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Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-CSA | Phase: SPA.2011.1.5-02 | Award Amount: 27.65M | Year: 2011

MACC II (Monitoring Atmospheric Composition and Climate Interim Implementation) is designed to meet the requirements that have been expressed for prototype operational GMES services for the atmospheric domain. From late-2011 MACC II will continue the operation and development of the GMES service lines established by the MACC project and prepare for its transition in 2014 to become the atmospheric monitoring component of GMES Operations. MACC II will prepare for full operations in terms of continuity, sustainability and availability. It will maintain and further develop the efficiency and resilience of its end-to-end processing system, and will refine the quality of the products of the system. It will adapt the system to make use of observations from new satellites, in particular the first of the atmospheric Sentinels, and will interface with FP7 RTD projects that contribute towards long-term service improvement. MACC II will ensure that its service lines best meet both the requirements of downstream-service providers and end users, and the requirements of the global scientific user community. The service lines will cover air quality, climate forcing, stratospheric ozone and solar radiation. MACC II will deliver products and information that support the establishment and implementation of European policy and wider international programmes. It will acquire and assimilate observational data to provide sustained real-time and retrospective global monitoring of greenhouse gases, aerosols and reactive gases such as tropospheric ozone and nitrogen dioxide. It will provide daily global forecasts of atmospheric composition, detailed air-quality forecasts and assessments for Europe, and key information on long range transport of atmospheric pollutants. It will provide comprehensive web-based graphical products and gridded data. Feedback will be given to space agencies and providers of in situ data on the quality of their data and future observational requirements.


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-FP | Phase: SPA.2011.3.2-02 | Award Amount: 11.78M | Year: 2011

The QB50 Project will demonstrate the possibility of launching a network of 50 CubeSats built by CubeSat teams from all over the world to perform first-class science and in-orbit demonstration in the largely unexplored middle and lower thermosphere. Space agencies are not pursuing a multi-spacecraft network for in-situ measurements in the middle and lower thermosphere because the cost of a network of 50 satellites built to industrial standards would be very high and not justifiable in view of the limited orbital lifetime. No atmospheric network mission for in-situ measurements has been carried out in the past or is planned for the future. A network of satellites for in-situ measurements in the middle and lower thermosphere can only be realised by using very low-cost satellites, and CubeSats are the only realistic option. The Project will demonstrate the sustained availability of a low-cost launch opportunities, for launching small payloads into low-Earth orbit; these could be microsatellites or networks of CubeSats or nanosats or many individual small satellites for scientific, technological, microgravity or biology research. The Project will include the development of a deployment system for the deployment into orbit of a large number of single, double or triple CubeSats. Once the system is developed for QB50 it can be easily adapted to other missions. QB50 will also provide a launch opportunity for key technology demonstration on IOD CubeSats such as formation flying and aerobrakes. All 50 CubeSats will be launched together into a circular orbit at approximately 380 km altitude. Due to atmospheric drag, the orbits of the CubeSats will decay and progressively lower and lower layers of the thermosphere will be explored without the need for on-board propulsion, perhaps down to 200 km. QB50 will be among the first CubeSat networks in orbit.


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-FP | Phase: SPA.2013.3.2-01 | Award Amount: 2.90M | Year: 2013

Due to the strong economic growth in the China in the past decade, air pollution has become a serious issue in many parts of the country. Therefore, up-to-date regional air pollution information and means of emission control for the main pollutants are important for China. Especially, the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region, the Yangtze River and the Pearl River deltas are known as three focal regions with serious air pollution where air quality policies are very important. Within the FP6 project AMFIC atmospheric environmental monitoring over China was addressed by a team of both Chinese and European scientists. Within AMFIC it was concluded that modelling of air quality and therefore the forecast capabilities are hampered by the rapidly changing emissions due to economic growth. In addition, air quality measures could not directly be related to changes in emissions. Therefore, within the follow-up proposal - MarcoPolo - the focus will be on emission estimates from space and the refinement of these emission estimates by spatial downscaling and by source sector apportionment. Air pollutants cover both anthropogenic and biogenic sources. A wide range of satellite data will be used from various instruments. From these satellite data, emission estimates will be made for NOx, SO2, PM and biogenic sources. With various state-of-the-art techniques emission inventories will be created and intercompared. By combining these emission data with known information from the ground a new emission database for MarcoPolo will be constructed. Due to the strongly growing economy in China regular emission inventories are quickly outdated. Within MarcoPolo we will have a monthly update of the emissions based on the latest satellite observations. The improved emission inventory is input to regional air quality models on meso-scale and urban-scale. End-users and decision makers will be informed about air quality via visualized model results and forecasts.


