Habitat Mapping and Characterization
Maps that depict and characterize the physical features and arrangement of seafloor habitats are the foundation for
coastal management and decision-making. NCCOS habitat mapping provides cutting-edge spatial data and models
on seafloor geology, habitats, and associated marine life in support of place-based management. To accomplish
this goal, we conduct multi-purpose, customer-driven mapping and research missions, optimize sensors to extract the
maximum data, and produce interactive models and data visualizations for managers to make informed decisions.
Areas of Focus
NCCOS Mapping: Inter-Niche Leading to Better Possibilities
Inter-niche is the concept of “filling and connecting” the gaps created by niches to provide integrated scientific solutions. NCCOS's habitat mapping inter-niche provides end-to-end coastal, geospatial, applied science solutions to resource managers enhanced by technology and application development.
Renewable Offshore Energy
and Mineral Planning
We fill the space between charted seabeds and decision making to minimize conflict and impacts to natural resources. NCCOS provides characterization through maps and visualization showing the geology and biological communities on the seabed.
Conservation of Coral
Our maps are used to define shallow and mesophotic corals as sensitive habitats to protect or focus restoration and detect change in impacted communities.
Managing Special Places
Our maps help managers better understand the condition and types of resources in protected areas to manage and conserve those resources. Our efforts also help identify, evaluate, and justify potential new areas for protection or management.
Where We're Going
There is a growing need to monitor and detect change in ocean habitats and the ecosystems they support, especially in the midst of rapidly growing coastal populations and ocean uses. As technology progresses, NCCOS mapping will continue to develop tools through research and development and transition those tools to operations to support NCCOS and NOAA mapping goals. We will continue to advance these strategies by expanding our partnerships with academic institutions, industries, and other government agencies.
Ensuring precision to detect changes in habitats
Transition R&D to operational mapping and characterization
Collaborative testing and training
Expanding partnerships and geographies