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QUEST Fellowship: Trace Gas Observations

Dr Andrew Manning was awarded the QUEST Advanced Fellowship in 2005 to study precise atmospheric O2 measurements in the UK and their application to land and ocean carbon cycle studies.

Andrew is now a full faculty member at the University of East Anglia, ensuring the continuity of the UEA Carbon-Related Atmospheric Measurement (CRAM) Laboratory . The CRAM laboratory uses innovative techniques to make continuous high precision laboratory measurements of CH4, CO, N2O, SF6, and a suite of WMO calibration standards. The vacuum UV atmospheric analyser measures oxygen to a world-leading 0.2 ppm precision.

On the technical side, his achievements include:
• the construction of a purpose-built 300m tall tower in central Siberia and the execution of experiments in this remote and challenging environment;
• the development of the South Atlantic-UK atmospheric greenhouse gas observations network, with contacts established on the UK South Atlantic islands;
• the design and testing of a new sample flask and construction of a fully automated system for analysis of these flask samples;
• the construction and installation of a calibration cylinder filling facility;
• the first ever O2 measurements collected in the UK;
• the design and construction of a shipboard O2 and CO2 measurement system, in CarboOcean;
• routine O2 and CO2 measurements at the Weybourne Atmospheric Observatory on the North Sea coast, resulting in nearly two years of continuous data;
• leadership of the intercomparison programmes GOLLUM (worldwide) and CUCUMBER (primarily European, through CarboEurope).

Key research outputs include over 15 publications including five carbon cycle publications based on the tall tower studies in Siberia and central Europe, and two on shipboard measurement. Andrew was also a contributing author to the Fourth Assessment Report of the IPCC, Working Group 1. He was involved in strategic discussions linking NERC and the other research councils, Defra and other UK agencies, and representatives from the research community about the establishment of a UK Greenhouse Gas Measurement Programme, still a gap in UK climate research and policy.