Dr. Kerstin Schepanski

Leibniz Institute for

Tropospheric Research

Permoserstraße 15

04318 Leipzig


Phone: +49 341 2717-7195

Mail: kerstin.schepanski@tropos.de  

Room: 118 (Building 23.1)



Scientific staff



Modelling of Atmospheric Processes


Area of Research and Research Interests


Current Research Projects

  • HiLDA - Iceland as a model for high-latitude dust sources - a combined experimental and modeling approach for characterization of dust emission and transport processes
  • FINDUS - Parameterizing agricultural fires inducing mineral dust emission
  • DUSTRISK - A risk index for health effects of mineral dust and associated microbes
  • SOARiAL - Spread of Antibiotic Resistance in an Agrarian Landscape
  • AEROCLO-sA - AErosols, RadiatiOn and CLOuds in southern Africa


Completed Projects



  • Associate Editor, Aeolian Research
  • Board member International Society for Aeolian Research (ISAR)
  • Member of Steering Commitee, AEROCLO-sA
  • Member of Executive Committee, Leibniz-Forscherverbund INFECTIONS'21
  • Member of Steering Committee, Leibniz-Forscherverbund INFECTIONS'21

Curriculum Vitae:

Academic Qualification

2015 | Privatdozent | Meteorology
2015 | Habilitation | Meteorology
2009 | Dr. rer. nat. | Meteorology
2006 - 2009 | PhD student | Christian-Albrechts-Universität Kiel
2006 | Diploma | Meteorology
2001 - 2006 | Studies of Meteorology | Christian-Albrechts-Universität Kiel

Habilitation: Meteorological controls on the atmospheric dust cycle

Dissertation: Characterizing Saharan Dust using Remote Sensing and Regional Modeling

Research Experience

since April 2013 | Scientist | Leibniz Institute for Tropospheric Research, Leipzig, Germany
2009 - 2013 | PostDoc | School of Earth and Environment, University of Leeds, Leeds, UK
2006 - 2009 | PhD student | Leibniz Institute for Tropospheric Research, Leipzig, and Leibniz Institute for Marine Sciences, Kiel, Germany


Winter term 2018/2019

Mineral dust in the Atmosphere


Winter term 2017/2018

Mineral dust in the Atmosphere


Winter term 2016/2017

Mineral dust in the Atmosphere



Faust, M., R. Wolke, S. Münch, R. Funk, and K. Schepanski (2020), A new Lagrangian in-time particle simulation module (Itpas v1) for atmospheric particle dispersion, Geosci. Model Dev. Discuss., https://doi.org/10.5194/gmd-2020-352

Vandenbussche, S., S. Callewaert, K. Schepanski, and M. De Mazière (2020), North African mineral dust sources: new insights from a combined analysis based on 3D dust aerosols distributions, surface winds and ancillary soil parameters, Atmos. Chem. Phys., 20, 15127–15146, https://doi.org/10.5194/acp-20-15127-2020

Thiel, N. S. Münch, W. Behrens, V. Junker, M. Faust, O. Biniasch, T. Kabelitz, P. Siller, C. Boedeker, P. Schumann, U. Roesler, T. Amon, K. Schepanski, R. Funk, U. Nübel (2020), Airborne bacterial emission fluxes from manure-fertilized agricultural soil, Microbial Biotechnology, https://doi.org/10.1111/1751-7915.13632

Pfrommer, E., C. Dreier, G. Gabriel, T. Dallenga, R. Reimer, K. Schepanski, R. Scherließ, U. E. Schaible, and T. Gutsmann (2020), Enhanced tenacity of mycobacterial aerosols from necrotic neutrophils, Scientific Reports, 10, 9159, doi: https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-020-65781-9



Villanueva, D., and K. Schepanski (2019), Investigation of atmospheric conditions fostering the spreading of Legionnaires’ disease in outbreaks related to cooling towers, Int. J. of Biometeorol., https://doi.org/10.1007/s00484-019-01751-9

