Department Prof. Dr. Jos Lelieveld
Our research focuses on photo-oxidation mechanisms, which play a central role in the self-cleaning capacity of the atmosphere. We develop highly sensitive instrumentation to measure trace gases, including reactive radicals that occur in minute amounts in ambient air, to uncover the photochemical reaction chains. We have specialized in the construction of new instrumentation for application on aircraft. Fast laser-optical, mass spectrometric and relatively fast gas chromatographic techniques, for example, are used to determine the key oxidants and breakdown products of hydrocarbons. Our studies include laboratory investigations, field measurements on aircraft and ships, and the use of satellite observations. We also develop computer models to simulate the interactions of chemical and meteorological processes, and investigate the impact of atmospheric composition changes on climate and planetary health in the Anthropocene.