ACTRIS (Aerosols, Clouds and Trace gases Research InfraStructure network) is a 4-year EC FP7 project (2011-2015). It aims at integrating European ground-based stations equipped with advanced atmospheric probing instrumentation for aerosols, clouds and short-lived gas-phase species. ACTRIS will have the essential role to support building of new knowledge as well as policy issues on climate change, air quality and long-range transport of pollutants.

ACTRIS is a coordinated network that contributes to: providing long-term observational data relevant to climate and air quality research produced with standardized or comparable procedures; supporting transnational access to large infrastructures strengthening collaboration in and outside the EU and access to high quality information and services to the user communities; developing new integration tools to fully exploit the use of atmospheric techniques at ground-based stations, in particular for the calibration/validation/integration of satellite sensors and for the improvement of global and regional-scale climate and air quality models. ACTRIS also supports training of new users in particular young scientists in the field of atmospheric observations and promotes the development of new technologies for atmospheric observation of aerosols, clouds and trace gases through close partnership with SMEs.

ACTRIS will have the essential role to support integrated research actions in Europe for building the scientific knowledge required to support policy issues on air quality and climate change. The ACTRIS observing system should allow for informed decisions in a wide range of policy areas, including climate change and air quality, but also health, international emission reduction protocols and research strategies. Such an observing system therefore responds to both the future political, societal and economic challenges and the development of scientific knowledge. ACTRIS will therefore impact on many areas related to research and development, as well as competitiveness and will support the development of European environmental policies. ACTRIS ensures the much needed continuity of the research oriented ground-based observing networks in Europe that is now and in the future essential to build new scientific knowledge in atmospheric research.

ACTRIS provides the structure, through expertise and geographical coverage of the participating stations, to ensure high quality and accessible, user-driven data for the validation of both geostationary and polar-orbiting satellites. Moreover, ACTRIS as continuously operating ground observation system complements irregular satellite observations will be able to elavorate and optimize suitable correlative measurement strategies as well as statistical studies allowing a full exploitation of satellite data, taking also advantage of the large geographical coverage of the ACTRIS infrastructure.

ACTRIS is coordinated by CNR.