Research on three branches of activity

High-quality research is utilized to develop services to benefit our everyday life. Visible examples are improvement of weather forecasts, development of new expert and warning services as well as applications of the newest research results.

The meteorological and marine research programme does basic and applied research on meteorology, atmospheric science and physical oceanography. Research subjects include forecast models for different time frames, scientific applications and remote sensing observations linked to the research area as well as the effects of climate change and how to adapt to them.
The climate research programme does basic and applied research on the different components of the climate system. The research subjects are especially past, current and future climate as well as the composition of the atmosphere and its effects on climate change and air quality. Some of the employees of the programme work at the office in Kuopio.
The space and earth observation centre is responsible for the research of the polar regions and near space as well as developing technology related to the activity. The research subjects are especially arctic research and remote sensing, new observation methods and space. The Arctic Space Centre and Sodankylä office are a part of the Space and earth observation centre.

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FMI's researchers publish about 300 peer-reviewed articles annually.

In Science News we publish current information about FMI's studies on the weather, the sea and the climate.

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A new method for studies of volatile organic acids in the forest air

A new method for studies of volatile organic acids in the forest air

An in situ method for studying gas phase C2-C7 monocarboxylic volatile organic acids (VOAs) in ambient air has been developed and evaluated at the Finnish Meteorological Institute.

Organic acids comprise a large fraction of the non-methane hydrocarbons in the atmosphere, but knowledge of especially volatile organic acids is poor. This is at least partly due to the lack of sensitive enough measurement methods for detecting concentrations in ambient air. These acids potentially play a role in the atmospheric chemistry and production of secondary organic aerosols and therefore they have effects also on air quality and climate.

In this method samples are collected directly into the cold trap of the thermal desorption unit and analyzed in situ using a gas chromatograph coupled to a mass spectrometer. The method was validated in the laboratory and tested on the ambient air of a boreal forest in June 2015. The highest mixing ratios were found for acetic acid and the highest relative variations for hexanoic acid.

This novel method will allow us to study diurnal and seasonal variations of VOAs in ambient air and produce new data on, which will benefit atmospheric chemistry and new particle formation studies.

More information:

Academy Research fellow Heidi Hellén,

Hellén, H., Schallhart, S., Praplan, A. P., Petäjä, T., and Hakola, H.: Using in situ GC-MS for analysis of C2–C7 volatile organic acids in ambient air of a boreal forest site, Atmos. Meas. Tech., 10, 281-289, doi:10.5194/amt-10-281-2017, 2017.

Science news archive

Contact information

Scientific Director Ari Laaksonen
tel. +358 539 5530

Meteorological and Marine Research Programme
Director Sami Niemelä
tel. +358 29 539 4172

Climate Research Programme
Director  Hannele Korhonen
tel. +358  29 539 2135

Space and Earth Observation Centre
Director Jouni Pulliainen
tel. +358 29 539 4701

Science News
Communications Specialist Eija Vallinheimo
tel. +358 29 539 2231

FMI publications

FMI´s own publications series are:

  • FMI Contributions: high-quality peer-reviewed research results, mainly doctoral dissertations
  • FMI Reports: current research results mainly for customers and other stakeholders

All publications from 2016 onwards can be found on Helda.