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The overarching goal of the proposed project is to answer the question: “Why dust particles travel longer than expected?” by understanding the role of triboelectric charging and quantify its impact on the evolution of the dust properties during transport. The following objectives are specifically identified:

  • To empirically quantify the physical mechanism responsible for dust triboelectrification.
  • To assess the impact of the triboelectric charging on atmospheric dust transport, by acknowledging the effects of electric field and particle orientation on dust removal processes and related parameterizations.
  • To quantify the climatic impacts of the mechanism, particularly the effect on the dust size evolution during transport and consequently on dry deposition and CCN/IN reservoirs, as well as the effect of the electric field on particle orientation and consequently on radiative transfer (“Venetian blind effect”).

Work Packages


Development of a lidar system to detect particle orientation
Implementation of the large-scale experiment
Development and validation of an algorithm for the retrieval of oriented dust properties
Develop a mathematical formulation to describe the triboelectric effects
Quantification of the impact of triboelectrification on climate processes based on the observations


The PANhellenic GEophysical observatory of Antikythera – PANGEA (35.86 N, 23.29 E, 110m a.s.l.) is a natural laboratory that facilitates the scientific needs of the ERC Consolidator Grant D-TECT.

The following equipment has been installed and is operational at the station

Polly-XT lidar

Polly-XT lidar: Multi-wavelength lidar for the 24/7 monitoring of the atmospheric state. The system enables the determination of the particle backscatter coefficient at 355, 532, and 1064 nm and of the extinction coefficient at 355 and 532 nm, allowing aerosol classification and microphysical characterization to derive the particle size distribution and concentration. In addition, the system operates two polarization-sensitive channels at 355 and 532 nm, to determine the aerosol particle shape from the (particle) linear depolarization ratio, to separate dust and non-dust particles in mixed aerosol layers, and to investigate mixed-phase clouds.

Field Mill Electrometer (JCI 131 FM)

A compact and robust instrument for continuous long term measurements of the ambient electric field, adverse environmental conditions. It is particularly suitable for continuous monitoring of atmospheric electric field conditions, associated with varying weather conditions and electric content, such as during thunderstorms or extreme volcanic activity. The output signal is proportionate to the electric field strength and currently operates at a range of 2kV/m with a precision better than 1%. The instrument is mounted on a 3m mast in order to avoid ground distortions. The FM is ideal for remote site installation due to its low power consumption and straightforward data collection system.

UV Multi-Filter Rotating Shadowband Radiometer (UV-MFR 7

Ultraviolet (UV) Multi-Filter Rotating Shadowband Radiometer (Model UVMFR-7), an instrument that measures global, diffuse, and direct UV solar irradiance at the same time. The recording channels are centered around seven wavelengths (300, 305, 311, 317, 325, 332 and 368 nm) with Nominal Full Width Half Maximum at 2 nm. Measurements are performed every 10 seconds and averaged values are stored every 1 minute. It is designed to operate automatically and autonomously in remote locations with only periodic manual cleaning of the fore optic

GRAW Radiosonde launch station (DFM-90, GS-E)

Specialized launching site for the deployment of meteorological GRAW radiosondes with attaching capabilities of newly developed atmospheric electricity sensors. The used radiosondes are of the DFM-09 type, are extremely light, small and robust, and provide reliable measurements of core atmospheric parameters with a columnar distribution. Effective telemetry and optimum reception guaranteed by the GS-E groundstation, make it the ideal set-up for on demand launches.

CIMEL sunphotometer

CIMEL is a high-precision multiband, automatic sun-and-sky scanning radiometer that provides measurements of the optical properties of the atmosphere by measuring the sun and sky radiance. Due to its very low power consumption and its self-powered system, it meets the requirements of continuous monitoring in terms of reliability, long term and very low maintenance cost

Direct-sun Solar Polarimeter (SolPol)

A prototype solar polarimeter, kindly conferred by the University of Hertfordshire, is designed to operate with direct sun tracking capabilities and measures the degree of linearly and/or circularly polarized sunlight due to forward scattering from atmospheric aerosols. Measurements are centered on 550nm, due to light detector current limitations, while the instrument’s precision and accuracy are of order of the 1ppm and 1%, respectively. SolPol is a robust instrument capable of manual operation per demand, especially under heavy Saharan dust loads and with low maintenance requirements. It is hosted within a medium sized astronomical dome for the optimum protection-to-applicability relation.


