SAHARAN DUST

In the years 1996 and 1997 enviscope was engaged in the performance of microphysical measurements of aerosol particles in Morocco, in close co-operation with the Institute for Physics of the Atmosphere (IPA) of the Johannes Gutenberg-University of Mainz (Germany) and the Laboratoire de Physique de l`Atmosphere (LPA) of the Université Mohammed I´er in Oujda (Morocco). Aim of the project, which was funded by the "German Science Foundation" (DFG, Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft) and the german "Foundation for Technical Co-Operation" (GTZ, Gesellschaft für Technische Zusammenarbeit) was the quantification of the deposition and the transport of mineral dust from Northern Africa into Central Europe.

To fulfil this task the mass concentration, the size distribution and the optical characteristics of the atmospheric aerosol were measured along with the relevant meteorological parameters. These data will be used to run a numerical particle-transport model.

At the very beginning of these long-term measurements enviscope erected a meteorological station in the vicinity of Oujda, a village North of the Chott highlands, close to the Algerian border. Since spring 1996 this station measures automatically atmospheric pressure, temperature, humidity, wind parameters, as well as global and diffusive radiation. The whole dataset is continuously transmitted to LPA.

In June and July 1997 an intensive measuring campaign was performed at this site. In addition to the discontinuously working measuring systems operated by LPA, IPA and enviscope performed measurements using continuously measuring optical particle counters and various impactor- and filter systems to monitor time series of particle size distributions with diameters from 5 nm up to giant particles, including biogenic aerosol particles.

The contribution of enviscope to this project, as a "scientific service company", reaches from the production of special measuring equipment, the logistic planning, the transport and set-up of the instruments to the performance of the routine measurements.

Please refer also to the SAharan Mineral dUst experiMent SAMUM where enviscope has contributed with the operation of the research aircraft Partenavia P68B D-GERY equipped with scientific instruments in 2006.

Scientists in charge:

  • Dr. Lothar Schütz and
  • Prof. Dr. Ruprecht Jaenicke, Institute for Atmospheric Physics, Johannes Gutenberg-University Mainz, D-55099 Mainz / Germany (IPA)
  • Prof. Dr. Mohammed Diouri, Université Mohammed Ier, Laboratoire de Physique de l`Atmosphère, Departement de Physique, Faculté des Sciences, Oujda, Morocco.