Banks, J. R., A. Hünerbein, B. Heinold, H. E. Brindley, H. Deneke, and K. Schepanski (2019), The sensitivity of the colour of dust in MSG-SEVIRI Desert Dust infrared composite imagery to surface and atmospheric conditions, Atmos. Chem. Phys., 19, 6893-6911, doi.org/10.5194/acp-19-6893-2019

Formenti, P., B. D’Anna, C. Flamant, M. Mallet, S.J. Piketh, K. Schepanski, F. Waquet, F. Auriol, G. Brogniez, F. Burnet, J. Chaboureau, A. Chauvigné, P. Chazette, C. Denjean, K. Desboeufs, J. Doussin, N. Elguindi, S. Feuerstein, M. Gaetani, C. Giorio, D. Klopper, M.D. Mallet, P. Nabat, A. Monod, F. Solmon, A. Namwoonde, C. Chikwililwa, R. Mushi, E.J. Welton, and B. Holben (2019): The Aerosols, Radiation and Clouds in southern Africa (AEROCLO-sA) field campaign in Namibia: overview, illustrative observations and way forward, Bull. Amer. Meteor. Soc., 0, doi.org/10.1175/BAMS-D-17-0278.1

Feuerstein, S. and K. Schepanski (2019), Identification of Dust Sources in a Saharan Dust Hot-Spot and Their Implementation in a Dust-Emission Model, Remote Sen., 11, 4, doi.org/10.3390/rs11010004.



Wagner, R., M. Jähn, and K. Schepanski (2018), Wildfires as a source of airborne mineral dust – revisiting a conceptual model using large-eddy simulations (LES), Atmos. Chem. Phys., 18, 11863-11884, doi.org/10.5194/acp-18-11863-2018

Schepanski, K. (2018), Transport of Mineral Dust and Its Impact on Climate, Geosciences, 8(5), 151, doi.org/10.3390/geosciences8050151

Banks, J. R., K. Schepanski, B. Heinold, A. Hünerbein, and H. E. Brindley (2018), The influence of dust optical properties on the colour of simulated MSG-SEVIRI Desert Dust infrared imagery, Atmos. Chem. Phys., 18, 9681-9703, doi.org/10.5194/acp-18-9681-2018

Tegen, I., and K. Schepanski (2018), Climate Feedback on Aerosol Emission and Atmospheric Concentrations, Current Climate Change Reports, doi.org/10.1007/s40641-018-0086-1



Schepanski, K., B. Heinold, and I. Tegen (2017), Harmattan, Saharan heat low and West African Monsoon circulation: Modulations on the Saharan dust outflow towards the north Atlantic, Atmos. Chem. Phys., 17, 10223-10243, doi.org/10.5194/acp-17-10223-2017

Weinzierl, B., A. Ansmann, J. Prospero, D. Althausen, N. Benker, F. Chouza, M. Dollner, D. Farrell, W. Fomba, V. Freudenthaler, J. Gasteiger, S. Groß, M. Haarig, B. Heinold, K. Kandler, T. Kristensen, O. Mayol-Bracero, T. Müller, O. Reitebuch, D. Sauer, A. Schäfler, K. Schepanski, A. Spanu, I. Tegen, C. Toledano, and A. Walser (2017), The Saharan Aerosol Long-range Transport and Aerosol-Cloud-Interaction Experiment (SALTRACE): overview and selected highlights, Bull. Amer. Meteor. Soc., 98(7), 1-25, doi.org/10.1175/BAMS-D-15-00142.1

Zielhofer, C., H. von Suchodoletz, W. J. Fletcher, B. Schneider, E. Dietze, M. Schlegel, K. Schepanski, B. Weninger, S. Mischke, and A. Mikdad (2017), Millennial-scale fluctuations in Saharan dust supply across the decline of the African Humid Period, Quat. Sci. Rev., 171,119-135, doi.org/10.1016/j.quascirev.2017.07.010

