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|the Swiss Federal Institute for Forest, Snow and Landscape Research.|
The WSL Institute for Snow and Avalanche Research SLF engages in research, scientific services, teaching and public relations, focusing on snow, the atmosphere, natural hazards, permafrost and mountain ecosystems.
The SLF's employees are active in both basic and applied research. The objective of their work is to develop practical instruments for public authorities, industry and the general public, which can be used, for example, to manage the risk associated with natural hazards or analyse climatic and environmental changes.
In close connection with its research activities, the SLF also offers a range of services. These include consulting, expert opinions on avalanche accidents and avalanche protection, and the development of warning systems for natural hazards in the Alps. The best-known service is the avalanche bulletin or warning report for the Swiss Alps, which is published twice daily in wintertime. For safety authorities, mountain guides and winter sports participants, the avalanche bulletin is an essential source of information dedicated to the prevention of avalanche accidents. SLF employees also teach at the ETH and various universities in Switzerland and abroad, and provide basic and further training for safety experts.
The SLF is also eager to share its knowledge with the general public. Its employees therefore publish articles, conduct guided tours of the institute, represent the SLF on public occasions, and appear on radio and television.
The link between science, application and public relations at the SLF dates back a long time. Since as long ago as 1945, when the Swiss Army's avalanche warning service was attached to the SLF, the institute has been able to pursue its scientific and practical interests under one roof.