The Polar and Arctic atmospheric research (PANDA).

The Polar and Arctic atmospheric research (PANDA) is a sub-group of the Institute of Atmospheric and Earth System Research / Physics, at the University of Helsinki (

We are part of Finnish Flagship "Atmosphere and Climate Competence Center (ACCC)" Flagship (

Our research is and has been largely funded by European Research Council (ERC-StG: GASPARCON – 714621), Academy of Finland (projects: 251427, 296628, 306853, 335844, 328290, 310627, 334514) and TEKES (“APCI-teknologian kaupallistaminen” & “APCI-teknologia CBRNE markkinalle”) together with numerous smaller sources of funding. CiGas-UHEL work is supported by University of Helsinki hosting the ACTRIS Topical Centre Units and Research Council of Finland supporting the implementation and operation of the Units (FIRI funding, ACTRIS Central Facilities 2020-2024, grant no. 329274).

The group is led by Prof. Mikko Sipilä (Värriö subarctic research station, Salla) and Dr. Nina Sarnela (Helsinki). Information on individual group members can be found below.


Mikko Sipilä

Prof. Mikko Sipilä is the co-leader of the Panda group and the head of Värriö sub-arctic research station and SMEAR I station located in Salla, eastern Lapland (/en/research-stations/varrio-subarctic-research-station). Mikko works with Arctic and Antarctic polar atmospheric research focusing on sea - ice - land ecosystem - atmosphere interactions mainly from aerosol formation point of view. He also investigates sub-arctic boreal forest - atmosphere interactions and the interference of anthropogenic air pollution. Furthermore, he collects data on north boreal flora and fauna, including birds, small mammals and apex predators.ä

Nina Sarnela

Nina Sarnela Ph.D., University researcher working for trace gases in situ measurements in CiGas-UHEL topical center of ACTRIS, co-leader of the Panda group.

I’m experienced in in-situ gas and particle measurements, especially chemical ionization high resolution mass spectrometry, in field, chamber, and laboratory measurements. I’m interested in developing better instruments, operation procedures and methods of analysis for atmospheric in-situ measurements. I’m curious about Arctic particle formation and atmospheric oxidation products and their role in nucleation.

Roseline C. Thakur

Lead Investigator of the Project “Molecular Steps of New Particle Formation in the Arctic Atmosphere- Long Term Measurements (NPF ARCTIC-II). My research focus is on the New Particle formation (NPF) processes through biogenic precursors in Arctic region. I aim to increase the understanding of the sources of biogenic volatile organic compounds in High Arctic and their implications on new particle formation. The objectives of my research involves Field campaigns in the Svalbard region using CIMS, Neutral cluster Air Ion Spectrometer and VOC flux chambers. My first love is always the Polar regions, however, I am also interested in carrying out studies elsewhere with a focus on biogenic precursors influencing NPF.

Lauriane Quéléver

Post Doctoral Researcher at INAR for Investigating the chemistry of aerosol precursors in cold environments: From laboratory experiments to remote polar field observations.

Research on the chemical origin of nucleation in the antarctic peninsula and central arctic ocean. Expert on Mass Spectrometry measurements for chemical identification and quantification of gas-phase molecules and ions, precursor of aerosols.

Matthew Boyer

Matt Boyer is a PhD student studying aerosol processes in polar environments. He is interested in the link between newly formed particles and their growth to CCN relevant sizes, and he enjoys making measurements in the field.

Cecilia Righi

Cecilia Righi is a Master student in Advanced Spectroscopy in Chemistry.

Throughout my studies, I have had the opportunity to study and get passionate about different spectroscopic techniques, which I would like to apply to the field of atmospheric chemistry.

I am currently working on defining precise calibration practices of an Atmospheric Pressure interface Time of Flight Mass Spectrometer provided with either Eisele-type or multi-scheme chemical ionization inlet for the measurement of gaseous sulfuric acid.

Chengfeng Liu

PhD student working with long-term mass spectrometry data.