Traffic and Environment

The objective of this research area is to investigate and manage the interrelated processes of emission and dispersion of airborne pollutants, with an emphasis on recording traffic emissions and their dispersion in urban areas.

An additional focus is placed on ventilation, fire safety and environmental issues concerning road and rail tunnels. Activities here entail undertaking theoretical investigations, system design, on-site testing of ventilation and
safety systems, and performance of fire and system tests.

The intense usage of measurement systems has led to the development of considerable competence in the monitoring and measurement of airborne pollutants as well as in the determination of properties related to thermo- and aerodynamics.


Research topics

Ventilation & Tunnel Safety

As early as the late 1960s, research in vehicle emissions and thermodynamics had resulted in the design of ventilation systems for road tunnels. In the meantime, the department has become a highly recognized institution when it comes to ventilation and safety issues relating to road and rail tunnels, metro lines, and complex subsurface parking facilities.

Urban Air Quality & Pollution Dispersion

The institute is one of the major research institutions for vehicle emissions under real world driving conditions. However, emissions are only one part of the story. The impact of these emissions is what really matters. Hence, knowledge of emissions was combined with knowledge of dispersion processes in the atmosphere (thermo- and aerodynamics). There is also a strong focus on urban regions, where road traffic is a major polluter.

Measurement Technology

In accordance with the major areas of research activity, measurement technology focuses, on the one hand, on the monitoring of airborne pollutants and related meteorological parameters, and on the other hand, on the parameters related to aero- and thermodynamics.