I currently work as research scientist at:

University of Extremadura, BADAJOZ (Spain)

I also belong to:

- Atmospheric Physic Group, University of Granada, GRANADA (Spain)

- Geophysics Centre of Évora, University of Évora, EVORA (Portugal)

Please feel free to contact me by e.mail: mananton(at)unex.es


The European Brewer Network

The COST Action ES1207 coordinates Brewer spectrophotometer measurements of total ozone column, spectral UV irradiance and aerosol optical depth (AOD) in the UV range within Europe. The main objective of this initiative is to unite the ozone, UV and AOD European communities through a formally network (EUBREWNET) capable of delivering a consistent, spatially homogeneous European data resource.

A Brewer ozone spectrophotometer open congress will take place in Tenerife 24-28 of March 2014. This event is a joint collaboration of EUBREWNET and WMO-GAW Brewer Users Group and will focus on operational, scientific and technical issues of the Brewer instrument.

More information at:


Enhancement events of solar radiation

Can be the solar radiation at surface recorded under cloudy conditions higher than its equivalent cloud-free value?. The answer is affirmative and the reason is a curious effect called enhancement which is related to broken clouds conditions. Even the extreme cases can origin values of solar radiation at surface higher than the corresponding values at the top of the atmosphere.

My colleague Ana A. Piedehierro has just published a really interesting paper in Atmospheric Research journal about this subject. This article shows a detailed analysis of the enhancement episodes recorded in Granada (Spain) during five years.  For all detected episodes (about 6% of all experimental data), the relative increases over the expected cloud-free values reached values up to 50%. The duration of the analyzed enhancement events exceeded one hour in some occasions which highlight the great interest of these episodes.

Please find the article at:


Workshop on Duststorms and Environmental Impact Assessments

The 7th International Workshop on Sand/Duststorms and Associated Dustfall will be held in Frascati, near Rome, from 2 to 4 December 2013.

The main scientific objectives of the conference are to obtain an update of current knowledge and research programs on dust and its impacts, to disseminate recent  results, to facilitate information exchange, especially with young scientists as  well as to identify current research priorities with a special focus on satellite  remote sensing.

The conference has no registration fee and the deadline for abstract submission is  15 September.

More information can be found at



Ph.D. thesis about desert dust aerosols

My colleague Antonio Valenzuela from University of Granada has just presented his Ph.D. thesis entitle “African desert dust event impact over Southeastern Spain (2005-2010): aerosol radiative properties and forcing”.

This thesis focuses on the analysis of the optical and microphysical properties of the atmospheric aerosol during African dust outbreaks recorded at Granada. These properties were classified according to potential source sector and also applying a cluster analysis. Additionally, the influence of the studied desert dust event on shortwave radiative forcing at the surface and the top of the atmosphere were also evaluated using a radiative transfer code fed with experimental sun-photometer data.

Major advances presented in this work are related to the implementation and application of a new methodology for deriving atmospheric columnar optical and microphysical properties using sky radiance in principal plane configuration, and considering that the particles are not spherical

This Ph.D. dissertation can be downloaded at:


Congratulations Dr. Valenzuela !!!.


The UVNews 2013

UVNews #9 has appeared in January 2013. This new Issue contains progress reports of the European Metrology Research Program (EMRP) Project ENV03 “Traceability for surface spectral solar ultraviolet radiation.” In addition, other articles on interesting topics in UV measurements are also included. UVNews #10 will appear in July 2014.
UVNews #9 can be downloaded in:



Summer schools on aerosol science in 2013

Two interesting events related to the atmospheric aerosol science will carry out in 2013. In May, the “9th SummerSchool on Atmospheric Aerosol Physics, Measurement, and Sampling” will be held in Hyytiälä (Finland). This summer school is an advanced course to deepen the training aspects for diverse atmospheric aerosol measurements. The course is organized within the frame of the EU-project ACTRIS. Then, University of Vienna will organize the summer school "BasicAerosol Science" in July which offers a broad education in atmospheric aerosol science with lectures, assignments, discussions, and demonstration experiments. Both summer schools are mainly intended for Ph.D students and young scientists.


Some new questions about the ozone layer

A recent paper published in Green and Sustainable Chemistry by Dr. González-Velasco explains the depletion-recovery cycle of the ozone layer on the basis of the paramagnetic or diamagnetic of oxygen, ozone, nitrogen oxides and chlorine combinations. Thus, the effects of the Earth’s magnetic field on gaseous fluxes polar and equatorial-wards could give a novel explanation of the seasonal, latitude and altitude variations in the ozone concentration. Furthermore, changes in the magnetic field strength could also have an influence on the equilibriums of chemical or photochemical reactions participating in those mechanisms related to ozone layer.

The author states that in order to verify that such a magnetic effect is actually playing a role it could be interesting to try to correlate eventual changes in the magnetic field strength produced during the year at different latitudes with variations in the rates of the depletion-recovery cycle of the ozone.


Sky radiance from hemispherical sky images

A paper, recently published in AMT by Román et al., explains a novel method of deriving the sky radiance field from a CCD camera which has the capability to give sky conditions with both angular and time high resolution.

The absolute calibration of this instrument is based on the comparison against clear sky outputs of a radiative transfer model (libRadtran), which in turn is compared to measurements taken with a CIMEL sun-photometer (mean absolute differences between 2% and 15%). The calibration method proposed in this paper is simpler and cheaper than the methodologies found in literature which need laboratory calibration. Additionally, the authors analyze the sky radiances for three particular cases corresponding to cloud-free, overcast and partially cloudy skies.

A very interesting application of this calibration method could be the use of radiances for the retrieval of cloud properties at any angular direction such as, for example, the cloud optical depth which is one of the most poorly measured climate variables due to the difficulty for its remotely observing.


