CARES measures traffic emissions to improve urban air quality management

CARES investigates how contactless measuremen of vehicle exhaust emissions can help monitor and enforce pollutant emission limits and improve air quality, particularly in cities.

The overarching goal of the project is to facilitate the use of disparate techniques for measuring emissions in real traffic and enable more efficient monitoring of vehicle fleet emissions. It is expected to leverage increased knowledge about emissions from many different vehicle types and thus a better basis for measures that will lead to improved air quality, better health and more sustainable cities.

Milan in Italy, Prague in the Czech Republic and Krakow in Poland are all experiencing problems with air pollution. In these places the EU project – City Air Remote Emission Sensing – will monitor traffic emissions and contribute to improving air quality.

IVL Swedish Environmental Institute coordinates the CARES project, which is made up of a large number of parties from several countries. International cooperation includes exchanges with researchers, cities and authorities in China, where similar measurements will also be carried out.

CARES uses four different techniques to measure emissions from individual vehicles in real traffic:
• Horizontal across-road remote sensing
• Vertical remote sensing from detectors placed above the roadway
• Tailpipe exhaust plume chasing where a mobile measurement platform drives behind the investigated vehicle
• Stationary roadside point measurement of exhaust plumes

The project involves both hardware and software development and the techniques will be combined in different ways in the three cities involved. Nitric oxide and particle concentrations are the primary subjects of investigation.

CARES is a research project funded under the European Union Horizon 2020 Research and Innovation programme. The project brings together European and Chinese experts in non-intrusive vehicle emissions measurement to investigate the use of different remote sensing techniques for monitoring real-world vehicle emissions performance and enforcing compliance with exhaust pollutant standards.”

Project facts

CARES – City Air Remote Emission Sensing

  • Period: 2019-2022
  • Budget: 3,3 miljoner euro
  • Finance: EU Horizon 2020,
    Grant agreement No: 814 966

 Airyx, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Beijing Institute of Technology, City of Milan, CRAES-VECC, Czech University of Life Sciences, Czech Technical University, EMPA, Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, ICCT, IIASA, Innovhub, Krakow Smog Alert, Technical University of Graz, TNO, Tsinghua University, University of Heidelberg, University of Leeds, University of Thessaloniki, University of York.  

Åke Sjödin Tel. +46-10 788 67 98 E-mail: