Environmental Spectroscopy

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Habitats on trial

The Earth, seen from space. Credit: NASA
The Earth, seen from space. Credit: NASA

We have long been aware of it: Not only the world, but also the environment, is changing. Our daily life is full of catchphrases like "the ozone hole problem," "the greenhouse effect," and "global climate change." But what do these terms really mean? To what extent are we responsible for these changes to our environment? Or are these phenomena also attributable to natural causes? In turn, what are the consequences of such environmental disruption for us and for the space in which we live? Such questions prompt us to give the earth's surface and atmosphere a thorough checkup! You'll learn the effects of ozone, ultraviolet radiation and water vapor, focus on investigating the ground and the air with the help of various measuring tools, and compare the values you get with those from satellite data. The results will permit us to make an environmental diagnosis!

So that we can feel at ease in our enviromnet also in the future

With the development of satellite measurement technology we have available in space an excellent tool for globally and continuously investigating many changes on the land surface and in the atmosphere. But in order to really understand the total situation, predict developments, recognize threats and possibly avert them, we have to look at things also from another viewpoint. We are just as dependent on ground investigations. As complex as the environment is, so diverse is also environmental measurement technolgy. The tasks range all the way from very local and regional investigations, such as noise measurements or analyzing pollutants in the ground, water and air, to huge research projects of a truly universal nature.

The art of measuring correctly

Measuring at a distance? How does that work? Well, try it out! There are various instruments available for you to choose from to measure ozone values, the amount of water vapor, the temperature and the humidity. Where do you measure? On the earth's surface and in the atmosphere, just like environmental researchers do. You have the choice among ground spectrometers, sun photometers, humidity and temperature measuring instruments, and an infrared thermometer. We're curious to know what your results will be!