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Closed depression density in karst regions of the conterminous United States: features and grid data


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Jones, J.M., Doctor, D.H., Wood, N.J., Falgout, J.T., and Rapstine, N.I., 2021, Closed depression density in karst regions of the conterminous United States: features and grid data: U.S. Geological Survey data release,


Most methods for the assessment of sinkhole hazard susceptibility are predicated upon knowledge of pre-existing closed depressions in karst areas. In the United States (U.S.), inventories of existing karst depressions are piecemeal, and are often obtained through inconsistent methodologies applied at the state or county level and at various scales. Here, we present a first attempt at defining a karst closed depression inventory across the conterminous U.S. using a common methodology. Automated algorithms for extraction of closed depressions from 1/3 arc-second (approximately 10 m resolution) National Elevation Dataset (NED) were run on the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) “Yeti” high-performance computing cluster. The full NED was first [...]


Attached Files

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“zipped file geodatabase”
21.22 MB application/zip
“Depression density map”
thumbnail 649.43 KB image/png
“depression polygons - shapefile”
24.48 MB application/zip
“sink density - tiff”
414.03 KB application/zip
“classified sink density - tiff”
80.19 KB application/zip
“classified polygons - shapefile”
498.82 KB application/zip


The purpose of this dataset is to provide a geospatial representation of the relative density of closed depressions in karst regions of the conterminous United States.


Unless otherwise stated, all data, metadata and related materials are considered to satisfy the quality standards relative to the purpose for which the data were collected. Although these data and associated metadata have been reviewed for accuracy and completeness and approved for release by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), no warranty expressed or implied is made regarding the display or utility of the data for other purposes, nor on all computer systems, nor shall the act of distribution constitute any such warranty. This database, identified as USGS_karst_depression_density_conus.gdb, has been approved for release by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS). Although this database has been subjected to rigorous review and is substantially complete, the USGS reserves the right to revise the data pursuant to further analysis and review. Furthermore, the database is released on condition that neither the USGS nor the U.S. Government shall be held liable for any damages resulting from its authorized or unauthorized use. Any use of trade, firm, or product names is for descriptive purposes only and does not imply endorsement by the U.S. Government.
Depression density map
Depression density map



  • USGS Data Release Products



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DOI doi:10.5066/P9EV2I12

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