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Amazon Tall Tower Observatory (ATTO) – a German-Brazilian Earth System Research Project

Embassy of Brazil in Berlin, Max Planck Institute for Biogeochemistry, National Institute of Amazonian Research (INPA) | Susan Trumbore, Carlos Alberto Quesada, Jürgen Kesselmeier, Bruna Holanda, Santiago Botía, Eliane Alves Gomes, Flávia Durgante

Understanding the complex forest-atmosphere interactions and its role in the global climate.

The Amazon Tall Tower Observatory is the most important bilateral project between Brazil and Germany. With a 325 meters-tall tower in the middle of the largest rainforest in the world, ATTO is a state-of-the-art observatory that allows scientists to analyze how tropical forests and atmosphere cycle greenhouse gases like carbon dioxide, methane, and volatile organic compounds, as well as water, nutrients and energy. Results from ATTO demonstrate that these mixing processes differ markedly from those operating in temperate forests, where most previous research has taken place.

By providing a platform high above the forest canopy, it closes a gap in the global climate monitoring network, while observations at smaller towers and on the ground provide deeper insights into the fundamental processes regulating the exchange of important gases and particles involved in cloud formation. The goal is to understand complex interactions: how the forest impacts global climate as well as the how the changing climate and land-use impact the remaining forest.

Ultimately, ATTO will contribute to the improvement of climate prediction models and emphasize the importance of the Amazon in the Earth system.

You can find the program here.


This event can be attended digitally or in person. For the online version (Zoom), please register here.

If you would like to attend on-site (limited capacity), please register here by 31 October (a confirmation e-mail will be sent on 1 November).

Susan Trumbore

Max Planck Institute for Biogeochemistry (MPI-BGC)

Susan Trumbore has been at MPI-BGC since 2009. She is also Professor of Earth System Science at the University of California Irvine and Honorary Professor in the faculty of Chemistry and Geology at the Friedrich Schiller University of Jena. She is a co-coordinator of the joint Brazilian/German ATTO project. Trumbore’s main research contribution is the application of radiocarbon to study the dynamics of carbon cycling in plants and soils. Her honors include election to the Academia Europaea (2020), the US National Academy of Science (2010) and other scientific associations. In 2019 Trumbore was awarded the Marsh Award for Climate Change Research at the annual meeting of the British Ecological Society and, in 2020, the Balzan Prize in Earth System Dynamics for her research using radiocarbon to study the carbon cycle. She was also awarded the 2021 Vladimir Ivanovich Vernadsky Medal of the EGU. Trumbore is the coordinator of ATTO Project in Germany.

Carlos Alberto Quesada

Brazilian National Institute for Amazonian Research (INPA)

Carlos Alberto Nobre Quesada has a PhD in Ecology and Global Change (University of Leeds, UK). After postdocs at Leeds and INPA, he is since 2013 a researcher at the Brazilian National Institute for Amazonian Research (INPA). His research provides a comprehensive picture of Amazonian soils and their properties, explained in the context of their origins, development, and their ecological relationship to nutrient cycling, carbon storage and vegetation productivity. He is a coordinator of ATTO Project (in Brazil) and AmazonFACE, and a member of the LBA Science Steering committee.

Jürgen Kesselmeier


Jürgen Kesselmeier is a trained plant physiologist with expertise on atmosphere biosphere interactions focusing on biogenic trace gases. After a professorship at the University of Cologne from 1987 to 1988, he became a research group leader at the Max Planck Institute for Chemistry (MPIC) in Mainz and adjunct professor at the Botanical Institute at the University of Mainz. He retired in June 2017 but continues with activities as Senior scientist at the MPIC and the university. Since 2019 he is a Member of the Science Panel for the Amazon (SPA) under the UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN). He was the launching and Chief Editor of the Journal Biogeosciences (2004-2017) and editor of the journal Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics (2002-2010). He acted as the German Project Coordinator of the ATTO Project from 2010 to 2017 and was a member of the corresponding Scientific Steering Committee.

Bruna Holanda

Max Planck Institute for Chemistry (MPIC)

Bruna Holanda is a doctoral researcher at the Max Planck Institute for Chemistry, in Mainz. Since 2016 she is involved in the ATTO project, studying the life cycle of atmospheric aerosols over the Amazon rainforest, an ecosystem of global significance. Her research focus on the emissions, properties and transport of particles emitted in biomass burning events over the Amazon Basin as well as from long-range transport from Africa. Her study aims to better understand the effects of biomass burning emissions on cloud formation and radiative budget.

Santiago Botía

Max Planck Institute for Biogeochemistry (MPI-BGC)

Santiago Botía started doing Amazon-related research in 2017 looking at the “Effect of fire emissions on the carbon cycle of the Amazon for 2010-2015” in his Master Thesis in Wageningen University, in The Netherlands. After finishing his master’s degree in Environmental Sciences, he moved to Jena in Germany and started a Ph.D. in 2018 at the MPI-BGC. During this time, he has studied methane and carbon dioxide at ATTO. His latest research shows the importance of the ATTO CO2 record to better understand processes at different temporal scales in the Amazon region.

Eliane Alves Gomes

Max Planck Institute for Biogeochemistry (MPI-BGC)

Eliane Gomes Alves is a postdoctoral researcher at the Max Planck Institute for Biogeochemistry (MPI-BGC). A biologist with a doctorate in Climate and Environment from INPA, she is now a professor of postgraduate studies in Climate and Environment at INPA, where she advises students for master’s and doctoral degrees. In Germany, she is part of the International Max Planck Research School for Global Biogeochemical Cycles (IMPRS-gBGC), where she supervises a doctoral researcher. Her research focuses on plant ecophysiology and atmosphere-biosphere interactions mediated by biogenic trace gases. She develops research and advises students within the scope of the ATTO project and, in addition, she is a co-founder of a network that aims to increase the representativeness of Latin American researchers in the global Earth system science community – the Latin American Early Careers of Earth System Science (LAECESS).

Flávia Durgante

Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT)

Flávia Durgante is a postdoctoral researcher at the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT). A forestry engineer with a doctorate in Tropical Forest Sciences from INPA, she is now a professor of postgraduate studies in Botany at INPA, where she advises a master’s and doctoral degree. In Germany, she is a lecturer in the KIT Geoecology master course. Her research focuses on ecophysiology, tree growth and development of technologies for the recognition of Biodiversity. She develops research and advises students within the scope of the ATTO project, and in addition actively participates in the outreach project in the local communities surrounding the ATTO site.

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About the Venue
Embassy of Brazil in Berlin
Wallstrasse 57
Berlin, Berlin 10179 Germany

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