Soil Survey Geographic Data Base (SSURGO), Version 2, Minnesota

This page last updated: 04/11/2007
Metadata created using Minnesota Geographic Metadata Guidelines


Metadata Summary

Originator U.S. Department of Agriculture, Natural Resources Conservation Service
Abstract This data set is a digital soil survey and generally is the most detailed level of soil geographic data developed by the National Cooperative Soil Survey. The information was prepared by digitizing maps, by compiling information onto a planimetric correct base and digitizing, or by revising digitized maps using remotely sensed and other information.

This data set consists of georeferenced digital map data and computerized attribute data. The map data are in a soil survey area extent format and include a detailed, field verified inventory of soils and nonsoil areas that normally occur in a repeatable pattern on the landscape and that can be cartographically shown at the scale mapped. A special soil features layer (point and line features) is optional. This layer displays the location of features too small to delineate at the mapping scale, but they are large enough and contrasting enough to significantly influence use and management. The soil map units are linked to attributes in the National Soil Information System relational database, which gives the proportionate extent of the component soils and their properties.

Note: All Minnesota SSURGO data sets are now in Version 2 format. This format is compatible with NRCS's Soil Data Viewer, a free extension for ArcView 3.x that allows users to more easily create soil-based thematic maps.
- For more information about Soil Data Viewer, see http://www.itc.nrcs.usda.gov/soildataviewer/

Also note: This metadata record was created by the Minnesota Land Management Information Center to serve as a generic record for all SSURGO data sets within Minnesota.

See the individual county metadata records created by NRCS for county-specific information; these records are included in the data set download files.
Browse Graphic View a sample of the data.
Time Period of Content Date
Currentness Reference Publication Date of printed soil survey (Note: also check the printed soil surveys for the dates when field work was conducted in each county)
Access Constraints None
Use Constraints The U.S. Department of Agriculture, Natural Resources Conservation Service, should be acknowledged as the data source in products derived from these data.

This data set is not designed for use as a primary regulatory tool in permitting or siting decisions, but may be used as a reference source. This is public information and may be interpreted by organizations, agencies, units of government, or others based on needs; however, they are responsible for the appropriate application. Federal, State, or local regulatory bodies are not to reassign to the Natural Resources Conservation Service any authority for the decisions that they make. The Natural Resources Conservation Service will not perform any evaluations of these maps for purposes related solely to State or local regulatory programs.

Photographic or digital enlargement of these maps to scales greater than at which they were originally mapped can cause misinterpretation of the data. If enlarged, maps do not show the small areas of contrasting soils that could have been shown at a larger scale. The depicted soil boundaries, interpretations, and analysis derived from them do not eliminate the need for onsite sampling, testing, and detailed study of specific sites for intensive uses. Thus, these data and their interpretations are intended for planning purposes only. Digital data files are periodically updated. Files are dated, and users are responsible for obtaining the latest version of the data.
Distributor Organization U.S. Department of Agriculture, Natural Resources Conservation Service, National Cartography and Geospatial Center
Ordering Instructions 1. Free download:
Click in the 'Online Linkage' field below to go to LMIC's webpage describing options for downloading SSURGO data sets from NRCS and from the State of Minnesota.

2. CD ordering option from NRCS:
Go to: http://www.ncgc.nrcs.usda.gov/branch/ssb/products/SSURGO/order.html or call or write to Distributor. The charge is $50 per CD.
Online Linkage Click here to download data. (See Ordering Instructions above for details.) By clicking here, you agree to the notice in "Distribution Liability" in Section 6 of this metadata.

Full Metadata

Soil Survey Geographic Data Base (SSURGO), Version 2, Minnesota

Go to Section:
1. Identification Information
2. Data Quality Information
3. Spatial Data Organization Information
4. Spatial Reference Information
5. Entity and Attribute Information
6. Distribution Information
7. Metadata Reference Information

 
Section 1 Identification Information   Top of page
Originator U.S. Department of Agriculture, Natural Resources Conservation Service
Title Soil Survey Geographic Data Base (SSURGO), Version 2, Minnesota
Abstract This data set is a digital soil survey and generally is the most detailed level of soil geographic data developed by the National Cooperative Soil Survey. The information was prepared by digitizing maps, by compiling information onto a planimetric correct base and digitizing, or by revising digitized maps using remotely sensed and other information.

This data set consists of georeferenced digital map data and computerized attribute data. The map data are in a soil survey area extent format and include a detailed, field verified inventory of soils and nonsoil areas that normally occur in a repeatable pattern on the landscape and that can be cartographically shown at the scale mapped. A special soil features layer (point and line features) is optional. This layer displays the location of features too small to delineate at the mapping scale, but they are large enough and contrasting enough to significantly influence use and management. The soil map units are linked to attributes in the National Soil Information System relational database, which gives the proportionate extent of the component soils and their properties.

Note: All Minnesota SSURGO data sets are now in Version 2 format. This format is compatible with NRCS's Soil Data Viewer, a free extension for ArcView 3.x that allows users to more easily create soil-based thematic maps.
- For more information about Soil Data Viewer, see http://www.itc.nrcs.usda.gov/soildataviewer/

Also note: This metadata record was created by the Minnesota Land Management Information Center to serve as a generic record for all SSURGO data sets within Minnesota.

See the individual county metadata records created by NRCS for county-specific information; these records are included in the data set download files.
Purpose SSURGO depicts information about the kinds and distribution of soils on the landscape. The soil map and data used in the SSURGO product were prepared by soil scientists as part of the National Cooperative Soil Survey.
Time Period of Content Date
Currentness Reference Publication Date of printed soil survey (Note: also check the printed soil surveys for the dates when field work was conducted in each county)
Progress In work
Maintenance and Update Frequency As needed
Spatial Extent of Data A number of counties within Minnesota; see status map: http://www.lmic.state.mn.us/chouse/soil_status_map.html
Bounding Coordinates -97.5
-89
49.5
43
Place Keywords Minnesota
Theme Keywords geoscientificInformation, Soil, Soils, Soil Survey, SSURGO
Theme Keyword Thesaurus ISO 19115 Topic Category
Access Constraints None
Use Constraints The U.S. Department of Agriculture, Natural Resources Conservation Service, should be acknowledged as the data source in products derived from these data.

This data set is not designed for use as a primary regulatory tool in permitting or siting decisions, but may be used as a reference source. This is public information and may be interpreted by organizations, agencies, units of government, or others based on needs; however, they are responsible for the appropriate application. Federal, State, or local regulatory bodies are not to reassign to the Natural Resources Conservation Service any authority for the decisions that they make. The Natural Resources Conservation Service will not perform any evaluations of these maps for purposes related solely to State or local regulatory programs.

Photographic or digital enlargement of these maps to scales greater than at which they were originally mapped can cause misinterpretation of the data. If enlarged, maps do not show the small areas of contrasting soils that could have been shown at a larger scale. The depicted soil boundaries, interpretations, and analysis derived from them do not eliminate the need for onsite sampling, testing, and detailed study of specific sites for intensive uses. Thus, these data and their interpretations are intended for planning purposes only. Digital data files are periodically updated. Files are dated, and users are responsible for obtaining the latest version of the data.
Contact Person Information Joe McCloskey, State Soil Scientist
U.S. Department of Agriculture, Natural Resources Conservation Service
375 Jackson Street, Room 600
St. Paul, MN 55101-1854
Phone: 651-602-7861
FAX: 651-602-7914
E-mail: jwm@mn.nrcs.usda.gov
Browse Graphic View a sample of the data.
Browse Graphic File Description
Associated Data Sets See http://www.lmic.state.mn.us/chouse/soil.html for information about other soils data available for Minnesota.

 
Section 2 Data Quality Information Top of full metadata Top of page
Attribute Accuracy Attribute accuracy is tested by manual comparison of the source with hard copy plots and/or symbolized display of the map data on an interactive computer graphic system. Selected attributes that cannot be visually verified on plots or on screen are interactively queried and verified on screen. In addition, the attributes are tested against a master set of valid attributes. All attribute data conform to the attribute codes in the signed classification and correlation document and amendment(s).
Logical Consistency Certain node/geometry and topology GT-polygon/chain relationships are collected or generated to satisfy topological requirements (the GT-polygon corresponds to the soil delineation). Some of these requirements include: chains must begin and end at nodes, chains must connect to each other at nodes, chains do not extend through nodes, left and right GT-polygons are defined for each chain element and are consistent throughout, and the chains representing the limits of the file (neatline) are free of gaps. The tests of logical consistency are performed using vendor software. The neatline is generated by connecting the explicitly entered four corners of the digital file. All data outside the enclosed region are ignored and all data crossing these geographically straight lines are clipped at the neatline. Data within a specified tolerance of the neatline are snapped to the neatline. Neatline straightening aligns the digitized edges of the digital data with the generated neatline (i.e., with the longitude/latitude lines in geographic coordinates). All internal polygons are tested for closure with vendor software and are checked on hard copy plots. All data are checked for common soil lines (i.e., adjacent polygons with the same label). Quadrangles are edge matched within the soil survey area and edge locations generally do not deviate from centerline to centerline by more than 0.01 inch.
Completeness A map unit is a collection of areas defined and named the same in terms of their soil and/or nonsoil areas. Each map unit differs in some respect from all others in a survey area and is uniquely identified. Each individual area is a delineation. Each map unit consists of one or more components.

Soil scientists identify small areas of soils or miscellaneous (nonsoil) areas that have properties and behavior significantly different than the named soils in the surrounding map unit. These minor components may be indicated as special features. If they have a minimal effect on use and management, or could not be precisely located, they may not be indicated on the map.

Specific National Cooperative Soil Survey standards and procedures were used in the classification of soils, design and name of map units, and location of special soil features. These standards are outlined in Agricultural Handbook 18, Soil Survey Manual, 1993, USDA, SCS; Agricultural Handbook 436, Soil Taxonomy, Soil Survey Staff, 1975, USDA, SCS; and all Amendments; Keys to Soil Taxonomy, Soil Survey Staff, (current issue); National Soil Survey Handbook, title 430-VI, (current issue).

The actual composition and interpretive purity of the map unit delineations were based on data collected by scientists during the course of preparing the soil maps. Adherence to National Cooperative Soil Survey standards and procedures is based on peer review, quality control, and quality assurance. Quality control is outlined in the memorandum of understanding for the soil survey area and in documents that reside with the Natural Resources Conservation Service state soil scientist. Four kinds of map units are used in soil surveys: consociations, complexes, associations, and undifferentiated groups.

Consociations - Consociations are named for the dominant soil. In a consociation, delineated areas are dominated by a single soil taxon and similar soils. At least one half of the pedons in each delineation are of the same soil component so similar to the named soil that major interpretations are not affected significantly. The total amount of dissimilar inclusions of other components in a map unit generally does not exceed about 15 percent if limiting and 25 percent if nonlimiting. A single component of a dissimilar limiting inclusion generally does not exceed 10 percent if very contrasting.

Complexes and associations - Complexes and associations are named for two or more dissimilar components with the dominant component listed first. They occur in a regularly repeating pattern. The major components of a complex cannot be mapped separately at a scale of about 1:24,000. The major components of an association can be separated at a scale of about 1:24,000. In each delineation of either a complex or an association, each major component is normally present, though their proportions may vary appreciably from one delineation to another. The total amount of inclusions in a map unit that are dissimilar to any of the major components does not exceed 15 percent if limiting and 25 percent if nonlimiting. A single kind of dissimilar limiting inclusion usually does not exceed 10 percent.

Undifferentiated groups - Undifferentiated groups consist of two or more components that do not always occur together in the same delineation, but are included in the same named map unit because use and management are the same or similar for common uses. Every delineation has at least one of the major components and some may have all of them. The same principles regarding proportion of inclusions apply to undifferentiated groups as to consociations.

Minimum documentation consists of three complete soil profile descriptions that are collected for each soil added to the legend, one additional per 3,000 acres mapped; three 10 observation transects for each map unit, one additional 10 point transect per 3,000 acres.

