Federal Geodetic Control
LEAD FEDERAL AGENCY/BUREAU AND/OR SUBCOMMITTEE/WORKING GROUP REPORT (Agencies With Lead Responsibilities Assigned under Current Circular A-16 Authorities) (Please provide a separate report for each activity for which you have the lead)
1. Program/Activity Name:
Federal Geodetic Control Subcommittee
Lead: National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), National Ocean Service, National Geodetic Survey
2. What are the programs this data supports?
U.S. Department of Agriculture
Agricultural Research Service
U.S. Forest Service
U.S. Department of Commerce
U.S. Census Bureau
National Institute of Standards and Technology
U.S. Department of Defense
National Imagery and Mapping Agency
U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
U.S. Naval Observatory
U.S. Department of Interior
Bureau of Indian Affairs
Bureau of Land Management
Mineral Management Service
National Park Service
U.S. Geological Survey
U.S. Department of State
International Boundary Commission
International Boundary and Waterways Commission
U.S. Department of Transportation
U.S. Coast Guard
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
Federal Communications Commission
National Aeronautics and Space Administration
Tennessee Valley Authority
Very Briefly Describe All Applicable Items:
3. Uses of Data: What are the end uses of this data? How does it benefit customers, support lead and other agency missions, etc.?
- Geodetic control provides a common reference system for establishing coordinates for all geographic data. All NSDI framework data and users' applications data require geodetic control to accurately register spatial data. The National Spatial Reference System is the fundamental geodetic control for the United States.
- Geodetic control provides spatial consistency, accuracy, timeliness, and ease of access to spatial reference in support of public safety, economic prosperity, and environmental well being.
4. Charter/Plan: Do you have a current charter or plan for collection? Should it be updated?
- Yes, there is a charter, from 1995.
- Yes, there are updates needed. One work group (Geodetic Control and Surveying Requirements Work Group) in the initial charter has been disbanded and needs to be dropped from the charter. Another (Spectrum Issues Work Group) has been instigated and needs to be added to the charter.
5. Metadata: What is the status of metadata? Is it discoverable and served through the NSDI Clearinghouse? What percentage of this theme's data has metadata and is in a Clearinghouse node?
The following have metadata and are available through the FGDC Data Clearinghouse:
- Geodetic Control (data sheets)
- Shoreline Data (digital compilation)
- Calibration Base Lines o Gravity Data and Models
- Geoid and Deflection of the Vertical Models
- GPS Orbits
- Shoreline Data (manual compilation)
- Aerial Photography
Standards: What is the status of this theme's data, process, transfer, and classification standards?
- All of the following standards have been fully endorsed by the FGDC:
- Geospatial Positioning Accuracy Standards, Part 1: Reporting Methodology
- Geospatial Positioning Accuracy Standards, Part 2: Standards for Geodetic Networks
- Spatial Data Transfer Standard (SDTS) Part 6: Point Profile
7. Progress: List FY 2000/2001 activities/progress to date (quantify where possible)
- Carried out equipment tests for Trimble 5700 GPS Receivers and the Trimble Geomatics Office v1.5 Processing Software in July 2001.
- Radio interference with GPS test was carried out at the National Institute of Science and Technology.
- Remote sensing instrument calibration was performed at the airport in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.
- On prototypical basis, meteorological equipment was installed at selected Nationwide Differential GPS (NDGPS) sites in order to demonstrate the ability of GPS to measure precipitable water vapor.
- Establishment of Cooperative CORS, including definition of standards and specifications.
- Development and operation of On-Line Positioning User Service (OPUS). OPUS provides users with positional coordinates for a given location over the Internet in exchange for their GPS observations taken at the location.
8. Leadership: Describe your active leadership role with others (private, local, State, Federal) who collect and use this data.
- NGS chairs the FGCS as well as three of the work groups (Instrumentation, Methodology, and Vertical Reference).
- FGCS ensures that the Global Positioning System (GPS) will continue to meet the positioning and timing needs of the Federal civilian community and work to strengthen the ties between the GPS positioning and timing communities and their relationships with the navigation communities. This responsibility is being implemented by FGCS through its role as the GPS Interagency Advisory Council (GIAC) to the Department of Transportation Pos/Nav Executive Committee and subsequent reports to the FGDC Steering Committee. In the GIAC role, the membership has been instrumental in influencing GPS modernization, especially in its recommendations regarding selection of the new civil GPS satellite signal frequency.
