Oeschger News (July 2011)

Symposium on methane in lakes and wetlands

On 12 September 2011 a one-day symposium under the title of Methane in Lakes and Wetlands: Microbiological Production, Ecosystem Uptake, Climatological Significance takes place at the University of Bern. Invited contributions will address aspects as different as the microbial production of methane in lakes and other wetlands, the uptake of methane within lake and stream food webs, the biotic and abiotic controls of methane fluxes in these ecosystems and the role of methane from lakes and wetlands as drivers of past and future climate change. This conference is sponsored by the OCCR, one of the organizers is OCCR member Oliver Heiri with the Institute of Plant Sciences. Participation is free of charge, but attendees are kindly requested to register by 19 August 2011.

Climate change impacts on hydroelectric power

The Group for Hydrology of the OCCR organizes a conference on hydroelectric power and climate change on 8 September 2001 in Visp. On this occasion the result of several research projects on the impact of climate change on hydroelectric power production conducted in co-operation with electric power companies will be presented. 

Discharge measurements on Plaine-Morte glacier

An extensive field campaign involving the Group for Hydrology of the OCCR will take place in August 2011 on the Plaine-Mort glacier as part of the research project MontanAqua. The experiment consists of placing three different colour tracers in the melting water of the glacier at three different locations. Then, water samples will be taken at several measuring points between Sierre and Lenk. For detailed information contact Hans Rudolf Wernli, 031 631 88 56, wernli@giub.unibe.ch or David Finger, 031 631 83 90, david.finger@giub.unibe.ch.

OCCR authors awarded by WMO

Christof Ammann and Jürg Fuhrer from the OCCR Air Pollution / Climate Group at Agroscope ART are co-authors of a paper that received the 2012 Norbert Berbier-MUMM International Award for carbon-climate links from the World Meteorological Organisation, WMO. The paper Climate control of terrestrial carbon exchange across biomes and continents was published in Environmental Research Letters in 2010, Volume 5. The authors came from 116 academic institutes in six continents. The paper examines relationships between climate and the carbon exchange of land-based ecosystems to predict future levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide.

New project on the use of Wireless Mesh Networks

The Group for Hydrology of the OCCR will lead a project called Authentication, Authorization, Accounting and Auditing in Wireless Mesh Networks (A4-Mesh) funded by SWITCH (Serving Swiss Universities) which starts in January 2011. A4-Mesh aims at developing a completely functional wireless mesh infrastructure including support for authentication and authorization, accounting, and auditing. Wireless mesh networks complement the fixed Internet network by extending wireless network coverage in campus networks or by connecting devices such as sensors or monitoring stations deployed in remote areas without high bandwidth network access. The A4-Mesh project encompasses several pilot networks, among them an outdoor network for detailed evaluation in a realistic environmental monitoring scenario in the area of hydrology. The pilot network will be installed in the framework of the NFP61 research project MontanAqua of GIUB in the region of Sierre-Crans-Montana.

Hydrological atlas of Switzerland managed in Bern

The Federal Office for the Environment has entrusted the Group for Hydrology of the OCCR to carry on leading the project Hydrological atlas of Switzerland for another four years.

Oliver Wetter featured in UniPress magazine

Historian and OCCR member Oliver Wetter from the Climate History Group is featured in the last edition of UniPress magazine with an article on his reconstructions of the Rhine floods in Basel for which he combined historical data with hydrological models.

Visual Reader on climate change

Stefan Brönnimann from the OCCRs Climatology Group is one of the authors of a stunning new book on climate change. Its title is Mensch Klima! - Wer bestimmt die Zunft? it weighs 2 kilos and counts 480 pages - a lot of them filled with impressive pictures. René Schwarzenbach, the editor calls the publication a visual reader. Its aim: Get the public interested in climate change via an appealing visual concept. An English version of the book is in preparation.

Wer bestimmt die Zukunft?, Schwarzenbach, René (Hrsg.),Lars Müller Publishers, Baden, CHF 67.00, ISBN : 978-3-03778-244-6

Oliver Heiri new Swiss representative for INTIMATE

Oliver Heiri from the OCCRs Paleolimnology and Palaeoecology Group was appointed the second Swiss representative in the European cooperation in science and technology (COST) action ES0907, INTegrating Ice core, MArine and TErrestrial records (60,000 to 8000 years ago) . INTIMATE aims at developing common protocols and methods, as well as networks to better understand the climate change between 60'000 and 8000 years before today. An informal INTIMATE meeting will take place during the INQUA Congress on 22 July at 18:00 at the Institute of Geography. Everybody interested in the work of this COST action is kindly invited to attend (please send an email beforehand to oliver.heiri@ips.unibe.ch)

IAP takes water vapour measurements in Finland

The OCCR's Group for Microwave Physics at the Institute of Applied Physics enjoys an excellent reputation for the development of novel techniques and instruments for applications in atmospheric remote sensing. Now, one of its instruments was deployed in Lappland from where since the beginning of June water vapour is measured in the stratosphere and mesosphere

Klemens Hocke receives venia docendi

Klemens Hocke who is part of the OCCRs Group for Microwave Physics at the Institute of Applied Physics has habilitated with a professorial dissertation called The restless atmosphere. His research is co-financed by the OCCR. Congratulations and our best wishes!

