Storm Surge Flooding at the US Naval Academy


 (requires Google Earth or another KML viewer)


This analysis uses a Lidar Digital Elevation model, and the MICRODEM computer program to produce a KML file you can view in Google Earth.  You can see the predicted flooding at a number of water levels, referenced to both MLLW for the Annapolis tide gauge, and to the NAVD of 1988.


We also have historic shorelines depicted by the Maryland Geological Survey; perhaps not surprisingly, almost all the area that floods is fill emplaced after the founding the Naval Academy in 1845.


Recent flooding events:

You can compare this with the experimental National Weather Service forecast.


You can see the current tides at and refer them to both NAVD and MLLW, as well as several other vertical datums.



Water level in downtown Annapolis and the Naval Academy from a storm such as Hurricane Isabel, overlaid on a 1 m resolution LIDAR DEM.

Water levels go from 0.2 m to 2.5 m in 0.1 m steps. This requires that the point be below the water level, and that it have a clear path to the bay.  This will be fooled if water can come through the seawall or a storm drain, for instance, but provides a reasonable estimate.

There are many caveats to this analysis, and there is no claim that it accurately portrays what happened in Isabel or would happen in a future storm.

This is a low resolution depiction for web delivery, and does not do justice to the quality of the DEM data.  You cannot stop it or change the playback speed.  You can get much more control over the visualization with the KML model for storm surge in Annapolis created by MICRODEM.

Actual water levels for recent hurricanes were: