TRAKT publications, outreach and special reports

Project peer-review publications

  • Varentsov M., Konstantinov P., Baklanov A., Esau I., Miles V. and R. Davy, 2018: Anthropogenic and natural drivers of a strong winter urban heat island in a typical Arctic city, Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics, doi: 10.5194/acp-2018-569 
  • Mahura, A., Baklanov, A., Arnold, S., Esau, I., Wolf-Grosse, T., and 55 co-authors, 2018: PEEX Modelling Platform for Seamless Environmental Prediction, Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics Discussions, submitted, doi:
  • Esau I. (ed.), 2018: TRAKT-2018: Transferable knowledge and technologies for high-resolution environmental impact assessment and management(Intermediate project report), NERSC technical report, No. 394, June 22, DOI: 10.13140/RG.2.2.27746.22727
  • Esau, I, Tolstykh, M., Fadeev, R., Shashkin, V., Makhnorylova, S., Miles, V., Melnikov, V., 2018: Systematic biases in short-term weather forecast induced by atmospheric boundary layer scaling, Environmental Research Letters, accepted, doi: 10.1088/1748-9326/aaecfb
  •   Ezhova, E., Kerminen, V.-M., Lehtinen, K. E. J., and Kulmala, M.: A simple model for the time evolution of the condensation sink in the atmosphere for intermediate Knudsen numbers, Atmos. Chem. Phys., 18, 2431-2442,, 2018. [URL]

Project outreach

The Web-based Atlas

There are several locations in the northern Russian Arctic associated with large amounts of sulphur dioxide (SO2) emission into the atmosphere. They are known as smelters, and they could have the largest environmental and health impacts. These are the Russian enterprises located in the cities of Norilsk (Krasnoyarsk Krai), Mochegorsk and Nikel-Zapolyarny (Murmansk region). Information about environmental and pollution situation in these regions of Russia is provided through annual state reports. A series of studies was performed as a part of the Russian state scientific-research programmes, Kola Science Center and Siberian Branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences projects, Arctic Monitoring and Assessment Programme activities, and others.
The modeling of atmospheric transport, dispersion and deposition of different pollutants is essential input for estimation of possible consequences on different scales ranging from hemispheric to urban/ local scales. Estimates of transboundary transport between selected countries is especially important for a decision making process. Generated model output is crucial for multi-level assessment of risk, vulnerability, impact, short- and long-term consequences for environment and population, which is living near-by or remotely from the sources of possible accidental releases and continuous emissions.
The long-term modeling of the atmospheric transport, dispersion and deposition of pollution resulted from continuous emissions from the Russian smelters was performed employing the Lagrangian-type Danish Emergency Response Model of the Atmosphere (DERMA; Sørensen, 1998; Baklanov et al., 2008).
The probabilistic approach, sensitivity of the model to meteorology and diffusion parameters, deposition processes, and other parameterizations are also described in more details by Baklanov and Mahura (2004), Sørensen (1998), and others. The European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecast (ECMWF) data archives were used as input 3D meteorological fields for the year 2000. These meteorological data are given at 1°x1° resolution with 6 hour time intervals and covering the Northern Hemisphere, north of 10°N. For each run, the pollution plume originated near the source was dispersed through the atmosphere (as well as deposited due to dry and wet deposition processes) during following 10 days. It should be noted that in general, levels of pollution can vary significantly depending on dominating meteorological conditions both within the boundary layer as well as the free troposphere, and the highest levels of pollution are generally observed in vicinity of the sources. The generated model output included: the air concentration, the time integrated air concentration (TIAC), dry (DD) and wet deposition (WD)


Linking TRAKT project to the PEEX networking [pdf]

