Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Developing methods for studying health effects of air pollution

19.05.2006


A model for assessing urban fine particle concentrations developed in a research project led by Professor Jaakko Kukkonen has substantially improved the methods used in urban air quality measurements. Funded by the Academy of Finland in 1999–2001, the project was among the first to develop methods for modelling urban air pollution through international cooperation. The project perfected the emission, dispersion and transformation models of road traffic emissions. Kukkonen’s research is one of the projects presented in the Academy’s report "The impact of research in biosciences and environmental research".



The results of the project have had extensive impact, both scientifically and socially. The project was mainly carried out at the Finnish Meteorological Institute, and the created methodological basis has, for instance, been used, developed and applied in later research projects studying the health effects of air pollution. The models have, for example, been used to calculate the distribution of air pollution concentrations in the Helsinki metropolitan area. This allows for more extensive assessments of exceedings of reference and limit values of concentration levels in comparison to mere measurements. The results thus have direct social significance as well.

"Collaboration with the Helsinki Metropolitan Area Council (YTV) from the very planning of the project led to that YTV is putting the results and to some extent also the methods to use in its practical work of assessing alternatives for traffic, urban and environmental planning," says Jaakko Kukkonen. The developed models have since been used to, for example, calculate health effects of air pollution in the Helsinki metropolitan area with different traffic system plans. This has been carried out in cooperation with the National Public Health Institute and YTV as part of the Academy of Finland’s Health Promotion Research Programme TERVE.


The Finnish Meteorological Institute and YTV have also jointly published two reports on the use of dispersion models in air quality and population exposure assessments in the Helsinki metropolitan area. The reports include computational estimates of emission, dispersion and transformation of gas-like pollutants as well as population exposure to air pollution in the Helsinki metropolitan area.

The research project has been continued as part of Tekes’ technology programme FINE Particles – Technology, Environment and Health, and financed through the EU Fifth Framework Programme. The FINE programme generalised the model system to cover the whole of Europe, and it was for example used to carry out the first assessment of the number of premature deaths in Finland caused by fine particles. This study was done in cooperation with the Finnish Environment Institute (SYKE) and the National Public Health Institute. "Results such as these allow us to put the fine particle problem in terms that political decision-makers can easily grasp," says Kukkonen.

Riitta Tirronen | alfa
Further information:
http://www.aka.fi/eng

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht MRI contrast agent locates and distinguishes aggressive from slow-growing breast cancer
25.09.2017 | Case Western Reserve University

nachricht Investigators may unlock mystery of how staph cells dodge the body's immune system
22.09.2017 | Cedars-Sinai Medical Center

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

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

Im Focus: LaserTAB: More efficient and precise contacts thanks to human-robot collaboration

At the productronica trade fair in Munich this November, the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT will be presenting Laser-Based Tape-Automated Bonding, LaserTAB for short. The experts from Aachen will be demonstrating how new battery cells and power electronics can be micro-welded more efficiently and precisely than ever before thanks to new optics and robot support.

Fraunhofer ILT from Aachen relies on a clever combination of robotics and a laser scanner with new optics as well as process monitoring, which it has developed...

Im Focus: The pyrenoid is a carbon-fixing liquid droplet

Plants and algae use the enzyme Rubisco to fix carbon dioxide, removing it from the atmosphere and converting it into biomass. Algae have figured out a way to increase the efficiency of carbon fixation. They gather most of their Rubisco into a ball-shaped microcompartment called the pyrenoid, which they flood with a high local concentration of carbon dioxide. A team of scientists at Princeton University, the Carnegie Institution for Science, Stanford University and the Max Plank Institute of Biochemistry have unravelled the mysteries of how the pyrenoid is assembled. These insights can help to engineer crops that remove more carbon dioxide from the atmosphere while producing more food.

A warming planet

Im Focus: Highly precise wiring in the Cerebral Cortex

Our brains house extremely complex neuronal circuits, whose detailed structures are still largely unknown. This is especially true for the so-called cerebral cortex of mammals, where among other things vision, thoughts or spatial orientation are being computed. Here the rules by which nerve cells are connected to each other are only partly understood. A team of scientists around Moritz Helmstaedter at the Frankfiurt Max Planck Institute for Brain Research and Helene Schmidt (Humboldt University in Berlin) have now discovered a surprisingly precise nerve cell connectivity pattern in the part of the cerebral cortex that is responsible for orienting the individual animal or human in space.

The researchers report online in Nature (Schmidt et al., 2017. Axonal synapse sorting in medial entorhinal cortex, DOI: 10.1038/nature24005) that synapses in...

Im Focus: Tiny lasers from a gallery of whispers

New technique promises tunable laser devices

Whispering gallery mode (WGM) resonators are used to make tiny micro-lasers, sensors, switches, routers and other devices. These tiny structures rely on a...

Im Focus: Ultrafast snapshots of relaxing electrons in solids

Using ultrafast flashes of laser and x-ray radiation, scientists at the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics (Garching, Germany) took snapshots of the briefest electron motion inside a solid material to date. The electron motion lasted only 750 billionths of the billionth of a second before it fainted, setting a new record of human capability to capture ultrafast processes inside solids!

When x-rays shine onto solid materials or large molecules, an electron is pushed away from its original place near the nucleus of the atom, leaving a hole...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

“Lasers in Composites Symposium” in Aachen – from Science to Application

19.09.2017 | Event News

I-ESA 2018 – Call for Papers

12.09.2017 | Event News

EMBO at Basel Life, a new conference on current and emerging life science research

06.09.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

An international team of physicists a coherent amplification effect in laser excited dielectrics

25.09.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

LaserTAB: More efficient and precise contacts thanks to human-robot collaboration

25.09.2017 | Trade Fair News

Highest-energy cosmic rays have extragalactic origin

25.09.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>