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 340 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

Cranfield University logoCranfield University logo

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 Materials Added

Imortant accessions in 2019

Since the systematic collection of soil and water related documents began in 2004, the WOSSAC archive has expanded to now include over 27,000 individual documents both maps and reports, covering 340 countries and territories.

Within the past year the collection has been boosted by a major acquisition from the Booker-Tate consultancy, which has agreed to the transfer of hundreds of land appraisal reports and maps to the archive (see recent news post on this acquisition). Additionally, the WOSSAC catalogue has been strengthened by a number of smaller acquisitions from individuals and former practitioners who had been active in overseas consultancy, especially soil survey.

Revised and updated mapping search tool

Improved spatial searches

Much as we like the new look and feel of the revised WOSSAC website, there is work to be done. Searching for items spatially has long been an asset of the catalogue tool, now it has been made even easier to use and interpret.

Expanding the World Soil Survey Archive and Collection (WOSSAC)

An overhaul for our website

To welcome in the new year in 2019, we are pleased to announce our overhauled website. The new site adds a more contemporary feel for the archive's public face, and importantly uses an 'adaptive' design (bootstrap) - meaning it will work on mobile devices as well as desktop computers and laptops. Try it and let us know what you think!