Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Urban Heat Island Effect

1st\NW Quadrant The Approval Matrix

An urban heat island (UHI) is a metropolitan area which is significantly warmer than its surroundings. The temperature difference usually is larger at night than during the day and larger in winter than in summer, and is most apparent when winds are weak. The main cause of the urban heat island is modification of the land surface by urban development; waste heat generated by energy usage is a secondary contributor. As population centres grow they tend to modify a greater and greater area of land and have a corresponding increase in average temperature. Partly as a result of the urban heat island effect, monthly rainfall is about 28% greater between 20-40 miles downwind of cities, compared with upwind.

Thermal (top) and vegetation (bottom) infrared satellite data measured by NASA’s Landsat 7 Enhanced Thematic Mapper Plus on August 14, 2002, one of the hottest days in New York City's summer. A comparison of the images shows that where vegetation is dense, temperatures are cooler. -- Wikipedia

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