Take advantage of the OCCR's funding opportunities

The Oeschger Centre supports its members for the following activities:

  • Conferences and Workshops
  • Visiting Scientist Programme
  • Matching Funds for Infrastructure and Equipment
  • Publications
  • Graduate School of Climate Sciences
  • Fast Track
  • Start-up grants

New projects at the Plant Ecology Group

The OCCR's Plant Ecology Group at the Institute for Plant Sciences is part of a project called Plant diversity and performance in relation to climate and land use on Mt. Kilimanjaro. Its aim is to better understand the impact of climate change and land use change on biodiversity. The project, which started in autumn 2010, was initiated by the DFG. A second project is funded by the EU. It is called FunDivEUROPE - Functional significance of forest biodiversity and studies the biodiversity in forests and its consequences for ecosystem processes and services among other aspects in relation with stability and climate change. The project started in November 2010.

Ralph Winkler is father to a newborn daughter

Zaha Suzan Winkler was born on 18 June 18th at 7:51 am. She was 53 cm tall and weighed 3796 grams. She is the first child of OCCR member Ralph Winkler of the Group of Climate Economics at the Department of Economics. Congratulations and our best wishes!

Researchers joining and leaving the OCCR

Joining:

Eric Allan is a new PostDoc in the Plant Ecology Group at the Institute for Plant Sciences.

David Finger is a new PostDoc in the Hydrology Group. He did his PhD at the ETHZ on effects of hydropower and oligotrophication on Lake Brienz, worked as a PostDoc at UC Davis, USA, and worked at the ETHZ The Swiss Experiment (developing a data exchange platform for Swiss research institutions) and The ACQWA project (Assessing future water resources in alpine regions).

Christine Heiniger a PhD student in the Plant Ecology Group at the Institute for Plant Sciences.

Jan Horak from the Department of Biometeorology and Hydrology, Slovak University of Agriculture in Nitra, Slovak Republic, has started a 6-months fellowship in the Air Pollution / Climate Group at Agroscope ART. His stay is funded by the Scientific Exchange Programme Sciex of CRUS (Rectors' Conference of the Swiss Universities). He will work on management effects on N2O emissions from arable land.

Kathrin Keller is a new PhD student at the Earth System Modelling - Biogeochemical Cycles Group at Climate and Environmental Physics Department. She will start her work in August 2011, perform simulations with the NCAR Earth System Model and analyse results of comprehensive climate-carbon cycle models within the framework of the EU FP7 project CARBOCHANGE.

Rinta Päivi is a new PhD student in the Paleolimnology and Palaeoecology Group. She did her MSc at the University of Turku. Her PhD project is called Reconstruction of methane flux from lakes: development and application of a new approach (RECONMET).

Rolf Rüfenacht is a new PhD student in the Group for Microwave Physics at the Institute of Applied Physics. He did his MSc at the University of Bern on A novel 142-GHz-radiometer for mesospheric wind measurements.

Oliver Stähli is a new PhD student in the Group for Microwave Physics at the Institute of Applied Physics. He did his MSc at the University of Bern on Novel measurements with the Imaging Polarimeter SPIRA (91 GHz) after technical upgrades.

Katharina Staudt is a new PostDoc in the Air Pollution / Climate Group at Agroscope ART. She works on a 2-year project to develop a model-based national inventory system for soil carbon stocks and CO2-fluxes for the agricultural land in Switzerland.

Tabea Stötter is a new PhD student in the Paleolimnology and Palaeoecology Group. She did her MSc at the University of Basel. Her PhD project is called Reconstruction of past changes in methane availability and methane fluxes in boreal and temperate lakes.

Brigitte Tschanz is a new PhD student in the Group for Microwave Physics at the Institute of Applied Physics. She did her MSc at the University of Bern on Measurement of middle atmospheric water vapor and integrated water vapor by MIAWARA-C.

Christoph S. Welker is a new PostDoc in the Climate Impact Group. He did his PhD at the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität in Munich on Predictability of tropical cyclones and related losses in the Indo-Pacific region and has worked at the Geo Risks Research / Corporate Climate Centre of Munich Reinsurance Company (Munich Re). His research focus is decadal-scale variability of cyclones over the North Atlantic and Europe.

A big welcome to all of you!

New Positions:

Steffen Boch formerly a PhD student in the Plant Ecology Group is now a PostDoc in the same group.

Oliver Bossdorf formerly a PostDoc in the Plant Ecology Group is now a scientific researcher in the same group.

Daniel Prati formerly a PostDoc in the Plant Ecology Group is now a scientific researcher in the same group.

Leaving:

Wayne Dawson (PostDoc in the Plant Ecology Group) has left to University of Konstanz.

Lidewij Keser (PhD student in the Plant Ecology Group) has left to University of Konstanz.

Oliver Schenker (PhD student in the Microeconomic Group) has left to ZEW (Center for European Economic Research) in Mannheim.

Stephanie Socher (PhD student in the Plant Ecology Group) has left to University of Konstanz.

Good luck to all of them!