Mace Head Atmospheric Research Station


Prof Colin O’Dowd


Funded Investigator


+353 (0)91 493 306




Mace Head


The mission of the Mace Head Atmospheric Research Station is to monitor the long-term trends of atmospheric composition change, essential climate variables and air pollution and to facilitate key-process research into the evolution of atmospheric composition and to its impacts on climate change, concomitant with the promotion of knowledge transfer and the underpinning of policy development and education in the areas of atmospheric climate, and air pollution.

Examples of Activities & Projects:

  • The Advanced Global Atmospheric Gases Experiment (AGAGE)
  • The Atmospheric/Ocean Chemistry Experiment (AEROCE)
  • World Meteorological Organisation/Global Atmospheric Watch (WMO/ GAW)
  • Tropospheric Ozone Research (TOR, a EUROTRAC project)
  • Budget of Ozone over the Atlantic (BOA)
  • The Climate Monitoring and Diagnostics Laboratory/National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (CMDL/NOAA) co-operative flask sampling network.


  • Three laboratory buildings and a converted 20ft cargo container laboratory
  • Two aluminium walk up towers, a 23m and a 10m
  • A wide range of aerosol, gas and meteorological profiling instrumentation
  • 10 m meteorological tower and platforms for the positioning of sampling equipment
  • Three laboratory buildings, one at ~300m and two at ~90m from the shore (~50m from high water)


  • The monitoring of meteorological data such as wind speed, wind direction, pressure, temperature, relative humidity and rainfall.
  • Solar radiation and UV levels are recorded continuously.
  • Opportunity to study atmospheric composition under Northern Hemispheric background conditions as well as European continental emissions when the winds favour transport from that regio