Correction models for diffuse solar irradiance from shadow rings

JGR-Atmospheres has highlighted a recent paper published in this journal about shadow-ring correction models for diffuse solar irradiance. The leader of this relevant paper is Guadalupe Sanchez from AIRE Research Team at University of Extremadura. Diffuse data measured by a shadow ring must be corrected for the portion of irradiance blocked by the ring. The authors found that the shadow ring itself blocks about 11% of the diffuse radiation reaching a sensor. They state the need to adjust empirical models to local conditions since local factors, such as aerosols and cloud cover, significantly affect estimates of diffuse radiation. Thus, the results of this study show that locally fitted empirical models perform better than globally valid theoretical models.

More information at:

Editors' Highlight


Striking case of the UV-A rays effects

UV-A solar radiation is scarcely attenuated by stratospheric ozone. Thus, the contribution of this spectral range to total UV radiation reaching at Earth’s surface is very high (about 90%). Although UV-A rays are less energetic, and so less dangerous than UV-B rays, the former can also induce detrimental effects on human health. For instance, a shocking case of “Unilateral dermatoheliosis” has been published in The New England Journal of Medicine. A 69-year-old man shows this syndrome which is associated with photo-damaged skin. He drove a delivery truck for 28 years and the left side of his face was particularly vulnerable to UV-A rays transmitted through window glass.

You can read the research note and see the striking photo at:



Initial Training for Atmospheric Remote Sensing

Initial Training for Atmospheric Remote Sensing (ITARS) is a research project in the framework of the interdisciplinary Marie-Curie Initial Training Networks. ITARS aims at improving our understanding of aerosols, clouds, and aerosol-cloud interaction processes and their role in both climate and weather.

ITRAS invites applications for 11 Early Stage Researcher (ESR, 3 year PhD) positions in 7 European countries. For this purpose, the PhD projects will focus on high-end ground-based remote-sensing instrumentation, synergistic observations and/or mathematical methods. For more information please click here.


Lectures on Atmospheric Mineral Dust

A training course focused on the mineral dust observation and modelling will take place the next November in Barcelona, Spain. The event will be held at the UPC Campus Nord with a total duration of 25 hours and will be coordinated by the WMO SDS-WAS Regional Center for Northern Africa, Middle East and Europe. Participants (operational meteorologists, PhD students and postdoctoral researchers) will attend a series of lectures and practical exercises. Registration will open April 16, 2012.

More information at:



Increasing ultraviolet radiation levels

I have found a very interesting video surfing the net. It deals with the main factors that affect the UV radiation reaching the Earth’s surface. In five minutes, it explains clearly the role of atmospheric and astronomical factors on the variability of UV radiation levels at surface. This video could be very useful for academic purposes.

You can see the video “Increasing ultraviolet radiation levels” at:



Traceability for surface spectral solar ultraviolet radiation

"Traceability for surface spectral solar ultraviolet radiation" is a European Union funded project that will last until 2014.

The project aims to significantly enhance the reliability of spectral solar UV radiation measured at the Earth surface. New methods of observation (techniques and instruments) are developed to provide traceable for solar UV irradiance measurements with an uncertainty of less than 2%.

The project will include three workshops, and a large field intercomparison campaign near the end of the project which will be opened for external collaborators.

More information on the project activities can be found in the project web pages.


Atmospheric Science Events in 2012

During the next year 2012, there will take place several interesting conferences related to the Atmospheric Sciences:

- International Radiation Symposium, 6-10 August, Berlin, Germany

- Quadrennial Ozone Symposium, 27-31 August, Toronto, Canada

- European Aerosol Conference, 2-7 September, Granada, Spain

- Atmospheric Science Conference, 18-22 June, Bruges, Belgium

- EUMETSAT Meteorological Satellite Conference, 3-7 September, Sopot, Poland

- EGU General Assembly, 22-27 April, Vienna, Austria

- SPIE Remote Sensing, 24-27 September, Edinburgh, United Kingdom.

- IEEE Geoscience and Remote Sensing Symposium, 22-27 July, Munich, Germany

- International Conference on Clouds and Precipitation, July 30 - August 03, Leipzyg, Germany

- European Meeting on Atmospheric Studies by Optical Methods, 20-24 August, Sopot, Poland

- International Conference on Meteorology, Climatology and Atmospheric Physics, May 30 - 1 June, Athens, Grecee


Long‐term solar erythemal UV irradiance data reconstruction

A very interesting paper has been just published in JGR (doi:10.1029/2011JD015836). My colleagues from the University of Valladolid (Julia Bilbao, Roberto Román, Argimiro de Miguel and David Mateos) have proposed a semiempirical method to obtain a long-term reconstructed series of ultraviolet erythemal irradiance (UVER) in Spain. For that, total shortwave radiation and total ozone columns measurements from satellite have been used.

The reconstructed hourly UVER irradiance values are in good agreement with the measurements in the seven locations, showing low RMSE values in summer (from 5% to 9%). A reconstructed 10 min UVER data set from 1991 to 2010 has been derived from the proposed method. Statistically significant UVER trends appear in summer and autumn when UVER levels increased 3.5% and 4.1% per decade, respectively.


Atmospheric Composition Portal

The Atmospheric Composition Portal (ACP) aims to provide a community-oriented framework that applies best practices in information science and technology to atmospheric composition science. This portal is being developed by the Atmospheric Composition Constellation (ACC) and the Workgroup for Information Systems and Services (WGISS) within the Committee on Earth Observation Satellites (CEOS).


Effects of an asteroid strike into ocean on the ozone layer

A very interesting paper “Ozone perturbation from medium-size asteroid impacts in the ocean” by Pierazzo et al. has been published in Earth and Planetary Science Letters. These authors have shown by simulations that if an asteroid 500 m to 1 km in diameter were to hit the Pacific Ocean it would eject enough water vapor and sea salt into the atmosphere to affect the ozone layer.

