New Brewer spectrophotometer and NILU multifilter radiometer at the Tamanrasset/Assekrem GAW station (Algeria)


The double Brewer Spectrophotometer #201 (MARK-IiII) has been installed at the Tamanrasset Meteorological Regional Center (1377 m a.s.l.), and a multifilter NILU radiometer was deployed at the high-altitude Assekrem Global Atmospheric Watch (GAW) station (2730m a.s.l, 80 km north to Tamanrasset) in the third week of October 2011. Both facilities are part of the l’Office Nationale de la Météorologie (ONM; Algeria).
The AECID (“Agencia Española de Cooperación Internacional para el Desarrollo”; International Cooperation Agency for the Development of Spain) has financed the Project entitled “Global Atmospheric Watch in the Maghreb-Sahara Region” (GAW-Sahara) through a World Meteorological Organization (WMO) Trust Fund. This project reinforces the “twining” established between the Tamanrasset-Assekrem and the Izaña GAW stations of global importance initiated in September 2006 with the fruitful ongoing SALAM (Saharan Air LAyer Monitoring) project. GAW-Sahara is focused on ozone and ultraviolet radiation monitoring and research within the GAW programme.


Group of participants in the installation campaign within the GAW-Sahara project at the South Regional Meteorological Center (Tamanrasset). First line from left to right: M. Mimouni (ONM), R. Ramos (AEMET), A. Ouladichir (ONM), E. Cuevas (AEMET), M. Kharef (ONM) and V. Carreño (AEMET). Second line from left to right: O. Bouziane (ONM), J. Rodríguez-Franco (AEMET), F. Mohamed Salah (ONM), B. Lamine (ONM), A. Berjón (AEMET) and B. Sida Lamine (ONM).



The same group at the terrace with the Cimel (left) and the Brewer (right).


The Brewer team with the Brewer#201 double spectrophotometer: From left to right: O. Bouziane (ONM), F. Mohamed Salah (crouched) (ONM), M. Kharef (ONM), B. Sida Lamine (ONM), J. Rodríguez-Franco (AEMET), V. Carreño (AEMET), and B. Lamine (ONM).


The Cimel team with the Cimel#547 sunphotometer. From left to right: R. Ramos (AEMET), A. Berjón (AEMET), F. Mohamed Salah (crouched) (ONM), M. Kharef (ONM) and O. Bouziane (ONM).

The NILU team with the NILU-UV6 multifilter radiometer at Assekrem. From left to right: A. Omar (ONM), V. Carreño (AEMET), B. Sida Lamine (ONM) and R. Ramos (AEMET).


The NILU-UV-6 multifilter and Ahaggar Mountains (Hoggar) in the horizon.


An operational Dobson (#11; WMO station code 002) spectrophotometer is at Tamanrasset since April 1994. This station is now one of the few sites in the world where permanent and long-term intercomparison between the Dobson, the Brewer and the present and future satellite-based sensors could be performed on a routine basis. This initiative has been strongly recommended by the WMO Ozone Scientific Advisory Group and will be a unique contribution to the total ozone global network Quality Assurance. On the other hand the installation of a NILU multifilter radiometer at Assekrem station (2730 m a.s.l.) will allow obtaining UV radiation, Photosynthetic Active Radiation (PAR) and also deriving total column ozone at a high-altitude site in the middle of the Sahara. The Brewer at Tamanrasset and the NILU at Assekrem will also fill a big gap existing nowadays of spectral UV and Umkehr observations in this region. Routine validation of new satellite-based sensors will be one of the main goals of the new program.

The Brewer#201 at Tamanrasset is integrated into the Iberonesia network (, managed by the Regional Brewer Calibration Center for Europe (RBCC-E;; PI: Alberto Redondas) hosted by the Izana Atmospheric Research Center (AEMET).
People who have participated in the Tamanrasset/Assekrem installation campaign is related in the following table:


Staff at Tamanrasset
Name First Name Position
Ouladichir Abdelkader Regional Director of the South Meteorological Region
Mimouni Mohamed Manager of GAW Programme (Tamanrasset/Assekrem)
Ouchene Bouziane Chief of Maintenance Staff
Zeudmi Sahraoui Lahouari Person in Charge of AOD (Cimel) and Assekrem trace gases data processing
Boulkelia Lamine Person in Charge of Radiation and Total Ozone Programme at Tamanrasset
Ferroudj Mohamed Salah Computer and Electronics Engineer
Kharef Mohamed Maintenance technician
Staff at Assekrem
Name First Name Position
Saanoune Abdessadek Technical Observer
Zoukani Mohamed Technical Observer
Abdouali Omar Technical Observer
Baika Sida Lamine Technical Observer
Izaña Atmospheric Research Center team (AEMET) in mission to Tamanrasset/Assekrem
Name First Name Position
Cuevas Emilio Director of the Izaña Atmospheric Research
Ramos Ramón Chief of Basic Systems Unit
Carreño Virgilio Technical Observer and researcher of the Ozone & UV Programme
Rodríguez-Franco Juan José Researcher of the Ozone & UV Programme
Berjón Alberto Researcher of the Aerosol Programme
Remote Assistance from Izaña Atmospheric Research Center
Name First Name Position
Redondas Alberto RHead of the Ozone and UV Programme and PI of the RBCC-E
Guirado Carmen Cimel sunphotometer expert



This mission to Tamanrasset was complemented with the installation of a calibrated head and electronic box of the Cimel sunphotometer installed at Tamanrasset since September 2006 (under the SALAM project). This instrument is part of AERONET and PHOTONS networks. Data can be downloaded here.

A technical seminar, within GAW-Sahara Project will be organized in near future at the Izana GAW station (Tenerife, Canary Islands) for technical persons in charge of the Brewer to be trained in operational aspects, instrumental maintenance and calibration skills of the project.

Special thanks to the General Director of “l’Office National de la Météorologie” (ONM, Algiers), Mr Ferhat Ounnar, and to the “Directeur des finances et de la comptabilité” (ONM), Mr Noureddine Benzaba, because without their active involvement this project could not be successful. We also thank the coordination work of Dr. Geir Braathen (WMO-AREP) and logistics support from Ms Chantal Renaud (WMO-AREP).

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