Title: Cluster analysis of intradiurnal holm oak pollen cycles at peri-urban and rural sampling sites in southwestern Spain
Citation: INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF BIOMETEOROLOGY vol. 59 no. 8 p. 971-982
Publisher: SPRINGER
Publication Year: 2014
JRC N°: JRC90765
ISSN: 0020-7128
URI: http://publications.jrc.ec.europa.eu/repository/handle/JRC90765
DOI: 10.1007/s00484-014-0910-9
Type: Articles in periodicals and books
Abstract: The impact of regional and local weather and of local topography on intradiurnal variations in airborne pollen levels was assessed by analysing bi-hourly holm-oak pollen counts at two sampling stations located 40 km apart, in south-western Spain (Cordoba city and El Cabril nature reserve) over the period 2010-2011. Pollen grains were captured using Hirst-type volumetric spore traps. Analysis of regional weather conditions was based on the computation of backward trajectories using the HYSPLIT model Sampling days were selected on the basis of phenological data; rainy days were eliminated, as were days lying outside a given range of percentiles (P95-P5). Analysis of cycles for the study period, as a whole, revealed differences between sampling sites, with peak bi-hourly pollen counts at night in Cordoba and at midday in El Cabril. Differences were also noted in the influence of surface weather conditions (temperature, relative humidity and wind). Cluster analysis of diurnal holm-oak pollen cycles revealed the existence of five clusters at each each sampling site. Analysis of backward trajectories highlighted specific regional air-flow patterns associated with each site. Findings indicated the contribution of both nearby and distant pollen sources to diurnal cycles. The combined use of cluster analysis and meteorological analysis proved highly suitable for charting the impact of local weather conditions on airborne pollen-count patterns. This method, and the specific tools used here, could be used not only to study diurnal variations in counts for other pollen types and in other biogeographical settings, but also in a number of other research fields involving airbone particle transport modelling, e.g. radionuclide transport in emergency preparedness exercises.
JRC Directorate:Nuclear Safety and Security

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