hwsdr functionality

Koen Hufkens


Programmatic interface to the Harmonized World Soil Database ‘HWSD’ web services (https://daac.ornl.gov/cgi-bin/dsviewer.pl?ds_id=1247). Allows for easy downloads of ‘HWSD’ soil data directly to your R workspace or your computer. Routines for both single pixel data downloads and gridded data are provided.


Single pixel location download

Get world soil values for a single site using the following format, specifying coordinates as a pair of latitude, longitude coordinates. Here the call only extracts the top soil fraction of sand and silt (% weight) for one specific location.

  values <- ws_subset(
    site = "HWSD",
    location = c(34, -81),
    param = c("T_SAND","T_SILT")

At this location we have a top soil fraction of sand of 78% weight and a silt fraction of 12 % weight! Data are returned as tidy data frames including basic meta-data of the query for later subsetting.

#>   site parameter latitude longitude value
#> 1 HWSD    T_SAND    33.95    -81.05    78
#> 2 HWSD    T_SILT    33.95    -81.05    12

Gridded data

You can grab gridded data by specifying a bounding box c(lat, lon, lat, lon) defined by a bottom left and top right coordinates. Here the call only extracts the top soil fraction of sand (%).

  t_sand <- ws_subset(
    site = "HWSD",
    location = c(32, -81, 34, -80),
    param = "T_SAND",
    path = tempdir(),
    internal = TRUE

plot of chunk unnamed-chunk-4

Alternatively you can use sf bounding box (st_bbox()) function output to define an extent over which you want to extract gridded data. The structure of the function also allows for pipes to be used.

  a <- sf::st_sf(a = 1:2,
                geom = sf::st_sfc(
                  sf::st_point(c(34, -81)),
                  sf::st_point(c(32, -80))),
                crs = 4326)

  t_sand <- a %>%
    sf::st_bbox() %>%
    ws_subset(param = "T_SAND")

This call gives an equivalent dataset as above, as shown in the plot.


plot of chunk unnamed-chunk-6