Texas A&M University is committed to GIScience research, education, and practice to serve the TAMU community of stakeholders and bring forth the next generation of technology, scholars, and practitioners. The facilities available to those interested in GIScience research and education include numerous open access computer labs across campus as well as dedicated research and teaching labs in individual departments and centers.
The TAMU GIScience facilities offer hardware, software, and support for using GIScience related technologies and tools in both teaching and research. TAMU students, faculty, and staff have access to the latest GIScience technology including an ArcGIS site license, statistical and modeling software (SAS, SPSS, Stata, and Matlab). Multiple academic units on campus provide ground-based LiDAR systems, surveying equipment, and survey quality GPS receivers.
The following lists describe a few of the infrastructure and lab resources available at TAMU for GIScience.
College of Geosciences
Geography GIS/ RS Labs - The Geographic Information Systems (GIS) Lab is located in the CSA (Teague) Building (# B002A). The GIS lab is used for instruction and research and contains 19 computers and one black and white laser printer. The Remote Sensing (RS) Lab is located on the seventh floor of the O&M Building (# 707).
Biogeography Lab - The Biogeography Lab is located on the seventh floor (# 706) of the O&M Building. The biogeography laboratory in the Department of Geography at Texas A&M is designed to facilitate state-of-the-art research in modeling and tree-ring analysis. The lab contains microscopes, Velmex measuring systems, and tree-ring analysis software, along with a separate workshop for sanding and sawing tree-ring samples. We also have a variety of micrometeorological measurement equipment and dataloggers to support the empirical research done by biogeographers at A&M. The lab has ample storage space and a full array of standard field equipment such as measuring tapes, increment borers and GPS units. Our modeling facilities include both Unix- and Windows-based machines dedicated to the development and testing of simulation models of biogeographic phenomena.
Geography Computer Labs - Undergraduate Computer Labs are located in the basement of CSA (Teague) Building (#B002C) and on the eighth floor of the O&M Building (#802B). The graduate Computer Lab is located on the third floor of the CSA (Teague) Building (# 313). The Department of Geography has three computer labs available for student use. Two undergraduate computer labs contain 23 Pentium 4 Dell OptiPlex computers, two HP flatbed scanners, color and black and white laser printers, and a large format wide-plotting printer. One graduate lab contains eight Pentium 4 Dell OptiPlex computers, one HP flatbed scanner, a color and black and white laser printer, and a copy machine.
All computers located in the Geography computer labs run on Windows. Software packages installed on all of the computers include ESRI ArcGIS 9.1, ENVI 4.1, ER Mapper 7, Google Earth, Adobe Photoshop, Acrobat Professional, and Illustrator, Microsoft Office, and various other programs.
Geology & Geophysics Computing and GIS/Remote Sensing Research Facilities - Current departmental facilities including a Macintosh OSX server, Windows 2000 server (Idaho.tamu.edu) with tape backup and 100GB of storage, five Windows 2000 workstations (Pentium 3 or 4 processors) and a large color plotter connected to the Internet and building network through 10BaseT and 100BaseT connections. Software tools running on the workstations include Windows 2000, Compliers for Fortran, C, Matlab and Mathematica, MS Access, SPSS, ArcInfo, ArcView, and the ArcView modules 3-D ArcView and Spatial Analyst, AutoCAD, Erdas Imagine, and ENVI.
Geology & Geophysics Near-surface Applied Geophysics - Geometrics G-858 cesium vapor magnetic gradiometer; Geometrics 36-channel StrataView seismic reflection/refraction equipment will roll-along box; AGI SuperSting R8 multi-electrode resistivity/IP; Sensors and Software PulseEkko ground-penetrating radar system with 25, 100, 200 MHz antennas; Geonics EM63 time-domain metal detector; Geonics PROTEM47 time-domain EM prospecting system; Geonics EM34-3 and EM61 frequency-domain EM systems; LaCoste & Romberg gravity meter; Topcon GT-313 total station navigation system.
Geology & Geophysics Earthquake Simulation Laboratory - Sun Fire X4600 server with 8 processors, 48 GB memory and 450 GB hard disk, and a Sun Ultra 40 workstation with 2 processors, 8 GB memory and 5 TB hard disk.
College of Agriculture and Life Sciences
Knowledge Engineering Laboratory - Computer capabilities have been created to accommodate development of integrative software systems. The computing environment features a variety of high end PC-based platforms. KEL also has outstanding peripheral hardware and software to facilitate landscape ecological analysis and synthesis and construction of computer systems for problem-solving and decision making. The KEL facilities include both a computing environment and an ecological laboratory complex.
