Hungarian Academy of Sciences KFKI Atomic Energy Research Institute
1121 Budapest, Konkoly Thege Miklós út 29-33., Hungary * Letters: H-1525 Budapest 114, P.O.B. 49. * Tel: +36 1 392 2222 *

Environmental Physics Research Group

Research topics

{under development}

Research projects

European Spallation Source - Preparation Phase Project

The ESS Preparatory Phase (ESS-PP) project has the overall goal to pave the way to and to facilitate a site decision and a final decision to construct and to operate ESS. Presently, there are three governments (Spanish, Swedish and Hungarian) firmly committed to host ESS in their own country. While the process for reaching an agreement is mainly political and lobbied for by the site contenders, the ESS-PP will have a catalyzing effect for a decision and provide data for a decision as well as for the realisation phase. ESS-PP will concentrate on the site independent aspects while the site specific aspects will be mainly covered by the site contenders.

Tasks in which our research group is involved:

Decommissioning of facility

Environmental impact

Technical evaluation of target materials

New Energy Externalities Developments for Sustainability

The NEEDS (New Energy Externalities Development for Sustainability) integrated project started on 1 September 2004 with 66 partners. The project consists of several research streams. Our research group took part in research stream 1d, which aimed the geographical extension of externality calculation for fossil, nuclear and renewable energy generation to new EU member states (Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Poland, Slovakia) as well as North-African countries (Egyipt, Morocco, Tunisia). The work in research stream 1d started in month 19 of the project (from 1 march 2006). The project ended on 28 February 2009.

In the framework of the project the following tasks were completed:

Evaluation of energy sector and energy policy in Hungary.

Application of impact pathway analysis (EcoSense model) for calculation of environmental externalities.

Collection of data for emission sources (technological data of power plants), receptors (population, building materials, crops yield data) as well as country specific monetary values (values of health and environmental damages expressed in monetary terms) for Hungary. Coordination of data collection for the other partners of the research stream.

Calculation of external costs of 20 fossil, 2 biomass and 1 nuclear reference power plants using the EcoSenseWeb model updated in the framework of the NEEDS project. Modeling of the environmental damages of power plants operational in 2005 as well as planned fossil and biomass technologies. Upstream and downstream processes were taken into account using life cycle inventory data. Cost-benefit analysis was applied for evaluation of retrofit projects of coal and lignite power plants, introducing flue gas desulphurization technologies. Four alternatives of new power plant projects were compared using cost-benefit analysis. The external costs of the Hungarian power sector were aggregated and compared to macro-economical indicators. Externalities related to different hypothetical nuclear accident scenarios were calculated using the COSYMA model, for nuclear reactors operating in Czech Republic and Hungary.

Evaluation of the possibilities for internalization of external costs.

LÉG-KÖR - NKTH Ányos Jedlik Programme
Environmental monitoring system of airport traffic

The aim of this project is to develop and establish an environmental monitoring system at Ferihegy International Airport, which is convenient to the European Union directives concerning airport air quality.

The growth rate of passanger number at Budapest Ferihegy Airport is one of the largest in the European region. The volume of traffic expanded by 26 % from 2003 to 2004, 533.352 airplanes crossed the Hungarian air space among which 111.753 landed on Ferihegy Airport carrying 6.453.983 passengers .The volume of transport of the discount airlines was ten times higher than the year before. Since the emission of the aircrafts and the ground support vechicles engine can be remarkable, it is an open question that does this pollution has any effect on the affected peoples human health, and how does it contribute to Budapests air quality. Moreover, the environmental impact of airport traffic is continuously monitored only in the field of noise pollution in Budapest.

In the framework of the project the following tasks were completed:

Ground measurements: Air quality measurements at the airport, remote sensing

Development of measurement methods: Measurement technique for fine atmospheric aerosols

Aircraft measurements

Installation of monitoring system

OTKA T49581
Characterization of primary and secondary aerosols relevant for climate effect of the atmospheric emissions of the energy sector

In order to characterize chemical composition, morphology and heterogeneity of aerosol particles, highly sensitive non-destructive microanalytical methods were developed and applied. Total reflection X-ray fluorescence analysis was used for determination of trace elemental composition of size fractionated aerosol. X-ray absorption spectrometry was used for determination of the molar ratio of ammonium and nitrate, as well as for studying the chemical state of carbon and zinc. A sampling technique was elaborated that harmonizes with the microanalytical methods and allows the collection of size fractionated aerosols. This technique enables the measurement of the same samples with the three microanalytical methods. Because of the sufficiently low detection limits (< 1 ng/m3), the techniques are suitable for tracing of rapidly changing atmospheric processes using extremely short sampling durations. In addition to demonstration of the capabilities of the methods and their application to aerosol samples collected in the framework of the project, atmospheric dispersion model calculations were performed, taking into account the formation of secondary aerosols. The concentrations were compared with aerosol optical thickness data. The sampling apparatus was also tested during research aircraft missions.