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  • The ocean influences our climate in many ways. Oceanic currents transport large amounts of heat around the globe and cause an additional heating or cooling of the continents. The ocean takes up considerable amounts of greenhouse gases that otherwise would be stored within the atmosphere and thereby would contribute to the heating of the atmosphere. The Department of Oceanography investigates changes in these climate-relevant processes in the ocean by applying a wide spectrum of modern experimental methods.
  • The section of physics and chemistry of the atmosphere is composed of several science teams. Research is made in the field of trace gas analysis using Fourier Transform Spectroscopy (FTS) and other methods, aerosol analysis, and satellite data retrieval and scientific support for the GOME and SCIAMACHY projects.
  • The working groups in the remote sensing section are doing atmospheric science using microwave sensors from the ground and from science aircrafts. Other groups of this section are using satellite data to do special cartography of surface properties such as sea ice maps.
  • In the terrestrial environmental physics group transport processes of trace substances in terrestrial ecosystems are being studied. Interest focuses on long-lived radioactive isotopes such as cesium-137 and strontium-90 as well as on the dynamics of heavy metals in soils.
  • Only a few years ago, the postgraduate course environmental physics (PEP) for students from all over the world was established, and has been very successful from the start.