Celebrate GIS Day 2023

Geographic Information Systems (GIS) make it easy to see the relationships between different datasets and are a powerful tool for researchers. GIS Day celebrates this technology.

On November 15, scientists across the globe are celebrating GIS Day, an annual event highlighting the many ways Geographic Information Systems (GIS) advance our ability to understand Earth’s complex interconnected systems. GIS enables data owners and users to manage, view, analyze, serve, and distribute geographical data from multiple sources, including data acquired by sensors aboard NASA’s constellation of satellites.

Teams across NASA’s Earth Science Division leverage the extensive data provided by the agency's Earth Science Data Systems (ESDS) Program to employ GIS tools to tackle important problems related to resource management, air quality monitoring, wildfire tracking, emergency response, and more.

3D image of precipitation levels during Hurricane Irma rendered from Geographical Information Systems tools
A 3D visualization generated using GIS tools of total daily precipitation (in mm) in the Southeast United States from September 8 to September 12, 2017, during Hurricane Irma's peak precipitation levels. NASA used data from the Global Precipitation Measurement (GPM) Integrated Multi-satellitE Retrievals for GPM (IMERG) Final Precipitation Level 3 1-day 0.1 degree x 0.1 degree V06 (GPM_3IMERGDF) dataset, specifically the precipitationCal variable. These data are distributed by NASA's Goddard Earth Sciences Data and Information Services Center (GES DISC). Credit: NASA's Precipitation Processing Center.

Nearly every field that relies on understanding the relationships between different datasets uses GIS—and with the volume of Earth science data managed by NASA approaching 100 petabytes, GIS technology is a powerful tool that is used by a growing number of scientists. Led by the ESDS GIS Team (EGIST), NASA aims to enable more users to discover, access, and use unrestricted Earth science data by leveraging GIS tools.

Learn more about how GIS empowers research through our GIS at NASA StoryMap, GIS Data Pathfinder, and Earthdata GIS page, and learn how to increase NASA Earth science data accessibility with GIS by viewing our recent Earthdata Webinar.