Banks, J. R., H. E. Brindley, G. Stenchikov, and K. Schepanski (2017), Satellite retrievals of dust aerosol over the Red Sea and the Persian Gulf (2005–2015), 2005-2015, Atmos. Chem. Phys., 17, 3987-4003, doi.org/10.5194/acp-17-3987-2017



Schepanski, K., M. Mallet, B. Heinold, and M. Ulrich (2016), North African dust transport toward the western Mediterranean basin: Atmospheric controls on dust source activation and transport pathways during June-July 2013, Atmos. Chem. Phys., 16, 14147-14168, doi.org/10.5194/acp-16-14147-2016

Granados-Muñoz, M. J., F. Navas-Guzmán, J. L. Guerrero-Rascado, J. A. Bravo-Aranda, I. Binietoglou, S. N. Pereira, S. Basart, J. M. Baldasano, L. Belegante, A. Chaikovsky, A. Comerón, G. D'Amico, O. Dubovik, L. Ilic, P. Kokkalis, C. Muñoz-Porcar, S. Nickovic, D. Nicolae, F. J. Olmo, A. Papayannis, G. Pappalardo, A. Rodríguez, K. Schepanski, M. Sicard, A. Vukovic, U. Wandinger, F. Dulac, and L. Alados-Arboledas (2015), Profiling of aerosol microphysical properties at several EARLINET/AERONET sites during July 2012 ChArMEx/EMEP campaign, Atmos. Chem. Phys., 16, 7043-7066, doi.org/10.5194/acp-16-7043-2016

Chaboureau, J.-P., C. Flamant, T. Dauhut, C. Kocha, J.-P. Lafore, C. Lavaysse, F. Marnas, M. Mokhtari, J. Pelon, I. Reinares Martínez, K. Schepanski, and P. Tulet (2016), Fennec dust forecast intercomarison over the Sahara in June 2011, Atmos. Chem. Phys., 16, 6977-6995, doi.org/10.5194/acp-16-6977-2016

Wagner, R., K. Schepanski, B. Heinold, and I. Tegen (2016), Interannual variability in the Saharan dust source activation - Toward understanding the difference between 2007 and 2008, J. Geophys. Res. Atmos., 121, doi.org/10.1002/2015JD024302

Heinold, B., I. Tegen, K. Schepanski, and J. R. Banks (2016), New developments in the representation of Saharan dust sources in the aerosol-climate model ECHAM6-HAM2, Geosci. Model Dev., 9, 765-777, doi.org/10.5194/gmd-9-765-2016

Mallet, M., F. Dulac, P. Formenti, P. Nabat, J. Sciare, G. Roberts, J. Pelon, G. Ancellet, D.Tanré, F. Parol, A. di Sarra, L. Alados, J. Arndt, F. Auriol, L. Blarel, T. Bourrianne, G.Brogniez, P. Chazette, S. Chevaillier, M. Claeys, B. D'Anna, C. Denjean, Y. Derimian,K. Desboeufs, T. Di Iorio, J.-F. Doussin, P. Durand, A. Feron, E. Freney, C. Gaimoz, P.Goloub, G. J. Gomez-Amo, M. Granados Muñoz, N. Grand, E. Hamonou, I. Jankowiak, M. Jeannot, J.-F. Léon, M. Maillé, S. Mailler, D. Meloni, L. Menut, G. Momboisse, J.Nicolas, T. Podvin, V. Pont, G. Rea, J.-B. Renard, L. Roblou, K. Schepanski, A. Schwarzenboeck, K. Sellegri, M. Sicard, F. Solmon, S. Somot, B. Torres, J. Totems, S. Triquet, N. Verdier, C. Verwaerde, J. Wenger, and P. Zapf (2016), Overview of the Chemistry-Aerosol Mediterranean Experiment/Aerosol Direct Radiative Forcing on the Mediterranean Climate (ChArMEx/ADRIMED) summer 2013 campaign, Atmos. Chem. Phys., 16, 455-504, doi.org/10.5194/acp-16-455-2016



