Case Stories

Aalborg Portland Fire

One morning the citizins of Aalborg, Denmark woke up to a thick, black smoke coming from Aalborg Portland cement factory.  The smoke came from a warehouse with large piles of paper and cardboard. The alarm sounded shortly before eight o'clock in the morning, and the fire had a good hold when firefighters arrived.


The firefighters managed to limit the fire, so only half of the warehouse, which is of 8000 square meters, has been damaged. No people are hurt. It still burning, but the smoke was not toxic, according to the police. The cause of the fire is still unknown.


If the smoke had been toxic ARGOS would have used to simulate how the smoke would develop and dispurse over a certain period of time.

Biological Incident Response

ARGOS was used to simulation and investigates the potential consequences for Foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) that is a highly contagious viral disease of cloven-hoofed domesticated and wild animals. The FMD disease is spread in relation to two outbreaks; Burnside Farm, Heddon-on-the-Wall and Prestwick Hall Farm, Ponteland, Northumberland.


The highly contagious nature of FMD is a reflection of the wide range of host species, the enormous quantities of virus liberated by infected animals, 5 the range of excretions and secretions which can be infectious, the stability of the virus in the environment, the multiplicity of routes of infection and the very small doses of the virus that can initiate infection.


Read article about Biological Incident response

Read article about Foot and Mounth Dicease Virus Transmission


Dose Modeling for Dirty Bomb

In recent years, the concern for protection of urban populations against terror attacks involving radiological, biological or chemical substances has attracted increasing attention. This sets new demands to decision support and consequence assessment tools, where the focus has traditionally been on accidental exposure.


The ARGOS decision support system is able to estimation the consequences of terror attacks involving chemical, biological, nuclear and radiological substances. Different scientific paper presents elements of the framework that is applied in ARGOS to calculate the dose contributions from contaminants dispersed in the atmosphere after a ‘dirty bomb’ explosion. Also the aerosolisation and atmospheric dispersion in a city of different types of conceivable contaminants from a ‘dirty bomb’ can be simulated.

Read article "Dirty bomb explosion in an urban area".

Read article "Radiological terrorist attack in a city"

Swedish ARGOS Implementation


The ARGOS system has been in production use within the Swedish Nuclear and Radiological Emergency Preparedness since 2005. The system is currently implemented at the Swedish Radiation Protection Authority (SSI) in Stockholm and at the Swedish Defence Research Establishment (FOI) in Umeå.


Furthermore, there have been some manifestations of interest from the NPP operators to get access to the system. Today, the core databases at SSI consist of two identical implementations, a primary system in Stockholm and a secondary, geographically separated from the primary, in Northern Sweden.


Contact PDC-ARGOS for detailled paper.

The Use of ARGOS in Ireland


The National Emergency Plan for Nuclear Accidents (NEPNA) – has been used ARGOS since 2007 and provides a framework for co-ordinating the emergency response to large scale nuclear incidents with the potential to contaminate a wide area in Ireland.


NEPNA use ARGOS to outlines emergency notification and alerting, responsibilities of the relevant State bodies, interagency coordination, implementation of countermeasures and communication with the public.


The Radiological Protection Institute of Ireland (RPII) has assigned particular functions to covering early warning, technical assessment of the incident and provision of technical advice on countermeasures and monitoring of the environment and the food chain.


Contact PDC-ARGOS for detailled paper.




ARGOS has been used in many scenarios and incidents, and various articles have been written about ARGOS, and the list includes:

Hazelwood Open Cut Mine Fire




ARGOS use During the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Disaster






ARGOS Use During Copenhagen Climate Change Conference (COP 15) and
Winter Olympics in Canada 2010.






ARGOS Use During Winter Olympics in Canada 2010.








Big Fire in Landfill with Poisonous Smoke







ARGOS in Australia for USA-193 Satellite Re-entry Scenarios







Aalborg Portland Fire








When a major disaster happens, we need a solution we can trust! Since 1996 DEMA has used ARGOS in the Danish emergency preparedness and response.

Mr. Steen Hoe from
Danish Emergency Management Agency

ARGOS/RIMPUFF has the advantage that the source term can vary in time and that the spatial domain can have varying land-use and terrain heights. We get outputs for each time-step, rather than an overall solution and NWP data can be used, so the model can more accurately reflect the changes in meteorological conditions that occur – which is absolutely necessary”

Mr. Blake Orr
ARPANSA, Australia