Vassilis Amiridis
Vassilis AmiridisDirector of research

Vassilis Amiridis (VA) was born in Göteborg, Sweden, in 1971. He received his B.Sc. in Physics, M.Sc. in Environmental Sciences and Ph.D. in Atmospheric Physics at the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Greece in 1998, 2000 and 2006, respectively. Since 2006, VA is a Researcher of the Institute for Astronomy, Astrophysics, Space Applications and Remote Sensing (IAASARS) of the National Observatory of Athens (NOA) in Greece

Antonis Gkikas
Antonis GkikasPost-Doc Researcher

Antonis Gkikas graduated in 2004 from the Natural Resources and Environmental Engineering Department of the Technological Education Institute of Crete (branch of Chania, Greece). In 2007, he received his MSc degree in Meteorology, Climatology and Atmospheric Physics. His PhD thesis (2012) dealt with the study of aerosol episodes in the Mediterranean basin

Nikolaos Siomos
Nikolaos SiomosPost-Doc Researcher

Nikolaos Siomos currently works at the Department of Physics, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki. Nikolaos does research in Atmospheric Optics and Aerosol monitoring with Remote Sensing Techniques, specializing in lidar and sunphotometer measurements. Their most recent publication is 'Comparison of two automated aerosol typing methods and their application on an EARLINET station’.

Eleni Drakaki
Eleni DrakakiPhD Candidate

Drakaki Eleni was born on 1985 in Athens. She received her B.Sc. in Physics and her M.Sc. in Environmental Physics/Meteorology from the University of Athens in 2009 and 2012 respectively.tory of Athens (NOA).

Ioanna Tsikoudi
Ioanna TsikoudiPhD Candidate

Tsikoudi Ioanna was born in 1994 in Athens, Greece. She graduated from the Physics Department of National and Kapodistrian University of Athens and she obtained her MSc degree in 2019, in the field of “Environmental Physics”, from the same Department.

Stavroula Papatheochari
Stavroula PapatheochariEnvironmentalist/Management Support

Papatheochari Stavroula studied Environmental Science at the Aegean University of Mytilene island, where she graduated in 2004. She acquired her Master's degree (MSc) on Waste Management, in 2011 from the Hellenic Open University. Professionally, she is active in national, EU and international funded projects' management and implementation from 2007.

Eleni Marinou
Eleni MarinouPost-Doc Researcher

Eleni Marinou graduated from the Applied Physics at the Applied Sciences Department of the National Technical University of Athens in 2010. She received her M.Sc. in the field of “Environmental Physics” from the Physics Department of the Kapodistrian University of Athens (2013). She acquired her PhD diploma on the study of the vertical distribution of desert dust and condensation nuclei over the Mediterranean from the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki (2017).

Emmanouil Proestakis
Emmanouil ProestakisPost-Doc Researcher

Emmanouil Proestakis graduated from the Department of Applied Physics at the Sciences of the National Technical University of Athens (NTUA) - Greece (2011). He received his MSc in the field of “Environmental Physics” from the Institute of Environmental Physics (IUP) of the University of Bremen – Germany (2013). In early 2018 he acquired his PhD diploma on the field of atmospheric remote sensing from space for depicting the aerosol connection with atmospheric electricity from the University of Patras (UoP) – Greece.

Ioannis Panagiotis Raptis
Ioannis Panagiotis RaptisPost-Doc Researcher

Born in Athens, Greece, in 1983. Holds a Diploma of Physics (University of Athens, 2009), a M.Sc. degree in Environmental Physics (20011) and a Doctorate in Physics (2018) in the Physics dept. of the same university. His Ph.D. Thesis was in the field of Solar Measurements for aerosol and trace gases research titled “Aerosol, Trace Gases and Water Vapour optical properties study, using spectral measurements of solar irradiance”

Anna Kampouri
Anna KampouriPhD Candidate

Kampouri Anna was born in 1986 in Thessaloniki, Greece. She graduated from the Physics Department of Aristotle University of Thessaloniki and completed her M.Sc. degree in 2018, in the field of "Meteorology, Climatology and Atmospheric Environment”, from the Department of Geology in Aristotle University of Thessaloniki

Angelos Nersesian
Angelos NersesianPhD Candidate

Angelos Nersesian obtained his degree in Physics from the University of Patras in 2012. He completed his MSc degree in Astrophysics and Space Physics, at the University of Crete, in 2015. The subject of his master thesis was the study of optical spectra variability of the Be/X-ray binary systems. As of September 2016, he is working as a PhD student at IAASARS, as part of the DustPedia project.9.

Ioanna Mavropoulou
Ioanna MavropoulouPhysicist/Management Support

Ioanna Mavropoulou was born in 1982 in Thessaloniki, Greece. She studied at the School of Applied Mathematics and Physical Sciences, Department of Applied Physics, in National Technical University of Athens. She worked since 2008 as a manager in multinational retail companies.

