USGS Holds Stakeholder Workshops for 3D Topo Data

May 20, 2015  - By 2 Comments
This map depicts the proposed body of work for 3DEP in Fiscal Year 2015. The BAA awards will add more than 95,000 square miles of 3DEP quality LiDAR data to the national database.

This map depicts the proposed body of work for 3DEP in Fiscal Year 2015. The BAA awards will add more than 95,000 square miles of 3DEP quality LiDAR data to the national database.

The U.S. Geological Survey National Geospatial Program is developing the 3D Elevation Program (3DEP) to respond to growing needs for high-quality topographic data and for a wide range of other three-dimensional representations of the nation’s natural and constructed features.

To expand awareness of 3DEP status and plans, as well as provide an open forum for 3DEP stakeholders to communicate and coordinate potential Broad Agency Announcement (BAA) proposals, the USGS is offering numerous state and regional coordination workshops.

The meetings will be held throughout the U.S. from now until June 30. The workshops will include in-person and virtual participation options.

The primary goal of 3DEP is to systematically collect 3D elevation data in the form of light detection and ranging (LiDAR) data over the conterminous United States, Hawaii, and the U.S. territories, with data acquired over an eight-year period. Interferometric synthetic aperture radar (ifsar) data will be acquired for Alaska, where cloud cover and remote locations preclude the use of LiDAR in much of the state.

The 3DEP initiative is based on the results of the National Enhanced Elevation Assessment that documented more than 600 business uses across 34 federal agencies, all 50 states, selected local government and tribal offices, and private and nonprofit organizations. A fully funded and implemented 3DEP would provide more than $690 million annually in new benefits to government entities, the private sector and citizens.

3DEP is a “Call for Action” because no one entity can accomplish it independently. 3DEP presents an opportunity for collaboration between all levels of government to leverage the services and expertise of private-sector mapping firms that acquire the data, and to create jobs.

“When partners work together, they can achieve efficiencies and lower costs so that 3DEP can become a reality,” the USGS said in a press release. “When 3D elevation data are available to everyone, new innovations will occur in forest resource management, alternative energy, agriculture, and other industries for years to come,” the USGS said.

Tracy Cozzens

About the Author:

Tracy Cozzens has served as managing editor of GPS World magazine since 2006. She also is editor of GPS World’s newsletters and the sister website Geospatial Solutions. She has worked in government, for non-profits, and in corporate communications, editing a variety of publications for audiences ranging from federal government contractors to teachers.

2 Comments on "USGS Holds Stakeholder Workshops for 3D Topo Data"

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  1. A leading project in the industry.

  2. Oleg Dontsov says:

    The USGS is late and does not care for American GIS professionals. DLR is already creating DEM for the whole world with height resolution down to 50- 25 cm if demanded. USGS should keep kicking NASA for sending at least one SAR radar to space, if not a constellation for civilian purposes or at least to cooperate with ESA for using brand new data from Sentinel-1. Or USGS will try to create precise 3D topography from last century SRTM data? Earth is fast developing space planet, and you need to be up to real time with at least geomorphological situation on the territory of the US.
    I think you are too slow sirs and madams, Ph.Ds.
    It is a shame for American aerospace administration, that still cannot help US states geological departments with cutting edge technology remote sencing instruments to observe a territory of the US.
    I would be glad to discuss it if USGS wants.
    Sincerely, Oleg Dontsov

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