The simulations showed that mid-latitude oceanic impacts of 1 km asteroids could produce a significant, global perturbation of upper atmospheric chemistry, including multi-year global ozone depletion comparable to ozone hole records registered in the mid-1990s. In addition, this ozone depletion would produce ultraviolet index (UVI) levels higher than 20 at the Earth’s surface during about two years in both the northern and southern hemispheres.


ACTRIS Project

ACTRIS (Aerosols, Clouds, and Trace gases Research InfraStructure Network) is a European Project aiming at integrating European ground-based stations equipped with advanced atmospheric probing instrumentation for aerosols, clouds, and short-lived gas-phase species. This European ground-based network will contribute to:

- providing long-term observational data relevant to climate and air quality research produced with standardized or comparable procedures;

- supporting transnational access to large infrastructures strengthening collaboration in and outside the EU and access to high quality information and services to the user communities;

- developing new integration tools to fully exploit the use of atmospheric techniques at ground-based stations, in particular for the calibration/validation/integration of satellite sensors and for the improvement of global and regional-scale climate and air quality models.


New version of TOGOMI/TOSOMI retrieval algorithms

The two European satellite-borne atmospheric sensors Global Ozone Monitoring Experiment (GOME) and the SCanning Imaging Absorption spectrometer for Atmospheric CHartographY (SCIAMACHY) are currently operational and offer the potential for an assessment of the global total ozone distribution covering an expected time span of over 18 years.

The Royal Netherlands Meteorological Institute (KNMI) has developed two retrieval algorithms to derive the total ozone data from these two European satellite instruments. These two retrieval algorithms are the Total Ozone retrieval scheme for the GOME instrument based on the OMI DOAS algorithm (TOGOMI), and the corresponding application to the SCIAMACHY instrument (TOSOMI).

A new version (2.0) of these two retrieval algorithms has been prepared by KNMI staff, and the new total ozone data are distributed via internet from the Tropospheric Emission Monitoring Internet Service (TEMIS)


Ozone depletion and climate change: impacts on UV radiation

A really interesting paper has been recently published by McKenzie et al. in Photochem. Photobiol. Sci.. This article presents a well documented review of the relationship between ozone depletion and climate change and its influence on the UV radiation at Earth’s surface. The paper indicates that because of the success of the Montreal Protocol, increases in UV-B radiation during the last two decades have been small outside regions affected by the Antarctic ozone hole. In addition, other atmospheric factors (mainly clouds and aerosols) also play an outstanding role on the variability of UV radiation at surface. Thus, the influence of the ozone depletion (and its recovery) on the UV radiation has been difficult to detect at mid-latitudes. The authors state that “without the Montreal Protocol, peak values of sunburning UV radiation could have been tripled by 2065 at mid-northern latitudes.”.

Regarding the interactions between ozone and climate change, the paper analyses both the effects of the implementation of the Montreal Protocol on climate change, and the influence of the increasing greenhouse gases on ozone recovery.


Sixth Regional Brewer Calibration Center for Europe intercomparison

The 6th Regional Brewer Calibration Center for Europe (RBCC-E) intercomparison will be held at El Arenosillo Atmospheric Sounding Station of the "Instituto de Técnica Aeroespacial" (INTA) during the period July 5 to 15 2011. This will be a join execercise of the Dobson and Brewer calibration centers for Europe. The QASUME unit of the Physikalisch-Meteorologisches Observatorium Davos / World Radiation Center (PMOD /WRC) will participate and provide a global UV reference spectrum for the ultraviolet measurements.
The campaign is scheduled in three main phases:
* Initial calibration to assess the current calibration of the instruments.
* Servicing, adjustments and maintenance works characterization test of the instruments.
* Final calibration. In this phase the ‘UV’ calibrations against the QASUME
Specific measurements for Brewer/Dobson comparison

Detailed information is available at the RBCC-E web page.


Ozone_cci project

The Ozone_cci project is part of the ESA Climate Change Initiative (CCI) Programme. Ozone_cci will develop, produce and validate long-term series of high quality global observations of atmospheric ozone derived from multiple satellite instruments that are essential to assess the fate of atmospheric ozone.
The task of the ESA Ozone-cci project is to improve on the scientific and operational exploitation of current European and Third Party Mission ozone monitoring sensors, by creating merged multi-sensors Essential Climate Variable (ECV) ozone time series that match the requirements formulated by GCOS, and allow reducing current uncertainties on the determination of ozone trends.
The Ozone_cci project team consists of 13 European partner institutions which are experts in the area of satellite retrieval algorithms, geophysical validation, system engineering and chemistry-climate modelling.


Scientific Assessment of Ozone Depletion 2010

The WMO/UNEP “Scientific Assessment of Ozone Depletion: 2010” will be ready in early 2011, but the executive summary of this report is already available. It provides new information about the relationship between the ozone layer and climate change, and highlights the successful implementation of the Montreal Protocol and its amendments.
The summary states that over the past decade, global ozone is no longer decreasing but is not yet increasing. Using numerical models of the Earth’s atmosphere, the report predicts that the stratospheric ozone layer will fully recover within the next 50 years.
Regarding the influence of ozone changes on ultraviolet radiation, the executive summary says that large UV levels in Antarctica continue to be seen when the springtime ozone hole is large. For instance, the Antarctic spring erythemal irradiance is approximately twice that measured in the Arctic for the same season. In addition, it is reaffirmed that at mid-latitudes, surface UV radiation has been about constant over the last decade, consistent with total ozone column observations over this period.


