Rothamsted Research

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watts

Christopher Watts

Role(s):
Deputy Head of SSGS
Sustainable Soil & Grassland Systems
Harpenden
Summary:

Personal statement

I have over 30 years of experience in the study of sustainable soil management systems ranging from the design and testing of novel and commercially successful high speed shallow cultivators to the measurement of processes responsible for the aggregation of clays and their role in sequestering soil organic carbon. I am the author of almost 100 papers, technical and contract reports. These include more than 40 refereed papers in high impact factor journals plus two book chapters.

Food security, global and environmental change, together with the requirement for sustainable development are all issues of great importance that face the world today. As an soil physicist and agricultural engineer I am well placed in concert with my colleagues to address many of these problems and find practical solutions that are underpinned by cuttung edge science. My work provides a solid foundation to a better understanding of the effects of agricultural management on sustainable soil function and on practical ways of maintaining soil quality. The provisions of robust measures of soil physical quality combined with accessible advice on soil management are vital components of a sustainable and productive UK and global agriculture.

Although not officially part of my job, I feel a personal responsibility to promote the professional development of Engineers and Scientists working in land based industries.                                                    

Detailed Employment History

2004 – to date. With the closure of Silsoe Research Institute (SRI) the Soil Physics Group was transferred to Rothamsted Research to become part of their Soil Science Department.  I am currently working closely with plant scientists, micro biologists and hydrologists with the aim of identifying and selecting plant genes for particular functions. Specifically, identifying wheat varieties that are best able to cope with drought conditions and associated stronger soils. In addition, we are looking to exploit the genetic diversity in grasses to manage biophysical interactions in grassland soils. I am also looking at the effects of soil management on different aspects of soil structure in particular soil stability and resilience. I am a co-supervisor of BBSRC PhD studentship looking to investigate links between the production of extracellular polymeric substances (EPS) from soil microbial biomass and soil structure. In 2007 I was made a visiting Professor at the Dezhou Experimental Station, Institute of Agricultural Resources and Regional Planning (IARRP), Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences (CAAS). I am also a member of the Farm and Field Experimental Committee (FFEC) at Rothamsted.

 2002 - 2004      Senior Scientific Officer within the Soil Physics Group, SRI. Duties included; planning, and conducting of field and laboratory experiments, analysis of experimental data and subsequent dissemination of results in refereed and technical reports, the development of experimental techniques to measure aspects of soil physical quality, collaboration with others in the preparation of project proposals and the management of technical support staff within the Soil Physics Group. Between 2001 and 2004 I studied for and was awarded a PhD by Cranfield University for a program of research entitled; ‘Interactions between tillage energy, soil structural stability and organic matter’. I was the leading Researcher in a number of BBSRC and Defra projects including: (i) Assessing critical levels of soil organic carbon in surface soils in relation to soil stability, function and infiltration; (ii) Soil stability and resilience: the interplay between  biological and physical recovery from stressand (iii) Assesing the strength and stability of coastal sediments.                                                

1990 – 2002    Higher Scientific Officer in Soil Science Group at Silsoe Research Institute, SRI. Responsible for setting up the soil physics laboratory and initiating a work program to study the effects of different management practices on soil structure. During this period I made significant contributions to the following MAFF projects: (i) Quantifying the effects of cultivations on soil stability and on organic matter (ii) Soil structural stability as affected by straw incorporation practices (iii) Cultivation practices in the UK and their potential impact on the environment (iv) Managed realignment at Tollesbury & Saltram in Essex. BBSRC projects included (i) Physical factors involved in the sequestration of organic matter in soil, (ii) Role of fine particles and of organic matter in aggregate formation and the maintenance of soil structure, and an EU project on Water management for non closed crop production systems.

 1978 -1990      Scientific Officer to the Tractor and Cultivation Department at National Institute of Agricultural Engineering (NIAE), Silsoe. Duties included: Design and development of novel field traffic  and tillage equipment to improve the economy of cultivations (funded by DTI and commercial contracts). I also assisted with long-term field experiments designed to assess the effectiveness of reduced and zero cultivations, zero (wide span) and low ground pressure vehicles and cultivations in the presence of straw. I developed and operated a mobile instrumentation and data processing system (using telemetry) for testing field machinery. This enabled us to win a number of commercial contracts.

Attributes and Achievements

1.         Depth & Breadth of Knowledge

  • The range of publications in high impact factor journals provide a peer reviewed record of technical and scientific knowledge in both soil science and agricultural engineering addressing directly and indirectly important environmental and food security related challenges.
  • I studied for, and was awarded a PhD by Cranfield University for a program of research entitled; ‘Interactions between tillage energy, soil structural stability and organic matter’.

