Coastal Changes and Impacts

Coastal Multi-Temporal Elevation Database

The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) National Geospatial Program's 3D Elevation Program (3DEP) aims to collect new light detection and ranging (lidar) data over the same areas on an 8-year return cycle. Between lidar surveys, there may be significant differences in bare- and non-bare earth heights due to both natural and human-induced geomorphic changes that occur. Therefore, research methods are being developed by the USGS Coastal and Marine Geology Program (CMGP) to create a new geospatial framework for three-dimensional (3D) time-series elevation data to make existing data more accessible to scientists and the general public, and to solve data integration issues with multi-temporal datasets.

Due to increased large-scale geomorphic changes, a time-series of 3D elevation data were refined in the Outer Banks of North Carolina. This geomorphology application combines over 20 high-resolution lidar datasets obtained in the region over a 10-year time period that can be used for temporal analysis and change detection. The multi-temporal topobathymetric elevation model was compiled on a “best available” basis that provided efficient access to multi-temporal lidar data for geomorphic change and coastal modeling applications.

Outer Banks, North Carolina, August, 2009 Outer Banks, North Carolina, November, 2009 Outer Banks, North Carolina, Pre- Hurricane Irene, August, 2011 Outer Banks, North Carolina, Post- Hurricane Sandy, November, 2012
Outer Banks, North Carolina, August, 2009
Outer Banks, North Carolina, November, 2009
Outer Banks, North Carolina, Pre- Hurricane Irene, August, 2011
Outer Banks, North Carolina, Post- Hurricane Sandy, November, 2012
This animation illustrates the localized impact that Hurricane Irene and Hurricane Sandy had on the southwest part of Cape Hatteras, Outer Banks of North Carolina. U.S. Geological Survey images created by Daniel Howard.

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