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News Releases from Region 05

EPA Awards $800,000 to University of Wisconsin for Research to Improve Air Quality Models

Contact Information: 
Ben Weiss (

Madison, Wis. (July 9, 2020) – Today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced $798,234 in research funding to the University of Wisconsin to improve air-quality models.  Specifically, the research will improve the component of models that represent how chemicals react in the atmosphere (known as “chemical mechanisms”). 

“EPA supports the university’s innovative research to improve air quality models,” said Regional Administrator Kurt Thiede. “This work is vital to improving our knowledge of pollutants in the air and will enable us to take better-informed actions to improve air quality and enhance public health.” 

“This study is unique in that it brings together two research teams, one with expertise in laboratory and field-based measurements of atmospheric chemistry and a second with expertise in regional scale modeling and satellite measurements of atmospheric composition,” said the project’s principal investigators Dr. Tim Bertram of the university’s department of chemistry and Tracey Holloway of the Holloway Group.

The project, “Development, Validation, and Integration of a New Model-Ready Parameterization of N2O5 Heterogeneous Chemistry,” will implement new chemical mechanisms into regional air quality models. Researchers will determine how chemical reactions between gases and aerosol particles in the air influence the concentration of pollutants like ozone and particulate matter. 

Nine grants totaling almost $6 million were awarded to institutions through the EPA’s Science to Achieve Results (STAR) program for research to improve air quality models used to simulate ozone, particulate matter, regional haze air toxics, and emerging pollutants. 

For more information on EPA’s STAR recipients visit: