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Air quality forecast system developed in collaboration with the UA integrates dispersion of dust coming from the desert


Air quality forecast system is now more complete

A dispersion forecasting module in the national territory of desert dust, coming from North Africa, was recently integrated in air quality forecasting system developed under a partnership between the Portuguese Environment Agency and the University of Aveiro (UA) – more precisely, the GEMAC research group of the Department of Environment and Planning. Accordingly, it is possible to make and integrate the forecasting of these natural events, so frequent in Portugal, allowing warnings to the population and avoiding health problems: http://previsao-qar.web.ua.pt/.

In addition, summer and the desired sunny days can have a drawback: the quality of the air these days is not always the best ... Nonetheless, with the help of GEMAC Group of DAO/UA, it is possible to predict the quality of the air.

The usefulness of this service, with benefits for the general population, could be of particular interest to the most sensitive groups. This is the case of children, the elderly, asthmatics and people with allergies, respiratory diseases or heart problems.

More details in: http://uaonline.ua.pt/pub/deta.....&lg=pt

HidroRia: an application to not run aground in the Ria de Aveiro


HidroRia: an application to not run aground in the Ria de Aveiro

It is possible to accurately predict the tides of the Ria de Aveiro. Developed at the University of Aveiro to facilitate fishermen navigation, sightseeing agents or any 'sailor' the estuary, the HidroRia application allows for the first time and through a smartphone, an updated forecast of the tides in real time for the main channels of the lagoon. The new app, whose predictions are made independently without access to mobile networks, will allow to avoid the frequent strandings due to increased tidal range and siltation of few channels, including those that access to marinas and fisheries.

Developed by researchers João Miguel Dias, Ana Picado, Carina Lopes and Renato Mendes, the Center for Estuarine modeling and Coastal Department of Physics (DFIs) and CESAM, the HidroRia want to pay a service to users of the Ria de Aveiro that "face enormous difficulties of navigation through various channels of the lagoon."

The predictions made by HidroRia application are based on current observations of tide performed in several permanent sampling stations distributed across the main channels of the lagoon and whose data were collected in the Hydrodynamics Monitoring project of Ria de Aveiro running by the Port of Aveiro. 

More details in:

Dia do CESAM 2016


Dia do CESAM 2016

No passado dia 8 de Julho foi comemorado o Dia do CESAM com um almoço partilhado no espaço relvado situado entre os dois edifícios do DAO. Este ano contámos com a presença de um instrutor de Tai Chi do Instituto Confúcio da UA para nos orientar numa sessão ‘ZEN’ de 30 minutos.

O evento contou também com o gentil patrocínio da CAVE CENTRAL DA BAIRRADA e do CAFÉ DEL ART.



CESAM researchers published in a special issue on fire effects


CESAM researchers of the Eco-hydrological Lab, published 6 papers in a special issue on fire effects on Land Degradation & Development journal (Impact Factor: 8.145):

Special Issue: Advances Towards an Integrated Assessment of Fire Effects on Soils, Vegetation and Geomorphological Processes


CASCADE Project Plenary meeting


The 5th Plenary meeting of the CASCADE Project took place May 24-28 at the EC’s Joint Research Centre in Ispra, Italy. The meeting covered research updates from all partners, plans for integration of results, and planning for the final year. In February 2017 there will be a final meeting in Matera, Italy, to share recommendations with stakeholders and policy makers, at both local and EU levels.

CASCADE Project partners are completing experiments and modelling to obtain a better understanding of discontinuous shifts, or tipping points, in dryland ecosystems around the Mediterranean. The study sites in parts of dryland Portugal, Spain, Italy, Crete and Cyprus have been used to establish more precisely the details of changes to the soil and plant ecosystems due to forest fires, overgrazing and land abandonment.

Research results are presented on the Information System CASCADiS as they become available: http://www.cascadis-project.eu/

The Project Deliverables that have been completed may be viewed or downloaded from the project website: http://www.cascade-project.eu/index.php

DNA TRUSTAG, an UA spin-off company founded by researchers from CESAM/DBio, received a Seal of Excellence by the EC


The UA spin-off DNA TRUSTAG was awarded with the Seal of Excellence by the European Commission within the EU Horizon 2020 Framework Programme for Research and Innovation (SME instrument). The seal certifies the innovative character and commercialization potential of the technology developed by the CESAM researchers Newton Gomes and Francisco Coelho, in the Laboratory for Molecular Studies of Marine Environments (LEMAM).

The technological platform of DNA TRUSTAG enables cost-effective and scalable production of unique DNA tags (impossible to forge), which generate reading signals similar to a barcoded label. The DNA tags are then used to mark and authenticate raw materials and a range of products directly in the production line. DNA TRUSTAG company was founded in January 2016 with the objective to help European and worldwide knowledge-based companies, to protect their intellectual property and fight against the attractiveness of a 'look-alike product' with a cheap price.

