USGS scientists and their research teams as well as by other communities of practice involving USGS and its partners.
New US Topo maps for Alaska are being produced statewide, with digital 7.5 minute 1:25,000-scale maps providing a comprehensive update to the 15-minute 1:63,360-scale printed maps produced nearly fifty years ago. You can view a status map showing where the new maps are available, and link to a site to download the maps.
Isotopically constrained lead sources in fugitive dust from unsurfaced roads in the southeast Missouri mining district
The isotopic composition of lead (Pb) in fugitive dust suspended by a vehicle from 13 unsurfaced roads in Missouri was measured to identify the source of Pb within an established long-term mining area. A three end-member model using 207Pb/206Pb and concentration as tracers resulted in fugitive dust samples plotting in the mixing field of well...Witt, Emitt C.; Pribil, Michael; Hogan, John P; Wronkiewicz, David
Post-disaster supply chain interdependent critical infrastructure system restoration: A review of data necessary and available for modeling
The majority of restoration strategies in the wake of large-scale disasters have focused on short-term emergency response solutions. Few consider medium- to long-term restoration strategies to reconnect urban areas to national supply chain interdependent critical infrastructure systems (SCICI). These SCICI promote the effective flow of goods,...Ramachandran, Varun; Long, Suzanna K.; Shoberg, Thomas G.; Corns, Steven; Carlo, Hector J.
Conflation and integration of archived geologic maps and associated uncertainties
Old, archived geologic maps are often available with little or no associated metadata. This creates special problems in terms of extracting their data to use with a modern database. This research focuses on some problems and uncertainties associated with conflating older geologic maps in regions where modern geologic maps are, as yet, non-existent...Shoberg, Thomas G.
High performance computing to support multiscale representation of hydrography for the conterminous United States
The National Hydrography Dataset (NHD) for the United States furnishes a comprehensive set of vector features representing the surface-waters in the country (U.S. Geological Survey 2000). The high-resolution (HR) layer of the NHD is largely comprised of hydrographic features originally derived from 1:24,000-scale (24K) U.S. Topographic maps....Stanislawski, Larry V.; Liu, Yan; Buttenfield, Barbara P.; Survila, Kornelijus; Wendel, Jeffrey; Okok, Abdurraouf
An evaluation of unsupervised and supervised learning algorithms for clustering landscape types in the United States
Knowledge of landscape type can inform cartographic generalization of hydrographic features, because landscape characteristics provide an important geographic context that affects variation in channel geometry, flow pattern, and network configuration. Landscape types are characterized by expansive spatial gradients, lacking abrupt changes between...Wendel, Jochen; Buttenfield, Barbara P.; Stanislawski, Larry V.
Evaluation of the U.S. Geological Survey standard elevation products in a two-dimensional hydraulic modeling application for a low relief coastal floodplain
Growing use of two-dimensional (2-D) hydraulic models has created a need for high resolution data to support flood volume estimates, floodplain specific engineering data, and accurate flood inundation scenarios. Elevation data are a critical input to these models that guide the flood-wave across the landscape allowing the computation of valuable...Witt, Emitt C.
Geospatial resources for the geologic community: The USGS National Map
Geospatial data are a key component of investigating, interpreting, and communicating the geological sciences. Locating geospatial data can be time-consuming, which detracts from time spent on a study because these data are not obviously placed in central locations or are served from many disparate databases. The National Map of the US Geological...Witt, Emitt C.
1-Meter Digital Elevation Model specification
In January 2015, the U.S. Geological Survey National Geospatial Technical Operations Center began producing the 1-Meter Digital Elevation Model data product. This new product was developed to provide high resolution bare-earth digital elevation models from light detection and ranging (lidar) elevation data and other elevation data collected over...Arundel, Samantha T.; Archuleta, Christy-Ann M.; Phillips, Lori A.; Roche, Brittany L.; Constance, Eric W.
Automated extraction of natural drainage density patterns for the conterminous United States through high performance computing
Hydrographic networks form an important data foundation for cartographic base mapping and for hydrologic analysis. Drainage density patterns for these networks can be derived to characterize local landscape, bedrock and climate conditions, and further inform hydrologic and geomorphological analysis by indicating areas where too few headwater...Stanislawski, Larry V.; Falgout, Jeff T.; Buttenfield, Barbara P.
A rapid approach for automated comparison of independently derived stream networks
This paper presents an improved coefficient of line correspondence (CLC) metric for automatically assessing the similarity of two different sets of linear features. Elevation-derived channels at 1:24,000 scale (24K) are generated from a weighted flow-accumulation model and compared to 24K National Hydrography Dataset (NHD) flowlines. The CLC...Stanislawski, Larry V.; Buttenfield, Barbara P.; Doumbouya, Ariel T.
Framework for modeling urban restoration resilience time in the aftermath of an extreme event
The impacts of extreme events continue long after the emergency response has terminated. Effective reconstruction of supply-chain strategic infrastructure (SCSI) elements is essential for postevent recovery and the reconnectivity of a region with the outside. This study uses an interdisciplinary approach to develop a comprehensive framework to...Ramachandran, Varun; Long, Suzanna K.; Shoberg, Thomas G.; Corns, Steven; Carlo, Héctor
A Systems Thinking approach to post-disaster restoration of maritime transportation systems
A Systems Thinking approach is used to examine elements of a maritime transportation system that are most likely to be impacted by an extreme event. The majority of the literature uses a high-level view that can fail to capture the damage at the sub-system elements. This work uses a system dynamics simulation for a better view and understanding of...Lespier, Lizzette Pérez; Long, Suzanna K.; Shoberg, Thomas G.
Survey Analysis via Visual Exploration rock cores
This graphic depicts the status of USGS US Topo map production as of March 20, 2018, showing maps published from 2013 to 2017, and maps planned to be published in fiscal year 2018, under the Alaska Mapping Initiative.
The USGS announces the release of the Species of Greatest Conservation Need national database. The SGCN lists are part of the State Wildlife Action Plan (SWAP) process and identify the species most in need of conservation action in that state or territory. In total, 16,420 species have been included in the SGCN national list.
Many of The National Map dynamic overlay services have new schemas and updated cartography to provide a better user experience in The National Map viewer and other applications.
To celebrate Earth Science Week and Geologic Map Day, the USGS, in collaboration with the American Geosciences Institute, is pleased to announce a “Geologic Open House” on Thursday, October 12, 2017 at Great Falls Park, near McLean, Va.
Calling all Earth Science professors conducting research or teaching geologic mapping. The USGS EDMAP Program is accepting funding proposals focusing on geologic mapping to support upper-level undergraduate and graduate students at their colleges or universities.
Call for elevation project funding proposals and requests issued.