Urban clusters impact on regional Air pollution and climate and generic visualisation software for satellite data applications

Research Activities

The research part of the Project will combine: (i) ground-based measurements of key compound species at and near Beijing region and several cities in China for satellite validation (ii) satellite retrieved column abundances of aerosols, NO2 and SO2 (from MODIS Terra and Aqua, GOME-2 and SCIAMACHY satellite sensors) in order to gain insight in anthropogenic and natural emissions of air pollutants over China and (iii) Total cloud cover, cloud droplet effective radius, cloud top-level pressure satellite data combined with data from (ii) above to study the effects of air pollution on climate.


Satellite observations from SCIAMACHY, validated using ground observations in several cities in China, will be used to study the temporal and spatial evolution of NO2 and SO2 over China and improve our understanding of the creation, the actual levels, the transport and the dispersion of SO2 and NO2 and channel future scientific efforts in novel ways. In addition, NOx emissions, derived from satellite observations, will be validated using ground observations in several cities in China.


To study the effect of aerosols on the climate, several studies will be conducted to gain understanding of the distribution of aerosols in time and space, including the temporal variability and the vertical distribution. Aerosol data retrieved from satellites (e.g. MODIS Terra and MODIS Aqua), will be validated with the Chinese AERONET-like aerosol network. From CALIPSO satellite data on aerosol vertical distribution a climatology (4-year, 1x1 degree) will be derived over China focused on Asian dust aerosol type.


Specific knowledge on aerosols in China from ground-based in situ and remote sensing measurements will be used together with Total Cloud Cover (TCC) and other cloud data from MODIS Terra, MODIS Aqua and ISCCP (International Satellite Cloud Climatology Project) to determine aerosol effects on climate in China, including contributions from natural and anthropogenic origin.