Aesosols and COVID-19: Panel Discussion during the European Aerosol Conference 2020
The only presence event during the European Aerosol Conference 2020 was a public panel discussion on "Aerosols and COVID-19" in Aachen on September 3, 2020. The possible transmission of the virus via aerosol particles, effectiveness of oronasal masks and consequences for the management of indoor air quality were explained and discussed. A recording is now available online, the video can be downloaded here. Prof. Klemm took part in the panel discussion.
Practical Course Biosphere/Atmosphere Exchange
The master course for learning the eddy-covariance method was successfully completed in the summer semester despite restrictions due to the current pandemic. At our station "Steinfurter Straße" exchange of CO2 and H2O was measured. Special attention was paid to the quantification of the Leaf Area Index (LAI). Here you can find the final report of the students.
COVID19 crisis: particle measurements in Münster
Due to the contact restrictions currently ordered by the state government, a reduction of emissions of all kinds has been observed in many places, which we also expect for Münster. For this reason, the Climatology Research Group has decided to measure aerosol particles with a high temporal frequency in Münster at times of the COVID19 crisis using a cargo bicycle. The cargo bicycle is equipped with several measuring instruments. Thereby, we ride 2 routes directly after each other. The first one on busy roads with typically high traffic volume near the promenade, the second one on the promenade itself.
In October and November 2019 a study project rode the same routes with the same cargo bicycle.
We are very excited about the results!
Face masks very efficient!
Today, we tested the filter efficiency of the fabric of a very simple face mask by using our cargo bicycle platform. As expected, the fabric filtered out over 99 % of the aerosol particles of diameters > 3 nm. Therefore, the cloth is an efficient protector of the person wearing the mask, as long as the breathing air passes through the mask material. Problems do arise when air sneaks around the mask.
Welcome to our Team
We are happy to welcome Dr. Jennifer Sobiech-Wolf to our Team.
Congratulations for your PhD defense, Falk Maneke
On 16 December, 2020, Falk Maneke-Fiegenbaum defended his thesis and finished his PhD. Congratulations from all of us!
Congratulations for your PhD defense, Carsten Schaller!
On 21 October, Carsten Schaller defended his thesis and finished his PhD. Congratulations from all of us!
Fog measurements in Taiwan
Bettina Breuer, Maiken Baumberger and Leonie Bronkalla measure fog in July and August 2019 in Taiwan. The measurements take place above the coniferous forest in Xitou (Experimental Forest, National Taiwan University).
The setup includes a caltech active fog collector which takes fog water samples with a temporary high frequency. After fieldwork the samples will be analyzed in a laboratory on ion composition.
Moreover, the fog droplet size distribution is measured by spectrometers for drops and diffuse light aerosol. Through a combination of both devices a further size spectrum of fog droplets can now be recorded for the first time. Evaluating all the data the researchers are supposed to establish the flux of fog drops sorted by their size.
Excursion to Taiwan 2019
For the third time students of the courses geography and landscape ecology make an excursion to the island of Taiwan. It is organized by Prof. Dr. Otto Klemm, who has travelled Taiwan several times for research purposes. The 16 students get in touch with the flood management of Taipeh and visit the measuring site for fog in the forest of Xitou, which is currently run by students of the University of Münster. In the astronomic observatory on top of Mount Lulin, they watch the change of the atmospheric boundary layer with increasing solar radiation.
Besides meteorological aspects, the students gain an insight in Taiwanese culture. They visit a teahouse, try local fruit and enjoy the Asian cuisine.
The students are documenting their trip in a Blog. Every day they publish new stories and pictures.
Interested? Follow this link to the Blog.
Instrument shelter – built by carpenters of WWU
A videoproduction describes the apprenticeship of a carpenter at the University of Münster. The video also shows the instrument shelters, built for the Climatology Working Group. Have a look!