Groß, S., V. Freudenthaler, K. Schepanski, C. Toledano, A. Schäfler, A. Ansmann, and B. Weinzierl (2015), Optical properties of long-range transported Saharan dust over Barbados as measured by dual-wavelength depolarization Raman lidar measurements, Atmos. Chem. Phys., 15, 11067-11080, doi.org/10.5194/acp-15-11067-2015

Schepanski, K., L. Klüser, B. Heinold, and I. Tegen (2015), Spatial and temporal correlation length as a measure for the stationarity of atmospheric dust aerosol distribution, Atmos. Env., 122, 10-21, doi.org/10.1016/j.atmosenv.2015.09.034

Ryder, C. L., J. B. McQuaid, C. Flamant, R. Washington, H. E. Brindley, E. J. Highwood, J. H. Marsham, D. J. Parker, M. C. Todd, J. R. Banks, J. K. Brooke, S. Engelstaedter, V. Estellés, P. Formenti, L. Garcia-Carreras, C. Kocha, F. Marenco, P. Rosenberg, H. Sodemann, C. J. T. Allen, A. Bourdon, M. Bart, C. Cavazos-Guerra, S. Chevaillier, J. Crosier, E. Darbyshire, A. R. Dean, J. R. Dorsey, J. Kent, D. O'Sullivan, K. Schepanski, K. Szpek, A. Woolley (2015), Advances in understanding mineral dust and boundary layer processes over the Sahara from Fennec aircraft observations, Atmos. Chem. Phys., 15, 8479-8520,  doi.org/10.5194/acp-15-8479-2015

Fiedler, S., P. Knippertz, S. Woodward, G. M. Martin, N. Bellouin, A. N. Ross, B. Heinold, K. Schepanski, C. E. Birch, and I. Tegen (2015), A process-based evaluation of dust-emitting winds in the CMIP5 simulations of HadGEM2-ES, Clim. Dyn., doi.org/10.1007/s00382-015-2635-9

Evan, A. T., S. Fiedler, C. Zhao, L. Menut, K. Schepanski, C. Flamant, O. Doherty (2015), Derivation of an observation-based map of North African dust emission, Aeolian Research, doi.org/10.1016/j.aeolia.2015.01.001

Schepanski, K., P. Knippertz, S. Fiedler, F. Timouk, J. Demarty (2015), The sensitivity of nocturnal low-level jets and near-surface winds over the Sahel to model resolution, initial conditions and boundary-layer set-up, Quart. J. Roy. Met. Soc., 141, 1442-1456, doi.org/10.1002/qj.2453



Fiedler, S., K. Schepanski, P. Knippertz, B. Heinold, and I. Tegen (2014), How important are atmospheric depressions and mobile cyclones for emitting mineral dust aerosol in North Africa?, Atmos. Chem. Phys., 14, 8983-9000, doi.org/10.5194/acp-14-8983-2014

Niedermeier, N., A. Held, T. Müller, B. Heinold, K. Schepanski, I. Tegen, K. Kandler, M. Ebert, S. Weinbruch, K. Read, J. Lee, K. W. Fomba, K. Müller, H. Herrmann, and A. Wiedensohler (2014), Mass deposition flux of Saharan mineral dust to the tropical northeast Atlantic Ocean: an intercomparison of methods, Atmos. Chem. Phys., 14, 2245-2266, doi.org/10.5194/acp-14-2245-2014



Schepanski, K., C. Flamant, J.-P. Chaboureau, C. Kocha, J. R. Banks, H. E. Brindley, C. Lavaysse, F. Marnas, J. Pelon, and P. Tulet (2013), Characterization of dust emission from alluvial sources using aircraft observations and high-resolution modeling, J. Geophy. Res., 118, 7237-7259, doi.org/10.1002/jgrd.50538