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-FP | Phase: SPA.2013.1.1-03 | Award Amount: 7.00M | Year: 2013

Policy makers are increasingly relying on Earth Observation (EO) data to make decisions on mitigating and adapting to climate change. These decisions need to be evidence-based and this requires complete confidence in EO-derived products. Although EO data is plentiful, it is rare to have reliable, traceable and understandable quality information. The situation is often further confused because various versions of the same product exist from data providers using different retrieval algorithms. Users need an internationally acceptable Quality Assurance (QA) framework that establishes, and provides understandable traceable quality information for the data products used in Climate Services. This will ensure that long-term data sets are historically linked and, in the future, automatically harmonised in an efficient and interoperable manner. The Quality Assurance for ECVs (QA4ECV) project will address these issues by developing a robust generic system for the QA of satellite and in-situ algorithms and data records that can be applied to all ECVs in a prototype for future sustainable services in the frame of the GMES/Copernicus Climate Change Service. Multi-use tools and SI/community reference standards will be developed. The QA4ECV project will generate quality-assured multi-decadal Climate Data Records for 3 atmospheric ECV precursors (NO2, HCHO, and CO) and 3 land ECVs (albedo, LAI, and FAPAR), with full uncertainty metrics for every pixel ready for model ingestion. The generic QA framework will be applied to these ECVs. QA4ECV will engage with all stakeholders, including other ECV projects, governance bodies and end-users, developers of Climate Services and relevant projects. The QA4ECV project will show how trustable assessments of satellite data quality and reliable means of interoperability can facilitate users in judging the fitness-for-purpose of the ECV Climate Data Record. QA4ECV will be a major step forward in providing quality assured long-term Climate Data Records that are relevant for policy and climate change assessments.


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: RIA | Phase: PROTEC-1-2014 | Award Amount: 1.21M | Year: 2015

HESPERIA will produce two novel operational forecasting tools based upon proven concepts (UMASEP, REleASE). At the same time it will advance our understanding of the physical mechanisms that result into high-energy solar particle events (SEPs) exploiting novel datasets (FERMI/LAT/GBM; PAMELA; AMS) and it will explore the possibility to incorporate the derived results into future innovative space weather services. In order to achieve these goals HESPERIA will exploit already available large datasets stored into databases such as the neutron monitor database (NMDB) and SEPServer that have been developed under FP7 projects from 2008 to 2013. The objectives of HESPERIA are: 1) To develop two novel SEP forecasting systems based upon proven concepts. 2) To develop SEP forecasting tools searching for electromagnetic proxies of the gamma-ray emission in order to predict large SEP events. 3) To perform systematic exploitation of the novel high-energy gamma-ray observations of the FERMI mission together with in situ SEP measurements near 1 AU. 4) To provide for the first time publicly available software to invert neutron monitor observations of relativistic SEPs to physical parameters that can be compared with the space-borne measurements at lower energies. 5) To perform examination of currently unexploited tools (radio emission) 6) To design recommendations for future SEP forecasting systems. The results will be openly accessible to the public through the dedicated web interface of HESPERIA and will further be posted in related servers such as NMDB and SEPServer. The HESPERIA consortium consists of 9 partners with complementary expertise covering all aspects of the project. HESPERIA will also collaborate with a number of institutes and individuals from US and Russia, ensuring both the in depth analysis of the novel datasets to be utilized within the project and the efficient dissemination of the results to the whole space physics/space weather community.


