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Atmosphere, Volume 12, Issue 10 (October 2021) – 137 articles

Cover Story (view full-size image): The Kathmandu Valley, which is surrounded by high hills and mountains, has been plagued by air pollution, especially in winter. We measured the levels of gaseous air pollutants such as volatile organic compounds in the Kathmandu Valley during the winter to investigate the impact of vehicular emissions and the contribution to secondary pollutants. It was indicated that gasoline components, which were emitted more frequently by engine combustion than gasoline evaporation, were the most common gaseous pollutants and significantly contributed to photochemical ozone production. View this paper.
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Article
Surface Urban Heat Island Assessment of a Cold Desert City: A Case Study over the Isfahan Metropolitan Area of Iran
Atmosphere 2021, 12(10), 1368; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/atmos12101368 - 19 Oct 2021
Viewed by 471
Abstract
This study investigates the diurnal, seasonal, monthly and temporal variation of land surface temperature (LST) and surface urban heat island intensity (SUHII) over the Isfahan metropolitan area, Iran, during 2003–2019 using MODIS data. It also examines the driving factors of SUHII like cropland, [...] Read more.
This study investigates the diurnal, seasonal, monthly and temporal variation of land surface temperature (LST) and surface urban heat island intensity (SUHII) over the Isfahan metropolitan area, Iran, during 2003–2019 using MODIS data. It also examines the driving factors of SUHII like cropland, built-up areas (BI), the urban–rural difference in enhanced vegetation index (ΔEVI), evapotranspiration (ΔET), and white sky albedo (ΔWSA). The results reveal the presence of urban cool islands during the daytime and urban heat islands at night. The maximum SUHII was observed at 22:30 p.m., while the minimum was at 10:30 a.m. The summer months (June to September) show higher SUHII compared to the winter months (February to May). The daytime SUHII demonstrates a robust positive correlation with cropland and ΔWSA, and a negative correlation with ΔET, ΔEVI, and BI. The nighttime SUHII displays a negative correlation with ΔET and ΔEVI. Full article
(This article belongs to the Topic Climate Change and Environmental Sustainability)
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Article
Evaluation of ERA-5 Precipitable Water Vapor Data in Plateau Areas: A Case Study of the Northern Qinghai-Tibet Plateau
Atmosphere 2021, 12(10), 1367; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/atmos12101367 - 19 Oct 2021
Viewed by 339
Abstract
In order to verify the accuracy of precipitable water vapor (PWV) in remote sensing and reanalysis datasets under different climatic conditions and ensure the reliability of analysis results, the performances of ERA-5 reanalysis PWV data and the Atmospheric Infrared Sounder (AIRS) remotely-sensed PWV [...] Read more.
In order to verify the accuracy of precipitable water vapor (PWV) in remote sensing and reanalysis datasets under different climatic conditions and ensure the reliability of analysis results, the performances of ERA-5 reanalysis PWV data and the Atmospheric Infrared Sounder (AIRS) remotely-sensed PWV data were tested in the northern Qinghai-Tibet Plateau by using weather balloon radiosonde data from meteorological stations from 2002 to 2016. The coincidence degree of total cloud cover was also verified, and then the PWV data precision with different levels of cloud cover was analyzed. The results show that: (1) Both ERA-5 and AIRS data underestimate PWV in the studied high plateau region, and higher altitude leads to greater deviation. (2) Compared with AIRS data, ERA-5 data have better consistency with radiosonde data in PWV and total cloud cover. (3) For the long-term trend of PWV, the ERA-5 data are the opposite to the radiosonde data with a clear sky, but both datasets showed a significant increasing trend in cloudy skies. It can be concluded that in high altitude areas, the ERA-5 data can be used for general analysis, but are not well qualified to reflect the changing trend of PWV under climate change. Full article
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Article
Impacts of the COVID-19 Lockdown Measures on the 2020 Columnar and Surface Air Pollution Parameters over South-Eastern Italy
Atmosphere 2021, 12(10), 1366; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/atmos12101366 - 19 Oct 2021
Viewed by 304
Abstract
The combined use of Lecce-University AERONET-photometer measurements and PM2.5, PM10, NO2, CO, and SO2 concentrations from different sites of Apulia-Region Air-Quality Agency represents the peculiarity of this study, which evaluates the impact of COVID-19 lockdown (LD) measures on aerosol and [...] Read more.
The combined use of Lecce-University AERONET-photometer measurements and PM2.5, PM10, NO2, CO, and SO2 concentrations from different sites of Apulia-Region Air-Quality Agency represents the peculiarity of this study, which evaluates the impact of COVID-19 lockdown (LD) measures on aerosol and gaseous pollutants. Monthly-averaged columnar and surface parameters of the 2020-year were compared with corresponding monthly parameters of the ref-year obtained by averaging 2017, 2018, and 2019 measurements in order to evaluate LD measure impacts by Average Percent Departure (APD%). Photometer measurements showed that LD measures were likely responsible for the decrease in Aerosol Optical Depth (AOD). The APD% estimated between the 2020- and ref-year AOD (at 440 nm) was characterized by negative values from June to August, reaching the smallest mean value (−46%) in June. Moreover, the columnar aerosol load appeared less affected by continental urban/industrial particles than previous years in the summer of 2020. The PM-concentration-APD% calculated at ten sites was characterized by monthly trends similar to those of AOD-APD%. PM-APD% values varied from site to site and smaller values (up to −57% in June) were on average detected at urban/suburban sites than at background sites (up to −37%). The impact of LD measures on gaseous pollutants was observed from the onset of LD. Full article
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Article
Estimation of Biogas Generated in Two Landfills in South-Central Ecuador
Atmosphere 2021, 12(10), 1365; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/atmos12101365 - 19 Oct 2021
Viewed by 615
Abstract
The landfill is a final disposal technique to confine municipal solid waste (MSW), where organic matter is degraded generating leachate and biogas composed of methane gases (CH4), carbon dioxide (CO2) and other gases that contribute to global warming. The [...] Read more.
The landfill is a final disposal technique to confine municipal solid waste (MSW), where organic matter is degraded generating leachate and biogas composed of methane gases (CH4), carbon dioxide (CO2) and other gases that contribute to global warming. The objective of the current research was to estimate the amount of biogas generated through the LandGEM 3.03 mathematical model to determine the amount of electrical energy generated and the number of homes that would be supplied with electrical energy from 2021 to 2144. As a result of the application, it was estimated that in the Pichacay landfill, the highest point of biogas generation in 2053 would be 76,982,177 (m3/year) that would generate 81,226,339.36 (kWh/year), and would supply 5083 homes with electricity. Similarly, in the Las Iguanas landfill, the highest point would be 693,975,228 (m3/year) of biogas that produces 73,223,5296.7 (kWh/year) and would supply electricity to 45,825 homes. Of the performed gas analyses in the Pichacay landfill in 2020, an average of 51.49% CH4, 40.35% CO2, 1.75% O2 and 17.8% H2S was presented, while in the Las Iguanas landfill, for 2020 and 2021, we obtained an average of 51.88/CH4, 36.62% CO2, 1.01% O2 and 187.58 ppm H2S. Finally, the biogas generated by being harnessed minimizes the impacts related to global warming and climate change and would contribute electricity to the nearby communities. Full article
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Article
Comparison of PM10 Sources at Traffic and Urban Background Sites Based on Elemental, Chemical and Isotopic Composition: Case Study from Krakow, Southern Poland
Atmosphere 2021, 12(10), 1364; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/atmos12101364 - 19 Oct 2021
Viewed by 343
Abstract
In large urban agglomerations, car traffic is one of the main sources of particulate matter. It consists of particulate matter directly generated in the process of incomplete liquid fuel burning in vehicle engine, secondary aerosols formed from exhaust gaseous pollutants (NOx, [...] Read more.
