Cabauw Experimental Site for Atmospheric Research (credits A. Apituley)

Observational platforms test

Observational platforms test

Cézeaux-Aulnat Opme Puy de Dôme (CO-PDD)

© Aurélie Colomb OPGC / LaMP / CNRS / UCA

Location: Clermont-Ferrand, France

Web site address:

The puy de Dôme station (Global GAW PUY station) is a reference site of the European and national research infrastructures ACTRIS and ICOS. It hosts a large number of in situ instruments for the long-term monitoring of atmospheric reactive and greenhouse gases, microphysical and chemical properties of aerosol particles, and clouds in their meteorological context. A wind tunnel allows more particularly the study of ice cloud microphysical properties under natural atmospheric conditions. The PUY station is completed by additional sites located at lower altitudes and adding the vertical dimension to the atmospheric observations: Opme equipped with a wind profiler, and instruments for rain and meteorological measurements, Cézeaux equipped with a multi-wavelength lidar and a meteorological radio-sounding reception device, Aulnat equipped with a low layer wind profiler. More than 70 atmospheric variables are currently measured at PUY, Cézeaux, Aulnat and Opme. 

TROPOS Research Station Melpitz (MEL)

Melpitz site, view to East © TROPOS

Location : Melpitz, Germany

Web site address:

The research site is situated in the rural background for lowlands in Central Europe. The size segregated long-time characterisation of chemical and physical aerosol properties by offline methods in combination with chemical analysis for ions OC/EC and for specific organic tracers and state of the art online methods provides a comprehensive dataset. Melpitz is a unique research infrastructure in Europe and a perfect site to study changes in atmospheric composition depending from air-mass inflow. The Access user can benefit from a comprehensive dataset and experiences for integrating the Melpitz site in projects investigating source apportionment of natural and anthropogenic trace components. International users will profit from the broad range of expertise in tropospheric research by the TROPOS staff. 

Finokalia (FKL)


Location: Finokalia, Crete, Greece.

Web site address:

The FKL sampling station is situated on the north coast of Crete. The station is located at the top of a hilly elevation (250 m a.s.l.). No significant human activities occur at a distance shorter than 15km within the above mentioned sector. The area is characterized by the existence of two well-distinguished seasons equally distributed throughout the year: The dry season (from April to September) and the wet season (from October to April). Observations at FKL are related to ACTRIS: e.g., in situ aerosol characterisation, gas precursors as well as an AERONET station and to ICOS. It is located in a unique environment: FKL is in the southern most point of Europe, with high insolation which favours photochemical activity and fast processing of aerosols.  

AThens MOnitoring Supersite (ATMOS)

Location: Athens, Greece

Web site address:

The Athens Supersite (ATMOS) is a unique and the largest Research Infrastructure in Greece and the Eastern Mediterranean containing state of the art instruments for i) aerosol in situ, ii) aerosol active and passive remote sensing, iii) trace gases in site, iv) mobile units v) equipment for greenhouse gases measurements as well as vi) air quality sensors (low and medium cost). It can therefore support several of the ACTRIS activities and be an ideal place not only for training on a big range of state-of-the-art instruments but performing cutting edge science. The infrastructure is distributed between 2-5 Kms and offers sites representing urban background, suburban background and regional background for several applications and new instrument testing.  

CNR-IMAA Atmospheric Observatory (CIAO)

Location: Tito (Potenza), Italy

Web site address:

CIAO is one of the most advanced infrastructures for ground based remote sensing in Europe equipped by multi-wavelength lidar and scanning cloud radar plus operative instruments. CIAO consists of a combination of advanced systems able to provide high quality long-term observations of aerosol and cloud properties. As a part of ACTRIS, it is one of the components of CARS (Centre for Aerosol Remote Sensing), being equipped with one of the two reference lidar systems for ACTRIS Aerosol Remote Sensing component. CIAO is going to enlarge the equipment with more advanced state of the art lidar systems, and instruments for aerosol in situ and clouds and trace gases remote sensing measurements. Additionally in the next few years CIAO will be equipped with ICOS Atmospheric in situ instruments. CIAO geographic position, in the Mediterranean basin but on a mountain far from big cities, makes the observatory a perfect location for investigating different aerosol types and atmospheric processes and setting up experiments with the support of the researches and technicians operating CIAO. 

Monte Cimone – Po Valley (CMN-PV)


Location: Monte Cimone (with possibility to access also at S. Pietro Capofiume and Bologna)

Web site address:

The « O. Vittori » observatory at Mt. Cimone (CMN, 2165 m a.s.l.), is the only high mountain station for atmospheric research both South of the Alps and the Po basin: it represents a strategic platform to study the South Europe and Mediterranean basin troposphere and the anthropogenic emissions from the Po basin. At this site co-located ICOS and ACTRIS observations exist: the « O. Vittori » observatory is an ICOS-RI class-2 station and an associated AGAGE station. Mt. Cimone is integrated with the “S. Pietro Capofiume” rural site (43°21 N, 12°34 E, 11 m a.s.l.) and the “Bologna Urban Observatory” (43°21 N, 12°34; E, 39 m a.s.l.). This latter site is equipped with ACTRIS compliant sampling systems for trace gases and aerosol properties. Continuous measurement programmes for aerosol properties, trace gases, columnar content and vertical profiling, meteorological parameters are carried out at Mt. Cimone. 

Cabauw Experimental Site for Atmospheric Research (CESAR)

© A. Apituley

Location: Lopik, the Netherlands

Web site address:;

The Cabauw site is used for: monitoring atmospheric change, atmospheric and land surface processes for climate modelling, validation of satellite observations and atmospheric models, development and implementation of new measurement techniques, and for training and education. At the site a comprehensive set of in-situ and active and passive remote sensing instruments is operated. It is the focal point of experimental atmospheric research in The Netherlands and main site for the national Ruisdael Observatory for atmospheric research covering ACTRIS and ICOS. The site consists of a 213m tall tower hosting in-situ observations of aerosols, trace gases and greenhouse gases, a remote sensing terrain, a radiation station and a field for micro-meteorological observations. The observational programme consists of in situ measurements of soil hydrology, surface fluxes of wind, temperature, humidity, the radiation budget, energy balance, rain, tower-based profiles of wind, temperature, profiling of aerosols, clouds and humidity, GHG at high precision and tracers. In situ aerosol observations include size distribution, scattering and absorption, chemical composition and CCN. Off-site, an atmospheric chemistry lab dedicated to high precision isotope ratio measurements on atmospheric trace species and volatile organic compounds, CFC’s and aerosols is operated.

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