The Institute of Meteorology and Climate Research, Atmospheric Environmental Research (IMK-IFU), which is coordinating the SUSALPS project, belongs to the Karlsruhe Institute of Technologie (KIT). The IMK-IFU has gained national and international reputation for its expertise in exchange processes between the biosphere, atmosphere and hydrosphere, with a strong focus on greenhouse gas exchange.
Further research foci are the development of process based biogeochemical models and sustainability studies. In the last two decades, the researchers involved in SUSALPS have focused on carbon and nitrogen turnover processes and the associated biosphere-atmosphere exchange of gaseous C and N species. This focus lead to the development of fully automated measurement systems which have been deployed in various international projects to investigate the soil source strength for CO2, CH4, NO, N2O und N2 in high temporal resolution.
In addition, the KIT is proficient in the application of stable isotope techniques to study biochemical processes. The Center for Stable Isotopes (http://www.imk-ifu.kit.edu/1689.php) offers excellent instrumentation an has resulted in the advancement of methods quantifying gross rates of carbon and nitrogen turnover.
The KIT coordinates the TERENO pre-alpine observatory funded by BMBF and the Helmholtz Association. TERENO per-alpine focuses on temperate grasslands so that corresponding expertise has been built up over several years.