Clouds have 'X-factor "in climate change
Monday, March 23, 2009

On the role of clouds in current climate change is still very little known.
Time so that more research into this' X factor '.
According to Prof. Herman Russchenberg
on Wednesday, April 1 in his inaugural address at TU Delft.

Although virtually all scientists agree on the current global warming
and the main cause (greenhouse gases),
there are aspects about which little is known.
The influence of clouds on climate is one aspect.
Prof.. Herman Russchenberg of IRCTR
advocates in his inaugural address at TU Delft for more research into clouds.
"The role of greenhouse gases in climate change is quite clear.
In addition, we are on the emissions of greenhouse gases do something concrete.
When cloud is all that complex.
We simply do not know how clouds respond to climate change and vice versa
how the climate is affected by clouds.
But the impact could be quite large may be. "


One of the areas that Russchenberg researches,
the influence of aerosols, fine particles, the cloud formation.
The dust can serve as a core around which water vapor can condense to form tiny droplets.
The more of such droplets in a cloud, the whiter it is and the more sunlight the cloud blocking.
It would therefore be that aerosols, partly by human activities (industry and transport) are emitted,
an inhibitory effect on global warming.

Here and are therefore even calls for large amounts of dust in the atmosphere it.
Russchenberg against such experiments.
"You should not grumble if you are not yet know exactly how the system is."


Although it is known how aerosols affect cloud formation,
is the size of the effect remains a question mark.
Russchenberg: 'It is more fundamental knowledge and better measurement techniques.
We search in a clever combination of techniques: lidar, radar and radiometry. "

Since 2002 test DUT together with other scientific partners new techniques
in and on the 213 meter high tower in Cabauw experimental weather, in Lopik.


A second key that Russchenberg, in his inaugural speech, of extreme weather events.
'The climate change
we in Ireland are increasingly faced with extreme weather, particularly heavy rainfall.
The question is whether we are ready for, "says Russchenberg.

The professor calls for better monitoring systems so that
in conjunction with sophisticated atmospheric models, local weather longer can be predicted in advance.
This example is very useful for airports such as Schiphol,
that better weather predictions for the air more efficiently.