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2005 Delaware Coastal Program Lidar: Sussex County

The data were acquired in March 2005 using the NASA Experimental Advanced Airborne Research Lidar (EAARL) platform in Sussex County, Delaware. Once acquired, the data were processed by USGS personnel into both 2-foot contours and digital elevation models. Multiple returns were recorded for each laser pulse. This is a bare earth data set. The points have approximately a 3 m ground spacing. Water points remain in the bare earth data set, they have not been classified as water.

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    Distribution Formats
    • LAZ
    Distributor Distributor information not available
    Point of Contact Delaware Geological Survey
    Documentation links not available.
    • DOI/USGS > United States Geological Survey, U.S. Department of the Interior
    • Delaware Geological Survey
    • Delaware Coastal Management Program
      • publication: 2005-01-01
      Data Presentation Form: Digital image
      Dataset Progress Status Complete
      Data Update Frequency: Not planned
      Supplemental Information: This project was funded in part, through a grant from the Delaware Coastal Program with funding from the Office of Ocean and Coastal Resource Management, and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration under award number NA03NOS4190078.
      Purpose: The Sussex County dataset was created to provide elevation based data to use for modeling and mapping.
      Time Period: 2005-03-01  to  2005-03-31
      Spatial Reference System:
      Spatial Bounding Box Coordinates:
      N: 38.967831
      S: 38.415440
      E: -75.046341
      W: -75.723623
      Spatial Coverage Map:
      • Bathymetry/Topography
      • DEM
      • Digital elevation model
      • Elevation
      • Digital terrain model
      • Surface Model
      • Hydraulic
      • Hydrographic
      • Lidar
      • Hydrologic Modeling
      • Drainage Area
      • Hydrology
      • US
      • Delaware
      • Sussex County
      Use Constraints No constraint information available
      Fees Fee information not available.
      Lineage Statement Lineage statement not available.
      • DOC/NOAA/NESDIS/NGDC > National Geophysical Data Center, NESDIS, NOAA, U.S. Department of Commerce
      Processing Steps
      • Data were collected by NASA EAARL (Experimental Advanced Airborne Lidar) during March of 2005. Flying was done out of Salisbury, Maryland. Nominal post spacing was approximately 3 meters, with data denser in areas of flight line overlap. A GPS base station was established and operated for 1 hour prior to, during, and for at least 30 minutes after completion of data collection flights (take off to touch down). The GPS collected data at 1 Hz intervals. GPS data were used for aircraft location correction. Lidar data collected for cross tracks were flown during each data collection flight. Preliminary fundamental vertical accuracy testing was performed against data collected by NRCS surveyors. Three landuse classes were tested woods, roads, and farm lanes with the aggregate average RMSe being 0.102m and the greatest RMSe observed was 0.148m. Processing was done in Airborne Lidar Processing Software (ALPS) by USGS personnel in Reston VA. Final bare-earth point data inspection and clean up was manually performed by USGS personnel in Dover Delaware and Baltimore, MD using ArcMap.
      • The NOAA Coastal Services Center (CSC) received the data in shapefile format with x, y, and z. The x, y, and z values were extracted from the shapefiles and converted to ASCII formatted text using a processing loop in arc/info. The ASCII files were then converted to LAS format using an internal processing script. CSC then performed the following processing on the data to make it available within the Digital Coast: 1. The data were converted from State Plane coordinates to geographic coordinates. 2. The data were converted from orthometric to ellipsoid heights using Geoid03. 3. The LAS header fields were sorted by latitude and updated. 4. The data were filtered to eliminate outliers.
      • The NOAA National Geophysical Data Center (NGDC) received lidar data files via ftp transfer from the NOAA Coastal Services Center. The data are currently being served via NOAA CSC Digital Coast at The data can be used to re-populate the system. The data are archived in LAS or LAZ format. The LAS format is an industry standard for LiDAR data developed by the American Society of Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing (ASPRS); LAZ is a loseless compressed version of LAS developed by Martin Isenburg ( The data are exclusively in geographic coordinates (either NAD83 or ITRF94). The data are referenced vertically to the ellipsoid (either GRS80 or ITRF94), allowing for the ability to apply the most up to date geoid model when transforming to orthometric heights.

      Metadata Last Modified: 2013-05-07

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