Research at the CVAO

German research activities at the CVAO, driven by TROPOS and the Max Planck Institute for Biogeochemistry (MPI-BGC) Jena, focus on studying ocean-atmosphere interactions and air quality, including the impact of climate change on atmospheric composition.


Effects of the climate on the composition of the atmosphere

The seasonality of Saharan dust and its input into the ocean will be studied, as Saharan dust can be a significant source of nutrients for the oceans. Furthermore, the effect of Saharan dust on the composition of aerosol particles as well as on cloud formation and the radiation budget will be investigated.


Interactions between ocean and atmosphere

Project MarParCloud

Completed Leibniz research project (2016-2019) to better understand ocean-atmosphere interactions with numerous national and international cooperation partners.

The role of oceanic emissions from the sea surface on cloud formation over the oceans, changes in aerosol composition and the properties of aerosols as cloud condensation nuclei (CCN) and ice nuclei (INP) were investigated.

Within the framework of MarParCloud, new mechanisms of the accumulation of organic material (OM) in the surface film (SML) of the ocean were elucidated. Furthermore, the transfer of organic material from the oceans into aerosol particles and clouds was described quantitatively and additional formation pathways of organic components in the atmosphere were identified.

Other scientific activities of the CVAO at the University of York (UK) include the study short-lived gases and organic matter of marine origin in the atmosphere.

These research activities have resulted in more than 60 peer-reviewed scientific articles, as well as numerous PhD students and early career researchers.


Capacity building:

In collaboration with TROPOS, the Direção Nacional do Ambiente (DNA) and the Instituto Nacional de Meteorologia e Geofísica (INMG) are in the process of establishing an air quality monitoring network in Cabo Verde.

TROPOS is committed to training local actors in air quality assessment through transnational access to TROPOS facilities in Germany.

There is increasing interest in the use of the CVAO infrastructure for training purposes by local students for academic bachelor and master theses in cooperation with the University of Cabo Verde and the Atlantic Technical University of Cabo Verde.

The CVAO has also been the venue for numerous PhD studies in Germany (TROPOS, IUF, Uni-Oldenburg), France and the UK, making Cabo Verde a good regional reference for atmospheric research.



The site has received funding from the BMBF (SOPRAN, ACTRIS-D), the DFG (ALAMARE, PHOSDMAP) and the Leibniz Association (INFRA-CV, MarParCloud, DUSTRISK) of the European Union (MARSU, TENATSO), as well as from UK-SOLAS, NERC from the UK.