A defined standard or level of confidence in the interpretive purity of the map unit delineations is attained by adjusting the kind and intensity of field investigations. Field investigations and data collection are carried out in sufficient detail to name map units and to identify accurately and consistently areas of about 4 acres.

Note: important features that are not large enough to map as polygons are mapped as point or line features.
Horizontal Positional Accuracy The accuracy of these digital data is based upon their compilation to base maps that meet National Map Accuracy Standards. The difference in positional accuracy between the soil boundaries and special soil features locations in the field and their digitized map locations is unknown. The locational accuracy of soil delineations on the ground varies with the transition between map units.

For example, on long gently sloping landscapes the transition occurs gradually over many feet. Where landscapes change abruptly from steep to level, the transition will be very narrow. Soil delineation boundaries and special soil features generally were digitized within 0.01 inch of their locations on the digitizing source. The digital map elements are edge matched between data sets. The data along each quadrangle edge are matched against the data for the adjacent quadrangle. Edge locations generally do not deviate from centerline to centerline by more than 0.01 inch.
Vertical Positional Accuracy Not applicable
Lineage 1. NRCS SSURGO data sets:

See metadata records for each county at the NRCS Soil Data Mart:
http://soildatamart.nrcs.usda.gov/
or at the National SSURGO Website:
http://www.ncgc.nrcs.usda.gov/branch/ssb/products/SSURGO/index.html

2. SSURGO Version 2 county files converted to UTM coordinates, extended zone 15, NAD 83:

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources - Land and Minerals Division, has modified the NRCS SSURGO Version 2 county data sets in the following ways:
- Converted from geographic coordinates to UTM Zone 15 (using an Arc/Info aml and ArcGIS - ArcToolbox 8.3). This step was only necessary for data sets downloaded from NRCS's National SSURGO Website; the data sets from NRCS's Soil Data Mart were downloaded in UTM coordinates.
- Reformatted the feature text file from tab-delimited to semi-colon delimited (using Notepad) and then associated the feature text descriptions with the associated point and line feature files. When a text field contained more than 250 characters, thus exceeding the limit of a shapefile's .dbf field, the field was split into two fields so that it would not be truncated.
- Imported the associated tabular data for each county into the NRCS Access database templates for both Access 97 and Access 2000.
Source Scale Denominator
 
Section 3 Spatial Data Organization Information Top of full metadata Top of page
Native Data Set Environment Shapefile (originally DLG)
Geographic Reference for Tabular Data None
Spatial Object Type Vector
Vendor Specific Object Types Polygons, lines and points are in separate files
Tiling Scheme County
 
Section 4 Spatial Reference Information Top of full metadata Top of page
Horizontal Coordinate Scheme UTM
Ellipsoid GRS80
Horizontal Datum NAD83
Horizontal Units Meters
Distance Resolution Unknown
Altitude Datum Not applicable
Depth Datum Not applicable
UTM Zone Number 14, 15
Coordinate Offsets or Adjustments None
 
Section 5 Entity and Attribute Information Top of full metadata Top of page
Entity and Attribute Overview Map Unit Delineations are closed polygons that may be dominated by a single soil or nonsoil component plus allowable similar or dissimilar soils, or they can be geographic mixtures of groups of soils or soils and nonsoil areas.

The map unit symbol uniquely identifies each closed delineation map unit. Each symbol is linked to a map unit name. The map unit symbol is also the key for linking information in the National Soil Information System (NASIS) tables. The map unit symbols are not carried within the modified Digital Line Graph file; however, they are made available in a companion attribute file. The attribute file links the minor codes in the Digital Line Graph files to the map unit symbols.

Map Unit Delineations are described by the National Soil Information System database. This attribute data base gives the proportionate extent of the component soils and the properties for each soil. The database contains both estimated and measured data on the physical and chemical soil properties and soil interpretations for engineering, water management, recreation, agronomic, woodland, range, and wildlife uses of the soil.

