A SYstem for ReaL-Time ObserVation of Aeroallergens

Project Info
Project-Specific Objectives
Objective 1 Develop cutting-edge bioaerosol monitoring technologies (TRLs 5-6 → 7-8)
Short description SYLVA will radically advance real-time bioaerosol monitoring technologies for in situ (target TRL8), atmospheric profile (tTRL7), and 3rd generation eDNA sequencing measurements (tTRL7). All instruments will be tested and validated for operational monitoring across Europe, including under extreme conditions in the Arctic, in hot and dusty southern Europe, and at high altitude. Machine learning bioaerosol identification algorithms will be extended to include more pollen species, fungal spores, as well as certain bacteria. These algorithms will be published open source, as will the reference datasets for all target species upon which these algorithms are trained.
Key results SYLVA’s technological innovations are prepared for Demonstration Pilots (Objective 3); operational algorithms updated and published open source; reference datasets compiled for target species and published open source.
Quantified target KPI 1: In situ real-time instruments: identification of 20 pollen and 5 fungal spores, with overall recognition quality of >80%.
KPI 2: Lidars: A minimum of 3 recognised pollen families, with recognition quality of >80%.
KPI 3: eDNA sequencing: Protocol allowing near-real-time (NRT) operation (<3 days data delivery delay), with costs < 40 Euro/sample.
Means validation of (i) Reports on the laboratory tests and evaluation of identification algorithms
(ii) WP3 Demonstration Pilots
Pertinence to the TopicText O.1, the core of SYLVA innovations, focuses on closing the geographical and high temporal resolution gaps in real-time monitoring of aeroallergens and other atmospheric aerosols interacting with climate, and affecting health, agriculture, and forestry.
Objective 2 Create bioaerosol monitoring ICT infrastructure and software following open-source principles and connect it to European environmental observing systems (TRL 4 → 6)
Short description Bioaerosol monitors use machine learning for particle recognition and produce large amounts of data (several TBs per year per device). SYLVA will create a federated system connected to European / national / regional data centres following unified standards and FAIR principles to provide easy access to real-time data, recognition algorithms, reference datasets, and metadata.
Key results A set of open access protocols, interfaces, and replicable solutions that can be utilised by all organisations carrying out real-time bioaerosol monitoring. Interface to EBAS, EARLINET.
Quantified target KPI 4: A set of standard interoperable protocols / formats for data handling, transfer, and storage.
KPI 5: A database and processing software for efficient handling and communication of reference datasets with demonstrated capacity for 100 TB and scalability to a PB-level.
KPI 6: A server for identification algorithms allowing reprocessing of annual data within 48 hours.
Means validation of The infrastructure will be used, tested, and evaluated as part of the Demonstration Pilots.
Pertinence to the TopicText O.2 creates an operational infrastructure for all SYLVA technologies, securing its interoperability, synchronisation with other observation techniques, lowering the costs of operations, and simplifying network expansion and long-term sustainability.
Objective 3 Validate the operational maturity and added-value of bioaerosol monitoring technology through Demonstration Pilots in three European regions (proving TRL 7-8)
Short description Pilot Demonstrations will run in three regions representing the full range of European climatic conditions - cold and humid Arctic, hot and dry Southern Europe, and at high altitude. Each Pilot will:
  • Collect representative samples of the reference species characteristic for the region
  • Test bioaerosol monitors operationally for two complete years
  • Verify and report device performance, accuracy, and cross-compatibility
  • Test IT infrastructure and data transfer technologies
  • Establish connections with regional stakeholders and end-users (e.g. public health authorities, medical professionals, patient organisations, agricultural industry, and environment and climate monitoring communities).
Key results Reports on the device performance in different conditions; two complete seasons of monitoring data; practical examples of end-user/stakeholder uptake
Quantified target KPI 7: Threshold for reliability is reached: > 95% of in-situ data is available from the two years
KPI 8: Threshold for quality is reached: recognition for key regional species is > 0.8
Means validation of Reports on the Demonstration Pilots; evaluation of the device and algorithm performance; end- user/stakeholder feedback reports.
Pertinence to the TopicText O.3 will prove high TRL levels for all SYLVA solutions by the end of the project, with demonstration of all technologies in real-life conditions. This objective will also extend spatial coverage and test the technologies in hard-to-reach under-sampled areas.
Objective 4 Maximise impact by demonstrating SYLVA innovations to key stakeholders related to climate, health, agriculture, silviculture, and the environment
Short description An open Stakeholder Forum will be created and maintained throughout the project, incorporating key stakeholders and ensuring continued dialogue and development. The Pilot Demonstrations will be used to facilitate the uptake of new technologies and information by demonstrating the SYLVA innovations directly to stakeholders at the local/national scale. For the first time ever across Europe, SYLVA will provide high-resolution data on bioaerosols openly and in real-time. On this basis, co- designed tailored products and services will be co-created together with key stakeholders. A dedicated protocol to harmonise manual observations with the real-time SYLVA measurements will also be developed to secure long-term climate datasets and the smooth integration of new technologies into stakeholders’ operations.
Key results Practical examples of the uptake of SYLVA results and technologies by key stakeholder groups (studies, products, services); satisfaction of the requirements formulated by the Stakeholder Forum; method to merge manual and automatic observations to create long-term climate datasets.
Quantified target KPI 9: > 90% of the quantitative criteria established by stakeholders are satisfied
KPI 10: A proven method to harmonise real-time data with existing manual time series’
KPI 11: A collection (3 or more) of open-source software serving end-user groups, e.g. GIS services, visualisation widgets, apps.
Means validation of Stakeholder satisfaction survey carried out at the end of the project; Climate-relevant time series from all available SYLVA sites; availability of open-source software for downstream applications.
Pertinence to the TopicText O.4 will provide open-access high-quality in situ measurements that provide scientific evidence and decision-support to meet the European Green Deal challenges. It also links SYLVA developments directly with stakeholders, who will facilitate the uptake of project outcomes and ensure sustainability of all innovations well beyond the lifetime of the project.
Objective 5 Ensure the long-term sustainability of bioaerosol technology and infrastructure across Europe
Short description As a forward-thinking partnership of governmental institutes, public bodies, and private companies, SYLVA aims to prototype a monitoring system that will be exploited well beyond the project lifetime. Building on principles laid down by the EUMETNET AutoPollen Programme, comprehensive planning for sustainable exploitation of the project outcomes will be a focus from the start. A coherent business plan will be developed accounting for technical, financial, legal, and IPR issues related to network operations and expansion. Furthermore, potential links to the ESFRI landscape will be explored, for example, through links with the ACTRIS program.
Key results Strategic long-term business plan for SYLVA innovations, infrastructure, and technology exploitation with clear principles and mechanisms for their implementation.
Quantified target KPI 12: Consensus support and commitment of stakeholders and end-users for continuation and extension of the monitoring network using SYLVA innovations beyond the project lifetime.
Means validation of The stakeholder survey at the end of the project will, amongst other things, cover future plans with regard to SYLVA technology and services, including network continuation and expansion.
Pertinence to the TopicText O.5 will develop a coherent business model, ensure direct collaboration with environmental observation data providers, and reinforce links with GEO, EC-ESA, and Copernicus initiatives. The Stakeholder Forum will be an integral part of this, bringing together all key stakeholders and end- users thus ensuring uptake of SYLVA innovations.