Laboratory of climate and environmental physics

The Institute of Natural Sciences and Mathematics is a subdivision of Ural Federal University, which engages in educational, scientific, innovative, social and educational activities. The fundamental nature, a lot of practical tasks, involvement of scientists, and the students’ participation in scientific activities are the keys elements of our education.


The integration of education and research ensures the competitiveness of graduates in employment market in the field of natural science and related applied areas. An important task of the Institute is to attract talented young people to form a community of teachers, students and graduates.


Our student community includes winners and prize-winners of National Olympiads and competitions in Mathematics, Computer Science, Physics, Biology, Chemistry, Astronomy, and prize-winners of world championships in programming and information security.


Our graduates are experts in such fields as high technology, biotechnology, pharmaceuticals, space, military defence, clinical diagnostics and genetics. They work in institutions of the Russian Academy of Sciences, research and expert laboratories, industrial corporations, leading computer companies and universities in Russia and abroad.


The Institute conducts fundamental and applied research, carries out expertise in different areas, including education. It integrates specialists in the international academic community, initiates and implements international research projects. The Institute provides work centres for collective use and popularizes scientific knowledge among the population. The main research areas of the Institute are:


• Mathematical and computer modelling of physicochemical processes in multiphase media;

• Mathematical modelling in physiology and medicine;

• Theory of automata and formal languages;

• Advanced materials, nanotechnology and physical instrument making;

• Bioresources, biotechnologies, physiology and fundamental medicine, bioinformatics;

• Information and telecommunication systems;

• Information processing and analysis technologies;

• Space physics.


The research work is based in the departments, laboratories, Research Institute of Physics and Applied Mathematics, research and educational centres, collective use centres, Kourovka Astronomical Observatory, Botanical Garden, Biological Station, Centre for Fundamental Biotechnology and Bioengineering.

Jean Jouzel Vyacheslav Zakharov
International head
Dr. Jean Jouzel
Director of research Laboratoire des Sciences du Climat et de l'Environnement Institut Pierre Simon Laplace
UrFU head
Dr. Viacheslav Zakharov
Institute of natural sciences and mathematics
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The objective of the Climate and Environmental Physics Laboratory is the validation of selected atmospheric general circulation models (AGCM) with embedded water isotopologues to adapt these models for the prediction of future rainfall and permafrost melting dynamics in Western Siberia. The forecast can be used by policy makers to plan the future economic development of this region.

climatThe Laboratory maintains two unique observation sites and a mobile laboratory. The Urals Atmospheric Fourier Station in Kourovka Astronomical Observatory is used both for remote sensing of the atmosphere to validate satellite observations and in situ measurements of water isotopologues and greenhouse gases in the lower atmospheric layer. The second station measures water isotopologues in the lower atmospheric layer located in Labytnangi (permafrost area). Both observation sites are equipped with automatic weather stations, collect daily precipitation samples and are remotely controlled via Internet by laboratory staff.

So far the Laboratory has obtained and processed atmospheric sounding data for target regions collected by satellite and ground-based Fourier transform infrared spectrometers, as well as data on isotopic composition of water vapor in the atmosphere and precipitations at the locations of both observation sites. A database containing all measurements on water isotopologue composition including soil vertical profiles for the period 2012-2014 is being compiled. It can be used for validation of AGCMs with embedded water isotopologues for climate modeling in Western Siberia.

Isotopic modules of supercomputer AGCMs ECHAM5 wiso and LMDZ-iso were validated for the territory of Western Siberia for the first time. A new ORCHIDEE physical, mathematical and programming module has been developed and tested for the description of heat exchange in the atmosphere-surface system of the LMDZ-iso AGCM.

In 2015-2016 we plan to establish a new atmospheric station near the Polar circle in Igarka and to perform a series of experiments on carbon greenhouse gases sensing at the Atmospheric Fourier Station in Kourovka Astronomical Observatory simultaneously with the measurements of the Japanese GOSAT satellite for validation of satellite data.

“My UrFU colleagues have expertise not only in the use of satellite data but also in FTIR spectrometry, both of which can provide information on water isotopes in the atmosphere. The deployment of PICARRO instruments, which allow continuous isotopic measurements in water vapor, has been facilitated by the easy access to the Kourovka and Labytnangy observatories. The staff also has acquired expertise in modeling water isotopes in the atmosphere. This combination of observations from various approaches and modelling is key to our project.”

— Dr. Jean Jouzel