ESA Living Planet Fellowhip

Can current and upcoming EO systems provide adequate information for detailed mapping and monitoring of Urban Surface Temperature?


For most of us, the urban environment is the norm. Over the past 200 years, the global population has increased sevenfold.

Climate Change

The rate at which global climate change is happening is arguably the most pressing environmental challenge of the century. It is affected by and it affects our cities.

Earth Observation

Temperature is an important parameter for urban climate. Earth Observation systems allow monitoring the urban surface temperature from space.

The EO4UTEMP Project

EO4UTEMP examines the exploitation of EO data for monitoring the urban surface temperature (UST). Large variations in surface temperatures can be observed within a couple of hours, particularly when referring to urban surfaces. The geometric, radiative, thermal, and aerodynamic properties of the urban surface are unique and exert particularly strong control on the surface temperature. EO satellites provide excellent means for mapping the land surface temperature, but the particular properties of the urban surface and the unique urban geometry in combination with the trade-off between temporal and spatial resolution of the current satellite missions impose the development of new sophisticated surface temperature retrieval methods particularly designed for urban areas.

EO4TEMP will develop a novel UST algorithm exploiting multi-temporal, multi-sensor, multi-resolution EO data, to be validated with in-situ measurements in urban sites and to be applied to Sentinel-3 and Sentinel-2 data. Therefore, EO4UTEMP will provide an advanced methodology for deriving frequent UST estimations at local scale (100 m), capable of resolving the diurnal variation of UST and contribute to the study of the urban energy balance.