The atmosphere plays an important role in climate change from global to regional scales. Especially in the middle atmosphere, i.e. from the upper troposphere to the lower thermosphere (approx. 10 to 100 km), far-reaching changes due to anthropogenic influences are already observed, and a further increase in the coming decades is predicted. The importance of the middle atmosphere for the climate is based on diverse interactions of these layers with the troposphere (approx. 0-10 km) and can be roughly divided into a) climate effects in the middle atmosphere, and b) influence of the middle atmosphere on the troposphere.

Changes in the composition of the middle atmosphere influence the radiation budget of the entire atmosphere and thus also the climate in the troposphere. The middle atmosphere and troposphere are dynamically coupled with each other in a variety of ways, especially by waves on very different spatial and temporal scales. For a few years it has also been clear that not only does the middle atmosphere react to anthropogenic activities, but that e.g. stratospheric circulation changes can influence the regional climate.

In order to better understand the role of the middle atmosphere for climate and to be able to take it into account in future projections, our understanding of these coupling mechanisms must be improved. The middle atmosphere is also a key region through which changes in solar activity and large volcanic eruptions affect the climate. The importance of the middle atmosphere for the troposphere becomes clear from the fact that weather services have meanwhile extended their operational forecast models to the mesosphere (approx. 50-100 km) because this improves the forecasts.

The main research topics of ROMIC-II are:

1. Trends in the middle atmosphere

2. Forcing by solar radiation, greenhouse gases, and stratospheric aerosols

3. Coupling between the troposphere and the middle atmosphere

Specific topics of individual projects and first results can be found on the corresponding websites (see projects).

ROMIC is part of BMBF's high-tech strategy for climate protection within the framework of research for sustainable development (FONA). The initiative ROMIC is intended to help reduce existing uncertainties in understanding climate and to allow for an important step in the direction of improved predictability of climate change.

This way to the websites of ROMIC I, the first phase of ROMIC:  ROMIC I