In large urban agglomerations, car traffic is one of the main sources of particulate matter. It consists of particulate matter directly generated in the process of incomplete liquid fuel burning in vehicle engine, secondary aerosols formed from exhaust gaseous pollutants (NOx, SO2) as well as products of tires, brake pads and pavement abrasion. Krakow is one of the cities in Europe with the highest concentrations of particulate matter. The article presents the results of combined elemental, chemical and isotopic analyses of particulate matter PM10 at two contrasting urban environments during winter and summer seasons. Daily PM10 samples were collected during the summer and winter seasons of 2018/2019 at two stations belonging to the network monitoring air quality in the city. Mean PM10 concentrations at traffic-dominated stations were equal to 35 ± 7 µg/m3 and 76 ± 28 µg/m3 in summer and winter, respectively, to be compared with 25.6 ± 5.7 µg/m3 and 51 ± 25 µg/m3 in summer and winter, respectively, recorded at the urban background station. The source attribution of analyzed PM10 samples was carried out using two modeling approaches: (i) The Positive Matrix Factorization (PMF) method for elemental and chemical composition (concentrations of elements, ions, as well as organic and elemental carbon in daily PM10 samples), and (ii) Isotope Mass Balance (IMB) for 13C and 14C carbon isotope composition of carbonaceous fraction of PM10. For PMF application, five sources of particulate matter were identified for each station: fossil fuel combustion, secondary inorganic aerosols, traffic exhaust, soil, and the fifth source which included road dust, industry, construction work. The IMB method allowed the partitioning of the total carbon reservoir of PM10 into carbon originating from coal combustion, from biogenic sources (natural emissions and biomass burning) and from traffic. Both apportionment methods were applied together for the first time in the Krakow agglomeration and they gave consistent results. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Air Quality in Poland)
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Article
Response of Northern Populations of Black Spruce and Jack Pine to Southward Seed Transfers: Implications for Climate Change
Atmosphere 2021, 12(10), 1363; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/atmos12101363 - 18 Oct 2021
Viewed by 317
Abstract
A variety of responses to climate change have been reported for northern tree populations, primarily from tree-ring and satellite-based studies. Here we employ provenance data to examine growth and survival responses of northern populations (defined here as those occurring north of 52° N) [...] Read more.
A variety of responses to climate change have been reported for northern tree populations, primarily from tree-ring and satellite-based studies. Here we employ provenance data to examine growth and survival responses of northern populations (defined here as those occurring north of 52° N) of black spruce (Picea mariana) and jack pine (Pinus banksiana) to southward seed transfers. This space for time substitution affords insights into potential climate change responses by these important northern tree species. Based on previous work, we anticipated relatively flat response curves that peak at much warmer temperatures than those found at seed source origin. These expectations were generally met for growth-related responses, with peak growth associated with seed transfers to environments with mean annual temperatures 2.2 and 3.6 °C warmer than seed source origin for black spruce and jack pine, respectively. These findings imply that northern tree populations harbor a significant amount of resilience to climate warming. However, survival responses told a different story, with both species exhibiting reduced survival rates when moved to warmer and drier environments. Together with the growth-based results, these findings suggest that the warmer and drier conditions expected across much of northern Canada under climate change may reduce survival, but surviving trees may grow at a faster rate up until a certain magnitude of climate warming has been reached. We note that all relationships had high levels of unexplained variation, underlining the many factors that may influence provenance study outcomes and the challenges in predicting tree responses to climate change. Despite certain limitations, we feel that the provenance data employed here provide valuable insights into potential climate change outcomes for northern tree populations. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Climate-Vegetation Interactions in Northern High Latitudes)
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Article
Recent Changes in Storm Track over the Southeast Europe: A Mechanism for Changes in Extreme Cyclone Variability
Atmosphere 2021, 12(10), 1362; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/atmos12101362 - 18 Oct 2021
Viewed by 326
Abstract
Recent changes in cyclone tracks crossing Southeast Europe are investigated for the last few decades (1980–1999 compared with 2000–2019) using a developed objective method. The response in number, severity, and persistence of the tracks are analyzed based on the source of origin (the [...] Read more.
Recent changes in cyclone tracks crossing Southeast Europe are investigated for the last few decades (1980–1999 compared with 2000–2019) using a developed objective method. The response in number, severity, and persistence of the tracks are analyzed based on the source of origin (the Mediterranean Sea sub-domains) and the target area (Romania-centered domain). In winter, extreme cyclones became more frequent in the south and were also more persistent in the northeast of Romania. In summer, these became more intense and frequent, mainly over the south and southeast of Romania, where they also showed a significant increase in persistence. The regional extreme changes are related to polar jet displacements and further enhanced by the coupling of the sub-tropical jet in the Euro-Atlantic area, such as southwestwards shift in winter jets and a split-type configuration that shifts northeastwards and southeastwards in the summer. These provide a mechanism for regional variability of extreme cyclones through two paths, respectively, by shifting the origins of the tracks and by shifting the interaction between the anomaly jet streaks and the climatological storm tracks. Large-scale drivers of these changes are analyzed in relation to the main modes of atmospheric variability. The tracks number over the target domain is mainly driven during the cold season through a combined action of AO and Polar–European modes, and in summer by the AMO and East-Asian modes. These links and the circulation mode’s recent variability are consistent with changes found in the jet and storm tracks. Full article
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Article
Possible Linkages of Hydrological Variables to Ocean–Atmosphere Signals and Sunspot Activity in the Upstream Yangtze River Basin
Atmosphere 2021, 12(10), 1361; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/atmos12101361 - 18 Oct 2021
Viewed by 325
Abstract
Profiling the hydrological response of watershed precipitation and streamflow to large-scale circulation patterns and astronomical factors provides novel information into the scientific management and prediction of regional water resources. Possible contacts of El Niño–Southern Oscillation (ENSO), Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO), sunspot activity to [...] Read more.
