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Advances in Meteorology
Volume 2016, Article ID 8026018, 10 pages
Research Article

Heat-Wave Events in Spain: Air Mass Analysis and Impacts on 7Be Concentrations

1European Commission, Joint Research Centre (JRC), Institute for Transuranium Elements (ITU), Via Enrico Fermi 2749, 21027 Ispra, Italy
2Environmental Chemistry and Radioactivity Laboratory, Department of Chemistry “G. Ciamician”, Alma Mater Studiorum University of Bologna, Via Selmi 2, 40126 Bologna, Italy

Received 7 March 2016; Accepted 23 May 2016

Academic Editor: Mastura Mahmud

Copyright © 2016 M. A. Hernández-Ceballos et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The present paper describes and characterizes the air mass circulation during the heat-wave events registered during the period 2005–2014 over Spain, paying special attention to the role of the Saharan circulations. Backward trajectories at 500, 1500, and 3000 m in Seville (south), Madrid (centre), and Bilbao (north) during the thirteen heat-wave events identified are analysed. Finally, the impact of the heat-wave events and of each advection pattern on 7Be activity concentrations is also analysed. The heat-wave events are characterized roughly by western, southern, and nearby advections, with a higher frequency of the first two types. The analysis shows an increase of African air masses with height, presenting a different spatial impact over Spain, with a decreasing occurrence and a decrease in the simultaneous occurrence percentage from south to north. On average, the 7Be activity concentrations during these events show an increase of concentrations in central (21%) and southern (18%) areas and a decrease in northern (13%) Spain. This increase is not associated with Saharan air masses but instead with the arrival of distant westerly air masses.