2          Ability to Innovate

  • I was responsible for the design and development of a novel soil driven high speed shallow cultivator, mobile instrumentation and data acquisition system using telemetry for use with tractors and field equipment.
  • I was responsible for specifying the design and developing a mobile rainfall simulator. This enables the effects of rainfall on different soils and different soil management and cropping practices to be compared directly. The rainfall simulator is used for a variety of tasks including: investigating the factors that affect soil stability and crust formation, studies of water infiltration and runoff and looking at the quality of runoff water and flow pathways through the soil.
  • I developed a number of practical laboratory techniques for assessing different aspects of soil quality (turbidimetry to measure mechanically dispersed clay, respirometers to assess the effects of simulated tillage on the mineralisation of organic matter, X-ray sedimentology for assessing the micro-aggregation of clay around various organic substrates).

3          Ability to plan

  • I am involved in the planning of projects from the initial proposal through to delivery of final report. This includes setting timetables and expenditure levels and keeping successful applications to time and within agreed budgets.
  • I am responsible for the design (both physical and statistical) of both field and laboratory experiments.
  • I was responsible for planning and organising the move of the soil physics laboratories from Silsoe to Rothamsted with minimal disruption to the work program.

4          Ability to collaborate with others.

  • I have a record of successful collaborations with a number of universities both in the UK (Cranfield, Cambridge, QMWC London, St. Andrews, Abertay, Aberystwyth, Plymouth and Lancaster) and abroad (CAU Beijing and Keil).
  • I have worked closely with a number of research institutes in the UK (IGER North Wyke, SCRI Dundee, MLURI Aberdeen, CEH) and overseas organisations (IMAG-DLO The Netherlands, FAL Germany, UNITO Turin Italy, IUNG Poland, CAU and CAAS, China).
  • In the past I have had contacts with tractor and implement manufacturers and currently work closely with UK scientific equipment manufacturers (Delta T Devices, Micromeretics, etc).
  • Within Rothamsted I collaborate with plant scientists and soil microbiologists. I also worked with architects and building engineers to specify and plan the new soil physics labs at Rothamsted.

5          Professional reputation

  • I am the author of a number of peer reviewed published scientific papers and have presented numerous papers at national and international conferences. I have been invited to write two book chapters on aspects of soil quality. (see details of all publications below).
  • My work is frequently cited by researchers both nationally and internationally. I have presented my work to government ministers, Defra, agricultural consultants and advisors, farmers and school children
  • I am a member of the Institute of Agricultural Engineers and an active member of their membership committee. I assisted in drafting an environment statement for them. I am a Chartered Environmentalist (CEnv) and Incorporated Engineer (IEng). In 2009 elected Fellow of Institute of Agricultual Engineers. 
  • I am also a member of the British Society of Soil Science (BSSS) and International Soil and Tillage Research Organisation (ISTRO) and am a regular contributor at their conferences.
  • At Rothamsted, I am a member of the Field and Farm Experiments Committee (FFEC) charged with scrutinising all new field experiments and protecting the experimental integrity of the world famous classical experiments while ensuring they maintain their relevance to modern agricultural practices.
  • I have refereed numerous scientific papers and a number of BBSRC research proposals.

6          Achievements

  • I have been instrumental in obtaining with others, a number of competitively won contracts from Defra (MAFF), BBSRC and EU. With limited core funding this provides continuity of employment for me and others at within the Soil Physics Group.
  • I was responsible for the concept, initial design and development of a soil driven, high speed shallow cultivator (subsequently the Bomford DynaDrive). A design capable of working in the presence of large amounts of straw that minimises the energy required for producing a cereal seed bed while maximising potential timeliness benefits. This implement won a RASE silver medal and a Design Council award and has sold in large numbers both in the UK and abroad.
  • I developed a mobile instrumentation system (using telemetry) for assessing the field performance of agricultural machinery. This enabled us to win a number of commercial contracts to evaluate tillage equipment and other field machinery, tractors, controlled traffic and other novel agricultural machinery.  
  • I was responsible for specifying the design and developing a mobile rainfall simulator. This enables the effects of rainfall on different soils, crops and soil management practices to be compared directly. The rainfall simulator is used for a variety of experiments including: investigating the factors that affect soil stability and crust formation, studies of water infiltration and runoff and looking at the quality of runoff water and flow pathways through the soil.
  • I opened up a new area of research (for SRI) in assessing the strength and stability of inter-tidal sediments in particular managed realignment schemes. The application of novel and existing techniques enabled us to quantify a critical shear stress above which erosion occurs and to quantify the minimum sediment shear stress necessary for colonisation by different saltmarsh plant species. I utilised similar techniques to assess traction characteristics (in particular rolling resistance) within paddy fields.
  • I used material science techniques, in particular brittle fracture theory to provide a robust physically based measure of soil friability. This approach allows us to quantify potential benefits that can be gained from maintaining higher levels of organic matter, reducing wheel traffic and identifying the optimum soil water content for particular tillage operations.
  • I developed physically based measures of soil quality enabling us to quantify the effects of tillage of different intensities on soil structural stability and the loss of organic matter. We were then able to identify and quantify the benefits of increased levels of soil organic matter, cultivating the soil only at appropriate water contents and in conjunction with reduced tillage intensity (energy). These techniques provide a practical approach to maintaining soil physical quality.
  • I designed and built a set of data-logging, conductimetric soil respirometers to measure the effect that mechanical energy (similar in magnitude to that of tillage) had on the mineralization of organic matter (characterised by measuring soil CO2 emissions). The results of this work indicate that organic matter, physically protected by stable soil structures, can be exposed to mineralization when the soil structure is destabilized during tillage particularly when the soil is wetter than its plastic limit.
Phone:
+44 (0) 1582 763 133 ext: +44 1582 938498
Location:
Rothamsted Research, West Common, Harpenden, Hertfordshire, AL5 2JQ
Past Projects
Member
  • Bio-physics of the soil-root interface
  • BBSRC Studentship: Investigating the link between the production of extracellular polymeric substances from soil microbial biomass & soil structure
  • Non-invasive acoustic-seismic sensing of soils
  • Improvement of soil structure and crop yield by adding organic matter to soil
  • Improving yield through management of soil organisms under cropping
  • Managing soil physical properties to maximise wheat yield
Dr Christopher William Watts Publications