Profiling the hydrological response of watershed precipitation and streamflow to large-scale circulation patterns and astronomical factors provides novel information into the scientific management and prediction of regional water resources. Possible contacts of El Niño–Southern Oscillation (ENSO), Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO), sunspot activity to precipitation and streamflow in the upper Yangtze River basin (UYRB) were investigated in this work. Monthly precipitation and streamflow were utilized as well as contemporaneous same-scale teleconnections time series spanning a total of 70 years from 1951 to 2020 in precipitation and 121 years from 1900 to 2020 in streamflow. The principal component analysis (PCA) method was applied so as to characterize the dominant variability patterns over UYRB precipitation time series, with the temporal variability of first two modes explaining more than 80% of total variance. Long-term evolutionary pattern and periodic variation characteristics of precipitation and streamflow are explored by applying continuous wavelet transform (CWT), cross-wavelet transform (XWT) and wavelet coherence (WTC), analyzing multi-scale correlation between hydrological variables and teleconnections in the time-frequency domain. The results manifest that ENSO exhibits multiple interannual period resonance with precipitation and streamflow, while correlations are unstable in time and phase. PDO and sunspot effects on precipitation and streamflow at interannual scales vary with time-frequency domains, yet significant differences are exhibited in their effects at interdecadal scales. PDO exhibits a steady negative correlation with streamflow on interdecadal scales of approximately 10 years, while the effect of sunspot on streamflow exhibits extremely steady positive correlation on longer interdecadal scales of approximately 36 years. Analysis reveals that both PDO and sunspot have significantly stronger effects on streamflow variability than precipitation, which might be associated with the high spatiotemporal variability of precipitation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Meteorology)
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Article
Offshore Wind and Wave Energy Complementarity in the Greek Seas Based on ERA5 Data
Atmosphere 2021, 12(10), 1360; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/atmos12101360 - 18 Oct 2021
Viewed by 482
Abstract
In this work, 20 years (2000–2019) of ERA5 wave and wind data are analyzed and evaluated for the Greek Seas by means of in-situ measurements derived from the POSEIDON marine monitoring system. Four different statistical measures were used at six locations, where in-situ [...] Read more.
In this work, 20 years (2000–2019) of ERA5 wave and wind data are analyzed and evaluated for the Greek Seas by means of in-situ measurements derived from the POSEIDON marine monitoring system. Four different statistical measures were used at six locations, where in-situ wind and wave measurements are available from oceanographic buoys. Furthermore, the ERA5 wind and wave datasets were utilized for the estimation of the available wind and wave energy potential for the Greek Seas, as well as for the assessment of complementarity and synergy between the two resources. In this respect, an event-based approach was adopted. The spatial distribution of the available wind and wave energy potential resembles qualitatively and quantitatively the distributions derived from other reanalysis datasets. Locations with high synergy and complementarity indices were identified taking into account water depth. Finally, taking into consideration a particular offshore wind turbine power curve and the power matrix of the PELAMIS wave energy converter, the estimation of the combined energy potential on a mean annual basis is performed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Topic Climate Change and Environmental Sustainability)
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Article
Diagnosis of Atmospheric Drivers of High-Latitude Evapotranspiration Using Structural Equation Modeling
Atmosphere 2021, 12(10), 1359; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/atmos12101359 - 18 Oct 2021
Viewed by 366
Abstract
Evapotranspiration (ET) is a relevant component of the surface moisture budget and is associated with different drivers. The interrelated drivers cause variations at daily to interannual timescales. This study uses structural equation modeling to diagnose the drivers over an ensemble of 45 high-latitude [...] Read more.
Evapotranspiration (ET) is a relevant component of the surface moisture budget and is associated with different drivers. The interrelated drivers cause variations at daily to interannual timescales. This study uses structural equation modeling to diagnose the drivers over an ensemble of 45 high-latitude sites, each of which provides at least several years of in situ measurements, including latent heat fluxes derived from eddy covariance flux towers. The sites are grouped by vegetation type (tundra, forest) and the presence or absence of permafrost to determine how the relative importance of different drivers depends on land surface characteristics. Factor analysis is used to quantify the common variance among the variables, while a path analysis procedure is used to assess the independent contributions of different variables. The variability of ET at forest sites generally shows a stronger dependence on relative humidity, while ET at tundra sites is more temperature-limited than moisture-limited. The path analysis shows that ET has a stronger direct correlation with solar radiation than with any other measured variable. Wind speed has the largest independent contribution to ET variability. The independent contribution of solar radiation is smaller because solar radiation also affects ET through various other drivers. The independent contribution of wind speed is especially apparent at forest wetland sites. For both tundra and forest vegetation, temperature loads higher on the first factor when permafrost is present, implying that ET will become less sensitive to temperature as permafrost thaws. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Climate-Vegetation Interactions in Northern High Latitudes)
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Article
Objective Calibration of Numerical Weather Prediction Model: Application on Fine Resolution COSMO Model over Switzerland
Atmosphere 2021, 12(10), 1358; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/atmos12101358 - 18 Oct 2021
Viewed by 391
Abstract
The objective calibration method originally performed on regional climate models is applied to a fine horizontal resolution Numerical Weather Prediction (NWP) model over a mainly continental domain covering the Alpine Arc. The method was implemented on the MeteoSwiss COSMO (consortium for a small-scale [...] Read more.
The objective calibration method originally performed on regional climate models is applied to a fine horizontal resolution Numerical Weather Prediction (NWP) model over a mainly continental domain covering the Alpine Arc. The method was implemented on the MeteoSwiss COSMO (consortium for a small-scale modeling) model with a resolution of 0.01° (approximately 1 km). For the model calibration, five tuning parameters of the parameterization schemes affecting turbulence, soil-surface exchange and radiation were chosen. A full year was simulated, with the history of the soil included (hindcast) to find the optimal parameter value. A different year has been used to give an independent assessment of the impact of the optimization process. Although the operational MeteoSwiss model is already a well-tuned configuration, the results showed that a slight model performance gain is obtained by using the Calibration of COSMO (CALMO) methodology. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Land Surface and its Interaction with the Atmosphere)
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Article
Atmospheric Deposition on the Southwest Coast of the Southern Basin of Lake Baikal
Atmosphere 2021, 12(10), 1357; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/atmos12101357 - 17 Oct 2021
Viewed by 297
Abstract
A precipitation monitoring station in Listvyanka was set up to determine the potential impact of the coastal area on the state of the adjacent air environment above Lake Baikal on its southwest coast. This article presents the results of studying the chemical composition [...] Read more.
