Geological cartography

Geological maps display a multitude of geologically relevant information in a concise manner. They are an important basis for geotechnical and environmental decisions. .

Excerpt from the Geological Atlas of Switzerland, Nesslau sheet
Map excerpt from the Geological Atlas of Switzerland 1:25,000 (GA25), Nesslau sheet
© swisstopo

Summary

A geological map provides information on the topmost rock layers of the Earth’s crust. The geological formations are assessed according to their:

  • material composition (Lithology)
  • age sequence (Stratigraphy)
  • development (Tectonics)

The geological formations are recorded with different graphical elements (symbols, shapes and colors) on a topographical foundation. Today there are geological maps in printed format and digitally as pixel or vector data sets.

Most of the geological maps in Switzerland are recorded and published by the Swiss Geological Survey in collaboration with universities, commissions and private bureaus. The geological national survey also has at its disposal many unpublished master mapping and out of print special geological maps.

Excerpt from the Geological Atlas of Switzerland, Les Mosses sheet
Map excerpt from the Geological Atlas of Switzerland 1:25 000 (GA25), Les Mosses sheet

Data capture software ToolMap

Geological maps can be directly recorded into a geographical information system (GIS). For this purpose the Swiss Geological Survey, in collaboration with the Centre de recherche en environnement alpin (Crealp), has developed the data capture software ToolMap. It is specifically targeted at the needs of geological maps.

Free download ToolMap

Excerpt from the vector dataset of the Les Mosses sheet
Excerpt from the vector dataset of the Les Mosses sheet
© swisstopo

The "National Geological Mapping and Raw Materials" group of the Swiss Geological Survey is gladly at your disposal for answering questions or for additional tools used to create geological maps.
See link below.

Attribute table for the vector dataset of the Les Mosses sheet
Excerpt from the attribute table for the vector dataset of the Les Mosses sheet
© swisstopo

Who is who

The Swiss Geological Survey has an extensive knowledge and a lot of experience in the fields of geological mapping, geological cartography and stratigraphy, as well as a good network in the practice, research and in commissions on geology in Switzerland and neighboring countries.

We are happy to assist you or help you search for the right contact.

Data

The Swiss Geological Survey and other institutions from the earth sciences sphere provide experts and interested parties with extensive material and data.

The Geological Dataviewer  of Switzerland provides visual access to the data of the Swiss Geological Survey and other institutions in the field of earth sciences. It displays map series, maps and data sets or their availability. For professionals and all interested parties, the Geological Data Viewer serves as a tool for preliminary investigations of geological projects or as a reference work. Geological data can be searched in a user friendly manner by title, author, coordinates or postal code. The data can be studied in the viewer and the extracted portioned printed out. 

Orders via toposhop

You can order geological maps and data from the Swiss Geological Survey directly via swisstopo Onlineshop  bestellen. In the Publications Catalogue you will find the addresses through which you can obtain additional geological data.

Geological information: printed or digital

Here you will find geological information in printed and digital formats:
Basic data


Revision service

Swisstopo has a revision service at their disposal. With this, you can easily and precisely report your georeferenced corrections for maps. Revision service swisstopo

Special requests

Please send special requests regarding unpublished master maps or special formats directly to infogeol@swisstopo.ch.


Fundamentals of Geology

Andreas Möri Dr. phil. nat., Geologist
Head of Geological Mapping
swisstopo / Swiss Geological Survey
Seftigenstrasse 264
P.O. Box
3084 Wabern
Tel.
+41 58 469 05 72

E-Mail


Print contact

Andreas Möri

Dr. phil. nat., Geologist
Head of Geological Mapping
swisstopo / Swiss Geological Survey
Seftigenstrasse 264
P.O. Box
3084 Wabern

Show map

Geological Vector Datasets GeoCover

Geological Atlas of Switzerland 1:25000

Geological Map of Switzerland 1:500000