Peer Reviewed Scientific Papers

  1. Macleod, CJA, Humphreys, MW; Whalley, WR; Turner, L; Binley, A; Watts, CW; Skot, L; Joynes, A; Hawkins, S; King, IP; O'Donovan, S; Haygarth, PM (Haygarth. 2013. A novel grass hybrid to reduce flood generation in temperate regions. Scientific Reports. 3: Article 1683. DOI:10.1038/srep01683
  2. Whalley, W.R.; Dodd, I.C.; Watts, C.W.; Webster, C.P.; Phillips, A.L.; Andralojc, J.; White, R.P.; Davies, W.J.; Parry, M.A.J. 2013. Genotypic variation in the ability of wheat roots to penetrate wax layers. Plant & Soil. 364: 171-179
  3. Shin, H.-C.; Taherzadeh , S.; Attenborough , K.; Whalley, W.R.;  Watts, C.W. 2013. Non-invasive characterization of pore-related and elastic properties of soils in linear Biot-Stoll theory using acoustic-to-seismic coupling. European Journal of Soil Science 1-16.(on line doi: 10.1111/ejss.12000)
  4. Robinson D.A.; N. Hockley, N; Cooper, D.;  Emmett, B.A.; Keith, A.M.; Lebron, I.; Reynolds, B.; Tipping, E.; Tye, A.M.; Watts, C.W.; Whalley, W.R.; Black, H.I.J.; Warren, G.P.; Robinson. J.S. 2013 Review: Natural capital and ecosystem services, developing an appropriate soils framework as a basis for valuation. Soil Biology & Biochemistry 57:1023-1033.
  5. Gao, W.; Watts, C.W., Ren, T.; Whalley, W.R. 2012. The effects of compaction and soil drying on penetrometer resistance. Soil & Tillage Research 125: 14-22.
  6. Gregory, A.S.; Bird, N.R.A; Watts, C.W.; Whitmore, A.P.; 2012. An assessment of a new model of fragmentation of soil with test data. Soil & Tillage Research 120: 61-68.
  7. Gao, W.; Ren, T.; Bengough, A.G.; Auneau, L.; Watts, C.W.; Whalley, W.R. 2012. Predicting penetrometer resistance from the compression characteristics of soil. Soil Science Society America Journal 76 (2): 361-369.
  8. Markagraf, W.; Watts, C.W.; Whalley, W.R.; Hrkak, T; Horn, R. 2012. Influence of organic matter on the rheological properties of soil. Applied Clay Science 64: 25-33.
  9. Whitmore, A.P.; Whalley, W.R.; Bird, N.R.A; Watts, C.W; Gregory, A.S. 2011. Estimating soil strength in the rooting zone of wheat. Plant and Soil, 339: 363-375
  10. Dodd, I.C.; Egea, G.; Watts, C.W.; Whalley, W.R. 2010. Root water potential integrates discrete soil physical properties to influence ABA signaling during partial root-zone drying. Journal Experimental Botany 61: 3543-3551.
  11. Gregory, A.S.,Webster, C.P.,  Watts, C.W., Whalley WR 2010. Soil management and grass species effects on the hydraulic properties of shrinking soils.Soil Science Society America Journal 74: 753-761.
  12. Gregory, A.S., Watts, C.W., Whalley WR, Kuan, H.L., Griffiths, B.S., Hallett, P.J., Whitmore, A.P. 2009. The effect of long-term soil management on the physical and biological resilience of arable and grassland soils in England. Geoderma. 153: 172-185.
  13. Bird, N.R.A., Watts, C.W., Tarquis, A.M., Whitmore, A.P. 2009. Modeling dynamic fragmentation of soil. Vadose Zone Journal. 8: 197-201.
  14. Matthews, G.P., Watts, C.W., Powlson, D.S., Price, J.C. & Whalley W.R.  2008. Wetting of agricultural soils measured by a simplified capillary rise technique. European Journal of Soil Science. 59: 817-823.
  15. Tolhurst, T.J., Watts, C.W., Vardy, S., Saunders, J.E., Consalvey, M.C. & Paterson, D.M. 2008. The effects of simulated rain on the erosion threshold and biogeochemical properties of intertidal sediments. Continental Shelf Research, 28: 1217-1230.
  16. Griffiths, B.S., Hallett, P.J., Kuan, H.L., Gregory, A.S., Watts, C.W., Whitmore, A.P. 2008. Functional resilience of soil microbial communities depends on both soil structure and microbial community composition. Biology & Fertility Soils. 44: 745-754
  17. Whalley, W.R., Watts, C.W., Gregory, A.S., Mooney, S.J., Clark, L.J. & Whitmore, A.P. 2008. The effect of soil strength on the yield of wheat. Plant & Soil. 306: 237-247.
  18. Gregory, A.S., Watts, C.W., Whalley WR, Kuan, H.L., Griffiths , B.S., Hallett, P.J.,  Whitmore, A.P. 2007. Physical resilience of soil to field compaction and the interactions with plant growth and microbial community structure.  European Journal of Soil Science: 58, 1221-1232  
  19. Kuan, H.L., Hallett, P.J., Griffiths , B.S., Gregory, A.S., Watts , C.W., Whitmore, A.P. 2007. The biological and physical resilience of a selection of Scottish soils to stresses. European Journal of Soil Science. 58: 811-821.
  20. Whalley, W.R., Clark, L.J., Take, W.J., Bird, N.R.A., Leech, P.K. & Watts, C.W. 2007. A porous-matrix sensor to measure the matric potential of soil water in the field. European Journal of Soil Science. 58, 18-25.
  21. Watts, C.W., Clark, L.J., Poulton, P.R., Powlson, D.S., Whitmore, A.P. 2006. The role of clay, organic carbon and long-term management on mouldboard plough draught measured on the Broadbalk Wheat Experiment at Rothamsted. Soil Use & Management 22: 334-341.
  22. Tolhurst, T.J., Friend, P.L., Watts, C.W., Black, K.S., Paterson, D.M. 2006. The effect of rain on the erosion threshold of inter-tidal cohesive sediments. Aquatic Ecology 40: 533-541.