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=92F3wMsGhVE (Sorry, unfortunately it's in German)
GfÖ Annual Meeting in Münster
From September 9th to 13th, 2019, the Ecological Society (Gesellschaft für Ökologie) will organize its 49th Annual Meeting in Münster.
The Climatology working group will organize two meetings concerning “Urban Air Pollution”, hosted by Prof. Dr. Andreas Held, Prof. Dr. Otto Klemm and Dr. Bastian Paas.
We invite scientists experienced in environmental meteorology and air pollution control that focus on topics like atmospheric chemistry, biometeorology, pollutant dispersion, and health effects within urban landscapes.
Topics will be different approaches to assess urban air pollution.
We would appreciate, if you handed in a paper or poster of your own research project until June 21st, 2019.
For further details, please visit the official GfÖ-Meeting website.
Air quality measurements at the Innsbruck Atmospheric Observatory (IAO)
We are currently conducting an intensive measurement campaign from March 2019 to April 2019 at the IAO to characterize the turbulent exchange of particulate matter (PM) between the city and the atmosphere in cooperation with the Institute of Atmospheric and Cryospheric Sciences (University of Innsbruck, Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics research group, Prof. Thomas Karl, https://www.atm-phys-chem.at/). The combined measurements of size-resolved PM fluxes and chemical signatures of organic aerosols and trace gases will improve our understanding of emission patterns of fine and ultra-fine particles in urban environments. Additional stable isotope analysis of 15N and 13C are undertaken to identify the sources of particulate matter in Innsbruck.
Wind field characterization at lake Heideweiher
Since recently, atmospheric research is taking place at the lake Heideweiher near the village Hopsten in the very North of Northrine-Westphalia, Germany. Or should we say within the lake Heideweiher? In the surrounding natural reserve area numerous environmental research projects are carried out for many years. Also, one of our research groups at the Institute of Landscape Ecology, namely the Ecohydrology and Biogeochemistry Group, is involved. In cooperation with them and complementary to their methane flux measurements with chambers, we are interested in quantifications concerning the turbulent atmospheric fluxes of methane, one of the most important greenhouse gases besides CO2, using the eddy-covariance technique at the site. Therefore, an eddy-covariance tower has been installed at the bottom of the lake equipped with an ultrasonic anemometer. The installation process was plain and simple at the time since the lake was dried-out almost completely due to the drought in Germany this summer. With a preliminary study running, the expected to be complex wind field will be investigated during the next weeks.
Prof. Klemm no longer active in the climate council of the city of Münster
At the beginning of November 2018, Prof. Klemm told the Mayor of the city, Markus Lewe, that he had left the Climate Council. "In the seven years since the reorganization of the Climate Council, in which I chaired, I have not been able to develop the Climate Council into a body of importance in the city of Münster." Repeated suggestions from the Climate Council, for example, to the sustainable redesign of the Former barracks area "York" (Gremmendorf) and "Oxford" (Gievenbeck), where many hundreds of new apartments will emerge, found little echo. "After weighing public and private concerns against each other and with each other, the ... statements were not followed," was one example vile, written answer to detailed proposals of the Climate Council. Debate with the climate council on contents hardly took place.
As early as the summer of 2018, Prof. Klemm announced internally that he would not continue to chair the Climate Council. However, the regular election in November 2018 went awry, as no candidate and no candidate for succession could be found. The vice-chairmanship also remained vacant. The Climate Council seemed paralyzed at this time. As a consequence, Prof. Klemm declared that he would leave the Climate Council. "I do not like doing that, but I have no choice. Maybe under other circumstances a successful reboot succeeds. "It requires a rethinking of some political representatives of the city and parts of the administration to help climate protection in Muenster to the importance that it needs.
