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Institute of Atmospheric Physics
Affiliation: Deutsches Zentrum für Luft- und Raumfahrt, Institut für Physik der Atmosphäre, Oberpfaffenhofen, Germany
Prof. Dr. Markus Rapp
Head of the Institute
Institut für Physik der Atmosphäre
The Institute of Atmospheric Physics investigates the physics and chemistry of the global atmosphere from the Earth's surface up to the upper boundary of the middle atmosphere at about 120 km height. As an institute of the German Aerospace Center (DLR) we answer questions associated with atmospheric processes and with relevance to the research programmes "Aeronautics, Space, and Transportation" and "Energy" of the Helmholtz Association (HGF).
50 years Institute of Atmospheric Physics
The DLR Institute of Atmospheric Physics celebrates its 50th anniversary. The institute was founded on 1 July 1962 from two precursory institutes, the Institute of Aviation Meteorology and the Institute of Airspace Research. This event will be acknowledged by a scientific colloquium on 29 June 2012 with contributions by invited speakers from different countries.
Measurement flights on the formation of ozone by thunderstorms
Thunderstorms have a significant effect on the formation of ozone. Nitrogen oxide is produced as a result of lightning; this in turn yields ozone at altitudes of 10 kilometres. Strong updraughts in thunderstorms also transport emissions from the ground into the upper atmosphere. But how significant is this effect – compared to aviation, for example? Researchers of the DLR Institute of Atmospheric Physics, in collaboration with the US National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR), NASA and other partners, are studying such questions. To this end, they will be conducting measurement flights in the United States until mid-June. The researchers are looking to increase the existing body of data and gain a better understanding of the processes that take place in thunderstorms.
DLR's Falcon research aircraft deployed in Malaysia
Favoured by severe weather conditions during the rainy season and the large-scale circulation of air masses in the western Pacific, short-lived natural chlorinated and brominated compounds compounds may be able to reach the stratosphere, and thus have an impact on the ozone layer. Particularly strong sources of these compounds are thought to exist in the tropical western Pacific. But the role of these natural halogen compounds in ozone depletion is largely unexplored. Answers are expected from the European-Malaysian project SHIVA (Stratospheric ozone: Halogen Impacts in a Varying Atmosphere) in which the DLR Institute of Atmospheric Physics participates.
DLR receives a contract for vulcanic ash flights with Falcon from the Volcanic Ash Advisory Center
The recent eruption of the Icelandic volcano Grimsvötn has again elucidated that airborne measurements of the volcanic ash concentration are important for the validation of forecasts of ash transport into the European airspace. The Volcanic Ash Advisory Center (VAAC) of the UK Met Office has charged DLR with respective measurements using the Falcon aircraft in case of any further eruption of Grimsvötn.
Contributions to Improve the Precipitation Forecast over Low-mountains
To conclude the international field experiment COPS (Convective and Orograpically-induced Precipitation Study) in June-August 2007 a special issue of the Quarterly Journal of the Royal Meteorological Society has appeared. The Institute was involved with the POLDIRAD radar and the combination of water vapour and wind lidars on the Falcon research aircraft in this experiment.
Institute of Atmospheric Physics
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