A precipitation monitoring station in Listvyanka was set up to determine the potential impact of the coastal area on the state of the adjacent air environment above Lake Baikal on its southwest coast. This article presents the results of studying the chemical composition of atmospheric deposition (aerosols and precipitation) at this station in 2020, and of their comparison with the data from previous years (from 2000 to 2019). In 2020, the ionic composition of atmospheric aerosols and precipitation had changed compared to previous years. In the modern period, the total amount of ions in aerosols, accounting for 0.46 ± 0.40 μg∙m−3, was lower by an order of magnitude than between 2000 and 2004. The average annual total amount of ions in precipitation in Listvyanka was almost unchanged from the average values in 2000–2010 and was 10% lower than that from 2011 to 2019 (7.3 mg/L). The ratio of major ions of sulphates and ammonium changed in the aerosol composition: compared to the period from 2000 to 2004, in 2020, the contribution of ammonium ions had decreased significantly, from 32% to 24%; the contribution of sulphates had increased to 43%, and the contribution of calcium had increased from 8 to 13%. Since 2010, the contribution of K+ ions has increased to 8–10%, indicating the effect of smoke aerosols from wildfires. In precipitation, despite the dominance of sulphates (26%) and calcium (18%) throughout the year, the contribution of nitrates increases to 19% during the cold season (from October to March), while the contribution of ammonium ions and hydrogen ions increases to 13% and 17%, respectively, in the warm season (from April to September). In 2020, as in previous research years, the acidity of precipitation at the Listvyanka station was elevated (pH 5.1 ± 0.5); 50% of precipitation in 2020 had pH ˂ 5. We quantified ions in atmospheric aerosols and precipitation on the underlying surface of the coastal southwestern part of Lake Baikal. Ion fluxes with precipitation were the highest in the warm season, which corresponds to the annual maximum precipitation. Unlike previous years (from 2000 to 2010 and from 2011 to 2019), wet deposition of most ions—especially calcium, ammonium and nitrates—had decreased in 2020. There was a 35-fold decrease in nitrogen fluxes and a 5-fold decrease in sulphur fluxes in aerosols, as well as 1.6-fold and 1.3-fold decreases, respectively, in precipitation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Climatology)
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Article
Characteristics and Extent of Particulate Matter Emissions of a Ropeway Public Mobility System in the City Center of Perugia (Central Italy)
Atmosphere 2021, 12(10), 1356; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/atmos12101356 - 17 Oct 2021
Viewed by 236
Abstract
Minimetrò (MM) is a ropeway public mobility system that has been in operation in the city of Perugia for about ten years to integrate with urban mobility and lighten vehicular traffic in the historic city center. The purpose of this work was to [...] Read more.
Minimetrò (MM) is a ropeway public mobility system that has been in operation in the city of Perugia for about ten years to integrate with urban mobility and lighten vehicular traffic in the historic city center. The purpose of this work was to evaluate the impact of MM as a source of pollutants in the urban context, and the exposure of people in the cabins and the platforms along the MM line. These topics have been investigated by means of intensive measurement and sampling campaigns performed in February and June 2015 on three specific sites of the MM line representative of different sources and levels of urban pollution. Stationary and dynamic measurements of particle size distribution, nanoparticle and black carbon aerosol number and mass concentrations measurements were performed by means of different bench and portable instruments. Aerosol sampling was carried out using low volume and high-volume aerosol samplers, and the samples nalysed by off-line methods. Results show that MM is a considerable source of atmospheric particulate matter having characteristics very similar to those of the common urban road dust in Perugia. In the lack of clear indications on road dust effect, the contribution of MM to the aerosol in Perugia cannot be neglected. Full article
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Review
Research Progress for Dynamic Effects of Cities on Precipitation: A Review
Atmosphere 2021, 12(10), 1355; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/atmos12101355 - 16 Oct 2021
Viewed by 384
Abstract
Citization significantly changes original surface properties. City areas can cause surface winds to decrease; furthermore, ground friction can be transferred layer by layer through the momentum exchange of air movement, which affects the air layers above. Precipitation modification by city environments has been [...] Read more.
Citization significantly changes original surface properties. City areas can cause surface winds to decrease; furthermore, ground friction can be transferred layer by layer through the momentum exchange of air movement, which affects the air layers above. Precipitation modification by city environments has been an active research area. Under the conditions of high wind speed, the dynamic effects of cities on precipitation are relatively obvious. Generally, the dynamic effects fall into two main categories: (1) for weather systems under weak forcing synoptic backgrounds, such as local convective systems, shorter-lived extreme precipitation events and fronts and city barrier effects can delay the movement of weather systems, directly change the horizontal distribution characteristics and occurrence time for precipitation, change the flow field and structure, cause the bifurcation of weather systems, and change the horizontal distribution characteristics of precipitation; (2) for weather systems under strong forcing synoptic backgrounds, such as extratropical systems (with large-scale moisture transport), monsoon systems, landfalling tropical cyclones, and supercell storms, the impact of the dynamic effects of cities cannot lead to the bifurcation of the weather system, nor can it change the horizontal distribution characteristics of the whole precipitation field, but it can have an impact on the local precipitation intensity and distribution. However, currently, people do not agree on the impact of cities on precipitation, especially regarding tropical cyclones. Hence, we provide a review and provide insights into the dynamic effects of cities on precipitation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Atmospheric Boundary Layer: Observation and Simulation)
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Review
Vehicle Emissions and Air Quality: The Early Years (1940s–1950s)
Atmosphere 2021, 12(10), 1354; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/atmos12101354 - 16 Oct 2021
Viewed by 447
Abstract
During the 1940s, an unusual form of air pollution was experienced in the Los Angeles (LA) area of Southern California. Referred to as LA smog, this pollution differed from previously known air pollution with respect to its temporal patterns (daytime formation and nighttime [...] Read more.
During the 1940s, an unusual form of air pollution was experienced in the Los Angeles (LA) area of Southern California. Referred to as LA smog, this pollution differed from previously known air pollution with respect to its temporal patterns (daytime formation and nighttime dissipation), eye irritation, high oxidant levels, and plant damage. Early laboratory and field experimentation discovered the photochemical origins of LA smog. Though mechanistic understanding was incomplete, it was determined that hydrocarbon (HC) compounds in the atmosphere participate in smog formation, enabling build-up of higher ozone concentrations than would otherwise occur. It being a significant source, there was great interest in characterizing and controlling HC emissions from motor vehicles. Considerable work was done in the 1940s and 1950s to understand how emissions varied with vehicle operating conditions and deterioration of engine components. During this time, procedures were developed (and improved) to sample and quantify vehicle emissions. Besides exhaust, HC emissions from crankcase blowby, carburetor evaporation, and fuel tank losses were measured and characterized. Initial versions of both catalytic and non-catalytic exhaust after-treatment systems were developed. The knowledge gained from this pre-1960 work laid the foundation for many advancements that reduced vehicle emissions and improved air quality during subsequent decades. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Air Quality Impacts of Vehicle Emissions)
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Article
Determine the Land-Use Land-Cover Changes, Urban Expansion and Their Driving Factors for Sustainable Development in Gazipur Bangladesh
Atmosphere 2021, 12(10), 1353; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/atmos12101353 - 16 Oct 2021
Viewed by 394
Abstract
At present, urbanization is a very common phenomenon around the world, especially in developing countries, and has a significant impact on the land-use/land-cover of specific areas, producing some unwanted effects. Bangladesh is a tightly inhabited country whose urban population is increasing every day [...] Read more.
