“Now we can say that the Lidar technique is implemented in Chile”

ANTONIETA WEB 2* Thesis of Antoinette Silva unveiled algorithms that allow the Lidar technique to rise to a level that up to now did not exist in Chile. Laura Gallardo, Director of the Center for Climate Science and Resilience (CR) 2 of the University of Chile, said that this is a major success for CEFOP-UdeC.

“Optical Characterization of Tropospheric Aerosols, using the Lidar Technique” is the thesis title of, the now, Dr. Antonieta Silva. After obtaining the highest rating, the young researcher explained that she developed inversion algorithms to obtain the desired parameters. “The characterization that I presented was elastic scattering and was carried out in February 2012, with measurements done at the LIDAR of CEFOP-UdeC.”

The results of that characterization showed there is a layer of aerosol that is maintained over time over the city and that it varies seasonally. “I validated the developed algorithms and provided an elastic algorithm, which was validated in the first campaign that we did together with the Latin American Lidar network (Lalinet) in March of last year. And two additional versions were validated, which are algorithm versions for the entire Latin American network,” Antoinette added.

For Dr. Elena Montilla, who worked with and was part of the formation of the young researcher, this thesis was much more than a document to obtain a degree. “This is a representation of our work. With this thesis, what was developed during 4 and a half years will be set down in writing, work which began when the nameplate for the laboratory was set in cement.”

Dr. Montilla added that although they are working towards publications, this document is also useful for academia, for students who will join in the future development of LIDAR. Moreover, theLIDAR WEB 1 researcher who is now working at the Universidade Federal Do Rio Grande do Norte, Brazil, ensures that Antonieta Silva’s contribution is vital to the interpretation of the Lidar technique in Chile. “You could say that the Lidar technique is implemented only, in my view, when inversion algorithms allow for analysis of data that is being validated. That is why Antoinette’s work has been fundamental and that today we can say the LIDAR technique is implemented in Chile.”

A good decision by CEFOP-UdeC

“Having instrumentation capacity is something hoped for and desirable, because we didn’t have it before. Until now, the Earth sciences depended on very expensive instruments purchased outside Chile, where, in general, the instrumental and analytical capacity was very bad, and today, Chile now has this capacity and that is a great success for CEFOP-UdeC,” says Dr. Laura Gallardo, Director of the Center for Climate Science and Resilience (CR) 2 of the University of Chile.

She added the group that has been formed at our Center, which is also part of Lalinet, has led to the creation of capabilities that did not exist previously, “and that greatly strengthens our ability to make increasingly more interesting questions, which also allows us to be more independent. The instrumentation ability, combined with theoretical abilities, is essential. One of the things that I like about CEFOP-UdeC is that what they do, they do with a generous spirit, and they always seek to share information, with a spirit of collaboration that is appreciated.”

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