At current moment the Pan-Eurasian EXperiment programme (PEEX) network includes more than 4000 researchers worldwide. The existing PEEX dissemination platform and communication tools will be used for presenting and promoting the TRAKT-2018 project (TRAnsferable Knowledge and Technologies for high-resolution environmental impact assessment and management) for the PEEX community.
The information is distributed through the PEEX official website ( - in English, Russian and Chinese), e-news, instagram, twitter (, e-mailing list (, newsletters (
So far the PEEX programme signed more than 30 PEEX Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with universities and research institutes in Russia and China (
As part of the TRAKT project, during the official kick-off-meeting (22-24 Jan 2018, St. Petersburg, Russia; Fig. 1) such MoUs were signed also with 3 Russian partners involved into the project – the Nansen International Environmental and Remote Sensing Center (NIERSC;; St. Petersburg), the Scientific Research Center for Ecological Safety (SRCES;; St. Petersburg) and the Kola Science Center of the Russian Academy of Sciences (KSC RAS;; Apatity, Murmansk region). Moreover, basic information about the TRAKT project is linked to the PEEX official website and available at: The TRAKT activities are well linked with two PEEX focus areas (Fig. 2) such as the “Knowledge Transfer” and “Impact on Society”. The “Knowledge Transfer” focus area directs towards educational programs at multiple levels, strengthening future research communities, and raising awareness of global changes and environmental issues. And in particular: (i) to educate the next generation of multidisciplinary experts and scientists capable of finding tools for solving grand challenges; (ii) to increase public awareness of climate change impacts in the Pan-Eurasian region; (iii) to distribute the new knowledge and data products to scientific communities and the public sector; and (iv) to deliver tools, scenarios and assessments for climate policy makers and authorities.
The “Impact on Society” focus area addresses key aspects related to mitigation and adaptation strategies. It also involves planning for preparing northern societies to cope with environmental changes, developing reliable early-warning systems, and addressing the role of new technology in the implementation of these strategies and plans.
As part of the PEEX Working Groups meeting (scheduled for 1-2 November 2018, Helsinki, Finland), the TRAKT partners were invited to present the achieved results to a wider PEEX community. TRAKT is also invited to contribute to the 4th PEEX Science Conference (2019, Helsinki). Materials and results of the project are expected to be included into lecture courses at Universities. In addition, the INAR-UHEL team is also agreeing to provide the Enviro-HIRLAM model through signing agreement on the model code transfer and use for research, development and educational purposes for the project partners. A closer involvement and project contribution are also expected as part of the PEEX climate policy making and to international forums, decision-makers and national authorities (see more information in the PEEX Science Plan, sections 5.2 & 6.1).

PEEX – Pan-Eurasian EXperiment Programme Science Plan, by Markku Kulmala, & Hanna K. Lappalainen, Sergej Zilitinkevich & PEEX Research Community [pdf]


Field training for Moscow State University Bsc and Ms students based in Polar micro-meteorological observations in Arctic area (2-5 February 2018) in Velikiy Ustug.


User conference, outreach events and master class for students in Apatity, July 2018

Press conference in Apatity for end usersPress conference in Apatity for end users

See more in the PEEX Artic-Boreal Hub Newsletters online [web-site]

Archangelsk pressa wrote: "Климатология городов продемонстрировала внушительные темпы развития в течение последних 20 лет, по этому показателю она опережает другие науки о Земле. До недавнего времени микроклимат городов арктической зоны оставался практически не изученным. Совместный проект ученых из Норвегии, России и Финляндии под названием «TRAKT-2018» призван устранить этот пробел. В качестве его основной задачи рассматривается разработка новых методов моделирования климатической обстановки и качества воздуха в населенных пунктах Кольского полуострова, а также информирование жителей о текущих проблемах природной среды. В рамках проекта ученые из МГУ планируют посетить Апатиты и прочитать лекцию в КНЦ РАН, посвященную проблемам климатологии городов, которые расположены в полярных широтах. После лекции участники «TRAKT-2018» собираются провести мастер-класс для студентов на Хибинской научной станции. Ранее в процессе полевых исследований были получены результаты, согласно которым в городах арктической зоны наблюдается значительно более высокая температура, чем за их пределами. Эффект особенно выражен в холодную погоду. Например, в Апатитах разница температур может достигать 10 градусов. Ученые связывают это явление с влиянием холмистого рельефа. В условиях постепенного изменения климатических условий точная информация о городском микроклимате будет основой для увеличения точности прогнозов погоды, роста эффективности градостроительного планирования и повышения комфортности проживания населения северных городов, считают ученые."

Within the framework of project "TRAKT-2018" on July 20, 2018, scientists of the Lomonosov Moscow State University have visited city Apatity (Kola Peninsula, 67°34′ N 33°23′ E) and have given a public lecture at the Kola Scientific Center of the Russian Academy of Sciences. The presentation (lead by Dr Pavel Konstantinov and Dr Mikhail Varentsov) was devoted to the actual project, the issues of the uniqueness of the urban microclimate and the problems of urban climatology in the polar latitudes. At the beginning, Dr Konstantinov introduced to end-users scientific background of project for more than five years, MSU-based urban climate research team, in close cooperation with Kola Scientific center , has been studying the “heat islands” of large cities in the Russian Arctic. During his talk Dr Konstantinov noticed that urban climatology in the last 20 years is one of the most dynamically developing of Earth sciences. However, until recently, the climate of the Eastern Arctic cities remained virtually unexplored.



engagement with ened users July 2018engagement with ened users July 2018

During the meeting, discussions were held on the issues of the uniqueness of the microclimate of Apatity and issues related to the problems of the urban climatology of the polar latitudes. Invited to public lecture scientists of the Institute of Industrial Ecology Problems of the North, the Biomedical Center and the Center for Humanitarian Problems of the Barents Region, discussed the importance of the results and the development of cooperation. The importance of the topic and the expansion of areas of interdisciplinary research conducted by scientists of the Kola Scientific Center of the Russian Academy of Sciences was noted in an interview to the journalists of the Public TV channel of  Kola Peninsula and the Murmansk Bulletin Journal by Vice-Chairman of the KSC, Dr. Sc. Galina Sousova.

