Four more observation stations receive the ICOS label

Hegyhátsál Class 2 Atmosphere station

ICOS, Integrated Carbon Observation System, is pleased to announce that after passing a rigorous quality assurance process, four new measurement stations have received the status of an ICOS labelled station. The station labelling was confirmed by the ICOS General Assembly on 14th May 2024. The newly labelled stations are located in Hungary, Germany and Italy. Warm congratulations to the personnel working at these stations, as well as the institutes responsible for them!

To guarantee data reliability and quality across the stations, ICOS has designed a unique quality-assurance process called station labelling. The process has tight criteria that each station has to fulfil, both for the measurements at the stations and for data production. Once the station fulfils all the criteria set for an ICOS station, it receives an ICOS label as a guarantee that the data produced is of the highest quality. 

What is more, ICOS labelling benefits the stations and their personnel as it provides substancial technical support and training through the Thematic Centres and Carbon Portal, and the standardisation of measurements and harmonised data processing increases the use and impact of the data. The data can be accessed openly and freely on ICOS data portal.

The first ICOS labelled station in Hungary

Among the newly labelled stations is the Hegyhátsál Class 2 Atmosphere station. Hungary joined ICOS in January 2022 with the goal of expanding the geographical coverage of the station network towards the east.

”Although the station has been providing data to international data centres (WMO WDCGG, NOAA) for a long time, a partial refurbishment of the station was necessary to fully comply with the ICOS standards,” says the station PI László Haszpra. ”This was complicated by the time-consuming procurement processes following the COVID-19 pandemic,” he adds.

The instrumentation at Hegyhátsál, established in 1993, is mounted on a 117 m tall TV/radio transmitter tower owned by Antenna Hungária Corporation. ICOS Hungary activities are coordinated by Hungar­ian Research Network Institute for Nuclear Research (HUN-REN ATOMKI) that has a long tradition in environmental monitoring. 

ICOS Hungary consortium will be developed gradually to involve university departments, the Hungarian Meteorological Service, and other institu­tions that are active in the field of atmospheric and ecosystem monitoring. In the coming years, the network hopes to expand to include a second Atmosphere tall-tower in the eastern part of Hungary. Two or more Ecosystem stations will also join the Hungar­ian network. The potential Ecosystem stations will focus on measuring the greenhouse gas budget of temperate climate zone grasslands.

”An atmospheric monitoring site in the eastern part of the country would further extend the ICOS network eastward and could also help to obtain more detailed emission information for Hungary and the neighboring region,” emphasise László. ”Hungarian research groups also operate ecosystem sites, which will join the ICOS network as soon as the financial conditions allow.”

Warm congratulations to the personnel working at Hegyhátsál station, and the other stations that received the ICOS label, as well as to the institutes responsible for them!

Stations that received the ICOS label on the 14th of May, 2024

Class 2 Atmosphere Station Hegyhátsál (HUN)

Country: Hungary; Station PI: László Haszpra

Associated Ecosystem Station Braunschweig (DE-Brs)

Country: Germany; Station PI: Lennart Böske

Associated Ecosystem Station Osservatorio Ximeniano Firenze (IT-OXm)

Country: Italy; Station PI: Beniamino Gioli

Associated Ecosystem Station Torgnon-LD (IT-TrF)

Country: Italy; Station PI: Marta Galvagno