Unified Interior Regions

South Dakota

Surface water and groundwater provide important water supplies in South Dakota. Major rivers include the Big Sioux, James, Cheyenne, and Missouri Rivers. Key aquifers include the Dakota, Madison, Minnelusa, and Big Sioux aquifers. The Dakota Water Science Center has many studies that focus on these resources as well various other national and international studies. 

Link to Science Center

States L2 Landing Page Tabs

Filter Total Items: 92
Date published: August 29, 2019
Status: Active

Eyes on Earth

Eyes on Earth is a podcast on remote sensing, Earth observation, land change and science, brought to you by the USGS Earth Resources Observation and Science (EROS) Center.

Click the "Multimedia" tab above to access each episode. ...

Contacts: Janice Nelson
Date published: February 25, 2019
Status: Completed

June 2014 floods in South Dakota, Minnesota, and Iowa

Learn more about USGS flood activities related to the June 2014 Floods in South Dakota, Minnesota, and Iowa.

Date published: February 25, 2019
Status: Completed

Summer 2011 Missouri River Basin flood

Learn more about USGS flood activities related to the 2011 Missouri River Basin Flood resulting from higher-than-average snowmelt runoff combined with heavy spring rains.

Date published: December 18, 2018
Status: Completed

LCMAP Workshop 2018

The Land Change Monitoring, Assessment, and Projection (LCMAP) team presented pilot data and offered visitors an opportunity to work with LCMAP data at the Earth Resources Observation and Science Center in November 2018. Read more about the workshop by following this link...

Contacts: Jesslyn Brown
Date published: December 17, 2018
Status: Active

Land Product Characterization System (LPCS)

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) Earth Resources Observation and Science (EROS) Center are collaborating on the development of a Land Product Characterization System (LPCS).

Date published: December 6, 2018
Status: Active

Sioux Arch Oil and Gas Assessments

The U.S. Geological Survey completed the following assessments of undiscovered oil and gas resources of the Sioux Arch Province 5032 in South Dakota:


Date published: November 29, 2018
Status: Active

Denver Basin Oil and Gas Assessments

The U.S. Geological Survey completed the following assessments of undiscovered oil and gas resources of the Denver Basin Province 5039 in Colorado, Kansas, Nebraska, South Dakota, and Wyoming:

  • 2003 Conventional and Continuous Assessment (DDS 69-P)
  • 1995 Assessment (
  • ...
Date published: November 28, 2018
Status: Active

Natural Drought and Flood Histories from Lacustrine Archives

Previous work performed as part of the USGS Holocene Synthesis project illuminated complex centennial-scale patterns of drought and wetter-than-average conditions across the North American continent interior during the past two millennia, where paleorecord data coverage is sparse.  In order to explain the patterns of naturally-occurring drought, floods, and storms for the past, identified by...

Date published: November 14, 2018
Status: Active

EROS User Group

The purpose of the EROS User Group (EUG) is three-fold:

  • Provide operational users of EROS products and services with an opportunity and platform to discuss opinions, needs, and concerns in a structured and consistent manner;
  • Provide EROS projects with a consistent platform for targeted communications and opportunity for direct feedback from the user community on product-
  • ...
Filter Total Items: 24
Date published: May 17, 2017

Groundwater Watch - Below Normal Groundwater Levels (GA/NC/SC)

The U.S. Geological Survey has a database/archive of about 850,000 wells across the Nation. A well with below normal groundwater levels is identified when the most recent water-level measurement is in the 24th percentile or lower in the month of measurement over the period of record for the well.

>> ...

Date published: April 1, 2017

Digital map of hydrothermal alteration type, key mineral groups, and green vegetation of the northwestern United States derived from automated analysis of ASTER satellite data

Mineral groups identified through automated analysis of remote sensing data acquired by the Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer (ASTER) were used to generate a map showing the type and spatial distribution of hydrothermal alteration, other exposed mineral groups, and green vegetation across the northwestern conterminous United States. Boolean algebra was used to

Date published: September 1, 2016

Sampled Sites for the U.S. Geological Survey Midwest Stream Quality Assessment

In 2013, the first of several Regional Stream Quality Assessments (RSQA) was done in the Midwest United States. The Midwest Stream Quality Assessment (MSQA) was a collaborative study by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) National Water Quality Assessment (NAWQA), the USGS Columbia Environmental Research Center, and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) National

Date published: August 4, 2016

Prospect- and Mine-Related Features from U.S. Geological Survey 7.5- and 15-Minute Topographic Quadrangle Maps of the Western United States

These data are part of a larger USGS project to develop an updated geospatial database of mines, mineral deposits and mineral regions in the United States. Mine and prospect-related symbols, such as those used to represent prospect pits, mines, adits, dumps, tailings, etc., hereafter referred to as “mine” symbols or features, are currently being digitized on a st

Date published: April 20, 2016

Structures Data

USGS data portray selected structures data, including the location and characteristics of manmade facilities. Characteristics consist of a structure's physical form (footprint), function, name, location, and detailed information about the structure. The types of structures collected are largely determined by the needs of the disaster planning and response and homeland security organizations....

