Welcome to WOSSAC

The mission of the World Soil Survey Archive and Catalogue (WOSSAC) at Cranfield University, UK, is to provide a secure home for soil survey reports, maps, imagery and photographs produced over the last 80 years from 342 territories worldwide, with a view to ensuring their enduring availability and protection. WOSSAC holds:

Maps

Maps and charts of soil and environmental themes worldwide

Books

Extensive soil survey reports, books and monographs

Photographs and imagery

Soil-related photographs and historical satellite imagery

Datasets

Soil profile data, land characteristics and statistical environmental information

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Hosted at Cranfield University, UK

As the UK's only exclusively postgraduate university, Cranfield University's world-class expertise, large-scale facilities and unrivalled industry partnerships is creating leaders in technology and management globally.

Environment and Agrifood

For 50 years, Cranfield has been contributing to enhancing natural capital and ensuring that global food systems are more resilient for the future. We are recognised worldwide by industry, government and academe for our research and teaching in plants, soil, water and air.

Soil science

Our research spans from basic aspects of soil physics, chemistry and biology to soil resource evaluation, sustainable soil management, soil conservation and land restoration.

QUEEN’S ANNIVERSARY PRIZE

Cranfield University is delighted to announce that, for the fifth time in its history, it has been the proud recipient of a prestigious Queen’s Anniversary Prize, in recognition of research and education in large-scale soil and environmental data for the sustainable use of natural resources in the UK and worldwide. Cranfield is one of only eight institutions to have won the award on five or more separate occasions.

This is the first time in the Prize”s history that an award has been given for soil science. Cranfield University's world-class expertise, large-scale facilities and unrivalled industry partnerships is creating leaders in technology and management globally.

Our prize was made ‘In recognition of research and education in large-scale soil and environmental data for the sustainable use of natural resources in the UK and worldwide’. The WOSSAC Archive and related soil facilities played a critical part in this success story for the University.

Queen's Anniversay Award logo

Case studies

The WOSSAC Archive and its many resources can be of enormous assistance for a range of applications and activities, from national and regional strategic land planning, to managing development and relief efforts, to the conduct of academic research. WOSSAC contains a huge wealth of unique reports, maps, manuscripts, photographs and albums covering scores of countries around the world over a period of many decades. The following examples give an idea of how the WOSSAC archive is being used to further development aid, relief work and research.

Blog

Recent news and updates from the WOSSAC archive. See All the blogs »

New Agri-informatics facility to help accelerate pace of digital agriculture adoption

An exciting new home for the WOSSAC archive

A new £3.2 million Agri-informatics facility has today been officially opened at Cranfield University by Rt Hon. George Eustice MP, the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs. A new home for the WOSSAC archive, Cranfield and its partners will use the facility to create innovative informatics to support novel business, management and policy approaches in the agricultural sector.....

Keith Virgo

A friend of WOSSAC remembered

WOSSAC is very sorry to hear of the death Keith Virgo from Covid, caught whilst he was in rehab after major heart surgery. We send our sympathy and condolences to his widow Sandy and all of his family. Coming together with the passing of Hugh Brammer, Keith’s death is a blow to WOSSAC, and the tropical soil science and overseas agricultural development communities in Britain....

Hugh Brammer

A life and career remembered: 1925-2021

WOSSAC is very sorry to hear of the death of Hugh Brammer on 13th January 2021, at the age of 95. We wish to send our condolences to his family and many friends. Coming so soon after the passing of Keith Virgo, Hugh’s death comes very much as a double blow to WOSSAC and the tropical soil science community in Britain.

WOSSAC has long been aware of Hugh’s stature and work, and we had some of his documents in the archive, some which he had donated himself. But it was only in the last year of his life that he worked closely with WOSSAC...