Research disciplines

The atmosphere is in constant motion over a large range of spatial and temporal scales. The atmospheric conditions, especially the extreme ones, have a large impact on our society and therefore a good understanding is crucial. Physics plays a central role in unraveling the mechanisms behind atmospheric processes. The research group Atmospheric Physics is investigating atmospheric processes both by modeling and observational studies.

Our research team undertakes research in close collaboration with the ACCORD team of the Royal Meteorological Institute of Belgium (RMI).

Atmospheric Modeling

Our modeling activities involve applying, evaluating and improving models which simulate evolution in our atmosphere both for the short term (weather) and long term (climate). Some of examples of recent research undertaken by our group:




  • investigating extreme precipitation events in future climate
  • assessing heat stress in cities in a warming world
  • carrying out regional climate modeling runs over several regions in the world

These modeling studies are based on the ACCORD model which is a highly successful high resolution limited area model developed and maintained by a large consortium of countries including Belgium.

Urban Observations

Our research activities are not limited to modeling, since July 2016 ourteam initiated the MOCCA network, a network of highly accurate weather stations to monitor the local microclimate of the city of Ghent. The MOCCA project provides a unique urban dataset that will improve our understanding of the specific microclimate of cities and can be used for very high resolution weather modeling validation. The team is also leading a citizen-science project VLINDER (EWI-Flanders) that investigates the impact of the environment on the local weather. Flemish schools are involved at all stages during this project. 80 automatic weather stations are operational since the end of 2019. More information can be found at

The team is also organizing measurement campaigns to assess the impact of greenblue adaptation measures in cities (e.g. Grote Markt in Sint-Niklaas).

Scientific research community Urban Climate

The Atmospheric Physics group plays an active role in the European COST action FAIRNESS. This international program aims at gathering expertise on microclimate observations both in an urban and rural context.