Norwegian Institute for Air Research

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© Photo: Norwegian Institute for Air Research (NILU)
NILU headquarters building.

The Norwegian Institute for Air Research (Norwegian: Norsk Institutt for luftforskning) or NILU is a private Norwegian research institute that is one of the leading specialized scientific institutes in Europe.[1]

NILU investigates and assesses technical, economic, hygienic and other environmental issues related to air pollution, climate change and health.


NILU's head office is at Kjeller on the outskirts of Oslo in Norway.[2] Another NILU office is maintained in the Fram Centre of the city of Tromsø.[3]

NILU also has two subsidiaries in other countries:[4]


NILU has a staff of nearly 200 scientists,[5] engineers and technicians with specialized expertise for working on air pollution problems. It also has accredited laboratories for chemical analyses.

The staff performs about 275 projects annually[6] for research councils, industries, international banks, governments and national and international organizations.

Fields of work

NILU was founded in 1969 and the institute conducts environmental research with emphasis on the sources of air pollution and on air pollution dispersion modeling,[7][8][9] transport, transformation and deposition. It is also involved in the assessment of the effects of pollution on ecosystems, human health and materials. Integrated environmental assessments and optimal abatement strategy planning has been a field of priority during the last few years. Assessment of transboundary transport of air pollutants, acid rain and global air quality are important tasks.

NILU has the responsibility as a national research institution for air pollution in Norway and is also being used as an international air pollution expert by the World Bank, the Asian Development Bank and the World Health Organization.

NILU has developed an automatic surveillance program for air quality in cities and background areas. NILU has specialized in computerized automatic air pollution surveillance, planning and optimal abatement strategy planning. Their AirQUIS system is a GIS- based air pollution management and planning system designed for managers and decision-makers.[10]