Government Maps and Charts

NOAA Central Library's (NCL) map collection contains cartographic material published by government agencies. Most of these maps and charts are received through the Federal Depository Library Program (FDLP) and are cataloged under SuDocs classification system. You will find the maps in the flat file cabinets and shelf files located in the southeast corner of the library.


NOAA Nautical Charts

NOAA's National Ocean Service produces nautical charts that contain information about the nature and form of the coast, the depths of the water and general character and configuration of the sea bottom, locations of dangers to navigation, the rise and fall of the tides, locations of navigation aids, and characteristics of the earth's magnetism. To learn more about nautical charts go to the Office of Coast Survey site.

NCL maintains a large collection of NOAA nautical charts, both current and past editions from about 1993 when it became a Federal Depository library. The library recently acquired earlier editions of some Pacific and Atlantic coast nautical charts published in 1969 by NOAA's predecessor-U.S. Coast and Geodetic Survey. The charts have been added to the collection. The most recent two editions of the flat charts are housed in the library, while the earlier editions are sent to storage and can be retrieved within 24 hours.

Nautical charts are accessed by five digit number as found in the Nautical Chart Catalog, copies of which are in the map area as well as at the reference desk. (Exceptions to this five digit number are chart numbers 50, 411, 500, 501, 530, and 531). You can access the Nautical Chart Catalog online via Office of Coast Survey website. Once you have the chart number you can check its availability at NCL using the catalog record for NOAA nautical charts [Nautical chart, C 55.418/7: ]. Please note that cataloging of these charts hasn't been completed yet. Contact the reference desk if you cannot find the chart you need. You can also view NOAA Electronic Navigational Charts or NOAA Raster Navigational Charts online.

Dates of Latest Editions: NOS Nautical Charts & Misc. Maps is an important tool that helps identify current editions of nautical charts. Charts with edition dates prior to those listed in this publication are obsolete for use in navigation. The charts are listed by number, so you have to consult chart catalogs to identify chart titles you need. This publication is issued quarterly and the latest issue is kept at the reference desk. Call number is Z6028.D384. It is also available online from the Office of Coast Survey website.

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NOAA Historical Map and Chart Collection

Historical Map and Chart Collection of the Office of Coast Survey contains over 20,000 maps and charts from the late 1700s to present day. The collection includes some of the nation's earliest nautical charts, hydrographic surveys, topographic surveys, geodetic surveys, city plans and Civil War battle maps. The digital images of these charts and maps are available for free via the Image Catalog.

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Nautical Charts by Other Agencies

These non-NOAA nautical chart products are not part of the Federal Depository Program and therefore do not have a SuDocs number.

British Admiralty Charts

An agreement exists between the NOAA Central Library and the UK Hydrographic Office concerning the charts that are sent to us under Reciprocal Exchange. These charts are filed in flat file cabinets in the map area that are labeled British Admiralty Charts. Note that some of these charts are also considered part of the International Chart Series (see note below). They are currently filed within the correct drawer but not in correct order. Each Admiralty chart will be added to this serial record [Admiralty charts, GA361 .G7 no.2 6th ed.(2001)]. Library retains the latest edition of these charts. Use Admiralty Online Catalogue to identify the chart number you need.

Canadian Hydrographic Service

Canadian nautical charts published by Canadian Hydrographic Service and distributed by NIMA were received through the Federal Depository Program (item number 0378-E-21). Library keeps the latest revision. These charts haven't been cataloged and are filed in the flat file cabinets in no particular order.

German Hydrographic Office

Nautical charts received from German Hydrographic Office(Bundesamt f|r Seeschiffahrt und Hydrographie) are not cataloged. Small craft charts which are small in size are filed in a small flat file cabinet; regular ones are in a large flat file cabinet.

NGA (former NIMA) Charts

These charts are located in 3 drawers of a large flat file cabinet underneath the later part of the NOAA nautical flat charts. These maps have not been cataloged in the NOAA Central Library.

NOTE: The International Map Series is a series of nautical charts that is comprised of charts from many agencies throughout the world. It is run under the auspices of the International Hydrographic Organization. These charts are labeled with an INT number in addition to the number assigned by their producing agency.

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Federal Aviation Administration Aeronautical Charts


These aeronautical charts used to be published by NOAA's National Ocean Service until the publication was taken over by the Federal Aviation Administration in October 2000. Therefore, holdings in NOAALINC have two different call numbers: earlier ones C 55.416/ and later ones T 4.79/

Chart descriptions are taken from the National Aeronautical Charting Office online catalog.

North Atlantic Route Charts

C 55.416/8:
TD 4.79/9:
North Atlantic Route Charts are designed for FAA Controllers to monitor trans-Atlantic flights. This 5-color chart shows oceanic control areas, coastal navigation aids, oceanic reporting points, NAVAID coordinates and reporting points. Full Size Chart: Scale 1 inch = 113.1nm/1:8,250,000; 39 x 28 inches, shipped flat only. Reduced Size Chart: Scale 1 inch = 150.8nm/1:11,000,000; 29-3/4 x 20-1/2 inches, shipped folded to 5 x 10 inches only. Revised every 56 days.
The library retains only one year's worth of these charts.

North Pacific Route Charts

C 55.416/8:
TD 4.79/10: TD 4.79/10-2:
North Pacific Route Charts are designed for FAA Controllers to monitor trans-Pacific flights. The 5-color charts show established intercontinental air routes, including reporting points with geographic positions. Composite Chart: Scale 1 inch = 164nm/1:12,000,000; 59-1/2 x 41-1/2 inches. Area Charts: Scale 1 inch = 95.9nm/ 1:7,000,000; 59-1/2 x 41-1/2 inches. All charts are shipped flat. Revised every 56 days.
The library retains only one year's worth of these charts.

Sectional Aeronautical Charts

C 55.416/10:
TD 4.79/11:
Sectional Aeronautical Charts are designed for visual navigation of slow to medium speed aircraft. The topographic information featured consists of the relief and a judicious selection of visual checkpoints used for flight under visual flight rules. The checkpoints include populated places, drainage patterns, roads, railroads, and other distinctive landmarks. The aeronautical information on Sectional Charts includes visual and radio aids to navigation, airports, controlled airspace, restricted areas, obstructions, and related data.
The library retains all charts issued from 1995-present. Issues prior to 2003 are kept in remote storage and can be retrieved within 24 hours.

VFR Terminal Area Charts

C 55.416/11:
TD 4.79/12:
Terminal Area Charts depict the airspace designated as Class B airspace. The information found on these charts, while similar to that found on Sectional Charts, is shown in much more detail because of the larger scale. These charts should be used by pilots intending to operate from airfields within or near Class B airspace or Class C airspace.
The library retains all charts issued from 1995-present. Issues prior to 2003 are kept in remote storage and can be retrieved within 24 hours.

U.S. Gulf Coast VFR Aeronautical Chart

C 55.416/12:
TD 4.79/13:
U.S. Gulf Coast VFR Aeronautical Chart is designed primarily for helicopter operations in the Gulf of Mexico area. Information depicted includes offshore mineral leasing areas and blocks, oil drilling platforms, and high-density helicopter activity areas, 55x27 inches folded to 5x10 inches. Revised annually.
The library retains all charts issued from 1995-present. Issues prior to 2003 are kept in remote storage and can be retrieved within 24 hours.

Helicopter Route Charts

C 55.416/12-2:
TD 4.79/18-4:
Helicopter Route Charts are three-color charts that depict current aeronautical information useful to helicopter pilots navigating in areas with high concentrations of helicopter activity. Information depicted includes helicopter routes, four classes of heliports with associated frequency and lighting capabilities, NAVAIDS, and obstructions. In addition, pictorial symbols, roads, and easily-identified geographical features are portrayed. Since helicopter charts have a longer life span than other NOAA products, all new editions of these charts will be printed on synthetic paper. These charts are updated as requested by the Federal Aviation Administration.
The library retains all charts issued from 1995-present. Issues prior to 2003 are kept in remote storage and can be retrieved within 24 hours.

World Aeronautical Charts

C 55.416/13:
TD 4.79/14:
World Aeronautical Charts cover land areas at a standard size and scale for navigation by moderate speed aircraft and aircraft operating at high altitudes. The topographical information includes city tints, principal roads, railroads, distinctive landmarks, drainage patterns and relief. The aeronautical information includes visual and radio aids to navigation, airports, airways, restricted areas, obstructions and other pertinent data.
The library retains all charts issued from 1995-present. Issues prior to 2003 are kept in remote storage and can be retrieved within 24 hours.

