In the multidisciplinary study of atmospheric aerosols there are many different research lines which may be considered as independent. The so-called “remote sensing” and “in situ” techniques define two important areas giving rise to focus on aerosol climate studies or that composing the area of air quality. The main activity of GOA is the study of columnar aerosol properties using sun-photometer measurements with the objective of aerosol characterization at local, regional and global scales in order to evaluate the aerosol climatology and its radiative impact on climate (aerosol radiative forcing). This scientific task mainly based on the data of our own or collaborative stations (a total of 6, see Our AERONET sites) is carried out together with the operational task of sunphotometer calibration. This is done in the context of AERONET-Europe and ACTRIS (see Calibration Facility).
The measure and analysis of atmospheric aerosols by “in situ” techniques is the necessary complement of the study of columnar aerosol properties. In this way, a global characterization of aerosol optical properties by means of the measurements of the scattering and absorption coefficients and the microphysical properties by the measure of the particle size distributions can be achieved.
The GOA-UVa in collaboration with ESAT-INTA developed in 2003 the “in situ aerosol laboratory” installed at El Arenosillo. Afterwards in 2010 the GOA-UVa developed its own “in situ aerosol laboratory”, first located at Fuente La Mora (7 km away from Valladolid) and since 2013 installed at Covilha, University of Beira Interior, Portugal. Full description and data are provided in the web page of the GOA-UVa in situ measurement station.