UHI studies for low carbon cities: integrating heat mapping with morphological attributes

Rohinton Emmanuel, Patricia Drach, Eduardo Krüger

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


    District Heating (DH) / Combined Heat and Power (CHP) systems are key planks of a low carbon city in colder climates. Heat mapping (HM) is a key tool to estimate the feasibility and efficacy of DH/CHP systems. HM involves mapping the current and future sources of heat against current and future demand for heat geographically. Current and future demands for heat are functions of building type, density, size and age, as well as local development plans and constraints. If the building attributes could be intelligently managed,
    heat demand in cold cities can be reduced. This could increase the feasibility of low efficacy renewable technologies to supply low carbon heat.

    In this paper, we develop a ‘heat morphology’ map for the central area of Glasgow to superimpose upon a local heat map to identify potential benefits of a heat island effect on reducing heating demand. We use urban morphological information such as building density, size, height, road network and natural features such as vegetation and water-bodies to map likely heat patterns in the city. We use ENVI-met for this purpose. Given the positive influence UHIs could have on building energy consumption in cold climates, a linking of ‘heat morphology’ with heat map could help predict more accurately the likely heat
    demand which in turn could increase the feasibility of low efficacy but low carbon technologiess. We propose a method for linking of the two and explore the data needs and identify barriers and opportunities for further action.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationICUC8 – 8th International Conference on Urban Climates
    Subtitle of host publicationProceeedings of the 8th International Conference on Urban Climate and 10th Symposium of the Urban Environment organised by the International Association for Urban Climate (IAUC) and the American Meteorological Society's Board of the Urban Environment
    Place of PublicationDublin
    Number of pages4
    Publication statusPublished - 2012


    • heat mapping
    • district heating
    • urban morphology
    • urban design
    • urban planning


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