Dr Mikhail Varentsov said that TRAKT-created technology of a fundamentally new level will be applied for Apatity region for the first time in the Russian Arctic. It allows to analyzing the microclimate in 30-meter increments (even satellite monitoring allows you to do only 1 km, other technologies 7 km). After this step, TRAKT-created technology will be available to citizens of Apatity-city “It is important that all these technologies are not used separately, but are synthesized with each other in order to obtain a final product that meets the needs of the present, which could be useful for the population of the city”, Mikhail Varentsov said.  “This will eventually allow to predict air quality, environmental comfort, transfer of air pollution, taking into account each small hill and each house.”

The interest to the event was shown by the Administration of the city of Apatity, whose representatives participated in the work of the Round Table ( Round Table was lead after public lecture). And this is not surprising, since these studies can be of considerable interest for utilities, especially during the heating season.

The lecture was also attended by local media journalists and bloggers. In connection with the event ten articles were published at local web-portals (see Additional links section)

After public lecture, the project participants held a master class for graduate and master students of MSU Faculty of Geography at the Khibiny training and research station in Kirovsk-city.


educational component July 2018educational component July 2018

Urban Heat Island Arctic Research Campaign (UHIARC) dataset, available since August 2018

UHIARC installationUHIARC installationAbsence of a dense meteorological network impedes development of urban climatology in the northern polar region where the global warming is rapid and amplified. High quality and density urban temperature datasets are required to monitor thawing processes in urban soils, properly assess and project trends in urban comfort and air quality as well as to estimate impacts of climatic extremes. This dataset presents data of Urban Heat Island Arctic Research Campaign (UHIARC) observational network, which has been deployed in several medium-sized cities of the Eurasian Arctic region in winter 2016-2017. The network comprises an array of air temperature loggers (iButton) and one automatic weather station Davis Pro in each of these four cities. The UHIARC observations revealed strong positive temperature anomalies in all four cities. These temperature anomalies, which are known as urban heat islands (UHIs), have mean wintertime intensities of 0.7K to 1.4K. Typical extreme intensities of 7.1K were observed during cold anticyclonic weather conditions. Such a strong mediation of the cold temperature spells by the UHI might induce considerable socio-economic and environmental impact in the cities. The data from the iButton TLs are provided on request as well as the data for other periods (including the latest observations) for the listed cities and also for Apatity (Murmansk region, Russia). The data are free exclusively for academic purposes, in case of publishing scientific results of processing of initial UHIARC info, the reference to the dataset and the source are mandatory.


Pavel Konstantinov, Mikhail Varentsov, and Igor Esau. A high density urban temperature network deployed in several cities of Eurasian Arctic. Environmental Research Letters, 13(7), 2018.






The list of publications:

video about the communication event 

media events  (the most comprehensive description)




V.I. Gornyy, 2018: Possibilities of remote sensing methods in the development of a new General Plan of St. Petersburg, presentation on at the meeting of the Environmental Council on Environmental Protection under the Government of St. Petersburg on September 27, 2018

V.I. Gornyy, 2018: Space technologies for managing the risk of overheating of the urban environment of St. Petersburg in the context of global warming, presentation at the Round Table «Comfortable urban environment - the basis for safe regional development» at the 9th St. Petersburg Gas Forum, October 02-05, 2018.

V.I. Gornyy et al., 2018: Satellite mapping of threats of ecological safety in the coastal zone of the Gulf of Finland, presentation at the International Science Forum «GULF OF FINLAND – NATURAL DYNAMICS AND ANTHROPOGENIC IMPACT», St. Petersburg, on October 18, 2018

V.I. Gornyy, 2018: Parry of threat of environment overheating in Saint-Petersburg, presentation at Russian-German Roundtable devoted to the IPCC Report: Global Warming of 1.5ºC, organized under the auspices of the Russian-German Environmental Information Bureau (RNEI), public environmental organization «Friends of the Baltic», ITMO University.