Fiedler, S., K. Schepanski, B. Heinold, P. Knippertz, and I. Tegen (2013), Climatology of nocturnal low-level jets over North Africa and implications for modeling mineral dust emission, J. Geophys. Res., 118, 6100-6121, doi.org/10.1002/jgrd.50394

Heinold, B., P. Knippertz, J. H. Marsham, S. Fiedler, N. S. Dixon, K. Schepanski, B. Laurent, and I. Tegen (2013), The role of deep convection and low-level jets for dust emission in summertime West Africa, J. Geophys. Res., 118, 4385-4400, doi.org/10.1002/jgrd.50402

Tegen, I., K. Schepanski, and B. Heinold (2013), Comparing two years of Saharan dust source activation obtained by regional modelling and satellite observations, Atmos. Chem. Phys., 13, 2381-2390, doi.org/10.5194/acp-13-2381-2013



Schepanski, K., T. J. Wright, and P. Knippertz (2012), Evidence for flash floods over deserts from loss of coherence in InSAR imagery, J. Geophys. Res., 117, D20101, doi.org/10.1029/2012JD017580

Crouvi, O., K. Schepanski, R. Amit, A. Gillespie, and Y. Enzel (2012), Multiple dust sources in the Sahara Desert: The importance of sand dunes, Geophys. Res. Lett., 39, L13401, doi.org/10.1029/2012GL052145

Schepanski, K., I. Tegen, and A. Macke (2012), Satellite based observations of Saharan dust source areas - Comparison and variability, Rem. Sens. Environ., 123, 90-97, doi.org/10.1016/j.rse.2012.03.019



Schepanski, K., and P. Knippertz (2011), Soudano-Saharan Depressions and their importance for precipitation and dust: A new perspective on a classical synoptic concept, Quart. J. Roy. Met. Soc., 137(659), 1431-1445, doi.org/10.1002/qj.850

Okin, G. S., J. E. Bullard, R. L. Reynolds, J.-A. C. Ballantine, K. Schepanski, M. C. Todd, J. Belnap, M. C. Baddock, T. E. Gill, and M. E. Miller (2011), Dust emissions: small-scale processes with global-scale consequences, EOS, Transactions American Geophysical Union, 92(29), 241-248, doi.org/10.1029/2011EO290001

Heinold, B., I. Tegen, K. Schepanski, M. Tesche, M. Esselborn, V. Freudenthaler, S. Gross, K. Kandler, P. Knippertz, D. Müller, A. Schladitz, C. Toledano, B. Weinzierl, A. Ansmann, D. Althausen, T. Müller, A. Petzold, and A. Wiedensohler (2011), Regional modelling of Saharan dust and land fire smoke: Part I: Model description and evaluation, Tellus B, 63, 430-447, doi.org/10.111/j.1600-0889.2011.00544.x

Johnson, B. T., M. E. Brooks, D. Walters, S. Woodward, S. Christopher, and K. Schepanski (2011), Assessment of the Met Office dust forecast model using observations from the GERBILS campaign, Quart. J. Roy. Met. Soc., 137(658), 1131-1148, doi.org/10.1002/qj.736



Laurent, B., I. Tegen, B. Heinold, K. Schepanski, B. Weinzierl, and M. Esselborn (2010), A model study of Saharan dust emission and distribution during SAMUM-1 campaign, J. Geophys. Res., 115, D21210, doi.org/10.1029/2009JD012995



Washington, R., C. Bouet, G. Cautenet, E. Mackenzie, I. Ashpole, S. Engelstaedter, G. Lizcano, G. Henderson, K. Schepanski, and I. Tegen (2009), Dust as a Tipping element: The Bodélé Depression, Chad, PNAS, 106(49), doi.org/10.1073/pnas.0711850106

Tegen, I., and K. Schepanski (2009), The global distribution of mineral dust, WMO/GEO Expert Meeting on an international sand and dust storm warning system, IOP Conference Series: Earth and Environment Science, 7(1), doi.org/10.1088/1755-1307/7/1/012001