9. Collaborative Partnerships: How many major partnerships with others do you have on this theme? (list if desired)
a) California Spatial Reference Center (CSRC)
This partnership was established to provide the geodetic services necessary to ensure the availability of consistent, accurate, and timely spatial referencing data for California. The CSRC consists of representatives from the public government agencies (Federal, state, and local), universities, utilities, and the private sector.
b) Louisiana Spatial Reference Center - In development, similar to CSRC.
c) National CORS
National CORS is a network of Global Positioning System (GPS) continuously operating reference stations (CORS), that provides support for accurate 3-dimensional GPS positioning activities throughout the United States and its territories. The National CORS network benefits from a multi-purpose cooperative endeavor involving many government, academic, commercial, and private organizations. New sites are evaluated for inclusion according to established NOAA criteria. The National CORS is currently growing at a rate of three or four sites per month. Surveyors, GIS/LIS professionals, engineers, scientists, and others can apply CORS data to position points where GPS data have been collected.
d) Cooperative CORS
Cooperative CORS, a complementary network to National CORS, was developed and brought into operation. Cooperative CORS provides greater access to more CORS data and to encourage the use of positional coordinates consistent with NSRS. Standards and specifications were developed to provide standardization and consistency among providers of GPS base station data. Similar to National CORS, these stations are provided through partnership with a variety of providers. Cooperative CORS differs from National CORS in that the provider archives their data and has more flexibility in operation time. Both have their data made available through the Internet by NGS.
e) GPS Crustal Motion Monitoring
FGCS members collaborated the University NAVSTAR Consortium (UNAVCO) in a plate tectonics study in the Northwest and Alaska, investigating the use of GPS in monitoring crustal motion.
f) Federal Base and Cooperative Base Geodetic Control Networks
State and local surveying organizations co-observe with federal field parties and assist in accelerating completion of the improved height component of the Federal Base Network (FBN). Those organizations that follow NGS specification and procedures can expect to achieve the same height accuracy for their Cooperative Base Network (CBN) stations as obtained for the FBN stations. When NGS specifications and procedures are followed, NGS processes, adjust, archives, and disseminates the results for those CBN stations, without charge.
g) Electronic Distance Measuring Instrument Calibration Base Lines
This cooperative program provides surveyors with a means to detect and correct errors in Electronic Distances Measuring Instruments (EDMI). More than 300 EDMI Calibration Base Lines (CBL) have been established throughout the United States in cooperation with various government agencies, universities, professional societies, and the private sector. These highly accurate base lines provide a locally accessible standard for length measurement. For each state, users are provided with location descriptions and the adjusted results of calibration base line measurements.
h) Geodetic Instrument Tests
FGCS coordinates and conducts inter-agency tests of new geodetic surveying systems, including the instrumentation, hardware, software, and procedures that comprise that system. The testing process is the recognized Federal assessment standard utilized by surveying equipment manufacturers and users. This Federal assessment demonstrates how well tested equipment will meet performance requirements specified in surveying contracts. The equipment used in the tests, as well as the personnel involved, are provided by the private industry firms which take part in the evaluation process.
i) Remote Sensing Calibration and Evaluation Networks
FGCS is developing and will manage a set of remote sensing calibration networks to be used by companies acquiring remotely sensed data to calibrate their LIDAR, Hyperspectral, SAR, and aerial Photography systems. Remote sensing evaluation networks will also be established to appraise the processes in which those systems are used. Private industry will provide the equipment and the personnel to carry out the systems calibration and evaluation.
10. Scope: Are you engaged in broad participation and international/global coordination?
Through its membership, FGCS is engaged with the following international organizations:
- International Association of Geodesy
- International Earth Rotation Service
- International Federation of Surveyors (FIG)
- International GPS Service for Geodynamics
11. Policy: Do you have a policy in place for full and open access or data sharing?
The FGCS charter states: Develop, adopt, publish, and promote common standards of content, format, and accuracy for geodetic data for use by all Federal agencies and to encourage use by non Federal organizations, to increase its interchangeability and enhance its potential for multiple uses. This policy encourages the open access to and sharing of data.
The National Geodetic Survey has a policy regarding publication of data sheets for National Spatial Reference System (NSRS) geodetic control points. Distribution is restricted to unclassified, nonproprietary, data within the United States, its territories and protectorates. Exceptions for publishing foreign data held in NSRS are made on a country by country consent basis.
12. Are there areas or issues regarding lead responsibilities for spatial data themes that require attention, or lessons-learned that you would like to share with others? Please describe.