Q: What is GRiD?

A: The Geospatial Repository and Data Management (GRiD) System was developed in partnership between U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) Cold Regions Research and Engineering Laboratory (CRREL) and the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA) to serve as an advanced enterprise level database for geospatial data. GRiD is designed to store, process, visualize, and disseminate a variety of geospatial datasets, such as 3D pointcloud data (e.g., Light Detection and Ranging (LIDAR)) and associated 2D geospatial products (e.g., digital elevation model (DEM), imagery, etc.).

Q: What are the benefits of GRiD?

A: Current storage and data management mechanisms do not enable efficient utilization of geospatial datasets. These systems are typically flat file repositories which do not effectively manage complex 3D datasets, nor handle very large datasets, which increase bandwidth and connectivity requirements. GRiD fills these gaps and addresses both data provider and user needs.

Q: What types of data are available within GRiD?

A: 3D pointcloud data, such as from LIDAR, Electro-Optical (EO), or radar, as well as 2D geospatial data, including EO, Relative Intensity Image (RII), Digital Elevation Models (DEMs), Infrared Imagery (IR). Mesh and vector data available on some systems.

Q: Why am I getting an error or security warning when visiting GRiD?

A: To ensure secure DoD websites and DoD-signed code are properly validated, the user's system must trust the DoD Root Certificate Authorities (CAs). GRiD uses DoD Root Certificates to provide a secure end-to-end connection for its users, therefore, as a user of GRiD, you may need to manually install the DoD CA certificates on your personal or non-DoD computer in order to access GRiD via a secure connection. For additional information and instructions, please see GRiD Help, Section 1.5 DoD Root Certificates for screenshots and information.

Q: How can I determine where GRiD has available data?

A: Click on Map on the top left banner. Once on the Map interface, turn on the data layers on the left side of the interface to see what datasets are available over desired regions.

Q: How do I see what data is available over my Area of Interest (AOI)?

A: Once on the Map interface of GRiD, the user can view an area by manually zooming to the region, or by entering a coordinate in the search bar. The user can then turn on the data layers to see what data is specifically over their AOI.

Q: What is a pointcloud?

A: A pointcloud is a set of data points in some coordinate system. In a 3D coordinate system, these points are defined as X, Y, Z coordinates, and often are intended to represent the external surface of an object. Pointclouds may collected by 3D scanning systems such as LIDAR, or generated by algorithms using EO or radar data.

Q: What if there are no DEMs, but only pointcloud data, over my AOI, what do I do?

A: If there is no DEM data available over the desired AOI, or even if the available DEM data does not satisfy requirements, the user can create a DEM from pointcloud data over their AOI. This function is available on the “Export” page, using the “Create DEM from Pointcloud” function. Read more here.

Q: Are there any freely available applications to view/utilize pointclouds?

A: Yes, a few 3D pointcloud viewer applications that are freely downloadable:

See a comprehensive list of 3D pointcloud viewers here.

Q: There isn’t any pointcloud data available over my AOI, is there a way to request pointcloud data over my AOI?

A: Yes. There is a program called P3D which utilizes available EO data and processes it into 3D pointcloud data. This data is only available on the classified systems. Users can request EO pointcloud data over their desired AOI via the GRiD interface. Once the user creates an AOI within GRiD, click on the “AOI Options” drop-down menu and select “Request P3D Pointcloud”.

Q: I am a low bandwidth user who requires large downloads of data. How can I get the data I need?

A: Low bandwidth users requiring large downloads of data may contact NGA’s Custom Media Team for additional assistance.

Alternatively, please contact the Custom Media Team directly at 636-321-5285.

Q: Does the GRiD program provide training?

A: Yes, the GRiD team is available to provide virtual or in-person training at your location. Training can be customizable based on the user’s specific needs. Please contact the GRiD team to coordinate.

Q: If I encounter an error, what do I do?

A: If you receive a website error, retry the action as it could be network related. If you continue to get the same error, please contact the GRiD Help Desk at any of the phone numbers or email addresses listed here.

Q: What if I have additional questions?

A: Please contact the GRiD Help Desk at any of the available phone numbers or email addresses listed here for any and all questions.