CERC — Environmental Software and Services

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6 Dec 2023Estimating emissions from concentration measurements: inverse dispersion modelling report published

The Environment Agency recently commissioned CERC and AQC to investigate inverse dispersion modelling methods which could be applied to fugitive (uncontrolled) sources of methane. Inverse dispersion modelling methods allow the estimation of unknown emission rates from concentration measurements. Improving estimates of methane emissions from sources such as landfill sites is important for quantifying greenhouse gas impacts.

The report from this project has now been published online. It includes: a literature review of different inverse dispersion modelling methods; an assessment of the applicability of inverse dispersion modelling methods to different EA-regulated facilities; a study testing four inverse dispersion modelling methods with measurements from three landfill sites; and recommendations for future use of inverse dispersion modelling.

CERC have previously developed and implemented an inverse dispersion modelling approach for improving estimates of urban emissions. For this project we developed a new 'modified Bayesian' inverse modelling technique, due to the short timescale of the plume transect measurements. Measurements at 1 second intervals capture the instantaneous rather than ensemble plume. The concentration fluctuations module in ADMS was used to represent the short-term distribution of concentrations, with inverse modelling applied to the peak modelled and measured concentrations only.

The image shows an example of transect measurements of acetylene (C2H2) tracer gas. The 1 second measured data displays a narrow peak, while standard modelling ('modelled') predicts a wider plume with a lower peak concentration. The maximum model prediction of 1 second concentrations from the fluctuations module ('modelled fluctuations maximum', also showing standard deviation error bars) gives good agreement with the peak measurement. Methane measurements from the same transect were used in the inverse modelling study.


5 Dec 2023PhD Opportunity to Explore the Pollution-Climate-Health Dilemma

CERC is a partner for a PhD studentship harnessing data and air pollution modelling to examine the complex interactions between pollution, climate, and health. The PhD project will delve into the issue of why the public is perceiving a decline in their health and wellbeing due to exposure to air pollutants when, in reality, anthropogenic air pollution emissions have significantly decreased over the last 30 years. One potential factor contributing to this dilemma could be the influence of climate change and the evolving nature of emissions.

The studentship will be awarded by Envision, a doctoral training program which fosters collaboration between researchers, industry partners and NGOs to cultivate a new generation of exceptional environmental scientists. The selected student will benefit from supervision of a team of interdisciplinary experts throughout the PhD journey, including an NHS clinician, and receive training from CERC and RDScientific.

If this rewarding and challenging project appeals to you please consider applying here. Or for further details please contact Professor Sarah Metcalfe, sarah.metcalfe@nottingham.ac.uk or Professor Duncan Whyatt, d.whyatt@lancaster.ac.uk.


17 Nov 2023Exploring Particulate Deposition Modelling at the ADMLC Seminar

CERC’s director, Dr David Carruthers, shared his insights into particulate deposition modelling using ADMS at the recent seminar organised by the Atmospheric Dispersion Modelling Liaison Committee (ADMLC) on dry deposition of reactive chemicals. David’s presentation explored the complexities of capturing the impact of spatial and temporal variation on modelled deposition, using a copper deposition dataset in the West Midlands as an example. Deposition is a critical topic that spans the environmental, defence and industrial safety sectors. This seminar brought together experts from these fields to collaborate, share knowledge and discuss approaches to modelling and measuring deposition. Access all the presentations from the day here.

This discussion will be continued in the forthcoming ADMS User Group Meeting, with Dr Victoria Hamilton giving a presentation that focuses on practical deposition model applications. This annual face-to-face meeting provides a great opportunity to learn more about the latest ADMS model advances and provides opportunities to network with other experts in the field – we hope to see you there!


18 Oct 2023Draft agendas now available for the ADMS User Group Meetings, 29-30 November 2023, York

There is still time to book your tickets for the 2023 ADMS User Group Meetings, which will be held at Malmaison York on 29th and 30th November.

Tickets are available to order through Eventbrite until 23:30 on Tuesday 14th November. Organisations with a valid software support contract are entitled to one or more tickets free of charge depending on the type of licence held.


17 Oct 2023CERC sponsor & present at Routes to Clean Air 2023

CERC are once again proud to have sponsored the Institute of Air Quality Management's (IAQM) Routes to Clean Air 2023 conference, held in Manchester on the 10th and 11th of October 2023.

The Routes to Clean Air conferences are annual events, providing a valuable opportunity for professionals in air quality and related fields to share their experiences and innovations for improving air quality. This year featured an excellent selection of talks, with key themes including indoor air quality, and the impacts of Net Zero on air quality. The latter included Dr Catheryn Price from CERC presenting a talk entitled 'Dispersion modelling considerations for air quality and Net Zero'.

Speaker details and the conference programme can be found on the IAQM website here, and the slides of the presentations will also be available soon.

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