The empirically corrected TOMS data

In July 1996, the Total Ozone Mapping Spectrometer (TOMS) instrument was launched on the Earth Probe (EP) satellite. The total ozone column (TOC) observations derived from this satellite instrument began to display significant deviations from the ground truth by the middle of the year 2000. Haffner et al. (2004) indicated that the detected error in the instrument performance appears to depend on latitude, season, lifetime, and wavelength Thus, NASA GSFC warned users that EP-TOMS TOC data after the year 2000 are not recommended for the calculation of long-term ozone trends. To correct the influence of this instrument degradation, an empirical calibration technique was applied to the TOC data according to the personal comunication of McPeters et al. (2007). This empirically corrected TOMS data (EP-TOMS V8-corrected) has been made available since September 2007. The recent paper of Antón et al. (2010) presented the global comparisons between the TOC satellite observations derived from the V8-original and V8-corrected EP-TOMS data using reliable ground-based measurements as reference.This work showed that EP-TOMS V8-corrected total ozone data present a remarkable improvement concerning the significant negative bias of around ∼3% detected in the EP-TOMS V8-originnal observations after the year 2000.


Solar minimum 2008-2009

The descending phase of solar cycle 23 was long and gradual, and during 2008–2009, solar activity became extremely low. In late 2009, solar activity finally started to increase, but the period between mid-2007 and mid-2009 was one of the longest of recent solar minima. Recently, several interesting papers have been published about this subject. The work of Fröhlich (2010) has shown that the value of total solar irradiance during the solar minimum of 2008-2009 was more than 0.2 Wm−2 smaller than during the last minimum in 1996. Solomon et al. (2010) have indicated that that solar extreme ultraviolet irradiance levels during the solar minimum of 2008-2009 were also lower than they were during the previous solar minimum. Haigh et al. (2010) have shown that these spectral changes appear to have led to a significant decline from 2004 to 2007 in stratospheric ozone below an altitude of 45 km. Garcia (2010) states that these implications for Earth’s atmosphere must be viewed as provisional.


The First WMO Antarctic Ozone Bulletin of 2010

The WMO Antarctic Ozone Bulletin contains information on the state of the ozone layer in the Antarctic at roughly two week intervals from August to November. The bulletins are based on ground-based ozone data provided by WMO Members and satellites to observe ozone globally. The first bulletin in 2010 (7.2 MB) indicates "that the area where total ozone is less than 220 DU (“ozone hole area”) is low compared to recent years", adding that its evolution will depend on the meteorological conditions between now and early October, when depletion usually ends. Thus, "it is still too early to give a definitive statement about the development of this year's ozone hole and the degree of ozone loss that will occur", the bulletin stated.


New UV forecasting website

The new UV forecasting website - http://uvawareness.com/ - is a very useful tool. It provides a four day hourly UV forecast from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. for just about any location world wide.
This UV forecast data is harnessed from NOAA UV Index forecasting which uses the TUV radiative transfer code for deriving the erythemally weighted downwelling UV fluxes. This NOAA UV Index is computed using forecasted ozone data, and cloud amounts. In addition, climatological aerosol loading, variable snow and constant bare earth albedo, and elevation are used in the model.


Influence of ozone mini-holes on UV radiation

The International Journal of Climatology has recently published two papers about the ozone mini-holes effects over the UV radiation. Sola and Lorente study the impact of two mini-holes on erythemal UV irradiance over Barcelona (Spain). They find that this irradiance at noon was 36% higher on 10 January 2004 than the day before. This date corresponds with the minimum total ozone value recorded over the Iberian Peninsula. On the other hand, Martinez-Lozano et al. analyzed the low ozone level episodes over Valencia (Spain) during 2000-2007. The increase of UV radiation related to the decrease in total ozone is quantified at 1.29 times this decrease


Final Report COST 726

The final report of the the COST Action 726 “Long term changes and climatology of UV radiation over Europe” is available in its web page . The main objective of this action was to advance the understanding of UV radiation distribution under various meteorological conditions in order to determine a UV radiation climatology and assess UV changes over Europe.

The report has been written by leader authors, but it is a result of the collective efforts of the members of the four Working Groups, coming from 23 countries. CONGRATULATIONS!!!!!


The 25 anniversary of the discovery of the Antarctic ozone hole

To mark the 25 anniversary of the discovery of the Antarctic ozone hole, the prestigious journal Nature presents the original research paper reporting the high ozone decline over Antarctica in spring. In addition, a new Opinion piece from one of the paper's authors, plus a collection of related articles that have advanced our understanding of the stratosphere and the ozone layer.

Access selected content from the web focus free online:
the 25 anniversary of the discovery of the Antarctic ozone hole


UV radiation, Ozone and Aerosols over the Iberian Peninsula

The JGR has recently published three papers about these topics. Bilbao and de Miguel (2010) studied an empirical relationship between the solar ultraviolet-B (UV-B) in the range (280–315 nm) and the total global solar irradiation (G) in Valladolid (Spain). The results showed that G is an appropriate variable to obtain UV-B daily values in places where UV radiation is not measured or to extend the existing data set back in time. Mladenove et al. (2010) analyzed the relationships between spectroscopic (fluorescence and absorbance) properties of the water-soluble organic compounds in aerosol deposition and ground-based remote sensing measurements of aerosols in the atmospheric column in Granada (Spain). They found important differences between Saharan- and marine-dominated organic aerosols. Antón et al (2010) compared the total ozone retrieved with the passive DOAS methodology from zenith-sky observations by the SPATRAM spectrometer located in Evora (Portugal) with highly accurate total ozone data retrieved from direct-sun recordings by a well-calibrated Brewer instrument in El Arenosillo (Spain). The results showed that the differences observed between both systems is not associated with the natural spatial variability of the total ozone.


e-Atlas of erythemally UV Climatology over Europe

The COST ACTION 726 - Long term changes and climatology of Ultraviolet radiation over Europe - has just presented the "Electronic Atlas" of UV Climatology over Europe. This atlas enables you to extract reconstructed erythemally weighted daily dose values for a certain location and a certain period. Data are available from 1.1.1958 to 31.8.2002 for longitudes from 25°E to 35°W and latitudes from 30°N to 80°N. These data are mean values over an area of 1°x 1°. It is possible to extract daily values, monthly sums and to calculate a simple annual statistics.

