Kies de Nederlandse taal
Course module: NS-MO405M
Atmospheric composition and chemical processes
Course infoSchedule
Course codeNS-MO405M
ECTS Credits7.5
Category / LevelM (M (Master))
Course typeCourse
Language of instructionEnglish
Offered byFaculty of Science; Graduate School of Natural Sciences; Graduate School of Natural Sciences;
Contact personprof. dr. T. Roeckmann
Telephone+31 30 2533858
prof. dr. T. Roeckmann
Feedback and availability
Other courses by this lecturer
Course contact
prof. dr. T. Roeckmann
Other courses by this lecturer
Teaching period
SEM1  (31/08/2015 to 05/02/2016)
Teaching period in which the course begins
Time slotC: C (MON-afternoon, TUE-aftern,THU-morn)
Study mode
Enrolment periodfrom 01/06/2015 up to and including 28/06/2015
Course application processOsiris Student
Enrolling through OSIRISYes
Enrolment open to students taking subsidiary coursesYes
Post-registration openfrom 17/08/2015 up to and including 18/08/2015
Waiting listYes
Course goals
  1. has in-depth knowledge about the composition of the atmosphere, including the role of various atmospheric trace compounds
  2. understands and is able to solve simple models that describe the earth's short+long wave energy balance and the role of atmospheric species in this  balance
  3. has in-depth knowledge about the chemical processes underlying photochemical ozone production and ozone smog in the atmosphere
  4. has in-depth knowledge about both the large scale atmospheric carbon cycle (CO2)
  5. knows the physical processes underlying the use of isotopes as paleoclimate proxy and can apply simple isotope approaches to identify sources and sink processes from exemplary datasets
  6. has in-depth knowledge about the physics and dynamics of stratospheric ozone and stratospheric tracers
  7. is acquainted with sources and characteristics of aerosols in the atmosphere
This course aims at providing in-depth knowledge on processes that control the chemical composition of the atmosphere. Some attention will be given to experimental and theoretical techniques. The course focuses around two themes: (i) atmospheric gasphase chemistry, and (ii) aerosol and clouds. Atmospheric gasphase chemistry: Good knowledge of stratospheric and tropospheric air chemistry is the key to understanding global environmental problems such as stratospheric ozone depletion or greenhouse warming. Most trace gases are emitted into the atmosphere by the vegetation. Physicochemical processes in the air eventually transfer these species back into the biosphere, lithosphere, or the oceans. Land use change (i.e. transferring natural ecosystems into agricultural areas or into cities and highways) and air pollution (fossil fuel burning, traffic and industrial exhaust) are the major impacts on the natural system of atmospheric chemistry. Besides changing the total primary emission of trace gases these anthropogenic impacts also change chemical pathways in the air. Anthropogenic activity thus exhibits a strong climate forcing because it feeds back to concentrations of greenhouse gasses and the formation of aerosols and clouds. Aerosol and clouds: Aerosols act as condensation nuclei for cloud formation, and co-determine the micro-physical and optical properties of clouds. Further, aerosols play an important role in the multiphase chemistry of the troposphere and the stratosphere, e.g., in the formation and destruction of ozone. Anthropogenic activities have caused a substantial increase in atmospheric aerosol abundances, which influences solar and terrestrial radiation in several ways. In this part the sources, microphysics, transformations and removal of aerosols will be examined. We will explore the impact of the changing aerosol characteristics on climate, e.g., through the use of numerical models. Attention will be given to the measurement of aerosol and cloud properties with emphasis on remote sensing techniques.

Entry requirements
You must meet the following requirements
  • Assigned study entrance permit for the master
Prerequisite knowledge
Climate, radiation and thermodynamics
Required materials
D. Jacob, "Introduction fo Atmospheric Chemistry", Princeton University Press
"Atmospheric composition and chemical processes" verkrijgbaar bij OSZ, BBL184a
X-server software op windows. UA10200 Putty 0.6 Mathematica
Instructional formats
Computer practical


Test weight100
Minimum grade5.5

Kies de Nederlandse taal