Geography and environmental facilities

Geographical Information Sciences (GIS) Computing Facilities

The department has access to several computing laboratories complete with modern PCs and the latest GIS software. Facilities include:

  • High specification PCs
  • Access to online mapping resources, including the Ordnance Survey
  • Data collection equipment, including GPS
  • Modern software packages, including ESRI ArcMap, QGIS and ENVI

Geosciences laboratory

This laboratory has specialist equipment for the testing of sediments including: particle size analysis by wet  sieving; basic soil properties, as well as compressibility and shear strength of soils, including both direct shear and triaxial shear testing.

Physical geography laboratory

This lab is especially designed to support students' practical learning activities in physical geography, geology, environmental sciences.

Facilities include:

  • a full suite of UK Geological Maps at 1:50,000 scale
  • OS 1:50,000 and 1:25,000 maps of England and Wales
  • Large collection of historic flat maps
  • many specialist maps at different scales
  • Maps of various other countries where field work has been carried out by our staff and students

The lab is extremely well stocked with all the major igneous, metamorphic, and sedimentary rock types plus a fossil collection, and also contains binocular petrological microscopes for the analysis of rocks samples in thin-section.

Bayfordbury field station

Our University has its own field station which is used by our Geography and Environmental Sciences students during their degrees. The field station is situated in the Lee Valley just outside of Hertford and includes:

  • Onsite laboratories, teaching and GIS computing facilities
  • Plant growth facilities- including refurbished glasshouses and experimental plot
  • 50-types of habitats, including: ancient woodlands, scrubland, hedgerows, grasslands, an ephemeral stream and lake.
  • Long term habitat management schemes including monitoring
  • Detailed species records for botany, vertebrates, terrestrial invertebrates and aquatic invertebrates
  • UK and EU protected species and specialist technical staff with survey licenses
  • Apiary and bee keeping equipment
  • Weather station with records dating back to the 1980s