At present, urbanization is a very common phenomenon around the world, especially in developing countries, and has a significant impact on the land-use/land-cover of specific areas, producing some unwanted effects. Bangladesh is a tightly inhabited country whose urban population is increasing every day due to the expansion of infrastructure and industry. This study explores the land-use/land-cover change detection and urban dynamics of Gazipur district, Bangladesh, a newly developed industrial hub and city corporation, by using satellite imagery covering every 10-year interval over the period from 1990 to 2020. Supervised classification with a maximum likelihood classifier was used to gather spatial and temporal information from Landsat 5 (TM), 7 (ETM+) and 8 (OLI/TIRS) images. The Geographical Information System (GIS) methodology was also employed to detect changes over time. The kappa coefficient ranged between 0.75 and 0.90. The agricultural land was observed to be shrinking very rapidly, with an area of 716 km2 in 2020. Urbanization increased rapidly in this area, and the urban area grew by more than 500% during the study period. The urbanized area expanded along major roads such as the Dhaka–Mymensingh Highway and Dhaka bypass road. The urbanized area was, moreover, concentrated near the boundary line of Dhaka, the capital city of Bangladesh. Urban expansion was found to be influenced by demographic-, economic-, location- and accessibility-related factors. Therefore, similarly to many countries, concrete urban and development policies should be formulated to preserve the environment and, thereby, achieve sustainable development goal (SDG) 11 (sustainable cities and communities). Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Application of Remote Sensing Cloud Computing in Land Surface Change)
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Article
Short-Term Associations between Morbidity and Air Pollution in Metropolitan Area of Monterrey, Mexico
Atmosphere 2021, 12(10), 1352; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/atmos12101352 - 15 Oct 2021
Viewed by 355
Abstract
Short-term effects of air pollution on the number of hospital admissions in eight municipalities of the Metropolitan Area of Monterrey, Mexico, were assessed from 2016 to 2019 using a time-series approach. Air quality data were obtained from the Atmospheric Monitoring System of Nuevo [...] Read more.
Short-term effects of air pollution on the number of hospital admissions in eight municipalities of the Metropolitan Area of Monterrey, Mexico, were assessed from 2016 to 2019 using a time-series approach. Air quality data were obtained from the Atmospheric Monitoring System of Nuevo Leon State (SIMA) which belongs to SINAICA (National System of Air Quality Information), providing validated data for this study. Epidemiological data were provided by SINAIS (National System of Health Information), considering admission by all causes and specific causes, gender and different age groups. Guadalupe had the highest mean concentrations for SO2, CO and O3; whereas Santa Catarina showed the highest NO2 concentrations. Escobedo and Garcia registered the highest levels for PM10. Only PM10 and O3 exceeded the permissible maximum values established in Mexican official standards. A basal Poisson model was constructed to assess the association between daily morbidity and air pollutants, from this, a second scenario in which daily mean concentrations of air pollutant criteria increase by 10% was considered. Most of pollutants and municipalities studied showed a great number of associations between an increase of 10% in their current concentrations and morbidity, especially for the age group between 5 and 59 years during cold months, excepting ozone which showed a strongest correlation during summer. Results were comparable to those reported by other authors around the world, however, in spite of relative risk index (RRI) values being low, they are of public concern. This study demonstrated that considering the nature of their activities, economically active population and students, they could be more vulnerable to air pollution effects. Results found in this study can be used by decision makers to develop public policies focused on protecting this specific group of the population in metropolitan areas in Mexico. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Air Pollution and Public Health Effects)
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Article
Climatology of Spread F over Tucumán from Massive Statistical Analysis of Autoscaled Data
Atmosphere 2021, 12(10), 1351; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/atmos12101351 - 15 Oct 2021
Viewed by 162
Abstract
Automatic ionogram interpretation methods developed for real-time ionospheric monitoring can be applied in retrospective studies to analyze large quantities of data. The Autoscala software, implemented for such a purpose, includes a routine for automatic detection of diffused echoes known as spread F, which [...] Read more.
Automatic ionogram interpretation methods developed for real-time ionospheric monitoring can be applied in retrospective studies to analyze large quantities of data. The Autoscala software, implemented for such a purpose, includes a routine for automatic detection of diffused echoes known as spread F, which appear in ionograms due to the presence of ionospheric irregularities along the radio signal path. The main objective of this routine is to reject bad quality ionograms. This new capability was used in a climatological study including a large number of ionograms recorded at the low-latitude ionospheric station of Tucumán (26.9° S, 294.6° E, magnetic latitude 15.5° S, Argentina). The study took into account different levels of geomagnetic and solar activity from 2012 to 2020. The results demonstrate the capability of Autoscala to capture the main signature characteristics of spread F and the temporal evolution of the ionosphere peak heigh hmF2, capturing the post-sunset plasma surge that precedes development of spread F. Maximum occurrence of spread F is observed in local summer, with a tendency to shift before midnight with increasing solar activity. Other new climatological details that emerged from the study are illustrated and briefly discussed, dealing with connection with geomagnetic activity, and morning hmF2 behavior after extremely marked nighttime spread F occurrence. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Upper Atmosphere)
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Article
Long-Term Variability of Dust Events in Southwestern Iran and Its Relationship with the Drought
Atmosphere 2021, 12(10), 1350; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/atmos12101350 - 15 Oct 2021
Viewed by 323
Abstract
Dust storms represent a major environmental challenge in the Middle East. The southwest part of Iran is highly affected by dust events transported from neighboring desert regions, mostly from the Iraqi plains and Saudi Arabia, as well as from local dust storms. This [...] Read more.
Dust storms represent a major environmental challenge in the Middle East. The southwest part of Iran is highly affected by dust events transported from neighboring desert regions, mostly from the Iraqi plains and Saudi Arabia, as well as from local dust storms. This study analyzes the spatio-temporal distribution of dust days at five meteorological stations located in southwestern Iran covering a period of 22 years (from 1997 to 2018). Dust codes (06, 07, 30 to 35) from meteorological observations are analyzed at each station, indicating that 84% of the dust events are not of local origin. The average number of dust days maximizes in June and July (188 and 193, respectively), while the dust activity weakens after August. The dust events exhibit large inter-annual variability, with statistically significant increasing trends in all of five stations. Spatial distributions of the aerosol optical depth (AOD), dust loading, and surface dust concentrations from a moderate resolution imaging spectroradiometer (MODIS) and Modern-Era Retrospective analysis for Research and Applications (MERRA-2) retrievals reveal high dust accumulation over southwest Iran and surrounding regions. Furthermore, the spatial distribution of the (MODIS)-AOD trend (%) over southwest Iran indicates a large spatial heterogeneity during 2000–2018 with trends ranging mostly between −9% and 9% (not statistically significant). 2009 was the most active dust year, followed by 2011 and 2008, due to prolonged drought conditions in the fertile crescent and the enhanced dust emissions in the Iraqi plains during this period. In these years, the AOD was much higher than the 19-year average (2000 to 2018), while July 2009 was the dustiest month with about 25–30 dust days in each station. The years with highest dust activity were associated with less precipitation, negative anomalies of the vegetation health index (VHI) and normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) over the Iraqi plains and southwest Iran, and favorable meteorological dynamics triggering stronger winds. Full article
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Article
A Theoretical Study of the N2 + H2 Reactive Collisions for High Vibrational and Translational Energies
Atmosphere 2021, 12(10), 1349; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/atmos12101349 - 15 Oct 2021
Viewed by 188
Abstract
High translational temperatures appear in the air inside the shock waves layers created by relatively large meteorites, reentry space vehicles, and hypersonic missiles. Under these conditions, reactions between molecular nitrogen and hydrogen are energetically permitted. In the present work, a quasiclassical trajectories study [...] Read more.