IFR Enroute Low Altitude U.S.

C 55.416/14:
TD 4.79/15:

IFR Enroute Low Altitude Alaska

C 55.416/15:
TD 4.79/16:
Instrument Flight Rules (IFR) Enroute Low Altitude Charts provide aeronautical information for navigation under instrument flight rules below 18,000 feet MSL.

IFR Enroute High Altitude U.S.

C 55.416/16:
TD 4.79/17:

IFR Enroute High Altitude Alaska

C 55.416/16-2:
TD 4.79/17-2:
Instrument Flight Rules (IFR) Enroute High Altitude Charts (Conterminous U.S. and Alaska) are designed for navigation at or above 18,000 ft MSL.

IFR Area Charts U.S.

C 55.416/15-2:
TD 4.79/16-2:
Area Charts show congested terminal areas at a large scale.

All IFR charts are revised every 56 days. The library retains all charts issued from 1995-present. Issues prior to 2003 are kept in remote storage and can be retrieved within 24 hours.

IFR/VFR Low Altitude Planning Chart

C 55.416/15-3:
TD 4.79/16-3:
IFR/VFR Low Altitude Planning Chart is designed for preflight and enroute flight planning for IFR/VFR flights. The chart is printed front-East, back-West, with insets for the east coast from Washington, D.C. to Boston and on the west coast, the Los Angeles/San Diego area. Information includes the depiction of low altitude LF/MF and VHF airways and mileages, navigational facilities, airports, special use airspace areas, cities, time zones, major drainage, a directory of airports with their airspace classification and a mileage table showing great circle distances between major airports, 40 x 36 inches. Revised annually.
The library retains all charts issued from 1995-present. Issues prior to 2003 are kept in remote storage and can be retrieved within 24 hours.

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National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency Charts

These charts are produced by the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (formerly National Imagery and Mapping Agency (NIMA), formerly DMA) and distributed by NOAA. They are received through the FDL program. The descriptions are taken from Richmond Map Facility website.

Tactical Pilotage Charts (TPC Charts)

D 5.354:TPC
The Tactical Pilot Chart supports high-speed, low-altitude radar, and visual navigation of high-performance tactical and reconnaissance aircraft from low to medium altitudes. It is designed to assist close air operations by providing visual and radar navigation information. The knowledge of map symbology becomes important to understand cultural features depicted on the chart.

The library retains select editions of TPC charts (1980-2003). These records are cataloged in one serial record [Tactical pilotage charts, D 5.354:TPC]. NOAA no longer produces and distributes these charts. Since October 2000, responsibility has been transferred to the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). Public Law 106-181, dated April 5, 2000 gives FAA the legislative authority to charge fees to recover the cost of producing paper and digital products. The authority was codified in Title 49, United States Code, section 44721. The FAA now develops aeronautical products and sells them through a network of around 400 authorized aeronautical chart agents, as well as through direct sales to the public. For current editions, please contact the FAA's Distribution Division. Historical versions of the Tactical Pilotage Chart series may also be available via University of Texas Libraries.

Jet Navigation Charts (JNC Charts)

D 5.354:JNC
JNC charts are also received through the FDL Program and they are in shelf files next to the TPC charts. The primary purpose of the Jet Navigation Chart is to support high-altitude computer assisted radar navigation/bombing by strategic aircraft. Information considerations are selected to support celestial, radar, and dead reckoning navigation.
Like TPC charts, the library retains the latest editions of JNC charts and catalogs them in one serial record [Jet navigation charts, D 5.354:JNC].

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U.S. Geological Survey Cartographic Products

These U.S.Geological Survey products are received through the Federal Depository Library Program.

U.S. Geological Survey Miscellaneous Reports

I 19.91:
These products are map and text products packaged in one folder (usually manila). There are several series to these products CP, GQ, HA, I and MF. These are cataloged as individual items in NOAALINC and are housed in shelf files in the map area.

U.S. Geological Survey Topographic Quadrangles

I 19.81:
We have the 7.5 minute topographic quadrangles for the District of Columbia, Maryland, Virginia, and West Virginia. They are in small flat file cabinets in alphabetical order by state.

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Online Map Resources

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