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For the second time in a row, members of the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS)'s Coastal and Marine Geology Program (CMGP) won the "You Make Us Proud to Be Geeks" poster prize at the biennial USGS GIS (Geographic Information System) Workshop in Denver, which convened during the week of April 24-28, 2006. The winning poster"Integrated Lidar and Bathymetric Surveys of the South San Francisco Bay Region: New Data for Salt Pond Restoration" by Amy Foxgrover and Bruce Jaffe (Santa Cruz, Calif.)featured baseline elevation mapping contracted by the USGS in advance of efforts to restore intertidal wetland habitats from salt ponds that have been impounded for as many as 100 years (see USGS Open-File Report 2005-1284). Amy also gave a talk at a session on lidar (light detection and ranging) elevation data, covering the complex process of establishing ground controls for both aerial and shipborne parts of the data collection, as well as the processing of data into a coherent map product. CMGP attendees from Woods Hole, Mass., won the award at the previous workshop in 2004 (see related Sound Waves article, "Coastal and Marine Geology Program Scientists Attend USGS GIS Workshop").
A poster by VeeAnn Cross (Woods Hole) entitled "Integration of Continuous Resistivity Profiling and Seismic-Reflection Data in the Nearshore Environment" highlighted resistivity profiling, a new data-collection tool now available within the Coastal and Marine Geology Program. Resistivity data integrated with seismic-reflection data enabled a three-dimensional representation of the ground-water system of outer Cape Cod and its relation to subsurface geology in the sub-sea-floor environment. Resistivity data are key to the ongoing USGS-National Park Service exploration of fresh/brackish-water dynamics at Cape Cod National Seashore (see related Sound Waves article, "Drilling for Submarine Ground Water at Cape Cod National Seashore").
A poster by Shawn Dadisman and Karynna Calderon (St. Petersburg, Fla.), entitled "The Geodatabase Solution to Data Management: Examples from LASED and XSTORMS," presented the leap in organization and accessibility achieved by loading project seismic-reflection and sediment-core data and coastal oblique aerial photographs and videos into a geodatabase structure.
Amar Nayegandhi (St. Petersburg) presented his research on "Deriving Vegetation Metrics Using Lidar," which uses data from a unique waveform-resolving, green-wavelength lidar system to derive such parameters as canopy height, relative canopy cover, and bare-earth elevation. Amar also gave a talk and poster on "Visualizing Spatial Data with Google Earth," in which he described how to convert spatial data sets for use with the popular three-dimensional mapping application.
A talk by Hilary Stockdon (St. Petersburg), entitled "Examining the Coastal Response to Hurricane Katrina Using a Storm-Impact Scaling Model," addressed the strikingly different impacts of the 2005 storm on the barrier islands of Louisiana, Mississippi, and Alabama.
Florence Wong (Menlo Park, Calif.) gave a talk and presented a related poster about "Probabilistic Tsunami Hazard Mapping, Seaside, Oregon," a cooperative pilot project by the USGS, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to help FEMA modernize its Flood Insurance Rate Maps (dowload the 600 KB PDF file from URL http://gis.esri.com/library/userconf/proc05/papers/pap2000.pdf).
The workshop provided opportunities for about 200 USGS GIS users from across the Nation to share information about new (or useful old) techniques in spatial analysis and data publication and to discuss the merits of different visualization applications (Google Earth, NASA's World Wind, and ESRI's ArcGlobe, for example). Training sessions conducted by USGS staff and outside vendors and specialists covered such topics as basic mapmaking, finding data on the Internet, image- and vector-processing tools, and metadata. The scheduling of many talks and several plenary presentations on health and hazard applications of GIS emphasized the importance of these topics for future USGS programs and collaborations. The proceedings of the 2006 workshop can be viewed or downloaded from the Proceedings of the U.S. Geological Survey Sixth Biennial Geographic Information Science Workshop web site.
in this issue:
USGS GIS 2006 Workshop
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