High translational temperatures appear in the air inside the shock waves layers created by relatively large meteorites, reentry space vehicles, and hypersonic missiles. Under these conditions, reactions between molecular nitrogen and hydrogen are energetically permitted. In the present work, a quasiclassical trajectories study of the N2(v)+H2(v) reaction for relative translational energies covering the range of translational energy 20.0Etr/kcalmol1120.0 is presented. In the calculations, several values of vibrational quantum numbers v=0,4,6,8,10,12 and v=4,6,8,10,12 have been considered. To model the interatomic interactions, a six-dimension global potential energy surface for the ground electronic state of N2H2 was used. The specific initial state reaction cross-sections and rate coefficients are reported. The energy effects produced by the reaction that could influence the shock wave modeling are here considered. An analysis of the possible impact of these processes under the atmospheric composition is also presented. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Theoretical Chemistry of Atmospheric Processes)
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Article
Sulfur and Nitrogen Oxides in the Atmosphere of Lake Baikal: Sources, Automatic Monitoring, and Environmental Risks
Atmosphere 2021, 12(10), 1348; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/atmos12101348 - 15 Oct 2021
Viewed by 205
Abstract
This paper analyzes the results of the automatic (in situ) recording of the regional transport of pollutants from the large regional coal-fired thermal power plants in the atmospheric boundary layer above the southern basin of Lake Baikal. Due to high stacks (about 200 [...] Read more.
This paper analyzes the results of the automatic (in situ) recording of the regional transport of pollutants from the large regional coal-fired thermal power plants in the atmospheric boundary layer above the southern basin of Lake Baikal. Due to high stacks (about 200 m), emissions from large thermal power plants rise to the altitudes of several hundreds of meters and spread over long distances from their source by tens and hundreds of kilometers. The continuous automatic monitoring of the atmosphere in the southern basin of Lake Baikal on top of the coastal hill (200 m above the lake) revealed the transport of a large number of sulfur oxides and nitrogen oxides in the form of high-altitude plumes from thermal power plants of the large cities located 70 to 100 km to the northwest of the lake (Irkutsk and Angarsk). The consequence of such transport is the increased acidity of precipitation in the southern basin of Lake Baikal and the additional influx of biogenic nitrogen compounds to the lake ecosystem. The spatial scale and possible risks of such regional transport of air pollution for the lake ecosystem require further closer study. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Air Quality Management)
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Article
Diurnal Dynamics of the Umov Kinetic Energy Density Vector in the Atmospheric Boundary Layer from Minisodar Measurements
Atmosphere 2021, 12(10), 1347; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/atmos12101347 - 14 Oct 2021
Viewed by 381
Abstract
The diurnal hourly dynamics of the kinetic energy flux density vector, called the Umov vector, and the mean and turbulent components of the kinetic energy are estimated from minisodar measurements of wind vector components and their variances in the lower 200 m layer [...] Read more.
The diurnal hourly dynamics of the kinetic energy flux density vector, called the Umov vector, and the mean and turbulent components of the kinetic energy are estimated from minisodar measurements of wind vector components and their variances in the lower 200 m layer of the atmosphere. During a 24 h period of continuous minisodar observations, it was established that the mean kinetic energy density dominated in the surface atmospheric layer at altitudes below ~50 m. At altitudes from 50 to 100 m, the relative contributions of the mean and turbulent wind kinetic energy densities depended on the time of the day and the sounding altitude. At altitudes below 100 m, the contribution of the turbulent kinetic energy component is small, and the ratio of the turbulent to mean wind kinetic energy components was in the range 0.01–10. At altitudes above 100 m, the turbulent kinetic energy density sharply increased, and the ratio reached its maximum equal to 100–1000 at altitudes of 150–200 m. A particular importance of the direction and magnitude of the wind effect, that is, of the direction and magnitude of the Umov vector at different altitudes was established. The diurnal behavior of the Umov vector depended both on the time of the day and the sounding altitude. Three layers were clearly distinguished: a near-surface layer at altitudes of 5–15 m, an intermediate layer at altitudes from 15 m to 150 m, and the layer of enhanced turbulence above. The feasibility is illustrated of detecting times and altitudes of maximal and minimal wing kinetic energy flux densities, that is, time periods and altitude ranges most and least favorable for flights of unmanned aerial vehicles. The proposed novel method of determining the spatiotemporal dynamics of the Umov vector from minisodar measurements can also be used to estimate the effect of wind on high-rise buildings and the energy potential of wind turbines. Full article
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Article
Quantitative Precipitation Forecasting Using an Improved Probability-Matching Method and Its Application to a Typhoon Event
Atmosphere 2021, 12(10), 1346; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/atmos12101346 - 14 Oct 2021
Viewed by 321
Abstract
This present study aims to explore how forecasters can quickly make accurate predictions by using various high-resolution model forecasts. Based on three high temporal-spatial resolution (3 km, hourly) numerical weather prediction models (CMA-MESO, CMA-GD, CMA-SH3) from the China Meteorological Administration (CMA), the hourly [...] Read more.
