Amazon Tall Tower Observatory (ATTO)
Joint German-Brazilian project to study the role of the Amazon
ATTO, the Amazon Tall Tower Observatory, is a unique scientific platform for long-term research on the changing role of Amazon forests in the Earth system. Research at ATTO seeks to improve fundamental understanding of the complex physical, chemical and biological interactions between the world’s largest expanse of tropical forest and the atmosphere.
ATTO infrastructure includes a 325-m tall tower to integrate forest-atmosphere interactions over hundreds of kilometers, two 80 m towers to study details of forest-atmosphere exchange processes, a cluster of instrumentation in a more open part of the forest for studying cloud properties, and canopy access walkways and permanent forest plots for detailed studies of soil and vegetation ecology and biogeochemistry.
ATTO brings together over 200 German and Brazilian researchers from multiple disciplines to study forest-atmosphere-climate interactions, and it is a highly visible international ‘flagship’ program for the Max-Planck Society, the German ministry for Research and Education (BMBF) and the Brazilian Ministry for Science, Technology and Communication (MCTIC). ATTO is operated through INPA, the Brazilian Institute for research in the Amazon, in Manaus. Our further main research partners are located at the Max Planck Institute for Chemistry in Mainz, the Karlsruhe Institute for Technology KIT, and the State University of Amazonas (UEA).
The overall science question of ATTO is: How will climate change and extremes influence the interactions between intact central Amazon tropical forest and the atmosphere, and what will be consequences for the region and beyond?