More details in: https://uaonline.ua.pt/pub/detail.asp?c=47188&lg=pt

Best Poster Award in Sciences for CESAM – Research Day 2016


Rita Bicho was awarded the Best Poster Award in Sciences for the poster:

Bicho, RC, Gonçalves, M., Amorim, MJB (2016) Development of novel tools for environmental health assessment - fast screening for long term effects.

presented at the Research Day 2016, held at the University of Aveiro, Portugal, June 15, 2016.

Rita is a PhD student at CESAM, and has been developing research in the area environmental health assessment in the Stress Biology Group (Ecotoxicogenomics Lab). She has recently published the work presented, e.g. Bicho R.C., Santos F.C.F., Goncalves M.F.M., Soares A.M.V.M., Amorim M.J.B. (2015) Enchytraeid Reproduction Test(PLUS): hatching, growth and full life cycle test-an optional multi-endpoint test with Enchytraeus crypticus. Ecotoxicology. 24, 5, 1053-1063.

NanoFARM kick off meeting realizou-se na UA


O kick off meeting do projeto ERA NET SIIN NanoFARM- Fate and Effects of Agriculturally Relevant Materials decorreu na Universidade de Aveiro, nos dias 6 e 8 de junho. Susana Loureiro (coordenadora UA, departamento de biologia) e Sónia Rodrigues (departamento de química) organizaram a reunião que decorreu no CESAM e onde participaram igualmente os parceiros das Universidades de Carnegie Mellon (Greg Lowry, coordenador NanoFARM), Kentucky (Jason Unrine) e Vienna (Frank von der Kammer). Estiveram igualmente presentes como observadores, investigadores do NERC, UK (Steve Lofts e Marianne Matzke).

O projeto NanoFARM tem como objetivo estudar o comportamento de nanoagroquímicos em solos, e relacionar essas características com os potenciais efeitos e riscos para o ambiente. O projeto terá uma duração de 36 meses e espera fornecer informações cruciais que permitam utilizar a nanotecnologia a favor da sustentabilidade da produtividade agrícola, extremamente necessária num contexto de crescimento exponencial da população mundial.

Mais informação em: http://uaonline.ua.pt/pub/deta.....



By highlighting the importance of nodules for the deep-sea biodiversity, scientists involved in the JPI Oceans pilot action on the ecological aspects of deep-sea mining call for criteria for designating preservation zones to be based on robust scientific knowledge.

An international group of researchers from Germany (Senckenberg am Meer), Belgium (Ghent University), France (Ifremer), and Portugal (MARE/IMAR-Azores and CESAM/University of Aveiro) has published their results  from a recent research campaign (SO-239, March-April 2015) onboard the new German research vessel SONNE in the Clarion-Clipperton Fracture Zone (CCZ, Central Eastern Pacific) in Nature, demonstrating that polymetallic nodule fields are hotspots of abundance and diversity for a highly vulnerable abyssal fauna.

The results of this study underlie the need for careful considerations of strategies for biodiversity conservation. Especially the CCZ area is recently of growing interest for industry because of the high concentration of polymetallic nodules present at abyssal depths. However being one of the remotest areas on earth, very little is known on its biodiversity and ecosystem functioning.

The paper shows that the fauna associated with polymetallic nodules is more abundant and diverse than in areas without or only low nodule numbers, a pattern which is consistent across the four areas licensed for nodule exploration which have been visited during SO239. They also provided, for the first time, ecological data from one Area of Particular Environmental Interest (APEI, Number 3) established by the International Seabed Authority (ISA) to be safeguarded from mining. Finally, they also report on the high impact and lack of recovery of fauna on 2 trawling tracks and experimental mining simulations up to 37 years old, suggesting that mining impacts may be long-lasting or even permanent. Based on these observations, the researchers argue that preservation zones within mining areas should be established in areas rich in nodules. 

More information:
Nature article
Project website

UA mostra competências na área do mar na Oceans Business Week


A Univesidade de Aveiro (UA) esteve presente na componente expositiva Oceans Business Week que decorreu no Centro de Congressos de Lisboa, de 2 a 4 de junho, dando conta das suas competências ao nível da investigação e desenvolvimento na área do mar e da economia do Mar. Tratou-se de um evento organizado pela Fundação AIP em parceria com o Ministério do Mar e com o alto patrocínio do Presidente da República.

O stand UA deu evidência à estruturas institucionais da UA que atuam nesse âmbito: Aveiro Institute for Marine Science and Technology (AIMARE), Plataforma Tecnológia do Mar, ECOMARE e Centro de Estudos do Ambiente e do Mar (CESAM) - laboratório associado - e suas valências.

Em exposição estiveram alguns exemplares resultantes da investigação da UA no mar profundo, como exemplos do vasto campo de abrangência da UA ao nível do mar.

Mais informação em: https://uaonline.ua.pt/pub/detail.asp?c=46587