This present study aims to explore how forecasters can quickly make accurate predictions by using various high-resolution model forecasts. Based on three high temporal-spatial resolution (3 km, hourly) numerical weather prediction models (CMA-MESO, CMA-GD, CMA-SH3) from the China Meteorological Administration (CMA), the hourly precipitation characteristics of three model within 24 h from March to September 2020 are discussed and integrated into a single, hourly, deterministic quantitative precipitation forecast (QPF) by making use of an improved weighted moving average probability-matching method (WPM). The results are as follows: (1) In non-rainstorm forecasts, CMA-MESO and CMA-GD have similar forecast abilities. However, in rainstorm forecasts, CMA-MESO has a notable advantage over the other two models. Thus, CMA-MESO is selected as a critical factor when participating in sensitivity experiments. (2) Compared with the traditional equal-weight probability-matching method (PM), the WPM improves the different grade QPF because it can effectively reduce rainfall pattern bias by making use of the weighted moving average (WMA). Additionally, the WPM threat score in rainstorm forecast similarly improved from 0.051 to 0.056, with a 9.8% increase relative to the PM. (3) The sensitivity experiments show that an optimal rainfall intensity score (WPM-best) can further improve the QPF and overcome all single models in both rainstorm and non-rainstorm forecasts, and the WPM-best has a rainstorm threat score skill of 0.062, with an increase of 21.6% compared with the PM. The performance of the WPM-best will be better if the precipitation intensity is stronger and the valid forecast periods is longer. It should be noted that there is no need to select models before using the WPM-best method, because WPM-best can give a very low weight to the less-skillful model in a more objective way. (4) The improved WPM method is also applied to investigate the heavy-rainfall case induced by typhoon Mekkhala (2020), where the improved WPM technique significantly improves rainstorm forecasting ability compared with a single model. Full article
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Article
Unorganized Machines to Estimate the Number of Hospital Admissions Due to Respiratory Diseases Caused by PM10 Concentration
Atmosphere 2021, 12(10), 1345; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/atmos12101345 - 14 Oct 2021
Viewed by 334
Abstract
The particulate matter PM10 concentrations have been impacting hospital admissions due to respiratory diseases. The air pollution studies seek to understand how this pollutant affects the health system. Since prediction involves several variables, any disparity causes a disturbance in the overall system, [...] Read more.
The particulate matter PM10 concentrations have been impacting hospital admissions due to respiratory diseases. The air pollution studies seek to understand how this pollutant affects the health system. Since prediction involves several variables, any disparity causes a disturbance in the overall system, increasing the difficulty of the models’ development. Due to the complex nonlinear behavior of the problem and their influencing factors, Artificial Neural Networks are attractive approaches for solving estimations problems. This paper explores two neural network architectures denoted unorganized machines: the echo state networks and the extreme learning machines. Beyond the standard forms, models variations are also proposed: the regularization parameter (RP) to increase the generalization capability, and the Volterra filter to explore nonlinear patterns of the hidden layers. To evaluate the proposed models’ performance for the hospital admissions estimation by respiratory diseases, three cities of São Paulo state, Brazil: Cubatão, Campinas and São Paulo, are investigated. Numerical results show the standard models’ superior performance for most scenarios. Nevertheless, considering divergent intensity in hospital admissions, the RP models present the best results in terms of data dispersion. Finally, an overall analysis highlights the models’ efficiency to assist the hospital admissions management during high air pollution episodes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Assessing Atmospheric Pollution and Its Impacts on the Human Health)
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Article
A Gaussian Process Method with Uncertainty Quantification for Air Quality Monitoring
Atmosphere 2021, 12(10), 1344; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/atmos12101344 - 14 Oct 2021
Viewed by 331
Abstract
The monitoring and forecasting of particulate matter (e.g., PM2.5) and gaseous pollutants (e.g., NO, NO2, and SO2) is of significant importance, as they have adverse impacts on human health. However, model performance can easily degrade due to [...] Read more.
The monitoring and forecasting of particulate matter (e.g., PM2.5) and gaseous pollutants (e.g., NO, NO2, and SO2) is of significant importance, as they have adverse impacts on human health. However, model performance can easily degrade due to data noises, environmental and other factors. This paper proposes a general solution to analyse how the noise level of measurements and hyperparameters of a Gaussian process model affect the prediction accuracy and uncertainty, with a comparative case study of atmospheric pollutant concentrations prediction in Sheffield, UK, and Peshawar, Pakistan. The Neumann series is exploited to approximate the matrix inverse involved in the Gaussian process approach. This enables us to derive a theoretical relationship between any independent variable (e.g., measurement noise level, hyperparameters of Gaussian process methods), and the uncertainty and accuracy prediction. In addition, it helps us to discover insights on how these independent variables affect the algorithm evidence lower bound. The theoretical results are verified by applying a Gaussian processes approach and its sparse variants to air quality data forecasting. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Air Quality in the UK)
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Article
A Fast-Converging Kernel Density Estimator for Dispersion in Horizontally Homogeneous Meteorological Conditions
Atmosphere 2021, 12(10), 1343; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/atmos12101343 - 14 Oct 2021
Viewed by 300
Abstract
Kernel smoothers are often used in Lagrangian particle dispersion simulations to estimate the concentration distribution of tracer gasses, pollutants etc. Their main disadvantage is that they suffer from the curse of dimensionality, i.e., they converge at a rate of [...] Read more.
Kernel smoothers are often used in Lagrangian particle dispersion simulations to estimate the concentration distribution of tracer gasses, pollutants etc. Their main disadvantage is that they suffer from the curse of dimensionality, i.e., they converge at a rate of 4/(d+4) with d the number of dimensions. Under the assumption of horizontally homogeneous meteorological conditions, we present a kernel density estimator that estimates a 3D concentration field with the faster convergence rate of a 1D kernel smoother, i.e., 4/5. This density estimator has been derived from the Langevin equation using path integral theory and simply consists of the product between a Gaussian kernel and a 1D kernel smoother. Its numerical convergence rate and efficiency are compared with that of a 3D kernel smoother. The convergence study shows that the path integral-based estimator has a superior convergence rate with efficiency, in mean integrated squared error sense, comparable with the one of the optimal 3D Epanechnikov kernel. Horizontally homogeneous meteorological conditions are often assumed in near-field range dispersion studies. Therefore, we illustrate the performance of our method by simulating experiments from the Project Prairie Grass data set. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Air Pollution Modelling)
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Article
Relationships among Indoor Radon, Earthquake Magnitude Data and Lung Cancer Risks in a Residential Building of an Apulian Town (Southern Italy)
Atmosphere 2021, 12(10), 1342; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/atmos12101342 - 14 Oct 2021
Viewed by 387
Abstract
(1) Background: The association of radon-222 with lung cancer is well studied. The aim of the study was to validate a model of indoor radon measurements, to apply radon software to estimate lung cancer cases that are attributable to radon and to [...] Read more.
(1) Background: The association of radon-222 with lung cancer is well studied. The aim of the study was to validate a model of indoor radon measurements, to apply radon software to estimate lung cancer cases that are attributable to radon and to study the relationship between radon and earthquakes. (2) Methods: Different data detectors were used to obtain radon measurements in different places. Continuous data collection and predictions of indoor radon concentrations were carried out. Software was used to assess radon-attributable lung cancer cases, and data related to earthquake magnitudes were downloaded from Italian Vulcanology Institute. (3) Results: As expected, the highest radon concentrations were observed on the ground floor (232 ± 232 Bq/m3), with higher values measured during winter than in other seasons. The comparison of the detectors showed the overlapping of the two detectors-measured data sets. The cases of lung cancer that were attributable to radon in Locorotondo were studied (3.66/10,000). From the multivariate analysis of the relationship between high radon concentrations and high earthquake magnitude values, they show statistically significant ORs of just over 1. (4) Conclusions: Although the measured values are, on average, within the reference level, prevention measures must be implemented, as the measured radon values allow us to estimate an expected value of 3.66 cases of lung cancer per 10,000 people in the resident population. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Atmospheric Radon Measurements, Control, Mitigation and Management)
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Article
Comparing Four Types Methods for Karst NDVI Prediction Based on Machine Learning
Atmosphere 2021, 12(10), 1341; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/atmos12101341 - 13 Oct 2021
Viewed by 387
Abstract
As a link for energy transfer between the land and atmosphere in the terrestrial ecosystem, karst vegetation plays an important role. Karst vegetation is not only affected by environmental factors but also by intense human activities. The nonlinear characteristics of vegetation growth are [...] Read more.