The atlas is free for non-comercial use, and it can be downloaded in the following web:



The World Avoided by protecting the ozone layer

There are several very interesting papers in literature that analyse a future world where ozone depleting substances were never regulated by the Montreal Protocol. This protocol signed in 1989 was the first international agreement on regulation of chemical pollutants, and it is widely considered the most successful environmental treaty. Newman et al (ACP, 2009) show that 17% of the globally-averaged column ozone is destroyed by 2020, and 67% is destroyed by 2065 in comparison to 1980. Ozone levels in the tropical lower stratosphere remain constant until about 2053 and then collapse to near zero by 2058. Morgenstern et al. (GRL, 2008) indicate that the Montreal Protocol has not only averted further damage to the ozone layer but has helped prevent significant regional climate change. In this sense, Molina et al. (PNAS, 2009) state that the strengthening of the Montreal Protocol can phase down the production and consumption of hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) with high global warming potential. According the authors, this and other strategies may reduce the risk of abrupt climate change in the next few decades.


Interesting events in 2010

During the year 2010, there will take place several interesting events related to the Atmospheric Sciences:

- EGU (European Geosciences Union, General Assembly 2010), 2-7 May, Vienna, Austria.

- 37th Annual European Meeting on Atmospheric Studies by Optical Methods , 23-27 August, Valladolid, Spain.

- IAC (International Aerosol Conference) , 29 August- 3 September, Helsinki, Finland.

- SPIE Remote Sensing, 20-23 September, Toulouse, France.

- EUMETSAT Meteorological Satellite Conference, 20-24 September, Cordoba, Spain.


Atmospheric aerosol charecterization

A very interesting paper has been recently published in ACP about the atmospheric aerosol characterization for North Africa, Northeastern Atlantic, Mediterranean and Middle East. This work is based on the analysis of quality-assured direct-sun observations of 39 stations of the AErosol RObotic NETwork (AERONET). Its main objectives are two: to discriminate different aerosol types and to quantify the contribution of mineral dust. Large mineral dust is found to be the most important constituent in Northern Africa and Middle East. Under specific meteorological conditions, its transport to Southern Europe is observed from spring to autumn and decreasing with latitude.

More information in:



New OMI Ozone Profile data release

OMI Ozone Profile data (OMO3PR) is given in terms of the layer-columns of ozone in Dobson Unit (DU) for an 18-layer atmosphere. The layers are nominally bounded by the pressure levels: surface pressure, 700, 500, 300, 200, 150, 100, 70, 50, 30, 20, 10, 7, 5, 3, 2, 1, 0.5, and 0.3 hPa.

Detailed information about this product can be found at:


Full OMO3PR data, as well as subsets of these data over many ground stations and along Aura validation aircraft flights paths are available through the Aura Validation Data Center (AVDC) website


The Cal/Val Wiki Page

The Calibration (Cal) and Validation (Val) Portal of the European Space Agency (ESA) has a very nice tool where the community can edit or insert new topic regarding the Calibration and Validation of Satellite Data. The name is The Cal/Val Wiki Page.

The link to this page is the following: http://calvalportal.ceos.org/cvp/web/guest/cal/val-wiki



GlobAEROSOL is a project whose aim is to produce a global aerosol data set (1995-2007) from merging ATSR-2, AATSR, MERIS and SEVIRI satellite data.

The specific objetives of this project are:
1. Development of a satellite data processing system to generate a standard reference multi-year global aerosol product (GAP) over land and water.
2. Production of the GAP covering 1995–2007.
3. Validation of the GAP using independent ground-based measurements.
4. Intercomparison of the GAP with other satellite-based aerosol data sets.

Detailed information in: http://www.globaerosol.info/


Global long-term monitoring of the ozone

My colleague Diego Loyola from German Aerospace Center (DLR) has been just published an interesting article in International Journal of Remote Sensing. This paper demonstrates the importance of a consistent multi-year dataset of total ozone which is composed from different satellite instruments (GOME (ERS-2), SCIAMACHY (ENVISAT), and GOME-2 (METOP-A)). In addition, the paper gives some examples of how to use satellite data products to evaluate model results with respective data derived from observations, and to disclose the abilities and deficiencies of atmospheric models.

View/Download this Publication (PDF, 3 MB)


Spanish Lidar Network (SPALINET)

The Spanish Lidar Network (http://www.lidar.es/spalinet/en/) was created on 1 January, 2007. It aims to promote the use of lidar instruments and data among the Spanish scientific community. The mains goals of the network are:

• Extend and reinforce the actions of EARLINET (European Aerosol Research Lidar Network to Establish an Aerosol Climatology).
• The formation of a nucleus for the development of the Spanish and Portuguese lidar community.
• Promote the participation of new groups for improving the spatial coverage of aerosol vertical measurements on the Iberian Peninsula territory.


COST 726 Aerosol Climatology over Europe

The COST 726 Aerosol Climtology over Europe (25°W to 35°E and 31°N to 80°N) consists of monthly mean values of AOT at 308 nm in one data file (ascii).

If altitude is higher than 1 km the following correction should be applied: AOT=AOT / (altitude[km])^1.65

Angstrom coefficient: 1
Single scattering albedo: 0.94
Asymmetry factor: 0.75

This climatology is free for non-comercial use.


A brief history of stratospheric ozone research

Rolf Müller has published an interesting review of the stratospheric ozone research in Meteorologische Zeitschrift. This paper describes the discovery of ozone and the first tropospheric measurements, covering the discovery of the role of ozone as an absorber of solar radiation, and the first measurements of total column ozone. In addition, it presents the development of the understanding of the chemistry of stratospheric ozone, and the discovery of the ozone hole.

