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Research area
Traffic and Environment

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.
The research work focuses primarily on the following areas:
  • Emissions inventories and air quality assessments
  • Mapping of air quality for urban agglomerations
  • Environmental Assessment Studies (EAS)
  • Dispersion modelling alongside roads, tunnel portals and in complex building developments (micro-scale) or complex terrain
  • Effects of action plans in areas with air quality problems
  • Development of dispersion models


The high-resolution model system GRAMM/GRAL, developed at the Institute, has become a benchmark for dispersion modelling in urban areas, both in scientific research, as well as in regulatory assessments.
The model is especially suitable for low-wind speed conditions and complex terrain. An integrated micro-scale flow-field model takes the effect of buildings on pollutant dispersion into account. The GRAL model system is a freeware:

Projektdauer: 2009 - 2012
Standort: Vienna, Austria
Auftraggeber: Einvironmental Protection Department of Vienna MA22