  23. Whalley, W.R., Clark, L.J., Take, W.A, Bird, N.R.A., Leech, P.K., Cope, R.E. and Watts C.W. 2006. A porous-matrix sensor to measure the matric potential of soil water in the field. European Journal of Soil Science. 58: 18-25.
  24. Gregory, A.S., Whalley, W.R., Watts, C.W., Bird, N.R.A., Hallett, P.D. and Whitmore, A.P. 2006. Calculation of the compression index and the pre-compression stress from soil compression test data. Soil and Tillage Research. 89: 45-57
  25. Watts, C. W., Clark, L.J., Chamen, W.C.T. & Whitmore, A.P. 2005. Adverse effects of simulated harvesting of short-rotation willow and poplar coppice on vertical pressures and rut depths. Soil & Tillage Research, 84, 192-199.
  26. Watts, C.W., Whalley, W.R., Whitmore, A.P., Brookes, P.C. Devonshire.  B.J.  2005. Biological and physical processes that mediate micro-aggregation of clays: experiments with a model system. Soil Science, 170, 573-583.
  27. Watts, C.W, Tolhurst, T.J., Black, K.S. and Whitmore, A.P. 2003. In-situ Measurements of Erosion Shear Stress and Geotechnical Shear Strength of the Intertidal Sediments of the Experimental Managed Realignment Scheme at Tollesbury in Essex, UK. Estuarine and Coastal Shelf Science. 58: 611-620.
  28. Whalley, W.R., Watts, C.W., Hilhorst, M.A., Bird, N.R.A., Balendonck, J. & Longstaff, D.J. 2001. The design of porous material sensors to measure the matric potential of water in soil. European Journal of Soil Science, 52, 511-519.
  29. Watts C.W., Whalley W.R., Longstaff D.J., White R.P., Brookes P.C. & Whitmore A.P. (2001) Aggregation of a soil with different cropping histories following the addition of organic materials. Soil Use and Management 17:263-268.
  30. Otten, W., Watts, C.W., Whalley; W.R., Longstaff, D.J. 2000. Short-term dynamics in carbon dioxide emission following controlled soil deformation. Soil Science Society of America Journal, 64, 1740-1748
  31. Watts C.W., Whalley W.R., Bird N.R.A.& Ashman M.R. 2000. The effect of iron concentration, hindered settling, saturating cation and aggregate density on the size distribution determined by X-ray sedimentometry. European Journal of Soil Science 52: 305-311.
  32. Watts, C.W., Eich, S., Dexter, A.R.  2000. Effects of mechanical energy inputs on soil respiration at the aggregate and field scales.  Soil and Tillage Research, 53, 231-243.
  33. Otten, W., Gilligan, C.A., Watts, C.W. Dexter, A.R., Hall, D. 1999. Continuity of air-filled pores and invasion thresholds for a soil-borne fungal pathagon. Rhizoctonia solaniSoil Biology and Biochemistry. 31. 1803-1810.
  34. Watts, C.W. & Dexter, A.R. 1998. Soil friability: theory, measurement and the effects of management and organic carbon content. European Journal of Soil Science: 49, 73-84.
  35. Rautaray, S.K., Watts, C.W., Dexter, A.R. 1997. Puddling effects on soil physical parameters. Agricultural Mechanisation in Asia, Africa & Latin America, 28, (3) 37-40.
  36. Watts, C.W., Dexter, A.R. 1997. The influence of organic matter in reducing the destabilization of soil by simulated tillage.  Soil and Tillage Research, 42, 253-275.
  37. Watts, C.W., Dexter, A.R., Dumitru, E., Arvidsson, J.  1996. An assessment of the vulnerability of soil structure to destabilization during tillage.  Part I.  A laboratory test.  Soil and Tillage Research, 37, 161-174.
  38. Watts, C.W., Dexter, A.R., Longstaff, D.J. 1996. An assessment of the vulnerability of soil structure to destabilization during tillage.  Part II.  Field trials.  Soil and Tillage Research, 37, 175-190.
  39. Watts, C.W., Dexter, A.R., Dumitru, E., Canarachie, A.  1996. Structural stability of two Romanian soils as affected by management practices.  Land Degradation and Development, 7, 217-238.
  40. Grant, C.D. Watts, C.W., Dexter, A.R., Frahns, B.S. 1995. An analysis of the fragmentation of remoulded soils, with regard to self-mulching behavior. Australian Journal of Soil Research, 33, 569-583.
  41. Watts, C.W., Dexter, A.R. 1994 Traffic and seasonal influences on the energy requirement for tillage and subsequent tilth. Soil and Tillage Research, 31, 303-322.
  42. Watts, C.W., Dexter, A.R. 1993. A hand-held instrument for the in-situ measurement of soil shear-strength in the puddled layer of paddy fields. Journal of Agricultural Engineering Research, 54, 329-337.
  43. Dexter, A.R., Watts, C.W. 1992. The effects of weather on soil strength. Hommes, Terre & Eaux., 22, 15-25.
  44. Chamen, W.C.T., Watts, C.W., Leede, P.R., Longstaff, D.J. 1992. Assessment of a wide span vehicle (gantry) and soil and cereal crop responses to its use in a zero-traffic regime.  Soil and Tillage Research, 24, 359-380
  45. Watts, C.W., Longstaff, D.J. 1989. Mobile instrumentation and data-processing system for testing field machinery. Journal of Agricultural Engineering Research, 43, 67-76.
  46. Watts, C.W., Patterson, D.E. 1984. The development and assessment of high-speed shallow cultivation equipment for cereals. Journal of Agricultural Engineering Research, 29, 115-122.

