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Title: What are hot and what are not in an urban landscape: quantifying and explaining the land surface temperature pattern in Beijing, China

Understanding how landscape components affect the urban heat islands is crucial for urban ecological planning and sustainable development. The purpose of this research was to quantify the spatial pattern of land surface temperatures (LSTs) and associated heat fluxes in relation to land-cover types in Beijing, China, using portable infrared thermometers, thermal infrared imagers, and the moderate resolution imaging spectroradiometer. The spatial differences and the relationships between LSTs and the hierarchical landscape structure were analyzed with in situ observations of surface radiation and heat fluxes. Large LST differences were found among various land-use/land-cover types, urban structures, and building materials. Within the urban area, the mean LST of urban impervious surfaces was about 6–12°C higher than that of the urban green space. LSTs of built-up areas were on average 3–6°C higher than LSTs of rural areas. The observations for surface radiation and heat fluxes indicated that the differences were caused by different fractions of sensible heat or latent heat flux in net radiation. LSTs decreased with increasing elevation and normalized difference vegetation index. Variations in building materials and urban structure significantly influenced the spatial pattern of LSTs in urban areas. By contrast, elevation and vegetation cover are the major determinants of themore » LST pattern in rural areas. In summary, to alleviate urban heat island intensity, urban planners and policy makers should pay special attention to the selection of appropriate building materials, the reasonable arrangement of urban structures, and the rational design of landscape components.« less
 [1] ;  [1] ;  [2] ;  [1] ;  [3] ;  [4] ;  [1] ;  [1] ;  [1]
  1. Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS), Beijing (China)
  2. Beijing Normal University, Beijing (China)
  3. Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States)
  4. Southwest University of Science and Technology, Mianyang (China)
Publication Date:
Grant/Contract Number:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Landscape Ecology
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 30; Journal Issue: 2; Journal ID: ISSN 0921-2973
Research Org:
Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE Office of Science (SC)
Country of Publication:
United States
29 ENERGY PLANNING, POLICY, AND ECONOMY; 54 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES; urban heat island; land surface temperature; urban landscape; land-use/land-cover; MODIS; portable infrared thermometer
OSTI Identifier: