European Facility For Airborne Research

European Facility For Airborne Research June 23, 2017, 03:41

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Major project to deploy multiple aircraft to assess impact of pollution over West Africa in summer 2016

The Dynamics-aerosol-chemistry-cloud interactions in West Africa (DACCIWA) campaign seeks to investigate the influence of anthropogenic and natural emissions on the atmospheric composition over South West Africa and to assess their impact on human health, the ecosystem, and agricultural productivity.

Funded by the European Union, DACCIWA is a large project (~€10M) with project partners in Germany, France, UK, Switzerland, Ghana and Nigeria. 

The research campaign will undertake a range of activities ranging from flying research aircraft over West Africa, to running complex numerical models of the composition of the atmosphere. These activities include:

  • Conducting observations of air pollutants at a number of urban sites in the region (e.g. roadside and west burning sites in West African capitals)
  • Using a range of satellite products to investigate processes over West Africa such as cloud-top pressure, SW and LW outgoing fluxes, aerosol and cloud optical depth, collocated vertical profiles of cloud and precipitation, etc. 
  • Running numerical models, including the UKCA model aerosol scheme, COSMO-ART with modal aerosol scheme, etc.
  • Flight campaigns with 3 European research aircraft (SAFIRE’s ATR42, DLR’s FA20 and NERC BAS Twin Otter) to sample air over the region.
  • Rural measurements of the state of the atmosphere from the ground through the boundary layer

As part of EUFAR’s transnational access activity, EUFAR will be providing flight hours at no cost to applicants and also support travel and subsistence expenses of three research campaigns that will be clustered with DACCIWA:

  • APSOWA, with flight hours on board DLR’s FA20 aircraft, aims to characterise gaseous and particulate pollutants emitted by shipping and oil, and gas extraction platforms off the coast of West Africa. Pollution will therefore be sampled west from Nigeria, along the coasts of Benin, Togo and Ghana.  
  • MICWA will investigate the mid-level inversions and genesis/lysis of altocumulus/altostratus fields. Three flights are planned between Cotonou and Niamey, for a total of 10 EUFAR supported flight hours onboard SAFIRE’s ATR42.
  • OLACTA-2 aims at obtaining a definitive dataset on the  low-level atmospheric circulation (LLAC) in the Gulf of Guinea, based on a suite of state-of-the-art in situ and remote sensing instruments intended to document the dynamics, thermodynamics and composition of the LLAC together with sea surface properties and near surface turbulent fluxes. Two identical meridional flights between coastal SWA and 2°N are planned (once the equatorial cold tongue is established) for a total of 10 hours of flying time, fully funded by EUFAR, on board SAFIRE's ATR42.

For more information on DACCIWA, the project team recently published an overview paper outlining the motivation for tackling this challenging science mission.

For further details on the three EUFAR funded campaigns, click on the project titles in the text above.

 

Originally published on April 12, 2016
Last update on Sept. 19, 2016

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This project has received funding from the European Union's Seventh Framework Programme for research, technological development and demonstration under grant agreement no. 312609

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