The National Soil Information System database contains static metadata. It documents the data structure and includes such information as what tables, columns, indexes, and relationships are defined as well as a variety of attributes of each of these database objects. Attributes include table and column descriptions and detailed domain information. For more detail, see:
http://soildatamart.nrcs.usda.gov/SSURGOMetadata.aspx
or, if using the Soil Data Viewer:
- Open the accompanying Access database for your county; the 'Soil Reports' window should open.
- Click the 'System Reports' button on the lower right of the window; the 'System Reports' window should open.
- Choose a report from the pulldown list (e.g., tables, or soil interpretation descriptions) then click the 'Generate Report' button. The report will be displayed onscreen.

The National Soil Information System database also contains distribution metadata. It records the criteria used for selecting map units and components for inclusion in the set of distributed data.

Special features are described in the feature table. It includes a feature label, feature name, and feature description for each special and ad hoc feature in the survey area.
Entity and Attribute Detailed Citation U.S. Department of Agriculture. 1999. Soil Taxonomy: A basic system of soil classification for making and interpreting soil surveys. Soil Conservation Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture Handbook 436.

U.S. Department of Agriculture. (current issue). Keys to Soil Taxonomy. Soil Survey Staff, Soil Conservation Service.

U.S. Department of Agriculture. (current issue). National Soil Survey Handbook, title 430-VI. Soil Survey Staff, Natural Resources Conservation Service.

U.S. Department of Agriculture. 1993. Soil Survey Manual. Soil Survey Staff, U.S. Department of Agriculture Handbook 18.
 
Section 6 Distribution Information Top of full metadata Top of page
Publisher U.S. Department of Agriculture, Natural Resources Conservation Service (Note: The publication date is listed in the NRCS metadata for each county).
Publication Date Periodically revised
Contact Person Information

U.S. Department of Agriculture, Natural Resources Conservation Service, National Cartography and Geospatial Center
P.O. Box 6567
Fort Worth, TX 76115
Phone: 800-672-5559
FAX: 817-509-3469
E-mail: none available
Distributor's Data Set Identifier ssurgo
Distribution Liability Although these data have been processed successfully on a computer system at the U.S. Department of Agriculture, no warranty expressed or implied is made by the Agency regarding the utility of the data on any other system, nor shall the act of distribution constitute any such warranty. The U.S. Department of Agriculture will warrant the delivery of this product in computer readable format, and will offer appropriate adjustment of credit when the product is determined unreadable by correctly adjusted computer input peripherals, or when the physical medium is delivered in damaged condition. Request for adjustment of credit must be made within 90 days from the date of this shipment from the ordering site.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture, nor any of its agencies are liable for misuse of the data, for damage, for transmission of viruses, or for computer contamination through the distribution of these data sets. The U.S. Department of Agriculture prohibits discrimination in its programs on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, religion, age, disability, political beliefs, and marital or familial status. (Not all prohibited bases apply to all programs)
Transfer Format Name ArcView shapefile, ArcInfo coverage, ArcInfo export
Transfer Format Version Number
Transfer Size Varies by county
Ordering Instructions 1. Free download:
Click in the 'Online Linkage' field below to go to LMIC's webpage describing options for downloading SSURGO data sets from NRCS and from the State of Minnesota.

2. CD ordering option from NRCS:
Go to: http://www.ncgc.nrcs.usda.gov/branch/ssb/products/SSURGO/order.html or call or write to Distributor. The charge is $50 per CD.
Online Linkage Click here to download data. (See Ordering Instructions above for details.) By clicking here, you agree to the notice in "Distribution Liability" above.
 
Section 7 Metadata Reference Information Top of full metadata Top of page
Metadata Date 04/11/2007
Contact Person Information Nancy Rader, GIS Data Coordinator
Minnesota Land Management Information Center (LMIC)
658 Cedar Street, Room 300
St. Paul, MN 55155
Phone: 651-201-2489
FAX: 651-296-3698
E-mail: clearing.house@state.mn.us
Metadata Standard Name Minnesota Geographic Metadata Guidelines
Metadata Standard Version 1.2
Metadata Standard Online Linkage http://www.lmic.state.mn.us/gc/stds/metadata.htm


This page last updated: 04/11/2007