The Virtual Alpine Observatory: Linking the Research Activities of the European Alpine High Altitude Research Observatories for an Enhanced Climate and Environmental Monitoring
Climate change impacts the environment on Earth. In particular, the Alpine region is known to be very sensitive. Alpine high altitude research stations make significant contributions to the monitoring, understanding, and forecasting of a variety of processes of the Earth’s systems. Their exposed location creates almost ideal conditions for the investigation of many physical and chemical processes in the atmosphere, geosphere, cryosphere, hydrosphere, and the biosphere. The Virtual Alpine Observatory project (VAO) supports the research activities of the Alpine high altitude research stations by combining their measurements and performing joint research projects. Access to other data, e.g. satellite-based, and to high performance computing facilities create unique research opportunities at the Environmental Research Station Schneefernerhaus.