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Proceedings Paper

Thermal remote sensing of Thom's discomfort index (DI): comparison with in-situ measurements
Author(s): Marina I. Stathopoulou; Costas Cartalis; Iphigenia Keramitsoglou; Matheos Santamouris
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Paper Abstract

The bioclimatic index most commonly used in urban climate studies to describe the level of thermal sensation that a person experiences due to the modified climatic conditions of an urban area, is the discomfort index (DI) of Thom. DI reflects the proportionate contribution of air temperature (Ta) and relative humidity (RH) on the human thermal comfort. In this study, the discomfort index is estimated using thermal infrared data as acquired by the Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer (AVHRR) sensor on board the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) satellite. For this purpose, a dataset of AVHRR-14 daytime images collected during the warm season from June to August 2000 covering the Greater Athens Area, in Greece, was used. Air temperature was related to a split-window estimate of land surface temperature (Ts), whereas relative humidity was assessed in terms of dew point temperature (Td) and of a split-window estimate of atmospheric precipitable water (PW). AVHRR-estimated DI values were compared with coincident DI values obtained from air temperature and relative humidity observations recorded at standard meteorological stations. Statistical analysis showed a good agreement (r2 = 0.79) between the AVHRR-estimated and the station-observed DI values, with a root mean square error (RMSE) of 1.2oC and a bias of 0.9oC. Results demonstrate the potential of using AVHRR data for defining the spatial variation of the DI index at a higher resolution (1.1 km) than is feasible from meteorological stations.

Paper Details

Date Published: 29 October 2005
PDF: 9 pages
Proc. SPIE 5983, Remote Sensing for Environmental Monitoring, GIS Applications, and Geology V, 59830K (29 October 2005); doi: 10.1117/12.627541
Show Author Affiliations
Marina I. Stathopoulou, Univ. of Athens (Greece)
Costas Cartalis, Univ. of Athens (Greece)
Iphigenia Keramitsoglou, Univ. of Athens (Greece)
Matheos Santamouris, Univ. of Athens (Greece)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 5983:
Remote Sensing for Environmental Monitoring, GIS Applications, and Geology V
Manfred Ehlers; Ulrich Michel, Editor(s)

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