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP | Phase: ICT-2011.4.3 | Award Amount: 12.28M | Year: 2013

A new approach is needed to ensure that the digital objects created today are available and useful for future generations of users. As scientific, engineering, and media assets and their related metadata are generated across different lifecycle phases, in a continually evolving environment, the concept of a fixed and stable final version becomes less relevant. The highly dynamic and complex digital objects that result from such an environment mean that human appraisal is increasingly infeasible. Automated or computer-assisted mechanisms are needed to address the long-term sustainability of this content, dealing not only with technological obsolescence (such as hardware, software, file formats), but also with semantic drift of digital assets (e.g. due to changes in terminology), and with disciplinary and societal changes (socialisation of the data).\n\nPERICLES will address these challenges by developing extensions to current preservation and lifecycle models that address the evolution of dynamic, heterogeneous resources and their dependencies in changing environments, including policies, processes, semantics, and users, as well as the content itself. Maintaining the complex dependencies between the components of the preservation ecosystem is key to achieving preservation by design, through models that capture intents and interpretative contexts, and thus enabling content to remain relevant to changing communities of users. These models will be complemented with a suite of tools that implement functionality in support of these models. PERICLES also has a strong focus on facilitating the future commercial exploitation of these outputs, which is reflected in the make-up of the consortium.\n\nThe project outputs will be validated against a corpus of user scenarios relating to the preservation of highly complex and dynamic and/or large-scale digital assets, derived from real-life contexts in (i) digital media and contemporary art, and (ii) space science. Media assets will include software-based art installations as well as digital images and video, together with contextual information generated during the creation process or through social media. Scientific datasets will include experimental (e.g. biophysics, material science) and observational (e.g. space weather) data, as well as related data (e.g. auxiliary data, calibration curves) and engineering and operations documentation.\n\nThe project will involve partners of a range of complementary types, including six academic partners, one multinational corporation, two SMEs and two non-academic public sector organisations.


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-FP | Phase: SPA.2013.2.1-01 | Award Amount: 2.83M | Year: 2013

The goal of this project is to investigate in detail the dynamics and composition of the middle and lower atmosphere of Venus by combining data from Venus Express instruments (VIRTIS, VMC) with simultaneous data acquired from several ground-based telescope facilities. The project will perform coordinated observations to provide a detailed analysis of dynamical and chemical couplings between different levels of the atmosphere that are probed simultaneously by different instruments. It is time critical in the context of (1) the extension of the Venus Express (VEx) mission until the end of 2014 and with the possibility of only 1-2 years beyond; (2) the expertise and coordination in wind and trace species measurements developed in our institutions, currently unique in the world; (3) the availability of new techniques of ground-based investigation of Venus atmosphere, which will benefit from coordination and cross-calibration with in-orbit Venus Express payload instruments. Venus is Earths closest sibling, but it has ended up with a radically different climate. Venus atmospheric science is thus increasingly important in an era in which we are trying to understand the divergent evolutionary outcomes for terrestrial planets, whether we are considering the future of our Earth or the habitability in other solar systems. The European Space Agencys Venus Express is the only spacecraft at Venus prior to Venus Express, the last Venus orbiter was launched in 1989 so European scientists now lead the world in Venus research (in marked contrast to the status for most other planets). This project will (a) enhance the legacy of Venus Express data through cross-validation with complementary ground-based telescopic observations; (b) position European ground-based researchers to continue to lead Venus research after the end of the Venus Express mission, and (c) strengthen the position of European researchers in the emerging field of comparative planetology.


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-FP | Phase: SPA.2013.2.1-01 | Award Amount: 3.59M | Year: 2013