Alexandra Tsekeri
Alexandra TsekeriPost-Doc Researcher

Alexandra Tsekeri (AT) was born in Ioannina, Greece, in 1981. She received her B.Sc. in Environmental Engineering from the Polytechnic School of the Democritus University of Thrace (DUTH), Greece, in 2005 and her Ph.D. in Earth and Environmental Sciences from the Graduate School and University Center, The City University of New York (CUNY), USA, in 2011.

Sotirios Mallios
Sotirios MalliosPost-Doc Researcher

Sotirios Mallios received his B.Sc. in Physics with an orientation in Electronics, Computers, Telecommunications and Control from the Department of Physics of the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens (NKUA) in 2005. In 2015 he earned his Ph.D in Electrical Engineering from the Electrical Engineering Department of the Pennsylvania State University, USA.

Anna Gialitaki
Anna GialitakiPhD Candidate

Gialitaki Anna was born in 1987 in Athens, Greece. She graduated from the Physics Department of National and Kapodistrian University of Athens and is currently a student at the postgraduate program of the same department entitled “Environmental Physics”.

 Peristera Paschou
Peristera PaschouPhD Candidate

Peristera Paschou comes from Lefkopigi Kozani, Greece and she was born in 1994. She is a graduate of the Physics Department in Aristotle University of Thessaloniki and she obtained her M.Sc. degree in 2018, in the field of "Environmental Physics", also from the Physics Department in Aristotle University of Thessaloniki

Thanasis Georgiou
Thanasis GeorgiouIT Support

Thanasis Georgiou is currently a student at the Electrical & Electronic Engineering faculty of the University of West Attica. In 2016, as a member of the TTSS team of the Electrical Engineering faculty he participated in the hackAIR project where he designed low-cost sensor nodes for measuring air quality.

Spyros Metallinos
Spyros MetallinosStation Operator

Metallinos Spiros graduated from high school at Corfu in 1993 and began his studies at the Physics Department of the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki (AUTH). At the same department he worked at the Computer Laboratory and later was employed as technical support for the AUTH Central Library007.

Stavros Solomos
Stavros SolomosPost-Doc Researcher

Stavros Solomos was born in Athens, Greece in 1976. He received his B.Sc. in Physics, M.Sc. in Environmental Physics / Meteorology and PhD in Meteorology / Atmospheric Modeling from the University of Athens, Greece in 2001, 2003 and 2011 respectively. Since 2013, he is a postdoctoral researcher at the Institute for Astronomy, Astrophysics, Space Applications and Remote Sensing (IAASARS) of the National Observatory of Athens.

Stergios Misios
Stergios MisiosPost-Doc Researcher

I have studied physics and environmental physics at the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Greece and atmospheric physics and climate modelling at the Max Planck Institute for Meteorology, Germany. I have worked as a post-doctoral research associate at the Department of Physics, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Greece, the department of Geosciences, Aarhus University, Denmark, the Atmospheric Oceanic and Planetary Physics lab, University of Oxford, UK and my latest assignment is at the National Observatory of Athens.

Vasiliki Daskalopoulou
Vasiliki Daskalopoulou PhD Candidate

Vasiliki Daskalopoulou was born in 1989 in Diavolitsi Messinia, Greece. She received her B.Sc. degree from the Department of Physics at the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens (NKUA) in 2015 and completed her M.Sc. degree in 2017, in the field of "Space Science, Technologies and Applications", granted from the University of Peloponnese and the National Observatory of Athens (NOA).

Maria Tsichla
Maria TsichlaPhD Candidate

Maria Tsichla was born in Athens in 1994. She graduated from the Physics Department of National and Kapodistrian University of Athens in 2017 and she obtained her MSc degree in the field of Astrophysics, Astronomy and Mechanics from the same Department in 2019.

Alexandros Alexiou
Alexandros AlexiouIT Support

Alexiou Alexandros was born in 1996 in Athens, Greece. He is a graduate of the Experimental High School of Anavryta, and is currently studying in Athens' University of Economics and Business, in the Department of Informatics. He has worked in the organisation and completion of various projects in the past and has been oftentimes occupied in the field of IT.

Giorgos Katsanevakis
Giorgos KatsanevakisStation Operator/Station Support

Giorgos Katsanevakis was born in Piraeus in 1976. He graduated from Technical and Vocational High School in 2000 with specialization on Electrical Engineering and he works since 2002 for the maintenance of mobile network antennas in different regions in Southern Greece


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