Atmospheric processes
Atmospheric radiometry
Research projects
Last update: 10.07.2017
Head of division
Portrait of Niklaus Kämpfer, Prof. Dr.
Niklaus Kämpfer, Prof. Dr.
Microwave Physics
Microwave physics deals with phenomena of electromagnetic radiation in the frequency range from typically a few GHz to the THz range. It thus bridges the gap of the spectrum between electronics and photonics offering a wealth of interesting applications.

The members of the microwave physics group are dedicated to the development of novel techniques and instruments mainly for applications in atmospheric remote sensing and to use these instruments for the understanding of physical processes thereby contributing to the research areas of ozone depletion and climate change.
Our research goals
Water vapor and ozone are important molecules in the atmosphere. Ozone protects the biosphere from harmful UV-radiation from the sun. Water vapor is the most important natural green house gas and affects radiative processes. A lot is known about atmospheric processes involving these constituents. However there are many open questions. Just to mention a few: is the depletion of ozone getting weaker, is water vapor increasing due to global warming, how is water vapor entering the stratosphere, how are the links between these trace gases.

In order to address these questions observations of high quality are needed. Our research group developed unique microwave radiometers that allow to detect the microwave emission of atmospheric molecules what allows to retrieve their distribution. Based on the excellent data from our instruments complemented from other platforms such as balloons and satellites we perform atmospheric studies usually in collaboration with international teams.

The other weight of our research is dedicated to the development of new techniques in the microwave and submillimeter region. For this purpose we operate state of the art electromagnetic and optical models and we dispose of excellent measuring equipment for the characterisation of radiation at frequencies up to the THz-regime. Polarimetric imaging and techniques to model farfield antenna pattern from near field measurements are just a few of our present research topics.