Work in Action – USGS

On the Technical Support Services Contract (TSSC), SGT provides support to the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) Earth Resources Observation and Science (EROS) Center, the world’s largest archive for land imaging data. Activities within this large 350 person contract include:

Managing and Preserving EROS’ Legacy of Earth Remote Sensing: SGT supports EROS in the critical role of managing and preserving the remote sensing, cartographic and Earth science archives through the use of databases and collections management techniques with a strong adherence to archival standards. USGS’ Long Term Archive (LTA) project is directly responsible for the management, quality assurance, operations, and maintenance of digital inventories within the EROS Center. SGT helps maintain, preserve, and provide ready access to the historical remote sensing digital databases and archives. This includes activities related to operations such as data organization, ingest, metadata generation and ingest, data set appraisal, assessments, dispositions and preservation activities such as data set transcriptions and media migrations.

Early Warning and Environmental Monitoring: SGT supports basic and applied research; analyses and interpretation of remotely sensed data; preparation of geospatial data for processing through hydroclimatological models; assisting with the development of early warning systems for food security and flooding as well as other hazards including landslides, tsunamis, and hurricanes; providing dynamic data access and delivery over the Internet; collaboration with other government and academic research scientists, other US government entities, and international organizations such as the UN. We provide technical expertise associated with the broad spectrum of satellite and aerial remote sensing systems and derivative data sets as well as other geospatial data characterizing the land, water, and atmospheric environments used to process the data, run the models, and provide access to the data. Under this activity SGT provides assistance in developing operational applications and modeling results related to harvest assessments, drought, land use changes, snow fall, rainfall anomalies in malaria epidemic zones, and identification of manifestations of long-term climate trends.

Land Cover Database and Land Characterization: SGT supports the Land Characterization and National Land Cover Database projects that provides information on the Nation’s current and historical land cover characteristics that are applicable at national, regional, and local scales. The geospatial data layers that are produced by this project are used to support a broad spectrum of applications in land management, environmental studies, modeling, and policy decisions. Land cover and land use data are high priority data themes within the USGS, with the National Land Cover Database (NLCD) providing the foundation database. This database, combined with other sources of relevant scientific data provide a robust suite of geospatial data that allow informed decisions by managers and the public. These data (and derived products) require continuous production, updating and improvement, in order to provide the most relevant land cover information for the Nation.

Land Cover Status and Trends: SGT supports the Land Cover Status and Trends Project which creates image maps of the land use and land cover on sample regions within the United States. We help develop geo- referenced databases using Landsat and aerial photography data. These studies support regional assessments and are key to assessing long term trends in land use and agricultural productivity.

Remote Sensing Technologies Project: The major tasks undertaken by SGT comprising this activity include:

  • Instrumentation and Analysis,
  • Reimbursable Aerial Camera Characterization and Calibration,
  • System Characterization/Calibration and Product Verification/Validation
  • Aerial Mapping Digital Sensor Characterization and Calibration.