The full text can be downloaded in the following link:



The European Ozone Research Coordinating Unit

The European Ozone Research Coordinating Unit (EORCU) coordinates the atmospheric research within Europe, establishing worldwide links within the global atmospheric science community by means of coordinating large scale field campaigns, organising conferences and workshops.

EORCU currently coordinates the Stratospheric-Climate Links with Emphasis on the Upper Troposphere and Lower Stratosphere (SCOUT-O3) Project.


Report of the “El Arenosillo”/INTA-COST Calibration Campaign of UVER Radiometers

The El Arenosillo/INTA calibration and intercomparison campaign of UVER Broadband radiometers held in the observatory “El Arenosillo” (Spain) from 15 August to 21 September 2007. This event was part of the COST Action 726 Working Group 4 activities. The main procedures and results of this campaign have been published in the following report:

COST Action 726 - Report of the “El Arenosillo”/INTA-COST Calibration and Intercomparison Campaign of UVER Broadband Radiometers
ISBN: 978-84-692-2640-7

View/Download this Publication (pdf, 4 MB)


Interesting events in September 2009

In the next month of September, two important events will take place in Spain:

- The FOURTH INTERCOMPARISON CAMPAIGN OF THE REGIONAL BREWER CALIBRATION CENTER-EUROPE (RBCC-E) in a joint intercomparison campaign with the Regional Dobson Calibration Center-Europe (RDCC-E) will be held at the El Arenosillo Atmospheric Sounding Station - INTA (Huelva) during the period September 7th-17th, 2009

- The ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCE CONFERENCE, organised by the European Space Agency in Barcelona, 7-11 September 2009.


Altitude effect in UV radiation

The Research Group of Meteorology and Geophysics belonging to the University of Barcelona has just published an interesting paper in JGR. This article analyses the altitude effect (AE) for UV irradiance under cloudless conditions by taking spectral and broadband measurements in SE Spain at three nearby sites located at different heights (680 m, 2200 m, and 3398 m). The study was within The Evaluation of the Effects of Elevation and Aerosols on the Ultraviolet Radiation 2002 (VELETA-2002) field campaign. The AE for erythemally weighted irradiance ranged from 11 to 14% km−1between the lowest and highest stations when it was calculated from spectral measurements. Saharan dust caused an increase in AE, especially in the UVB region and in the erythemal irradiance.



The NOAA/EPA Brewer Spectrophotometer UV Monitoring Network (NEUBrew) is comprised of six Brewer Mark IV spectrophotometers located in the western, central and eastern United States. In addition to the Brewer instruments each site is equipped with considerable ancillary instrumentation that allows for expanded research opportunities. The NEUBrew website provides access to calibrated network data, data products, and on-line graphics displays for data and diagnostics.

The NEUBrew website is:


Total Ozone Climatology 1950-2004

The COST 726 Total Ozone Climatology (COC) consists of two data files and a easy to use program to extract a time series for a certain location. The program only needs latitude and longitude (decimal point) divided by a comma as input (e.g. 52.21,15.33). Time series, daily means for the period 01.01.1950 - 31.12.2004 is stored in a simple ASCII-file.


Krzyscin, J.W., Statistical Reconstruction of Daily Total Ozone over Europe 1950 to 2004, Journal of Geophysical Research, Vol.113, D07112, doi: 10.1029/2007JD008881, 2008


Forums of the O3M SAF project

The first products of the Satellite Application Facility on Ozone and Atmospheric Chemistry Monitoring (O3M SAF) (http://o3msaf.fmi.fi) have been declared operational. In this framework, a combined User Forum and Algorithm Forum workshop will be carried out in Greece between 2-4 June, 2009. The aim of the User Forum is to gather feedback from the user community on specific services and products disseminated by the O3M SAF. On the other hand, the aim of the Algorithm forum is to bring together the product developers of the team with other algorithm experts sharing their technical expertise and experience.

The most up-to-date information can be found from the web page:


Direct SW aerosol radiative forcing over Portugal

The aerosol research team belong to the Geophysics Centre of Évora (Portugal) has published an interesting article in ACP. This paper analyses the evaluation of the aerosol radiative forcing at the top of the atmosphere as well as at the surface over two ground-based stations located at the south of Portugal. The instantaneous direct SW aerosol radiative forcing values obtained at the top of the atmosphere are, in the majority of the cases, negative, indicating a tendency for cooling the Earth at the top of the atmosphere. The average surface direct SW aerosol radiative forcing efficiency is also negative with the more negative values corresponding to forest fire aerosols.



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12th Biennial WMO-GAW Brewer Users Group Meeting

This workshop will focus on the science and technical issues of the Brewer instrument and its role in the global ozone, aerosol and UV monitoring networks. In addition, there will also be a special data analysis session aimed at helping Brewer users perform the analysis and quality control functions needed to prepare Brewer data records for use in the 2010 WMO Ozone Assessment.

The meeting will be hosted by the Aosta Valley Regional Environmental Protection Agency (ARPA), Aosta (Italy), 20-26 September 2009.

More information in the meeting web site.


The strongest desert dust intrusion over the Iberian Peninsula

Cachorro et al. have published an interesting article in JGR. They analyze the strongest desert dust intrusion that occurred over the Iberian Peninsula (IP) during the last decade registered with Sun photometry. This extreme episode took place from 22 July to 3 August 2004. The most relevant features of this exceptional event, originated over the Saharan desert, were its great intensity and duration. Aerosol optical depth (AOD) reached a maximum of 2.7 at El Arenosillo during 22 July and 1.3 at Palencia on 23 July, with the Ansgtrom exponent values near zero during the AOD peaks.


