Data Resources

Like most crop models, the CSM models require detailed data on management, soil physical and chemical conditions, and daily weather. Furthermore, for most applications, the model should be evaluated through comparison with measured crop responses. Obtaining all of the required data is often one of the biggest challenges for model applications.

We note that data quality is often problematic as well, so users should cross-compare or otherwise assess data whenever possible.

Below we list multiple data resources. In many cases, the data are not pre-formatted for use in DSSAT, so the user must reformat the data and in some cases reformat or apply conversion factors. Various DSSAT tools can assist in this process, but for large volumes of similar data (e.g., numerous locations for weather data), it is often more efficient to process the data using scripting languages (e.g., Python) or statistical packages with utilities for reading and writing in different data formats.






  • WISE Version 3.1 soil database with 9,613 profiles available
  • AfSIS soil database for Africa; 3,655 profiles from WISE Version 3.1 & 4,773 new Africa profiles, total 8,428


  • IAIMS: The database of daily weather data provides access to weather data from multiple sources globally and provides error-checking and gap-filling (for periods less than 10 days).
  • University of Idaho Gridded Surface Meteorological Dataset: provides gridded daily data for the coterminous United States from 1979 to the present for precipitation, temperature (maximum and minimum), humidity (maximum and minimum relative humidity and specific humidity), surface downward shortwave radiation (daily mean), and 10-meter Wind velocity (daily mean). The grid resolution is ~ 4 km.
  • AgMERRA: Contains AgMIP climate forcing data based on the NASA Modern-Era Restrospective Analysis for Research and Applications (MERRA). AgMERRA corrects to gridded temperature and precipitation, incorporates satellite precipitation, and replaces solar radiation with NASA/GEWEX SRB to cover the 1980-2010
  • MarkSimGCM: This online tool is a stochastic weather-generator that allows user to generate daily weather data across the globe. It creates files containing rainfall, maximum and minimum temperatures and solar radiation data and is specifically designed for tropical countries. The tool can also generate daily data for multiple years of a future climate.
  • NASA/POWER ( Provides daily weather data on a 1° grid for solar and 0.5 degree grid for temperature. Higher resolution, improved data are in beta testing as of 4 Feb 2018. Users can download data for selected periods, spot locations or rectangular regions.