With approximately 500 researchers and supporting staff, VITO is the largest Belgian research institution active in the fields of energy, environment and materials. VITO has a thirty years history in air quality measurements and modelling. In recent years a lot of attention is going to urban air quality. Air quality measurement strategies and models are adapted to the complex urban environment. Several research projects have been carried out in major cities in Belgium (Brussels, Antwerp, Ghent, Bruges, Mechelen, Hasselt, …) on behalf of the local or regional authorities. These contacts will be very valuable when setting up a case in the EveryAware project.

The research unit on Environmental Risk and Health (about 70 researchers) has a long history in the as- sessment of air quality and associated health risks. Its Air Quality Measurements team has extensive field experience in air quality measurements (both in outdoor and indoor environments) and unique lab test facilities to test and validate measurement equipment and methods. It is the reference lab for air quality measurements in the Flemish region. To improve its potential for detailed assessment of personal exposure of people to air pollution, the research unit is developing tools to assess air quality at a high spatial and temporal resolution. It is therefore involved both in the development of activity-based models, and in the development of sensor networks and mobile monitoring techniques. A bicyle (Aeroflex)has been equiped with air quality measuring equipment, GPS and video, and has been used in several research projects. In the IDEA project VITO is working together with research groups from the university of Ghent to establish an intelligent sensor network for urban air quality and noise.

Projects are carried out in close collaboration with the Environmental Modelling unit. It develops computer models to calculate the dispersion and chemical transformation of pollutants into the atmosphere, to determine air quality on urban and regional scales. It also developed RIO, a de-trended Kriging scheme for the interpolation of (regional scale) air pollution maps, and OVL, a neural-network based air quality forecasting model. The Earth Observation unit has been involved in the 6FP project OSIRIS that dealt with integrated sensor networks (air quality, emergency).


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