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ESA helps make summer in the city more bearable
Date:8/27/2009

xities of how urban heat islands arise, so that more efficient alert systems can be developed and effective mitigation strategies adopted, ESA organised an airborne campaign that was recently carried out over Athens.

In a series of coordinated activities, a group of thermal remote-sensing and urban-climate experts from Greece and Spain carried out ground-based measurements at various sites in and around the Greek capital, whilst aircraft equipped with sensitive instrumentation passed overhead and satellites orbiting Earth acquired data simultaneously from space.

The campaign, called Thermopolis 2009 from the classical Greek terms for hot (thermo) and city (polis), was led and coordinated by Prof. Spyridon Rapsomanikis from the Democritus University of Thrace. It was carried out as part of the Urban Heat Islands and Urban Thermography project within the framework ESA's Data User Element. Four Greek administrations also participated in the project: the city of Athens, the municipality of Amaroussion, the Hellenic National Meteorological Service and the General Secretariat for Civil Protection.

Prof. Rapsomanikis pointed out that, "Although the objectives of the Thermopolis 2009 project targeted the needs of ESA's Urban Heat Island and Urban Thermography Data User Element project, the generated dataset will, as an unavoidable by-product, generate unique scientific insight into the thermal budget of cities."

The campaign follows a similar exercise successfully executed last summer in the city of Madrid, Spain, called the DESIREX 2008 campaign. The Thermopolis campaign in Athens began on 18 July, when two aircraft made simultaneous flights over the city. One aircraft, operated by INTA, Spain, took measurements with a hyperspectral imaging spectrometer called the Airborne Hyperspectral System. The spectrometer is sensitive to both visible and thermal infrared wavelengths, covering 0.442 m-13.361 m of the electromagnetic spectrum. Th
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Contact: Robert Meisner
robert.meisner@esa.int
39-069-418-0874
European Space Agency
Source:Eurekalert

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