DATE2016-06-02 10:01:58
AUTHORSIphigenia Keramitsoglou (1), Chris T. Kiranoudis (1,2), Panagiotis Sismanidis (1,2), Antonis Analitis (3), Klea Katsouyanni (3)
  1. Institute For Astronomy, Astrophysics, Space Applications And Remote Sensing, National Observatory Of Athens Athens (Greece)
  2. School Of Chemical Engineering, National Technical University Of Athens Athens (Greece)
  3. Department Of Hygiene, Epidemiology And Medical Statistics, Medical School, National And Kapodistrian University Of Athens Athens (Greece)
ABSTRACTToday cities host more than 50% of the world population and exhibit a distinct thermal environment that is much warmer than natural lands. These two facts make inhabitants of cities especially vulnerable to extreme hot-weather effects, the most adverse of which is the significant increase in human morbidity and mortality. The effects of excess heat are probably not happening homogeneously within a city but depend on many location-specific characteristics such as land cover/land use, building conditions, and population characteristics (distribution, age, health conditions, mobility & poverty) and their assessment requires spatially detailed urban temperature data. At the moment however, such data are not available because most cities operate sparse, irregular weather station networks that cannot provide a complete picture of the urban thermal environment. This is an important issue which prohibits the identification of the vulnerable urban hotspots and induces exposure measurement errors. A way to overcome this problem is through the innovative use of thermal Earth Observation (EO). Specifically two recent advancement of EO technologies, namely the spatial enhancement of frequently acquired geostationary data and the estimation of air temperature (TA) from remotely sensed land surface temperatures (LST), can provide the basis for the development of spatially and temporally detailed urban temperature datasets. Our team has implemented a service that uses these two technologies in conjunction with EO data from MSG2-SEVIRI so as to provide gapless 1km/5 min LST and TA data for 16 European & N. African cities. These data are produced in real-time and are used for the estimation of a number of higher-value products relevant to the monitoring of the urban thermal environment, e.g. heatwave hazard and thermal discomfort maps, and the development of relevant services. One service that we have developed in the context of the European Commission’s Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protections Directorate-General’ (DG-ECHO) TREASURE project is a mobile phone application that provides the user with information about his/her location-specific personalized temperature-related health risk. The calculation of the personal risk is based on epidemiological evidence of the temperature-health association and takes into account personal characteristics that modify this relationship. This application will become freely available after its validation during summer 2016 in Athens (GR).