The weather in urban areas is different from that in rural areas. The urban heat island effect is the best known urban weather phenomena. On hot summer days it can be 6 degrees warmer in the centre of Amsterdam than in surrounding areas. But cities also have their own wind climate, water balance and carbon budget, that influence air quality, comfort, urban water management, energy consumption and sustainability of the city.
Expanding Amsterdam’s meteorological network and monitoring a wide scope of variables, AAMS sets out to increase the understanding of local weather, climate and air, to help improve citizens’ health, air quality, and local hydrology.
The sensors of the installed monitoring network can for instance identify cool neighbourhoods. Based on this information we can identify the "best practices" of these neighbourhoods.
The monitoring network also contains a so-called scintillometer that records the heat exchange and evaporation of the city as a whole. This evaporation is an important term in the urban water balance, and thus for urban water management and groundwater levels.
To record the CO2 balance of Amsterdam, CO2 flux measurements are performed. Generation of sustainable energy by means of solar panels helps to achieve the CO2 objective. To investigate the optimal set-up of solar panels, a special roof with meteorological instruments will be set up as a test location.
In addition to the measurements, a numerical weather forecast model is used in the summer to make a daily weather forecast on a neighbourhood scale, and to validate against observations in the network. The forecasts are available via this website.