Aerolab CNR is a new mobile laboratory ISAC-CNR in Rome for the high temporal resolution measure (minutes) of the optical and physical properties of the suspended particulate matter in the air (aerosols). Aerolab extent such concentrations resolved aerosol size, nanoparticles (10 billionths of a meter) to ‘giant’ particulate (30 millionths of a meter); measuring the amount of ‘black carbon’ into the atmosphere, that is, the black and carcinogenic particulate produced by the combustion; measuring the optical-spectral properties of the particles, from which derives their ability to alter the Earth’s radiative budget, then the climate. Using a radar laser tool (called ceilometer), finally, the extent of the particulate distribution with altitude, from the first layers of the atmosphere up to 15 km altitude. This tool allows, inter alia, to identify the presence in the atmosphere of Saharan dust, of from fires or clouds from volcanic eruptions or measure hour after hour the vertical development of that portion of the atmosphere in which we live call “mixed layer”, whose extension has a strong influence on the concentration of pollutants that we breathe to the ground.
This ability to observe, next to the parameters required by European standards such as PM2.5 and PM10, currently polluting ‘non regulated’, make Aerolab a single mobile unit in Italy, able to measure those variables that the World Health Organization (WHO) defines paramount to assess the impact of particulate air pollution on human health.
Realized within the group ‘Poemha’ ISAC, Aerolab made his debut on the field in the port of Civitavecchia in April 2016, as part of the coordinated international campaign dall’Isac-CNR ‘Air-Sea Lab’. On this occasion Aerolab also host advanced tools for studying particulate chemical: a mass spectrometer aerosol ISAC Bologna and INFN-Cnr hours a sampler for the analysis of the individual elements contained in the same particulate, analysis which will be carried out at the particle accelerator of Florence. This configuration is an optimum for the characterization of those ‘particulate matter’ whose impacts on the climate of the planet and the health of its inhabitants are becoming increasingly important.
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