 Book Chapters

  1. Dexter, A.R. & Watts, C.W. 2000. Tensile strength and friability. In: Soil and Environmental Analysis: Physical methods. 2nd. Edn. (Eds. Smith, K.A. & Mullins, C.E.) Marcel Dekker. New York. pp 405-435
  2. Watts, C.W., Hallett, P.D., Dexter, A.R.  (1999). The effects of mechanical stresses and strains on soil respiration.  In: The effect of Mineral-Organic-Microorganism Interactions on Soil and Freshwater Environments, (Eds. Berthelin, J. Huang, P.M., Bollag, J.M. and Andreux, F.) Plenum Publishing. 305-316.

PhD Thesis.

 Watts, C.W. (2004). Interactions between tillage energy, soil structural stability and organic matter, PhD Thesis, National Soil Resources Institute, Cranfield University, UK.

Recent conference papers & presentations

Whalley, W.R.  Watts, C.W.;  Jenkins, R;  Attenborough, K. 2010. Non-invasive acoustic-seismic sensing of soils: predicting effective stress in saturated soils. ASA Long Beach CA. November 2010.

Jenkins, R; Goodchild, M; Whalley, W.R.; Watts, C.W. 2010. Use of a dielectric tensiometer and other soil moisture sensors to measure soil drying by roots of wheat. ASA Long Beach CA. November 2010.

WATTS, C.W. (2009) Carbon and its effect on soil tillage and workability. Joint Home Grown Cereals Authority (HGCA) / Rothamsted Research Association (RRA) workshop. Kenilworth, November 5th 2009.

WATTS, C.W. (2009) Soil strength and its influence on crop growth and tillage. UK China Workshop on Soils for Sustainable Agriculture, Beijing, China. 13-17 October 2009

WATTS, C.W. (2009) Aspects of soil strength and stability. Workshop on Soil quality processes. Workshop funded by UK Brazil Partnership in Science and Innovation. Rio, 22-27 March 2009.