Date published: April 19, 2016

The United States Interagency Elevation Inventory (USIEI)

The USIEI is a comprehensive, nationwide listing of known high-accuracy topographic and bathymetric data for the United States and its territories. The project is a collaborative effort of the USGS and NOAA with contributions from other federal agencies. The inventory supports the 3D Elevation Program and the Integrated Ocean and Coastal Mapping effort. This resource is updated in Spring and...

Date published: April 19, 2016

Elevation Data

The 3DEP products and services available through The National Map consist of lidar point clouds (LPC), standard digital elevation models (DEMs) at various horizontal resolutions, elevation source and associated datasets, an elevation point query service and bulk point query service. All 3DEP products are available, free of charge and without use restrictions.

Date published: April 12, 2016

Orthoimagery Data

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.

Date published: April 12, 2016

The National Map Small-Scale Collection

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.

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Color photo of EROS Fall Poster Session
November 13, 2019

Eyes on Earth Episode 11 - EROS Fall Poster Session

Each fall, EROS invites its staff scientists and area graduate students to visit for a noontime poster session. The poster sessions offer a change for those researchers to present their results to their peers and get feedback from their fellow scientists. For this episode, we’ll hear about research into biofuels, cloud-friendly Landsat data, shrubland mapping and satellite

September 16, 2019

Image of the Week - Unplanted Acres in South Dakota

Abnormally high spring rainfall and subsequent flooding in the Midwest had a season-long impact on cropland production. In these Landsat images of South Dakota growing vegetation is shown as green and unplanted areas appear pink. The difference between 2018 and 2019 is striking.

A designation of "prevented planting" is given to unplanted acres as a signal to crop

Color photo of Saud Amer with Eyes on Earth podcast logo
September 12, 2019

Eyes on Earth Episode 7 – Training Iraqi Scientists

EROS scientists track water availability and crop health around the world to help governments and non-profits manage resources and stave off food shortages. But EROS also teaches international scientists to track those resources themselves. In this episode, we hear about a recent training session at EROS for Iraq’s Ministry of Water Resources.

September 4, 2019

Eyes on Earth Episode 12 – Plant Health via Satellite (NDVI)

A farmer at the foot of a corn stalk can tell how well the plant is faring. That same farmer might survey his entire field for crop health. But assessing the health of crops or forests at regional, national, and international scales requires remote sensing, most often via satellite. In this episode of Eyes on Earth, we talk to Jesslyn Brown about the Normalized Difference

Color photo of Jon Christopherson with USGS EROS "Eyes on Earth" graphic
August 31, 2019

Eyes on Earth Episode 4 - Cataloging Earth Observation Satellites

Earth observation used to be the province of a handful of countries with satellite technology. Today, hundreds of satellites built all over the world are launched every year. This episode of Eyes on Earth talks about the explosive growth in the civilian and commercial remote sensing and EROS’ role in it.

Color photo of Doug Daniels with the graphic for the USGS EROS podcast "Eyes on Earth"
August 31, 2019

Eyes on Earth Episode 6 - Satellites 101

How much does an Earth observation satellite weigh? How are they launched? How fast does it travel? Does Landsat have a gas tank? In this episode of Eyes on Earth, we answer some of the basic questions surrounding the satellites that define the EROS mission.

Terry Sohl - Eyes on Earth podcast
August 29, 2019

Eyes on Earth Episode 16 – Predictive Modeling

Land cover and land use across the United States are the culmination of a complex web of interwoven factors: Climate, landscape types, and economic factors among them. Remotely-sensed data from satellites like Landsat and a variety of other sources are useful for documenting and monitoring land cover and land use. When used alongside other data sources, however, remote

Color photograph of Falls Park, Sioux Falls, SD, USA
August 3, 2019

Falls Park - Sioux Falls, SD

Nature always displays vibrant colors. It is only a matter of time until you get the chance to witness its beauty. Even more difficult is capturing this beauty through the lens. Here, we see the magnificent beauty of the falls on the Big Sioux River, from which Sioux Falls, SD takes its name, showing the vibrant colors of nature just before sunset.

