26 July 2021

Minister of Science and High Education of the RF visited Tomsk 

Valery Falkov, Minister of Science and High Education of the RF, visited Tomsk and got acquainted with modern results and research of the Institute of Atmospheric Optics. 
In particular, Valery Falkov was told about the unique flying laboratory belonging to the Institute of Atmospheric Optics. This laboratory is involved in active studies of the carbon balance of forest ecosystems of southern and central taiga, as well as methane content near water surfaces. The laboratory is based on the Optik Tu-134 aircraft equipped with up-to-date research measurement system including both contact and remote facilities for diagnostics of the environment. It serves for large-scale measurements of vertical distributions of gaseous atmospheric constituents and aerosols, optical and meteorological parameters of the air and underlying surface, including water surface. The Institute of Atmospheric Optics employs the flying laboratory for atmospheric studies in Siberia and the Russian Arctic for four decades. In particular, it allowed the scientists to reveal the drastic decrease in the rate of CO2 absorption by forest ecosystems of Western Siberia after 2004, the increased methane content near the surface of all seas of the Russian Arctic in 2020, and the accelerated growth of the methane content near the sea surface.

Valery Falkov emphasized that the Institute of Atmospheric Optics has the unique infrastructure including eight research stations. To form the objective pattern of carbon balance in Russia, the Institute of Atmospheric Optics should be necessarily involved in the monitoring network measuring anthropogenic emissions of greenhouse gases.
More information about the visit can be found at the site of the Ministry of Science and High Education  of the Russian Federation.