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An Investigation into the the urban heat island of Detroit, MI., and the role of three spatial variables

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Monday, 24 January 2011
An Investigation into the the urban heat island of Detroit, MI., and the role of three spatial variables
Washington State Convention Center
E. Oswald, Univ. of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI; and R. B. Rood and M. O'Neill

Knowledge of the characteristics and spatial structure of urban heat islands (UHIs) is becoming increasingly more important to public health practitioners and city planners as they attempt to better identify parts of the city that are especially vulnerable to aid mitigation strategies during heat-related health threats. However, the structure of UHIs can be investigated in many different manners, but the most fundamental investigation of raw observations can be challenging. From a meteorological stance, one goal is to devise a way to map the structure of the urban heat island from standard 2-meter air temperature observations to a complex urban environment in effect, a vastly localized downscaling. Subsequently, in this investigation, analysis using a dense network of temporary observations stations in concert with established observing networks, inside the city is investigated. We correlated point source temperature measurements with relevant spatial attributes (surface imperviousness, proximity to water, etc.) to model the observed temperature patterns. Future work includes correlation with satellite thermal images and evaluation on urban parameterizations in climate models.