Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Highly sensitive weather radar a gain for climate research

27.08.2007
The Delft University of Technology (TU Delft) has taken a new weather radar system into use, the 'Drizzle Radar', which can observe even the lightest of drizzles.

This is an enormous gain for climate researchers and is attracting international attention. The radar was successfully installed on the 213 metre-high Royal Netherlands Meteorological Institute (KNMI) measurement tower on the 23rd of August. From this spot the highly sensitive radar, together with the other advanced instruments of the CESAR observatory (Cabauw Experimental Site for Atmospheric Research), is to provide a complete picture of the interaction between dust, clouds, rain and radiation. The latter is still one of the least understood factors in climate models.

Clouds and the climate

Clouds are of great importance for the greenhouse effect. On the one hand, clouds wrap a blanket round the Earth which retains heat, but they also cool the planet through the reflection of sunlight. Clouds can therefore compensate for some of the global warming, but the question is how much, and how precisely does it work. Dust particles play a crucial role in the formation of clouds and precipitation. They act as condensation nuclei, around which small droplets form. In an atmosphere without dust, clouds would not even be able to form. The more dust particles, the more clouds, the more solar radiation is reflected and the cooler the Earth stays.

A cooler Earth leads, in its turn, to less precipitation, because cooler air cannot hold as much moisture as warm air. Thus we have an extremely complicated interplay of factors that can be elucidated only through detailed measurements. The new Drizzle Radar is able to measure cloud droplets and precipitation extremely accurately. In addition, the measurement tower in Cabauw monitors the quantity and composition of dust particles and of clouds. Climate researchers are particularly interested in the extent to which dust particles influence rainfall.

IDRA

The International Research Centre for Telecommunications and Radar (IRCTR) Drizzle Radar, or IDRA, developed by TU Delft, is able to measure the smallest raindrops in a thirty kilometre zone around the observatory. The data are used to determine cloud life cycles, and their relationship to radiation and airborne dust. These measurements, which will lead to a better understanding of the climate system, are unique in the world and can be done nowhere else.

CESAR

The CESAR Observatory in Cabauw is one of the world’s most advanced observatories for atmospheric research. Its highly accurate, multi-instrument array constantly measures atmospheric characteristics, to obtain a better picture of the atmosphere’s role in the climate system. The most eye-catching feature is the 213 metre-high measurement tower of the KNMI, where the Drizzle Radar has now been installed. CESAR is a consortium of KNMI (Royal Netherlands Meteorological Institute), TU Delft (Delft University of Technology), TNO (Netherlands Organisation for Applied Scientific Research), RIVM (National Institute of Public Health and Environmental Protection), ECN (Energy Research Centre of the Netherlands), Wageningen University and ESA (European Space Agency).

Roy Meijer | alfa
Further information:
http://www.tudelft.nl/live/pagina.jsp?id=a297e7ee-4494-4d26-b6f1-7a7d0f8061fd&lang=en

More articles from Ecology, The Environment and Conservation:

nachricht How does the loss of species alter ecosystems?
18.05.2017 | Deutsches Zentrum für integrative Biodiversitätsforschung (iDiv) Halle-Jena-Leipzig

nachricht Excess diesel emissions bring global health & environmental impacts
16.05.2017 | International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA)

All articles from Ecology, The Environment and Conservation >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Wafer-thin Magnetic Materials Developed for Future Quantum Technologies

Two-dimensional magnetic structures are regarded as a promising material for new types of data storage, since the magnetic properties of individual molecular building blocks can be investigated and modified. For the first time, researchers have now produced a wafer-thin ferrimagnet, in which molecules with different magnetic centers arrange themselves on a gold surface to form a checkerboard pattern. Scientists at the Swiss Nanoscience Institute at the University of Basel and the Paul Scherrer Institute published their findings in the journal Nature Communications.

Ferrimagnets are composed of two centers which are magnetized at different strengths and point in opposing directions. Two-dimensional, quasi-flat ferrimagnets...

Im Focus: World's thinnest hologram paves path to new 3-D world

Nano-hologram paves way for integration of 3-D holography into everyday electronics

An Australian-Chinese research team has created the world's thinnest hologram, paving the way towards the integration of 3D holography into everyday...

Im Focus: Using graphene to create quantum bits

In the race to produce a quantum computer, a number of projects are seeking a way to create quantum bits -- or qubits -- that are stable, meaning they are not much affected by changes in their environment. This normally needs highly nonlinear non-dissipative elements capable of functioning at very low temperatures.

In pursuit of this goal, researchers at EPFL's Laboratory of Photonics and Quantum Measurements LPQM (STI/SB), have investigated a nonlinear graphene-based...

Im Focus: Bacteria harness the lotus effect to protect themselves

Biofilms: Researchers find the causes of water-repelling properties

Dental plaque and the viscous brown slime in drainpipes are two familiar examples of bacterial biofilms. Removing such bacterial depositions from surfaces is...

Im Focus: Hydrogen Bonds Directly Detected for the First Time

For the first time, scientists have succeeded in studying the strength of hydrogen bonds in a single molecule using an atomic force microscope. Researchers from the University of Basel’s Swiss Nanoscience Institute network have reported the results in the journal Science Advances.

Hydrogen is the most common element in the universe and is an integral part of almost all organic compounds. Molecules and sections of macromolecules are...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Dortmund MST Conference presents Individualized Healthcare Solutions with micro and nanotechnology

22.05.2017 | Event News

Innovation 4.0: Shaping a humane fourth industrial revolution

17.05.2017 | Event News

Media accreditation opens for historic year at European Health Forum Gastein

16.05.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

New approach to revolutionize the production of molecular hydrogen

22.05.2017 | Materials Sciences

Scientists enlist engineered protein to battle the MERS virus

22.05.2017 | Life Sciences

Experts explain origins of topographic relief on Earth, Mars and Titan

22.05.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>