Laurent, B., B. Marticorena, G. Bergametti, I. Tegen, K. Schepanski, and B. Heinold (2009), Modelling mineral dust emission, WMO/GEO Expert Meeting on an international sand and dust storm warning system, IOP Conference Series: Earth and Environment Science, 7(1), doi.org/10.1088/1755-1307/7/1/012006

Klüser, L., and K. Schepanski (2009), Remote sensing of mineral dust over land with MSG inferred channels: A new Bitemporal Mineral Dust Index, Remote Sens. Environ., 113, 9, doi.org/10.1016/j.rse.2009.04.012

Cavazos, C., M. C. Todd, and K. Schepanski (2009), Numerical model simulation of the Saharan dust event of 6-11 March 2006 using the Regional Climate Model version 3 (RegCM3), J. Geophys. Res., 114, D12109, doi.org/10.1029/2008JD011078

Schepanski, K., I. Tegen, M. C. Todd, B. Heinold, G. Bönisch, B. Laurent, and A. Macke (2009), Meteorological processes forcing Saharan dust emission inferred from MSG-SEVIRI observations of sub-daily dust source activation and numerical models, J. Geophys. Res., 114, D10201, doi.org/10.1029/2008JD010325

Reinfried, F., I. Tegen, B. Heinold, O. Hellmuth, K. Schepanski, U. Cubasch, H. Huebener, and P. Knippertz (2009), Simulations of convectively-driven density currents in the Atlas region using a regional model: Impacts on dust emission and sensitivity to horizontal resolution and convection schemes, J. Geophys. Res., 114, D08127, doi.org/10.1029/2008JD010844

Schepanski, K., I. Tegen, and A. Macke (2009), Saharan dust transport and deposition towards the tropical northern Atlantic, Atmos. Chem. Phys., 9, 1173-1189, doi.org/10.5194/acp-9-1173-2009

Knippertz, P., A. Ansmann, D. Althausen, D. Müller, M. Tesche, E. Bierwirth, T. Dinter, T. Müller, W. von Hoyningen-Huene, K. Schepanski, M. Wendisch, B. Heinold, K. Kandler, A. Petzold, L. Schütz, and I. Tegen (2009), Dust mobilization and transport in the northern Sahara during SAMUM 2006 - A meteorological overview, Tellus B, 61(1), 1231, doi.org/10.1111/j.1600-0889.2008.00380.x

Heinold, B., I. Tegen, M. Esselborn, K. Kandler, P. Knippertz, D. Müller, A. Schladitz, M. Tesche, B. Weinzierl, A. Ansmann, D. Althausen, B. Laurent, A. Massling, T. Müller, K. Schepanski, and A. Wiedensohler (2009), Regional Saharan dust modeling during the SAMUM 2006 campaign, Tellus B, 61(1), 307324, doi.org/10.1111/j.1600-0889.2008.00387.x



Heinold, B., I. Tegen, K. Schepanski, and O. Hellmuth (2008), Dust radiative feedback on Saharan boundary layer dynamics and dust mobilization, Geophys. Res. Lett., 35, L20817, doi.org/10.1029/2008GL035319

Birmili, W., K. Schepanski, A. Ansmann, G. Spindler, I. Tegen, B. Wehner, A. Novak, E. Reimer, I. Mattis, K. Müller, E. Brüggemann, T. Gnauk, H. Herrmann, A. Wiedensholer, D. Althausen, A. Schladitz, T. Tuch, and G. Löschau (2008), A case of extreme particulate matter concentrations over Central Europe caused by dust emitted over the southern Ukraine, Atmos. Chem. Phys., 8, 997-1016, doi.org/10.5194/acp-8-997-2008



Schepanski, K., I. Tegen, B. Laurent, B. Heinold, and A. Macke (2007), A new Saharan dust source activation frequency map derived from MSG-SEVIRI IR-channels, Geophys. Res. Lett., 34, L18803, doi.org/10.1029/2007GL030168