The Sodankylä facility hosts programs exploring upper-air chemistry and physics, atmospheric column measurements, snow/soil hydrology, biosphere-atmosphere interaction and satellite calibration-validation studies. Due to the warming effect of the Gulf Stream the area is included in the boreal region. However, with regard to stratospheric meteorology, Sodankylä can be classified as an Arctic site, often lying beneath the middle or the edge of the stratospheric polar vortex and in the zone of polar stratospheric ozone depletion. Its strategic location, coupled with ready accessibility from all parts of the world, makes the ARC an excellent base for studying various themes of global change in a northern context. The ARC research sites belong to the Lapland Biosphere-Atmosphere Facility (LAP-BIAT), an infrastructure project through which the EU can fund visiting research groups.
The Pallas Global Atmospheric Watch station focuses on monitoring of the near-surface air chemistry and physics as well as greenhouse gas exchange.
The observations collected at the Sodankylä and Pallas stations support several international research networks and projects concerning the Arctic and boreal environment, such as:
- WMO GAW: Global Atmospheric Watch
- GRUAN: GCOS Reference Upper Air Network
- GEWEX: Global Energy and Water Cycle Experiment
- NDACC: Network for the Detection of Atmospheric Composition Change
- EU-ICOS: International Carbon Observation System
- TCCON (Total Carbon Column Observing Network): A network of ground-based Fourier Transform Spectrometers recording direct solar spectra in the near-infrared spectral region
- ESA GlobSnow and EUMETSAT H-SAF: Climate databases and near-real-time services for hemispheric snow mapping
- Development of satellite systems for the monitoring of cryospheric processes and Arctic atmosphere: Reference systems and measurements, e.g. for ESA SMOS, ESA CoReH2O, NASA AURA, NASA/Jaxa AMSR-E, NASA MODIS, ESA AATSR
Weather radar on Luosto fell