MARKGRAF, W, HORN R, WATTS, CW, WHALLEY, WR (2009) Rheology: Structural Processes in Micromechanics – Classifying Stiffness Degradation. Proceedings, 18th I.S.T.R.O. Congress 15th-19th June, Izmir, Turkey

McLeod, CJA, Watts, CW, Webster, CP, Whalley, WR et al. (2009). Linking plant biology and soil physics to understand hill slope hydrology. European Geophysical Union, Vienna, 19-24 April

Watts, C.W. 2008. Crop responses to drying in shrinking and non-shrinking soils (Some effect of soil strength on wheat yield). To members of the Soil and Water Technical Group, IAgrE & Soc Env., at Unilever's R&D Colworth facility at Sharnbrook, Beds. 10th March 2008

Watts, C.W. 2008 Soil strength and stability of soils and sediments of a managed realignment site at Tollesbury, Essex. Defra, Flood Management Division, London 17th March 2008.

 Gregory, A.S.,  Watts, C.W.,  Whitmore, A.P.,Griffiths, B.S., Hallett, P.D.,  Kuan H.L. (2008) Is soil organic matter the link between soil management and soil resilience in agricultural soils in England? Eurosoil 2008. 25-29 August. Vienna, Austria.

Watts, C.W. (2007). Tensile Strength and Friability. A special paper prepared for the members of China National Soil Fertility and Fertilizer Efficiency  Long-Term  Monitoring  Network (October 2007).

Watts, C.W. Whalley, W.R. Clark L.J. & Whitmore A.P. (2006).Crop responses to drying in shrinking and non-shrinking soils. 17th International Soil Tillage Research Organisation, Kiel, Germany 28th August-3rd September. pp152.

Hallett, P.C., Kuan, H., Watts, C.W., Griffiths, B.S., WHitmore, A.P. Gregory, A.S. (2006). Interactions between physical and biological resilience of soil. 17th International Soil Tillage Research Organisation, Kiel, Germany 28th August-3rd September. p50.

WATTS, C.W. (2006). Interactions between tillage energy, soil structure and organic matter. Rothamsted Research Day, 5th November 2006.

Kuan, H.L., Griffiths, B.S.,  Hallett, P.D.,  Gregory, A.S.,  Watts, C.W.,  Whitmore A. P. (2004) The interplay between soil physical and biological resilience for the functional monitoring of soil. Eurosoil 2004. 4th-12th September, Freiburg, Germany.

Hallett, P.R., Griffiths, B.S., Kuan, H.L., Pitkin, Y. Watts, C.W. & Whitmore, A.P. 2004. The interplay between soil physical and biological resilience for the functional monitoring of soil. Eurosoil 4-12 September, p410.

Tolhurst T,J., Friend, P.L., Watts C.W., Wakefield R., Black K.S., Paterson D.M. (2004). The effects of rain on the erosion threshold of intertidal cohesive sediments. Aquatic Ecology

Whitmore, A.P., Watts, C.W Clarke, M.  Rickson. J. (2004). Critical levels of soil organic carbon in surface soils in relation to soil stability function and infiltration Eurosoil 4-12 September 2004, p19

Hallett, P.R., Griffiths, B.S., Kuan, H.L., Pitkin, Y. Watts, C.W. & Whitmore, A.P. (2003). Soil stability and resilience: the interplay between physical and biological recovery from stress. International Workshop on Soil Physical Quality. Pulawy, Poland, 2-4 October, 2003

WATTS, C.W.; DEXTER, A.R.; ARVIDSSON, J., CZYZ, E.A. (2000). The effects of simulated tillage and soil factors on soil respiration. Proceedings 15th ISTRO-2000, Fort Worth, TX. July 1-7, 2000

WATTS, C.W. & DEXTER, A.R. (1997) Intensity of tillage of wet soil and effects on soil structural condition. Proceedings 14th. I.S.T.R.O. Conference July 27- Aug. 1, Pulawy, Poland

Technical & Contract Reports

WATTS, C.W. (2009) Interactions between tillage energy, soil structure and organic matter. Rothamsted Research Association (RRA) Newsletter Issue 28. June 2009.

Bromilow R.H., Karp A., Riche A., Richter G., Watts C.W., Whitmore A.P., Finch J.W. & Robinson M. (2007). The benefits and negative impacts of biomass crops on resource protection. Report prepared for the environment agency 10th July 2007.

Reading, C.J. Watts, C.W. Garbutt, R.A. Saunders, J. & Wolters, M. (2004). Managed realignment at Tollesbury. CEH Project C 00356 Contract Report 2003-2004.

Reading, C.J., Gray, A.J., Paramor, O.A.L., Garbutt, R. A., Watts, C.W., Spearman, J.R., Barratt, D.R., Chesher, T., Cox, R., Hughs, R.G., Mann, J.L., Myhill, D.G., Rothery, P, Semmence, J. Wolters, M., (2002). Managed realignment at Tollesbury and Saltram. Final Report. Defra/NERC contract. FD 1101. Defra, London.

