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Training School


First international training school on Convective and volcanic clouds detection, monitoring and modeling (4-9 October 2015)


Convective and volcanic clouds detecting, monitoring and modeling
Castiglione del Lago, Italy, 4-9 October 2015

The event took place from October 4th -9th at Castiglione del Lago at the former Asilo Reattelli. Everything started Sunday, October 4th with a presentation dinner at the restaurant La Cantina in which students, organizers and the first speakers participated. Among the 13 speakers, all being of high, international profile, were an impressive 4 Marie Curie alumni (a European program which provides research grants for scientists in Europe and abroad): Adrian Tompkins, Guergana Guerova, Riccardo Biondi, and Mario Montopoli. The most prominent, stand-out figure was Fred Prata, the world’s expert on volcanic cloud tracking, visiting scientist at the University of Oxford, leader of many projects financed by the European Space Agency (ESA) aimed at the monitoring of volcanic ash, expert in satellite monitoring and atmospheric physics, inventor of a new instrument (AVOID) to observe volcanic clouds on commercial aircraft, founder and director of Nicarnica Aviation, and company leader in the monitoring of volcanic clouds and flight security.
The school was organized by the Wegener Center for Climate and Global Change (Austria) in collaboration with the Norwegian Institute for Air Research (Norway), the Instituto Nazionale di Geofisica e Vulcanologia (National Institute of Geophysics and Volcanology, Italy) and the International Centre for Theoretical Physics (UNESCO). Due to its high scientific value and international impact the school received sponsorship from the Ministro degli Affari Esteri (Ministry of Foreign Affairs) and Cooperazione Internazionale and was financed and sponsored by European Geosciences Union (EGU).
The students who enrolled were from four continents (Belgium, Egypt, France, Ghana, Germany, the United Kingdom, India, Iran, Ireland, Nigeria, New Zealand, Poland, Romania, Russia, Serbia, and Turkey), an aim that is rarely able to be met given that the costs involved in participating in such schools are not small. Thanks to scholarships from EGU, students from Ghana, Nigeria, India, and Serbia had the possibility to participate. The first two days of the course were dedicated to a full immersion on volcanic clouds, while the second part of the week completely revolved around cyclones and storms, with a lesson on the little-known Mediterranean hurricanes, thanks to the contribution of one of the greatest experts in the field, the researcher of CNR, Marcello Miglietta.

Island of meetings, obviously thought about moments to relax looking to have the surroundings and traditions appreciated. The morning run along the lake started the day on Tuesday and Thursday, bringing to mind Strasimeno (an annual marathon taking place around Lake Trasimeno), the excursion to the palazzo of Corgna and to the castle allowed everyone to admire our art and architecture, the coffee breaks and dinners, organized at a different restaurant every evening, allowed for tasting of our cuisine. Island of meetings also offered free enrolment to a young man from Castiglione that is studying Mathematical Sciences at the University of Perugia, a unique occasion to put himself into an international context and add a truly important experience to his resume.



Castiglione del Lago (Italy) is a medieval town located on a peninsula on the coast of Trasimeno Lake, mid-way between Rome and Florence and easily reachable by train and by car from both cities.


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