Map Production and Geoinformation Management

Varied Production Approaches

6602.2 - U.S. Geological Survey 3D Elevation Program: Past, Present and Future

Thursday, July 6
3:10 PM - 3:30 PM
Location: Delaware B

The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) has a long history of generating and distributing elevation data. That work is continuing through the 3D Elevation Program (3DEP). The primary goal of 3DEP is to systematically collect enhanced elevation data in the form of high-quality light detection and ranging (lidar) and interferometric synthetic aperture radar (ifsar) data. Preparing for 3DEP required the assimilation of existing elevation data into the suite of 3DEP products, including the National Elevation Dataset. Additionally, all available data were incorporated into the National Spatial Data Infrastructure. Other work included designing a system to handle the expected large volumes of data. This system is currently in place, and is rapidly expanding processing capacity for quality control, product generation and distribution.

Quality control and product generation occur at the National Geospatial Technical Operations Center (NGTOC). After the quality control process has determined the dataset meets the USGS Lidar Base Specification, high resolution elevation data are processed to produce or package ten unique products for distribution via The National Map including high resolution Digital Elevation Models, Digital Surface Models, Orthorectified Radar Intensity Imagery and Lidar Point Cloud data in the form of LAS. Distributed products will be described in detail, as well as how they can be accessed via The National Map.

Near and long term enhancements are planned to increase both the processing capability of elevation data at NGTOC, as well as to offer expanded methods for public access of these data. Operational workflows are continually being assessed for efficiency and updated within an Agile development environment. Data accessibility enhancements include refinement of existing products, data hosting in the cloud, and new or improved elevation services.

Amanda J. Lowe

U.S. Geological Survey

Amanda Lowe is a Geographer with the U.S. Geological Survey, National Geospatial Program. She is the workflow coordinator for operational systems responsible for performing quality control, product generation and distribution of elevation data for the 3D Elevation Program. She holds a MS in Geographic Information Science from Northwest Missouri State University and a MS in Applied and Environmental Biology from Missouri University of Science and Technology.


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Kristin A. Fishburn

Cartographic Products Lead
United States Geological Survey

Kristin Fishburn is the Cartographic Content Lead for the National Geospatial Program at the United States Geological Survey, providing strategy and vision for the US Topo map and Historical Topographic Map Collection programs and for cartographic design associated with The National Map. She earned her Master of Science degree in Cartography from The Ohio State University in 1992 and obtained her GIS Professional Certification (GISP) in 2008.


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6602.2 - U.S. Geological Survey 3D Elevation Program: Past, Present and Future


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