Watts, C.W. (2002). Changes in strength and stability of managed realignment soils and sediments. In: Managed Realignment at Tollesbury and Saltram: Report 1998-2002 (Ed. Gray, A.J.). CEH Report to Defra, April 2002

WATTS. C.W., LONGSTAFF, D.J. (1999). Soil Strength and Stability of the managed realignment at Tollesbury. Part IV. Summary of measurements made during 1998/99 period. In: Managed Realignment at Tollesbury and Saltram. (Eds C.J. Reading et al.). NERC Institute of Terrestrial Ecology, Furzebrook Research Station, Wareham, Dorset. March 1999.

WATTS. C.W. (1998). Further analysis of cultivation practices. Contract Report, CR/878/98/0245. Silsoe Research Institute, Silsoe. August 1998.

WATTS. C.W., LONGSTAFF, D.J. (1998). Soil Strength and Stability of the managed realignment at Tollesbury. Part III. Summary of measurements made during 1997/98 period. Contract Report, C.R/840/98/1874. Silsoe Research Institute, Silsoe. March 1998.

WATTS, C.W., DEXTER, A.R., LONGSTAFF, D.J. (1997). Post-inundation characteristics of soil physical and chemical parameters on the Tollesbury experimental set-back site (August 1995 - June 1996). Contract Report, CR/737/96/1326. Silsoe Research Institute, Silsoe. February 1997

WATTS, C.W., (1996). The crushing strength and particle size distributions of a range of fertiliser materials Contract Report, CR/724/96/1625. Silsoe Research Institute, Silsoe. August 1996.

WATTS, C.W., (1996). The crushing strength and particle size distributions of a range of fertiliser materials Contract Report, CR/732/96/1644. Silsoe Research Institute, Silsoe. September 1996.

WATTS, C.W., COPE, R.E., DEXTER, A.R. (1996). Harvesting and ploughing of crops at various stages of growth. Contract Report, CR/718/96/1599. Silsoe Research Institute, Silsoe. May 1996.

WATTS, C.W., LONGSTAFF, D.J., CHAMEN, W.C.T., DEXTER, A.R. (1995). Measurements of soil compaction on two sites of short-rotation coppice. Contract Report, CR/650/95/1445. Silsoe Research Institute, Silsoe. April 1995.

WATTS, C.W., DEXTER, A.R., CHAMEN, W.C.T., LONGSTAFF, D.J. (1995). Pre-inundation characterisation of soil physical and chemical parameters on the Tollesbury experimental set-back site. Contract Report, CR/643/95/1326. Silsoe Research Institute, Silsoe. November 1995. 

WATTS, C.W., DEXTER, A.R. (1994). Macro structure of tilled soil as determined by image analysis of sections: Boot Field 1993. Divisional Note DN 1704. Silsoe Research Institute, Silsoe. February 1994.

WATTS, C.W., DEXTER, A.R. (1994). Size distribution of ten different granular fertilizer samples. Contract Report, CR/594/95/1308. Silsoe Research Institute, Silsoe. April 1994.

WATTS, C.W. (1993). Soil particle size analysis Divisional Note DN 1653. Silsoe Research Institute, Silsoe. October 1993.

DEXTER, A.R. WATTS, C.W. (1991). Structure of beds of glass beads with loose random packing. Divisional Note DN1593. Silsoe Research Institute, Silsoe. October 1993.

WATTS, C.W. (1990), The construction and operation of an oedometer to determine the standard bulk density of agricultural soils. Divisional Note 1579. AFRC Institute of Engineering Research, Silsoe. August 1990

CHAMEN, W.C.T., WATTS, C.W., LEEDE, P.C., LONGSTAFF, D.J. (1990). Development and assessment of a wide span tractor (gantry) for arable crops. Divisional Note DN 1587. AFRC Institute of Engineering Research, Silsoe. November 1990.

WATTS, C.W. (1989), A review of direct and indirect losses in grassland as a result of machinery traffic Divisional Note DN 1510. AFRC Institute of Engineering Research, Silsoe. March 1989.

CHITTEY, E., PATTERSON, D.E., CHAMEN, W.C.T., WATTS, C.W. LONGSTAFF, D.J. (1988). Cultivation systems for straw incorporation on clay soils (1984-1986). Divisional Note DN1450. AFRC Institute of Engineering Research, Silsoe. February 198McMULLAN, T.A.G., WATTS, C.W. (1987). Tractor front linkage requirements for primary cultivation tasks. Industry Tractor Development Contract (Phase 3) Report No 2. AFRC Institute of Engineering Research, Silsoe.  November 1987.