Special reports

  • ---------------------------------------------------------------------- Stage #2
  • SMEAR – Station for Measuring Ecosystem-Atmosphere Relations, by Tuukka Petäjä, Markku Kulmala, Timo Vesala, Jaana Bäck, Hanna K. Lappalainen & SMEAR stations researchers; UHEL/INAR, Stage #2, April 2018, [pdf]
  • Multi-Scales and Multi–Processes Modelling at INAR, by Alexander Mahura, Risto Makkonen, Michael Boy, Zhou Putian, Tuukka Petäjä, Markku Kulmala, Sergej Zilitinkevich & “Enviro-PEEX on ECMWF” Modelling Team; UHEL/INAR, Stage #2, April 2018, [pdf]
  • Monthly Concentration & Deposition Patterns from Smelters of the Russian North: Atlas, by Alexander Mahura, Alexander Baklanov, Jens. H. Sørensen; UHEL/INAR, Stage #2, April 2018 [pdf]
  • Seamless Integrated Meteorology-Chemistry-Aerosols Enviro-HIRLAM Modelling, by Alexander Mahura, and ENVIRO-HIRLAM team; UHEL/INAR, Stage #2, April 2018, [pdf]
  • Process-Based Modelling for the Meteorology-Chemistry-Aerosol System, by Michael Boy & the Atmospheric Modelling Group (AMG); UHEL/INAR, Stage #2, April 2018, [pdf]
  • Seasonal impact due to sulphur emissions from Severonikel smelters, by Alexander Mahura, Iratxe Gonzalez-Aparicio, Roman Nuterman, Alexander Baklanov;UHEL/INAR, Stage #2, April 2018, [pdf]
  • Historical data analysis for the for Apatity-Kirovsk region in Russia: Climatology of days with synoptic conditions contributing to increased atmospheric pollution, by Natalia Gnatiuk, Elena Shalina, Leonid Bobylev; NIERSC, Stage #2, April 2018, [pdf]
  • Satellite Data for Verification of Air Pollution Modelling Results, by Victor Gornyy, I. Latypov, A. Kiselev, T. Davidan, A. Manvelova, S. Kritsuk, Alexander Mahura; SRCES, Stage #2, April 2018, [pdf]
  • ----------------------------------------------------------------------- Stage #3
  • Earth System Modelling with EC-Earth, by Risto Makkonen; UHEL/INAR, Stage #3, June 2018, [pdf]
  • Boundary conditions for the high-resolution modelling of the Apatity-Kirovsk area with PALM, by Tobias Wolf-Grosse; NERSC, Stage #3, June 2018, [pdf]
  • Criteria of successful knowledge and technology transfer, by Igor Esau; NERSC, Stage #3, June 2018, [pdf]
  • Enviro-HIRLAM Downscaling Setup towards Fine Scale Modelling, by Alexander Mahura; UHEL/INAR, Stage #3, June 2018, [pdf]
  • Historical data analysis for the for Apatity-Kirovsk region in Russia, by Natalia Gnatiuk, Elena Shalina, Leonid Bobylev; NIERSC, Stage #3, July 2018,[pdf]
  • Urban Heat Island Arctic Research Campaign (UHIARC) dataset, by Pavel Konstantinov, Mikhail Varentsov (KSC), Alexander Baklanov (WMO) and Igor Ezau (NERSC), Stage #3, August 2018, [pdf]
  • Analysis of meteorological conditions at SMEAR I station in December 2017, by Pyry Poutanen (UHEL/INAR), Stage #3, August 2018, [pdf]
  • Analysis of atmospheric composition at SMEAR I station in December 2017, by Pyry Poutanen (UHEL/INAR), Stage #3, August 2018, [pdf]
  • ----------------------------------------------------------------------- Stage #4
  • Online integrated multi-scale modelling: Downscaling meteorology and atmospheric composition, by Alexander Mahura, Risto Makkonen, Tuukka Petäjä, Markku Kulmala, Sergej Zilitinkevich; UHEL/INAR, Stage #4, October 2018, [pdf]
  • Black carbon and other species in the Arctic, by Alexander Mahura, Roman Nuterman, Alexander Baklanov; UHEL/INAR, Stage #4, October 2018, [pdf]
  • Online integrated multi-scale modeling: Zooming to the Northern Fennoscandia and Kola Peninsula, by Alexander Mahura, Risto Makkonen, Tuukka Petäjä, Markku Kulmala, Sergej Zilitinkevich; UHEL/INAR, Stage #4, October 2018, [pdf]
  • TRAKT - PEEX knowledge transfer - continue networking and collaboration, by Hanna K. Lappalainen, Alexander Mahura, Risto Makkonen, Tuukka Petäjä, Markku Kulmala, Sergej Zilitinkevich; UHEL/INAR, Stage #4, October 2018, [pdf]
  • Climate Model Data for TRAKT Domain: 21st Century Climate Change and Connection to Air Quality, byRisto Makkonen Risto Makkonen; UHEL/INAR, Stage #4, October 2018, [pdf] 
  • ----------------------------------------------------------------------- The final stage