As a link for energy transfer between the land and atmosphere in the terrestrial ecosystem, karst vegetation plays an important role. Karst vegetation is not only affected by environmental factors but also by intense human activities. The nonlinear characteristics of vegetation growth are induced by the interaction mechanism of these factors. Previous studies of this relationship were not comprehensive, and it is necessary to further explore it using a suitable method. In this study, we selected climate, human activities, topography, and soil texture as the response factors; a nonlinear relationship model between the karst normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) and these factors was established by applying a back propagation neural network (BPNN), a radial basis function neural network (RBFNN), the random forest (RF) algorithm, and support vector regression (SVR); and then, the karst NDVI was predicted. The coefficient of determination (R2), mean square error (MSE), root mean square error (RMSE), and mean absolute percentage error (MAPE) of the obtained results were calculated, and the mean R2 values of the BPNN, RBFNN, RF, and SVR models were determined to be 0.77, 0.86, 0.89, and 0.91, respectively. Compared with the BPNN, RBFNN, and RF models, the SVR model had the lowest errors, with mean MSE, RMSE, and MAPE values of 0.001, 0.02, and 2.77, respectively. The results show that the BPNN, RBFNN, RF, and SVR models are within acceptable ranges for karst NDVI prediction, but the overall performance of the SVR model is the best, and it is more suitable for karst vegetation prediction. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Application of Remote Sensing Cloud Computing in Land Surface Change)
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Article
Effects of Long-Term Nitrogen Fertilization and Ground Water Level Changes on Soil CO2 Fluxes from Oil Palm Plantation on Tropical Peatland
Atmosphere 2021, 12(10), 1340; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/atmos12101340 - 13 Oct 2021
Viewed by 694
Abstract
A long-term study on the effect of nitrogen (N) fertilization on soil carbon dioxide (CO2) fluxes in tropical peatland was conducted to (1) quantify the annual CO2 emissions from an oil palm plantation under different N application rates and (2) [...] Read more.
A long-term study on the effect of nitrogen (N) fertilization on soil carbon dioxide (CO2) fluxes in tropical peatland was conducted to (1) quantify the annual CO2 emissions from an oil palm plantation under different N application rates and (2) evaluate the temporal effects of groundwater level (GWL) and water-filled pore space (WFPS) on soil organic carbon (SOC) and CO2 fluxes. Monthly measurement of soil CO2 fluxes using a closed chamber method was carried out from January 2010 until December 2013 and from January 2016 to December 2017 in an oil palm plantation on tropical peat in Sarawak, Malaysia. Besides the control (T1, without N fertilization), there were three N treatments: low N (T2, 31.1 kg N ha−1 year−1), moderate N (T3, 62.2 kg N ha−1 year−1), and high N (T4, 124.3 kg N ha−1 year−1). The annual CO2 emissions ranged from 7.7 ± 1.2 (mean ± SE) to 16.6 ± 1.0 t C ha−1 year−1, 9.8 ± 0.5 to 14.8 ± 1.4 t C ha−1 year−1, 10.5 ± 1.8 to 16.8 ± 0.6 t C ha−1 year−1, and 10.4 ± 1.8 to 17.1 ± 3.9 t C ha−1 year−1 for T1, T2, T3, and T4, respectively. Application of N fertilizer had no significant effect on annual cumulative CO2 emissions in each year (p = 0.448), which was probably due to the formation of large quantities of inorganic N when GWL was temporarily lowered from January 2010 to June 2010 (−80.9 to −103.4 cm below the peat surface), and partly due to low soil organic matter (SOM) quality. A negative relationship between GWL and CO2 fluxes (p < 0.05) and a positive relationship between GWL and WFPS (p < 0.001) were found only when the oil palm was young (2010 and 2011) (p < 0.05), indicating that lowering of GWL increased CO2 fluxes and decreased WFPS when the oil palm was young. This was possibly due to the fact that parameters such as root activity might be more predominant than GWL in governing soil respiration in older oil palm plantations when GWL was maintained near or within the rooting zone (0–50 cm). This study highlights the importance of roots and WFPS over GWL in governing soil respiration in older oil palm plantations. A proper understanding of the interaction between the direct or indirect effect of root activity on CO2 fluxes and balancing its roles in nutrient and water management strategies is critical for sustainable use of tropical peatland. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Agricultural Greenhouse Gas Emissions)
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Article
Impact of Agricultural Drought on Sunflower Production across Hungary
Atmosphere 2021, 12(10), 1339; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/atmos12101339 - 13 Oct 2021
Viewed by 449
Abstract
In the last few decades, agricultural drought (Ag.D) has seriously affected crop production and food security worldwide. In Hungary, little research has been carried out to assess the impacts of climate change, particularly regarding droughts and crop production, and especially on regional scales. [...] Read more.
In the last few decades, agricultural drought (Ag.D) has seriously affected crop production and food security worldwide. In Hungary, little research has been carried out to assess the impacts of climate change, particularly regarding droughts and crop production, and especially on regional scales. Thus, the main aim of this study was to evaluate the impact of agricultural drought on sunflower production across Hungary. Drought data for the Standardized Precipitation Index (SPI) and the Standardized Precipitation Evapotranspiration Index (SPEI) were collected from the CARBATCLIM database (1961–2010), whereas sunflower production was collected from the Hungarian national statistical center (KSH) on regional and national scales. To address the impact of Ag.D on sunflower production, the sequence of standardized yield residuals (SSYR) and yield losses YlossAD was applied. Additionally, sunflower resilience to Ag.D (SRAg.D) was assessed on a regional scale. The results showed that Ag.D is more severe in the western regions of Hungary, with a significantly positive trend. Interestingly, drought events were more frequent between 1990 and 2010. Moreover, the lowest SSYR values were reported as −3.20 in the Hajdu-Bihar region (2010). In this sense, during the sunflower growing cycle, the relationship between SSYR and Ag.D revealed that the highest correlations were recorded in the central and western regions of Hungary. However, 75% of the regions showed that the plantation of sunflower is not resilient to drought where SRAg.Dx < 1. To cope with climate change in Hungary, an urgent mitigation plan should be implemented. Full article
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