McMULLAN, T.A.G., WATTS, C.W., LONGSTAFF, D.J. SMITH, R.A., WILKIN, A.L. (1987). Experimental equipment to test and measure the performance of tractor front mounted implements. AFRC Institute of Engineering Research, Silsoe. Industry Tractor Development Contract (Phase 3) Report No 3. AFRC Institute of Engineering Research, Silsoe. November 1987.

McMULLAN, T.A.G., WATTS, C.W., LONGSTAFF, D.J. (1987). The Results of field experiments with a novel tractor front hitch. Industry Tractor Development Contract (Phase 3) Report No 4. AFRC Institute of Engineering Research, Silsoe. November 1987.

WATTS, C.W. LONGSTAFF, D.J. 1986. Field evaluation of a Ransomes oscillating tine subsoiler. Contract Report. CR/219/86/8453. National Institute of Agricultural Engineering, Silsoe, November (1986).

SEWARD, P.C., WATTS, C.W., LONGSTAFF, D.J. (1986). Field evaluation of the Yoke powered tool carrier. Contract Report, CR/214/86/8441. AFRC Institute of Engineering Research, Silsoe. October 1986.

WATTS, C.W. LONGSTAFF, D.J. (1986). Draught capacity of a Sissis Hydrotrac 55, municipal tractor. Contract Report. CR/219/86/8486. National Institute of Agricultural Engineering, Silsoe, November 1986

WATTS, C.W. LONGSTAFF, D.J. (1985). Field evaluation of a Bomford Earthquake subsoiler. Contract Report. CR/145/85/8288. National Institute of Agricultural Engineering, Silsoe, March 1985

WATTS, C.W. LONGSTAFF, D.J. (1985). Field assessment of the Parmiter Strawgone: (1984-1985). Contract Report. National Institute of Agricultural Engineering, Silsoe, CR/165/85/1204. March 1985.

WATTS, C.W. LONGSTAFF, D.J. (1985). Field measurements of a three-furrow reversible-plough. Contract Report. CR/159/85/8350. National Institute of Agricultural Engineering, Silsoe, October 1985

WATTS, C.W. LONGSTAFF, D.J. (1984) Field assessment of Kverneland M series cultivator. Contract Report. CR/129/84/8210. National Institute of Agricultural Engineering, Silsoe, September 1984.

WATTS, C.W. LONGSTAFF, D.J. (1983) Development of a shallow slant-leg cultivator. (1982-1983) Contract Report. CR/103/83/8224. National Institute of Agricultural Engineering, Silsoe, November 1983.

WATTS, C.W. LONGSTAFF, D.J. (1983). Dyna Drivecereal-drill; Field trials. Contract Report. CR/102/83/8239. National Institute of Agricultural Engineering, Silsoe, October 1983.

WATTS, C.W., LONGSTAFF, D.J. (1982), Development of a twin-rotor shallow cultivator. Contract Report. CR/51/82/8208180. National Institute of Agricultural Engineering, Silsoe

WATTS, C.W. LONGSTAFF, D.J. (1982). A light-weight slurry injector. Contract Report. CR/52/8200/0090. National Institute of Agricultural Engineering, Silsoe, July 1982. 

STAFFORD, J.V. WATTS, C.W., CHANDLER, H.W. (1982). Self-propelled cultivators: A feasibility study, Part 1. Dept. Note DN/CU/1000/1135. National Institute of Agricultural Engineering, Silsoe, September 1982.

COLLINS, T.S., WATTS, C.W. (1980). Methods of improving the performance of cereal drills. Dept. Note DN/CU/1000/01008. National Institute of Agricultural Engineering, Silsoe, March 1980.

Qualifications

2003:

PhD in Interactions between tillage energy, soil structural stability and organic matter (Cranfield University)

1978:

BSc in Agricultural Engineering (Cranfield University)

Measures of esteem

2013

  • IAgrE: Member of Council of IAgrE

2012

  • IAgrE: Member of Council IAgrE

2010

  • Brazil UK Soil Workshop: Key Note Speaker: Ways to maintain and improve soil structure: Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

2009

  • UK-Brazil Soil Quality Workshop: Invited lecture: Aspects of soil strength and stability in relation to soil management.: Rio Di Janeiro, Brazil. March 2009
  • IAgrE: Course accreditation Committee of IAgrE Accreditation of MSc Soil Management course and Land Restoration and Rehabilitation course at Cranfield University
  • China-UK workshop on soils for sustainable agricul: Invited Lecture: Soil strength and its influence on crop growth and tillage: Beijing, October 2009.
  • FIAgrE: Fellow of Institute of Agricultural Engineers FIAgrE

2007

  • Visiting professor: Visiting Professor Dezhou Exp. Station, Institute of Agricultural Resources and Regional Planning (IARRP), Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences (CAAS).

2004

  • Merrit Award: Silsoe Research Institute
  • CEnv: Chartered Environmentalist
  • IAgrE: Membership Committee of IAgrE

1984

  • MIAgrE: Member of the Institute of Agricultural Engineers
  • IEng: Incorperated Engineer