DGS Annual Report

DGS Annual Report of Programs and Activities.

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DGS Projects

Strategic Plan for Geologic Mapping of Delaware 2016-2030

Strategic Plan for Geologic Mapping of Delaware 2016-2030

Geologic maps at the DGS are created as primary deliverables of a project and as derivatives of other projects. Primary deliverables are mainly those that are the result of outside funding sources such as the AASG-USGS cooperative StateMap. Derivative maps are those that have primary data collected for reasons other than geologic mapping can be used to create geologic maps or that geologic maps are derivative products of a project rather than the primary goal of a project.

Mapping the evapotranspiration (ET) in Sussex County using satellite remote sensing data

Landsat 7 satellite
Project Contact(s):

DGS is continuing a collaboration with climate scientist Kevin Brinson (DEOS) to develop and test methods to estimate and map annual and seasonal distribution of ET for Sussex County, Delaware. Remotely sensed data from Landsat 7 ETM+ and MODIS platforms will be used to estimate regional energy balance and water flux. These estimates are calibrated by comparison to ET estimates determined by direct point measurements (Eddy Covariance and atmometer) and models driven by meteorological data such as temperature, relative humidity, wind speed, and soil moisture. The results have the potential to improve accuracy and precision of ET models and will be valuable for efforts that use water budgets for resource management, agriculture, wetland assessment, and research.

Determination of Future Sea-Level Rise Planning Scenarios and Development of Coastal Inundation Maps for the State of Delaware

Roadway flooding along Delaware's coastal areas  (Photo: DNREC, 2012)
Project Contact(s):

The Delaware Geological Survey will review recent scientific literature and assessments of sea-level change in Delaware and identify appropriate scenarios to use for planning purposes throughout the state. This project will also develop new inundation maps along Delaware's coast that correspond to the identified scenarios.

Drought Conditions Indicators for Delaware

Summary of Water Conditions for Delaware website screen shot for March 2015

The DGS will research past performance of the Water Conditions Index (WCI) for Northern New Castle County, as compared with other established drought indicators, and investigate modifying the WCI, if needed. We will also investigate the feasibility of quantifying water conditions in Kent and Sussex Counties by analyzing factors that are most important to these regions (i.e., precipitation, groundwater for agricultural irrigation, etc….)

New Instrumentation for Water Budget Evaluation

Eddy Covariance Instrumentation
Project Contact(s):

The Delaware Environmental Observation System (DEOS) and the Delaware Geological Survey have acquired and installed new instrumentation to measure evapotranspiration (ET). The eddy covariance (EC) instrument system, purchased with support from the Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control, will improve the ability to quantify ET during agricultural and water supply drought periods and improve water availability estimates for resource managers.

2015 Delaware Geological Survey Data Preservation Proposal

Petrographic Thin Section of Greenville Gabbro
Project Contact(s):

The Delaware Geological Survey has submitted a grant proposal for National Geological and Geophysical Data Preservation Program (NGGDPP) funds for the migration of 2 in-house MS Access databases; the DGS Petrographic Thin Section Database and the DGS Radiocarbon Database, to the web for public access to these “value added” data.

The DGS Petrographic Thin Section Database requires images of each thin section in plain polarized light and one in crossed polarized light to be displayed with each thin section petrographic description. No upfront work is needed for the Radiocarbon Database. Once these images are acquired, both databases will be able to be migrated to a web site environment that will allow searching of the thin sections and radiocarbon data through specific queries with a report format to display the results. A mechanism will also exist to retrieve the data for use in further research by those accessing the web accessible databases.

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Analysis of Storm Surge and Tidal Data Relationships in the Delaware Inland Bays based on Meteorological Conditions

Fenwick Island Flooding due to Hurricane Sandy (AP Photo/Randall Chase)
Project Contact(s):

This project will study the water level behavior throughout the Delaware Inland Bays, with a focus on populated areas, during times of both storm and non-storm events through analysis of observational data from tide gages. It will also support the inclusion of the Delaware Inland Bays into the Delaware CFMS by developing a statistical relationships between the water levels along the Atlantic Ocean coast near the mouth of the Inland B

Delaware Geologic Mapping Program (STATEMAP)


The Delaware Geological Survey has a continuing program to map the geology of the entire state at the detailed scale of 1:24,000. The STATEMAP component of the National Cooperative Geologic Mapping Program has contributed significantly to our surficial geologic mapping program. This work has resulted in not only new geologic mapping, but also the digital compilation of previous mapping. Products of this program include file formats that can be downloaded and printed from the web as geologic map products and imported into GIS software as georeferenced layers.

Development of a High Water Mark Database and Display System for Coastal Flooding Events in Delaware

Water over the road at Bethany Beach, DE
Project Contact(s):

DGS is building a database and web distribution system to collect, manage, and display high water marks (HWMs) that are observed throughout Delaware as a result of flooding events. Historical peak water levels can be extracted for past storms or for a selected geographic area. Development is being done in partnership with the Office of the Delaware State Climatologist, the Delaware Environmental Observing System (DEOS) and the Delaware Environmental Monitoring and Analysis Center (DEMAC).

A numerical model to evaluate potential impacts of sea-level rise on groundwater resources in the Delaware coastal plain

Project Contact(s):

Simulating the impact of sea-level rise on the surficial aquifer along the Delaware Estuary coastline