The role of paved surfaces in the Urban Heat Island phenomenon: Assessment of fundamental thermal parameters and finite element analysis for UHI mitigation

Matricardi, David (2015) The role of paved surfaces in the Urban Heat Island phenomenon: Assessment of fundamental thermal parameters and finite element analysis for UHI mitigation. [Laurea magistrale], Università di Bologna, Corso di Studio in Ingegneria civile [LM-DM270]
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Nowadays the environmental issues and the climatic change play fundamental roles in the design of urban spaces. Our cities are growing in size, many times only following immediate needs without a long-term vision. Consequently, the sustainable development has become not only an ethical but also a strategic need: we can no longer afford an uncontrolled urban expansion. One serious effect of the territory industrialisation process is the increase of urban air and surfaces temperatures compared to the outlying rural surroundings. This difference in temperature is what constitutes an urban heat island (UHI). The purpose of this study is to provide a clarification on the role of urban surfacing materials in the thermal dynamics of an urban space, resulting in useful indications and advices in mitigating UHI. With this aim, 4 coloured concrete bricks were tested, measuring their emissivity and building up their heat release curves using infrared thermography. Two emissivity evaluation procedures were carried out and subsequently put in comparison. Samples performances were assessed, and the influence of the colour on the thermal behaviour was investigated. In addition, some external pavements were analysed. Albedo and emissivity parameters were evaluated in order to understand their thermal behaviour in different conditions. Surfaces temperatures were recorded in a one-day measurements campaign. ENVI-met software was used to simulate how the tested materials would behave in two typical urban scenarios: a urban canyon and a urban heat basin. Improvements they can carry to the urban microclimate were investigated. Emissivities obtained for the bricks ranged between 0.92 and 0.97, suggesting a limited influence of the colour on this parameter. Nonetheless, white concrete brick showed the best thermal performance, whilst the black one the worst; red and yellow ones performed pretty identical intermediate trends. De facto, colours affected the overall thermal behaviour. Emissivity parameter was measured in the outdoor work, getting (as expected) high values for the asphalts. Albedo measurements, conducted with a sunshine pyranometer, proved the improving effect given by the yellow paint in terms of solar reflection, and the bad influence of haze on the measurement accuracy. ENVI-met simulations gave a demonstration on the effectiveness in thermal improving of some tested materials. In particular, results showed good performances for white bricks and granite in the heat basin scenario, and painted concrete and macadam in the urban canyon scenario. These materials can be considered valuable solutions in UHI mitigation.

Tipologia del documento
Tesi di laurea (Laurea magistrale)
Autore della tesi
Matricardi, David
Relatore della tesi
Corso di studio
Curriculum: Infrastrutture viarie e trasporti
Ordinamento Cds
Parole chiave
Urban Heat Island, thermal imaging, emissivity, urban canyon, painted materials
Data di discussione della Tesi
12 Febbraio 2015

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