Using the Scanning Imaging Absorption Spectrometer for Atmospheric Chartography (SCIAMACHY) on Envisat, the largest Earth observation satellite ever built, they can measure atmospheric trace gases through the observation of reflected and scattered sunlight.
Using 20,000 individual measurements a month, researchers are monitoring carbon dioxide drawn down by plants over Siberia, North America and Northern Europe. Dr Paul Monks, of the University’s Department of Chemistry, who is working on this with Ph.D. Student Michael Barkley (Department of Physics and Astronomy), said: “Usually researchers put up a tower and measure carbon dioxide concentrations in the surrounding kilometres, but we are taking high precision measurements on a continental scale. This is exciting as it allows us to see nature in action from space and begin to understand the role the natural system has in controlling carbon dioxide”.
“Analysing a year’s measurements for each continent takes 12 weeks of computer time on 60 processors, and we can actually see streaks of low carbon dioxide where the vegetation is sucking it out of the atmosphere during the growing season.”
The SCIAMACHY work on carbon dioxide at Leicester has been funded by NERC’s Centre for Observation of Air-Sea Interactions and Fluxes(CASIX) and will provide important information for policy makers and scientists alike.
Dr. Paul Monks, said: “With the rapid changes in the Earth’s climate that are now taking place, the importance of this kind of research is vital to preserving the planet’s health. We are delighted that NERC has acknowledged this and recognised it in their annual highlights.
The Leicester Earth Observation Science Group in the University’s world-renowned Space Research Centre is involved in three of the ten instruments on board Envisat. SCIAMACHY, the Advanced Along Track Scanning Radiometer (AATSR) and the Michelson Interferometer for Passive Atmospheric Sounding (MIPAS).
Launched in 2002, the European Space Agency’s Envisat (environmental satellite) circles the Earth 14 times a day at a speed of seven kilometres per second. About 250 gigabytes of data products are generated every day, providing both information for immediate use and building up an archive for future generations of scientists to use.
Alex Jelley | alfa
New research calculates capacity of North American forests to sequester carbon
16.07.2018 | University of California - Santa Cruz
Scientists discover Earth's youngest banded iron formation in western China
12.07.2018 | University of Alberta
For the first time ever, scientists have determined the cosmic origin of highest-energy neutrinos. A research group led by IceCube scientist Elisa Resconi, spokesperson of the Collaborative Research Center SFB1258 at the Technical University of Munich (TUM), provides an important piece of evidence that the particles detected by the IceCube neutrino telescope at the South Pole originate from a galaxy four billion light-years away from Earth.
To rule out other origins with certainty, the team led by neutrino physicist Elisa Resconi from the Technical University of Munich and multi-wavelength...
For the first time a team of researchers have discovered two different phases of magnetic skyrmions in a single material. Physicists of the Technical Universities of Munich and Dresden and the University of Cologne can now better study and understand the properties of these magnetic structures, which are important for both basic research and applications.
Whirlpools are an everyday experience in a bath tub: When the water is drained a circular vortex is formed. Typically, such whirls are rather stable. Similar...
Physicists working with Roland Wester at the University of Innsbruck have investigated if and how chemical reactions can be influenced by targeted vibrational excitation of the reactants. They were able to demonstrate that excitation with a laser beam does not affect the efficiency of a chemical exchange reaction and that the excited molecular group acts only as a spectator in the reaction.
A frequently used reaction in organic chemistry is nucleophilic substitution. It plays, for example, an important role in in the synthesis of new chemical...
Optical spectroscopy allows investigating the energy structure and dynamic properties of complex quantum systems. Researchers from the University of Würzburg present two new approaches of coherent two-dimensional spectroscopy.
"Put an excitation into the system and observe how it evolves." According to physicist Professor Tobias Brixner, this is the credo of optical spectroscopy....
Ultra-short, high-intensity X-ray flashes open the door to the foundations of chemical reactions. Free-electron lasers generate these kinds of pulses, but there is a catch: the pulses vary in duration and energy. An international research team has now presented a solution: Using a ring of 16 detectors and a circularly polarized laser beam, they can determine both factors with attosecond accuracy.
Free-electron lasers (FELs) generate extremely short and intense X-ray flashes. Researchers can use these flashes to resolve structures with diameters on the...
13.07.2018 | Event News
12.07.2018 | Event News
03.07.2018 | Event News
17.07.2018 | Information Technology
17.07.2018 | Materials Sciences
17.07.2018 | Power and Electrical Engineering