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7 Apr 2017Defra briefing praises airTEXT air quality communication service

Defra's recent Air Quality Briefing for Directors of Public Health says “clear public health messages enable the public to reduce their personal exposure... this is beneficial for the general population and those with existing health conditions. Examples of successful implementation of health communication include air quality services such as airTEXT.”

airTEXT has provided a public air quality and health information service for London since 2007 and has recently expanded to Colchester and Chelmsford. It offers three-day air quality forecasts for O3, NO2, PM10 and PM2.5 at street-scale resolution using CERC's ADMS-Urban modelling system. People who sign up to the airTEXT pollution alerts receive free voice, email or text messages when air pollution is forecast to be moderate or higher. airTEXT is operated by CERC in partnership with a consortium made up of representatives from all the member local authorities, the GLA, Public Health England and the Environment Agency.

The full Defra briefing is available online (.pdf, 7MB). For more information on airTEXT, ADMS-Urban or forecasting services please contact CERC.


4 Apr 2017Hong Kong street-level air quality forecasting and exposure

CERC are partners in a new 5-year air quality (AQ) & health project that will develop a real-time, urban AQ modelling system capable of analysing and forecasting pollution levels in Hong Kong down to individual street level. PRAISE-HK (Personalised Real-time Air quality Information System for Exposure – Hong Kong) is being led by the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology with contributions from a number of other Hong Kong partners and CERC, and is part of the HSBC 150th anniversary charity programme.

The Hong Kong forecasting system will use the CMAQ regional model with WRF meteorological data coupled to a Linux version of CERC's ADMS-Urban high-resolution air quality model with its Regional Model Link allowing calculation of air pollution forecast maps at street-scale resolution. The schematic shows how the project will progress.

GPS-based real-time estimates of pollutant concentrations will be made available to the public via a website and a mobile app. The app will provide personalised pollutant exposure information relating to different periods of the day, and will be able to predict exposure levels relating to routes and modes of transport selected by the user.

The project also includes measurements and characterisation of AQ variations in different indoor microenvironments around HK. Various community groups will be targeted to help them better understand how outdoor ambient air conditions impacts on indoor AQ. You can sign up for the PRAISE-HK newsletter if you wish to keep informed of the Hong Kong developments.

28 Mar 20172017 ADMS User Group Meetings to be held in Birmingham, 1-2 November

The 2017 User Group Meetings will be held in Birmingham on 1st and 2nd November.

  • ADMS 5 User Group Meeting: Wednesday 1st November
  • ADMS-Urban and ADMS-Roads User Group Meeting: Thursday 2nd November

These meetings will include the usual mix of presentations by CERC staff and software users and are the ideal opportunity to hear the latest news and advice on new model features.

Users with a valid support contract are entitled to a number of free or reduced-rate delegate places depending on the type of licence held. Please contact CERC if there is a topic you would like to be covered at one of the meetings or if you would like to give a ‘user view’ presentation. More details will be published later in the year; registration will open online in the Summer.


10 Mar 2017ADMS-Urban & ADMS-Roads 4.1 released

The latest versions of ADMS-Urban and ADMS-Roads are now available for download.

ADMS-Urban & ADMS-Roads are comprehensive tools for investigating air pollution taking account of complex urban morphology including street canyons and road tunnels. ADMS-Roads is designed primarily for networks of roads that may be in combination with industrial sites, for instance small towns or rural road networks. ADMS-Urban can model large urban areas providing output from street-scale to urban-scale.

New features in version 4.1 include:

  • project files: allowing background maps, contour plots, layer symbology and more to be saved and reopened with your model input files;
  • quick creation of terrain files from OS terrain 50 and SRTM data formats;
  • road geometry simplification using Douglas-Peucker vertex reduction;
  • file drag-drop and context menus throughout the Mapper and interface; and
  • the latest UK emissions factors from EFT 7.0

For more information about all the new features please see the relevant What’s New? guide.

Eligible users should log in to the User Area in order to download the new versions.

For further information please contact us.


2 Mar 2017ADMLC report on source term sensitivity in dispersion models

CERC's consultancy team, with GT Science & Software Ltd, has carried out a High Level Review of the Sensitivity of Dispersion Model Predictions to Individual Source Term Parameters. The work was funded by the UK Atmospheric Dispersion Modelling Liaison Committee (ADMLC) and the report is freely available here.

Defining source terms is an essential part of dispersion modelling. A substance can be released into the atmosphere in many different ways, particularly in accidental release situations. It is important to have an understanding of the sensitivity of the model results to each of the source term input parameters.

The review discusses the main issues of source term sensitivity, describes a range of commonly-used dispersion models, and presents the results of detailed sensitivity tests. The source terms examined in the review include evaporating pools, pressurised catastrophic failures, jet releases, spray releases, warehouse fires and pool fires.

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