Color photo of Land Change interactive display at USGS EROS
August 2, 2019

Determining Land Change Display

An interactive display at the USGS Earth Resources Observation and Science Center highlighting land change research.

Color photo of Land Change interactive display at USGS EROS
August 2, 2019

Determining Land Change Display with Viewers

Viewers look through several years of change in an interactive display at the USGS Earth Resources Observation and Science Center.

Volker Radeloff with USGS EROS "Eyes on Earth" graphic
July 31, 2019

Eyes on Earth Episode 5 – Declassified Data at EROS

There’s a lot more than Landsat in the EROS Archive. In this episode of Eyes on Earth, we hear from a professor who’s mined satellite data collected during once-classified military missions to peer into the history of land use in Eastern Europe during the height of the Cold War.

Color photo of John Dwyer with Eyes on Earth podcast logo
July 31, 2019

Eyes on Earth Episode 2 - Chernobyl

When an accident occurred at the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant's No. 4 reactor in Ukraine on April 26, 1986, Landsat satellites were among the first to capture visual evidence of its widespread impact. This episode of Eyes on Earth outlines how the disaster focused the world's attention on the value of remote sensing.

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Color screenshot of 2019 National Plan for Civilian Earth Observations
December 13, 2019

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.

Color photo of USGS EROS Scientist Chris Crawford
December 11, 2019

Christopher “Chris” Crawford likes to say his roles with the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) as a research physical scientist, the Landsat Project Scientist, and co-chair of the Landsat Science Team are akin to staring down a foot of snow on the driveway.

Color graphic for "Eyes on Earth," a podcast of the USGS Earth Resources Observation and Science (EROS) Center.
September 9, 2019

Satellite data is everywhere. It’s in the swirling clouds of the nightly news weather forecasts and the land surface maps beneath them. It’s in our pockets, showing up as base layers in smartphone mapping applications.


Color photo of John Dwyer
September 3, 2019

He started at EROS in November 1980. His first job—data analyst in Science and Applications. From there, John Dwyer traveled a wide-ranging and opportunistic path through what he calls an incredibly satisfying career here at the Center.

Color photo of Landsat International Ground Station (IGS) Network members posing in group
June 12, 2019

Landsat 9 mission updates and ground station preparation are among the major topics on the agenda for the scientists and engineers from 11 counties visiting Sioux Falls, SD this week for the annual meeting of the Landsat Technical Working Group (LTWG).

Color image of Kansas Applied Remote Sensing (KARS) map
May 9, 2019

In the spring of 1996, the Kansas Applied Remote Sensing (KARS) program on the campus of Kansas University started chronicling the greening and browning of America.

Color photograph of Christopher "C.J." Loria
May 7, 2019

CJ Loria didn’t have the smoothest transition into his role as the new Earth Resources Observation and Science (EROS) Center director.

He had been on the job less than two weeks when the government shut down for 35 days, starting Dec. 22, 2018. Then the dogs of winter—the wind, the snow, the cold—came howling, filling him with visions of his life back in Louisiana very quickly.

Color photograph of Christopher "C.J." Loria
April 8, 2019

Christopher Joseph (CJ) Loria brings a fascinating back story—and a quiet, collaborative leadership philosophy—to his role as the Earth Resources Observation and Science (EROS) Center’s newest director.

Water Science
April 8, 2019

News media and the public are invited to a free meeting about critical South Dakota-area water issues on Thursday, April 11, in Rapid City, South Dakota.

Measuring high water on the Big Sioux River
March 22, 2019

Reporters: Do you want to interview USGS scientists in the Sioux Falls area on Monday, March 25, or Tuesday, March 26, as they measure flooding? Please contact Jennifer LaVista, Marisa Lubeck or Chris Laveau.

USGS EROS Director C.J. Loria
February 19, 2019

Will oversee Landsat satellite and Earth imaging operations

Jesslyn Brown of the USGS speaking at a workshop on Land Change Assessment, Monitoring, and Projection
November 15, 2018

The mapping and classification of land use and land cover has long been a primary duty for the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), and remotely-sensed data at the Earth Resources Observation and Science (EROS) Center has served as the backbone of the Survey’s modern efforts.

In recent years, two advancements in remote sensing emerged that promise to revolutionize the field.

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