The use of a vegetation index for assessment of the urban heat island effect

International Journal of Remote Sensing
By: , and 



A vegetation index and radiative surface temperature were derived from NOAA-11 Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer (AVHRR) data for the Seattle, WA region from 28 June through 4 July 1991. The vegetation index and surface temperature values were computed for locations of weather observation stations within the region and compared to observed minimum air temperatures. These comparisons were used to evaluate the use of AVHRR data to assess the influence of the urban environment on observed minimum air temperatures (the urban heat island effect). AVHRR derived normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) and radiant surface temperature data from a one week composite product were both related significantly to observed minimum temperatures, however, the vegetation index accounted for a greater amount of the spatial variation observed in mean minimum temperatures. The difference in the NDVI between urban and rural regions appears to be an indicator of the difference in surface properties (i.e., evaporation and heat storage capacity) between the two environments that are responsible for differences in urban and rural minimum temperatures.

Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title The use of a vegetation index for assessment of the urban heat island effect
Series title International Journal of Remote Sensing
DOI 10.1080/01431169308954031
Volume 14
Issue 11
Year Published 1993
Language English
Publisher Taylor & Francis
Contributing office(s) Earth Resources Observation and Science (EROS) Center
Description 8 p.
First page 2223
Last page 2230
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