CROSS DRIVE targets on creating the foundations for collaborative distributed virtual workspaces for European space science. Space exploration missions have produced huge data sets of potentially immense value for research as well as planning and operating future missions. However, currently expert teams, data and tools are fragmented, leaving little scope for unlocking this value through collaborative activities. The question of how to improve data analysis and exploitation of space-based observations can be answered by providing and standardizing new methods and systems for collaborative scientific visualisation and data analysis, and space mission planning and operation. This will not only allow scientist to work together, with each others data and tools, but importantly to do so between missions. The consortium brings together unprecedented expertise from space science, scientific visualisation, virtual reality and collaborative systems. The proposed collaborative workspace encompasses various advanced technological solutions to coordinate central storage, processing and 3D visualization strategies in collaborative immersive virtual environments, to support space data analysis. A specific focus is given to the preparation of the ExoMars 2016 TGO and 2018 rover missions. Three case studies will demonstrate the utility of the workspaces for European space science: Mars atmospheric data analysis, rovers landing site characterization and rover target selection during its real-time operations. The use cases will exploit state-of-the-art science data sets and they will be constructed in view of the ESA ExoMars missions scenarios. Impact on beneficiaries will be maximised both through providing an expandable backbone and reusable standardisation and tools, and three levels of workspace for: scientists directly engaged; other external scientists; and the public.


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-FP | Phase: SPA.2012.2.1-01 | Award Amount: 2.66M | Year: 2013

In this project we investigate solar system plasma turbulence from in-situ data gathered by automated platforms launched by the European Space Agency (ESA) and NASA. We investigate how the features of turbulence and intermittency vary with the solar activity and estimate the corresponding impact. We use electromagnetic field and plasma data provided by a core of three ESA spacecraft, Ulysses, Venus Express and the Cluster quartet, in coherence with data from other missions like ESAs Giotto and Rosetta, NASAs THEMIS, Cassini and Mars Global Surveyor. Complementary to the satellite databases we study the fluctuations of the geomagnetic field observed on ground. A package of advanced nonlinear analysis methods will be applied on the selected data sets. Power Spectral Densities (PSD) and Probability Distribution Functions (PDF) will be computed first. In a next step we apply five higher-order methods of analysis: (i) the partition function multifractal analysis, (ii) the Rank Ordered Multifractal analysis, (iii) the wave telescope, (iv) the multi-spacecraft methods for anisotropy (v) the discriminating statistics. The targeted physical processes are: the turbulent transfer of energy and dissipation, the intermittency and multifractals, the anisotropy, and non-linearity of the solar system plasma turbulence. The Consortium includes European experts with valuable achievements in space plasma turbulence and complexity, as well as in satellite data analysis. The members of the Consortium are principal or co-investigators of several experiments on-board the selected missions. Two American experts agreed to collaborate and will increase the links with major space actors like the USA. The project responds to the Objectives of the Call by its international, multi-disciplinary dimension, the large number of targeted space missions and databases and the associated analysis methods, and the ambitious scientific objectives that are expected to have a significant impact.


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP | Phase: INFRA-2011-2.1.1. | Award Amount: 5.62M | Year: 2012

ARISE proposes to design a new infrastructure that integrates different station networks in order to provide a new 3D image of the atmosphere from the ground to the mesosphere with unprecedented spatio-temporal resolution. Three existing networks are involved: 1) the International infrasound network developed for the verification of the Comprehensive nuclear Test Ban Treaty (CTBT), 2) the Network for the Detection of Atmospheric Composition Changes (NDACC) which uses Lidar to measure stratospheric dynamics, 3) the Network for the Detection of Mesopause Changes (NDMC), dedicated to airglow layer measurements in the mesosphere. In addition the network will incorporate complementary infrasound station and satellite data. The infrastructure extends across Europe and outlying regions, including polar and equatorial regions. The network will play a particularly important role in improving atmospheric measurement in the stratosphere. A great deal of recent work has shown that stratospheric variability, primarily caused by large, planetary-scale waves, is important for prediction of tropospheric weather and climate. Additionaly, the network will provide important new measurements of atmospheric gravity waves. Parameterization of gravity waves is needed for accurate simulation of mean climate and variability, but parameters are uncertain due to lack of long-term high-resolution observations. The expected benefits of ARISE are two-fold. First, the measurements will allow a better description of the atmosphere state, leading to an improved accuracy in short and medium range weather forecasts. Second, the measurements will be used to improve the simulation of middle atmosphere climate and its tropospheric impact. In the long term, data will be used for monitoring changes in the occurrence of extreme events and trends in the middle atmosphere climate. The benefits also include civil applications related to monitoring of natural hazards as volcanoes.

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