May 6, 2021

EOC researchers successful in a TV-format spin-off competition

EOC satellite data show how much the ozone layer can vary also over Europe when ozone-poor air masses from equatorial zones reach northern latitudes. People on the ground notice the difference only in the evening when their sunburn starts to hurt. An EOC atmosphere researcher used his knowledge to found a spin-off that tackles the problem. The discovery convinced investors in a well-known German tv spinoff competition to provide venture capital toward its further development.

Although one can be warned in advance about so-called atmospheric streamer events with the help of satellite data, it is in practice often difficult to estimate the sunshine dosage that matches one’s own skin type. Especially on cloudy or windy days the lower temperatures lead an underestimate of UV exposure.

In order to determine the healthy level of sunshine the EOC researcher developed with DLR know-how a small UV measuring device that can be worn on the wrist or clothing, or attached to a rucksack. When linked to a smartphone the sensor gives a warning when one’s individual sunshine dosage has been reached, which depends on the skin type and sunscreen protection factor.

The technology behind the “ajuma” UV sensor unites results from both space and earth systems research. In addition to the UV sensor the app uses information about the position of the sun and the amount of stratospheric ozone at the user’s location. The amount of stratospheric ozone is obtained from data supplied by the operational Copernicus Atmosphere Monitoring Service (CAMS).

The required correction factors for deriving the UV exposure was determined using the “Libradtran” radiative transfer model and validated in measurement campaigns.



Nils Sparwasser

Head of Department
German Aerospace Center (DLR)
German Remote Sensing Data Center (DFD)
Science Communication and Visualization
Oberpfaffenhofen, 82234 Weßling
Tel: +49 8153 28-1316