Ozone Monitoring Instrument

The OMI satellite instrument is a contribution of the Netherlands's Agency for Aerospace Programs (NIVR) in collaboration with the Finnish Meteorological Institute (FMI), and it is onboard NASA EOS/Aura platform launched in July 2004. This remote sensing UV spectrometer continues currently with the measurements recorded by the NASA Total Ozone Mapping Spectrometer (TOMS) instrument which was operative on board of two satellites: Nimbus-7 (1978-1993) and Earth Probe (EP) (1996-2005).

The total ozone column over many locations (in Spain: Badajoz, El Arenosillo, Madrid and Valencia ) can be obtained in the following ftp site:



Active fire monitoring over continental Portugal

The Active Fire Monitoring (FIR) is a product that displays information on the presence of fire within a pixel and it is obtained directly from the European Organization for the Exploitation of Meteorological Satellites (EUMETSAT). The information for continental Portugal is made available in this page in near real time (15 to 20 minutes delay) with a spatial resolution of 3×3km².


The 2008 ozone hole

The 2008 ozone hole is larger both in size and ozone loss that 2007 but is not as large as 2006.

More information in: ESA News


Ozone trends at northern mid- and high latitudes

The paper "Ozone trends at northern mid- and high latitudes – a European perspective" by Harris et al., has been recently published in Annales Geophysicae. This interesting paper shows the main conclusions of the EU CANDIDOZ project which investigated the chemical and dynamical influences on decadal ozone trends focusing on the Northern Hemisphere. The results shows an almost monotonic negative trend from the late 1970s to the mid 1990s followed by an increase in the NH mid latitudes and in the Arctic. The article analyzes the chemical and dynamical causes of this ozone increase.


Training School over UV Radiation

This “Training School” is organized by the COST 726: Long term changes and climatology of biologically effective UV Radiation over Europe. The main objetive is the understanding of biologically effective solar UV radiation in an interdisciplinary context, using the knowledge base and results from COST Action 726. A further aim is to educate a pool of national experts with the knowledge and international contacts to promote and disseminate their understanding of recent and past values of biologically effective UV radiation across all fields of science.

More information in the web of COST Action 726


Ozone mini-holes

Extreme low ozone episodes called ozone mini-holes are characterized by a quick and small-scale decrease in total ozone amount followed by an equally rapid recovery after a few days. These anomalous events have been observed in both hemispheres in winter or early spring. In mid-latitudes, these episodes can be explained by different dynamic processes such as the displacement of the polar vortex, the influence of planetary waves, the advection from the tropics of air patches with low total ozone content and vertical uplift of isentropic air-mass in the lower and middle stratosphere.
The following article analyses the main characteristic of these anomalous events:


International Radiation Symposium 2008

The International Radiation Symposium (IRS2008) on Current Problems in Atmospheric Radiation will be held during August 3-8, 2008 at Foz do Iguaçu, Brazil. The Symposium is organized every four years by the International Radiation Commission (IRC). This will be the first edition in South America and is an opportunity to share ideas and experiences on the current problems in atmospheric radiation from theory and modeling to measurements and applications on weather and climate.

More information in the following link:


Ozone vs. Climate change

Ozone and climate change are linked in two important ways:
  • The greenhouse gases produces near-surface global warming. This fact is expected to cool the stratosphere, and in turn, it is expected to produce a relative increase in stratospheric ozone depletion.
  • Conversely, ozone is a radiative forcing of the climate system. There are two opposing effects. On the one hand, ozone increases in the troposphere from pollution associated with human activities leads to a warming of Earth’s surface. In contrast, stratospheric ozone depletion represents a small negative forcing, which leads to cooling of Earth’s surface.

There are several interesting links which detail this subject:


European Fleet for Airborne Research (EUFAR)

EUFAR (http://www.eufar.net/) is an European project which aims at coordinating the operations of the European fleet of instrumented aircraft in the field of environmental research in the atmospheric, marine, terrestrial and Earth sciences. EUFAR is divided in several expert working groups such as aerosols, radiation and remote sensing.

EUFAR is organizing its 2nd Summer School on Airborne Cloud and AerosolScience (ACAS) open to PhD students and Post Docs. This school will take place in Utrecht, The Netherlands from April 14th to April 25th 2008. The aim of the school is to train students in airborne research focused on aerosols and clouds.



The project "Ozone layer and UV radiation in a changing climate evaluated during the IPY (ORACLE-O3)" deals with experimental and modelling research on the ozone layer, UV radiation and the effects of personal UV exposure during the International Polar Year 2007-2008 (IPY). This project is divided into 7 main activities:

  • Ozone loss (detection and impact on UV radiation)
  • PSC and cirrus
  • Atmospheric chemistry
  • UV radiation
  • Ozone and climate change and feedback
  • Data management
  • Education, outreach and communication

ORACLE-O3 project has contributions from 67 research institutions in 22 countries. Spanish constribution is summarized in this presentation:


Aerosol references and links

My colleage Dra. Sandra Mogo from University of Beira Interior (Portugal) focuses her research on the nature and behavior of aerosols (optical properties, laboratory and field measurements, optical instrumentation, radiative forcing and modelization). Sandra has a close collaboration with the Atmospheric Optical Group from University of Valladolid (Spain).

Sandra's web-page contains two very interesting lists about aerosol science:


Valencia Anchor Station

Valencia Anchor Station (VAS) is an automatic meteorological station equipped with a large number of instruments to carry out validation activities of remote sensing data and products . It is located at about 80 km from the city of Valencia (Spain) in a reasonably homogeneous and flat area of about 50x50 km2.

The main scientific objectives of the VAS are:

VAS takes part in validation and calibration activities of satellite sensors corresponding to several missions such as EarthCARE (Earth Clouds, Aerosols and Radiation Explorer) and CERES (Clouds and the Earth’s Radiant Energy System).

More information in its web:


WMO Sand and Dust Storm Warning System for Europe, Africa and Middle East

Spain is currently implementing a WMO Regional Sand and Dust Storm Warning System Centre for Europe, Africa and Middle East. This Regional Centre aims to achieve three major objectives:
  • provide real-time information from a core-operational and quality controlled dust monitoring and forecasting system.

