Intergovernmental GR-RO research Programme

Air Quality assessment and study of transport processes along the axis Athens-Aegean sea (Greece) and Bucharest (Romania) using lidar techniques

About the project

AQuA-GRO is a bilateral research project implemented by:

  • National Technical University of Athens (Greece)
  • National Institute of R&D for Optoelectronics (Romania).

and financed by:

  • The General Secretariat for Research and Technology of the Greek Ministry of Education, Lifelong Learning and Religious Affairs (Greece)
  • National Authority for Scientific Research (Romania)



The main objective of this proposal is the creation of a statistical database of the spatio-temporal evolution of the vertical distribution of aerosols over Greece (Athens/Evia island/Aegean Sea) and Romania (region of Bucharest) using ground-based remote sensing techniques (lidar).

Specific objectives

  • Establishment of a statistical database for the vertical distribution of the aerosols optical properties over SE Europe

  • Identification of the main air pollution/aerosol sources affecting the air atmospheric quality over SE Europe

  • Characterization of aerosol transportation mechanisms over Athens/Evia/Aegean and Bucharest

  • Increasing the international visibility of the collaborating teams


  1. Development or optimization of the software used for the analysis of the Raman lidar signals.
  2. Performance of systematic Raman lidar measurements to determine the vertical distribution of aerosols once or twice per week (e.g. Monday at 13:00 UT and 19:00 UT)
  3. Development of a statistical database on the spatial and temporal variation of the vertical distribution of the aerosol optical properties (backscatter and extinction coefficients) over Athens and Bucharest.
  4. Analysis of selected cases of transport of aerosols in the studied regions under special events (forest fires, Saharan dust events, industrial pollution, volcanic eruptions) using meteorological data to study the mechanisms of aerosol transport processes in SE Europe (Athens/ island of Evia/Aegean Sea) and Bucharest.
  5. Study of the dynamic and statistical behavour of the air masses coming from the Sahara desert region, using aerosols as tracers.
  6. Use of satellite and ground-based data for the analysis of the motion and the optical parameters of the air masses arriving over Greece (Athens/island of Evia/Aegean Sea) and south of Bucharest.
  7. Identification of the main sources of air pollution and aerosols in Europe and North Africa, contributing to the air quality levels in SE Europe over Greece (Athens and island of Evia/Aegean Sea) and south of Bucharest.