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50 years of ozonesonde measurements at Uccle

After some years of testing - the earliest ozonesonde measurements at Uccle in the WOUDC database date back to 1965,1966, and 1967 - the operational ozonesonde programme at the Royal Meteorological Institute (RMI) of Belgium in Uccle started in January 1969, with a launch frequency of three times a week, year around. This year, after more than 6800 launches covering 50 years of measurements, we would like to highlight the value of this tremendous effort, of this long-term dataset, for the past, present and future. 

Therefore, a celebration event will be held at the Uccle launch site (headquarters of the RMI in Brussels) on Thursday, 19 September 2019. Since ozone is a trace gas that has different impacts on life on Earth, depending on its location in the atmosphere (UV blocker, greenhouse gas, air quallity), the event is open to a wide range of interested people, from data users, policy makers, environmental agencies and the media to of course scientists with interests in ozone research.

The focus will not only be on the Uccle ozonesonde time series, as more general topics will also be covered:

  • the different effects of ozone in the atmosphere
  • ozone and climate change
  • the importance and challenges of ground-based ozone measurements
  • homogenisation of the ozonesonde network
  • validation of satellite ozone retrievals
  • new developments in satellite ozone retrievals
  • ozone measurements on aircraft
  • the future of ozone research

Here it is: the 50 years time series of the vertical ozone profiles (ozone partial pressures in mPa) measured at Uccle based on more than 6800 ozonesondes. The altitude level is expressed in km relative to the tropopause height.