  • maintain a web portal with both research and near-real information and links to available dust forecasting and monitoring systems within the region.

  • implement a web-oriented modelling and observational historical data base available for case-study and climatological analysis.

More information in the following link:


The Spanish Antarctic base is already opened

After many hard working days in the last couple of weeks, "Gabriel de Castilla" Antarctic Base is completely operative. At all, 14 Spaniards and 1 Mexican will stay during three months in this far place. My colleages Antonio Serrano (row of down, second by the left) and Maria Luisa Cancillo (row of above, second by the right) have already started their research works about the radiative budget in the permafrost (frozen ground) . Good Luck!!!!


GOME-2 Team

I would like to write about the group within which I am currently doing a research stay. The GOME-2 Team at DLR belongs to Remote Sensing Technology Institute (IMF) . Its main research topics are related with the algorithm development in order to obtain total columns products of ozone, minor trace gases and cloud properties. These satellite products are generated at DLR in the framework of the Satellite Application Facility on Ozone and Atmospheric Chemistry Monitoring (O3M SAF).

The Global Ozone Monitoring Experiment-2 (GOME-2) is one of the new-generation European instruments carried on MetOp-A (launched in October 2006). It continues the long-term monitoring of atmospheric trace gases started by GOME on ERS-2 and SCIAMACHY on Envisat.


Arrival to Antarctica

My colleages Antonio Serrano and María Luísa Cancillo from University of Extremadura have already arrived to Deception Island. The meteorological conditions have been quite unfavorable during The Drake passage, between Cape Horn and Antarctica. In addition, the "Gabriel de Castilla" Spanish Base has a lot of snow cover (about 2 meters). Thus, the instalation works will be very hard.

In the Base campaign dairy, there is current information about this antarctic expedition.

El Pais newspaper has published a broad information about the arrival to Antactican of this expedition.


Quadrennial Ozone Symposium

The 2008 Quadrennial Ozone Symposium will take place in Tromsø, Norway, from 29 June to 5 July 2008. The main topics are:
  • Ozone depletion in a historical perspective

  • Observations – total ozone, vertical distribution, analysis and evaluation

  • UV changes

  • Tropospheric ozone – trends, precursors, emissions

  • Climate ozone interaction

  • Ozone recovery

More information in the symposium web:


Carlos Toledano

I visited my colleague Dr. Carlos Toledano last week. He is currently doing a postdoctoral research stay at Meteorological Institute from University of Munich. He works together with Dr. Peter Koepke in the Radiation and Remote Sensing Group.

Carlos focuses his research on the study of atmospheric aerosols with optical methods. He did his Ph.D. thesis at Atmospheric Optics Group from University of Valladolid (Spain).


Antarctic Research

The AIRE group of the University of Extremadura is also involved in Antarctic research. Thus, next week, María Luisa Cancillo and Antonio Serrano, members of this research group, will travel to Decepción Island to carry out research activities related to the energy balance of the permafrost. They will stay at the "Gabriel de Castilla" Spanish Antarctic Base for two months.

More information in the following link:


6rd Spanish-Portuguese Assembly of Geodesy and Geophysics

The 6rd Spanish-Portuguese Assembly of Geodesy and Geophysics will be held the next February 2008 in Tomar (Portugal).

Information about topics, deadlines, etc, in the following link:


Iberian Aerosols Measuments Network (RIMA)

RIMA (Red Ibérica de Medida fotométrica de Aerosoles) Network is currently maded up of 15 Cimel photometer. This network is greatly expanded by collaborators from national institutes and universities from Spain and Portugal. RIMA Network is coordinated by University of Valladolid (Spain) and it is associated with AERONET network.

AIRE research group (University of Extremadura) is participating since 2004 with a Cimel photometer located at Cáceres.

More information about RIMA Network in its web (in Spanish):


German Aerospace Center (DLR)

Currently, I am a visiting scientist at Remote Sensing Technology Institute (IMF) at DLR in Wessling near to Munich (Germany). The research stay will last until the end of January 2008 and it focus on the ozone data comparison between GOME-2 satellite instrument and Brewer spectroradiometers in Iberian Peninsula.

This research stay is a continuation of a O3-SAF VS Activity carried out the past year which was summarized in this report:


7th EMS Annual Meeting

European Meteorological Society (EMS) Annual Meeting was held in San Lorenzo de El Escorial, Madrid, Spain from 1 to 5 October 2007. This event addressed a wide spectrum of scientific and application topics in atmospheric sciences – Atmosphere and the Water Cycle, Forecasting the Weather from one day to one year ahead, Climatology (under the auspices of ECSN) and Meteorology and Society.

In this meeting, Dr. Francisco Javier Acero belonging AIRE research group presented the following study:

UV radiation conference in Davos

To celebrate the 100th anniversary of the Physikalisch-Meteorologisches Observatorium Davos (PMOD/WRC), a conference dedicated to solar UV radiation research carried out in Davos (Switzerland) from 18 to 20 September 2007. The conference got together about 100 scientists interested in solar UV radiation, with topics ranging from measurements and modelling, to the influence of UV radiation on humans and climate.

Dr. Antonio Serrano belonging to AIRE Research Group (Extremadura University) participated in this interesting event and he presented the following works:

Calibration campaign of broad-band UV radiometer Arenosillo 2007

The first Spanish calibration campaign of ultraviolet broad-band radiometer was carried out at the “El Arenosillo” INTA station in Huelva (Spain), from 20 August to 15 September 2007. This campaign was organized by Spanish Institute of Aerospace Technology (INTA) and University of Extremadura with the colaboration of Spanish Institute of Meteorology (INM).
In all, 22 broad-band UV instruments from 13 institutions took part in this important event.