Münster wants to reduce its CO2 emissions by 95% by 2050. The EU has committed to reduce it by 80% to 95%. The latest report of the IPCC (IPCC) to comply with the 1.5-degree target (Oct 2018) calls for a reduction in emissions to virtually 100% by 2050. Otherwise, dramatic further consequences for the world's population are expected. "Germany as an industrialized nation and especially those municipalities that have committed themselves to climate protection must make headway here," says Prof. Klemm. Against this background, there can be no other consideration than planning todays new buildings (keywords: York, Oxford) to emit no greenhouse gases in 2050! However, this does not seem to be considered. Prof. Klemm emphasizes that there is sufficient expertise in the politics and administration of Münster, and for many the willingness to consistently implement climate protection. Alone lack of consensus, the climate among other important aspects (social, financial, ...) grant the status of a guardrail of urban development. The role of the climate council has been marginal so far. Maybe a successful restart succeeds. Good luck!
New field trips
In the summer of 2019 an excursion to Taiwan will be offered. The excursion will take place from 20.07.2019 until 02.08.2019 and will focus on climatological aspects. Also the landscape, geology and culture are considered to get an unrestricted view of the country.
This semester a one-day excursion to Essen takes place. We will visit the German Weather Service (DWD) with the associated measuring field and the State Office for Nature, Environment and Consumer Protection NRW (LANUV). The excursion takes place on 07.02.2019 and there are no costs if a semester ticket is available. On 12.03.2019 there will be a one-day excursion to the German Weather Service in Offenbach and the EUMETSAT in Darmstadt. 20 Euro will be charged for the trip. For more information in english, please contact Prof. Klemm.
New investigations on air quality in Münster
A new measurement campaign to determine urban air quality started at the end of August at the Bült, a busy street in the city center of Münster. The project „LUFTHY“ founded by the DFG includes continuous measurements of carbon dioxide, ammonia, nitrogen oxides and tropospheric ozone as well as ultrafine particles in the range between 6 nm and 10 µm at a high temporal resolution. We also collect additional information about the passing vehicles using a microphone and special cameras.
The results will help to determine the relationship between traffic-related emissions of gaseous air pollutants and ultrafine particles and the characteristics of the vehicle fleet (e.g. emission classes). On the long run, this project should contribute to the enhancement of atmospheric model predictions and help to mitigate urban air pollution.
Measurements in Taiwan
Bettina Breuer has been conducting fog measurements at the Lulin Atmospheric Background Station in Taiwan since mid-August. With the help of an active fog collector, fog water samples are taken automatically and with high temporal resolution, which are then analyzed for their ion composition. In addition, a new aerosol spectrometer is being used for the first time to measure the size distribution of mist droplets. Some exciting fog events have already been recorded.
Mobile measurements in Münster
As part of a master's thesis, mobile measurements were carried out in the urban area with a cargo bike. These serve to investigate particle and CO2 concentration as well as their spatial distribution.
March for Science
On April 14th, the March for Science took place in several cities. It is an international movement that demonstrates the value of science. Also in Münster people have come together with the motto "Science moves". After a walk through the city, the event would end with a panel discussion. Our AG took also part to stand for the freedom of science.
Update for "MünsterWetter" App
The "MünsterWetter" App provides the data of the weather station on the roof of the institute building. Unfortunately, the app had some dropouts that have been fixed by an update. The update is available in the Google Play Store for Android operating systems.
We welcome a new employee
Since April 01, 2018, Bastian Paas joins the team of the research goup climatology. We welcome him and wish him a good start in his new job.
We welcome the new PhD student Bettina Breuer
Since this semester Bettina Breuer supports the AG Climatology. We're happy to have her here.
field trip to Essen
On 22th of february a field trip to the German Weather Service (DWD) and the State Office for Nature, Environment and Consumer Protection (LANUV) in Essen took place. At the DWD, the students had the opportunity to get to know the regional weather consultants and to experience the launch of a radiosonde at the measuring field. The LANUV provided insights into its wide range of tasks and in particular explained the monitoring of air quality in NRW. In addition, insight into the vehicle of the "Sondereinsatz" was granted. The on-call service maintained by the LANUV examines hazardous emissions in the event of damage on site.