Biological Engineering Sensor Technologies Laboratory - The TAMU BEST Lab maintains a diverse set of research equipment including: UV/Vis/NIR Spectrophotometer, Analytical Balances, Laser Surveying System, FTIR Spectrometer, NIR Camera, Electronics Work Bench, Particle-Size Analyzer, Video Microscope System, Shaker Table, Circuit Board Plotter, Topographic Mapping System, and Centrifuge.
College of Architecture
The College of Architecture provides computer labs for the use of its students: one general computing labs on the first floor of Langford A, blue and red pods on the 3rd floor of Langford A, gold and brown pods on the 4th floor of Langford A and a GIS lab on the third floor of Langford A.
The LAUP GIS Laboratory -
The Department of Landscape Architecture and Urban Planning at Texas A&M University maintains a Geographic Information Systems (GIS) laboratory including 2 Optiplex scanners for digitizing maps and 38 desktop computers equipped with ArcGIS. Further, the Lab is run by a full-time lab manager and GIS instructor.
The Dwight Look College of Engineering
The Center for the Study of Digital Libraries uses and maintains over 100 computer systems spanning a myriad array of hardware and software platforms. These computers are situated within 14 offices, 4 large shared office spaces, 2 laboratories, and a conference room on the main campus of Texas A&M University in College Station, Texas. Connectivity to these systems consists of a gigabit Ethernet network connected to the University's backbone. Wireless network access is also available to users within the Center. 44 Multiprocessor Linux servers provide Linux services including a 12 node Beowulf cluster, 3 dedicated web application development and hosting machines, and two interactive access machines for application development. 23 of the servers are dedicated to individual projects. Two shared disk clusters with multi-terabyte storage capacity serves Windows as well as Unix users. Roughly 15% of desktop workstations run some variant of Unix, with the remainder largely consisting of Windows systems. Server systems are routinely backed up over the network to a multi-tape DAT backup unit and a 1.5TB file server dedicated to backups. To aid in system testing, the CSDL maintains a testbed providing all popular Web browsers on Windows, Linux, and Macintosh. Additionally, the center has a five head Linux-based user study lab. The Center also has a dedicated state-of-the-art conference room equipped with a SMART Board connected to a computer with digital projection equipment. Additionally a second machine attached to a flat display television and digital video camera provides videoconferencing support. Wired as well as wireless Internet access is available to meeting participants.
The College of Liberal Arts
The Texas A& Census Research Data Center secure computing lab - Working in close collaboration with the U.S. Census Bureau, the TXCRDC provides researchers in the State of Texas and beyond access to non-public versions of datasets in the federal statistical system. Qualified researchers who gain project approval to use the secure lab can conduct basic science research and research to improve the effectiveness of the federal statistical system. A partial list of available datasets includes, non-public versions of: US Decennial censuses and demographic surveys; Economic censuses and surveys; and Health data from the National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) and the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ).
Texas A&M University-Wide Facilities
Texas Transportation Institute - TTI maintains state-of-the-art laboratories, buildings and outdoor test beds. The 67,000-square-foot Gibb Gilchrist Building, located in the Texas A&M University Research Park, was designed and built specifically to house TTI’s transportation research programs. The TransLink Gilchrist Laboratory for traffic operations, a fully interactive driving and pedestrian environment simulator, and extensive video, photography, web and publishing facilities are located in the Gilchrist Building. The CE/TTI Building, an 85,640-square-foot building on the main campus of Texas A&M University, houses a portion of TTI staff, many of whom are also faculty in Texas A&M’s Dwight Look College of Engineering. The CE/TTI Building connects to several laboratories in the areas of pavements and materials; soils and aggregates; and structures. The new three-story, 66,700-square-foot TTI State Headquarters and Research Building houses additional TTI research programs and TTI’s administrative offices. Other highlights of the building include the Visibility Research Laboratory, which features a 125-foot-long corridor and is used to test materials for traffic signs and pavement markings, as well as vehicle headlamps, sign lighting and roadway lighting.
Texas A&M Libraries Map & GIS Library -
The Map & GIS Library is located in Room 202 of the Sterling C. Evans Library.
The collection consists of over 250,000 individual sheet maps, 3,000 atlases and gazetteers, and 1000 CD/DVDs.
The Map & GIS Library has worldwide coverage of topographic and geological maps, GIS datasets.
The collection also includes travel maps and guides. We offer GIS assistance for those seeking data and support.
The Map & GIS Library provides assistance to all colleges and agencies associated with Texas A&M, as well as members of the local community.
Materials may be put on reserve for class assignments, and study space is available, although somewhat limited. Tours and lectures for class support may be arranged.
Photocopy and scanning services are available for a small fee. Staff is available to photocopy and scan library-owned materials.
The Map & GIS Library has a 40” wide-format scanner as well as several desktop workstations for public use.