Meteorology and Atmospheric Physics

, Volume 94, Issue 1–4, pp 209–218 | Cite as

Mesoscale and macroscale aspects of the morning Urban Heat Island around Athens, Greece

  • P. A. Kassomenos
  • B. D. Katsoulis


This paper examines the characteristics of the morning Urban Heat Island (UHI) in Athens basin, Greece. The study is performed by using and analyzing mesoscale and synoptic data covering the period 1990–2001. The UHI was estimated using the 0600 Local Time (LT) minimum temperature differences between rural and urban areas of the city. The analysis results in 7 UHI classes. A strong UHI was found for the 1/3 of days. The specific meteorological characteristics (surface and upper air, cooling rate) of each UHI class were revealed and examined. The spatial and temporal characteristics of the UHI were also identified.

The UHI is largest on nights with clear skies and low relative humidity. In all seasons the UHI switches on rapidly in afternoon. During spring and summer, sea breeze commonly reduces and delays the UHI. Cases documenting the sensitivity and rapidity of changes of the UHI to changes in classes (cloud cover, wind) are also presented. The cooling rate is higher in the urban area under negative and lower under positive UHI conditions.

Mesoscale and macroscale phenomena were examined during the different UHI classes through a weather type scheme. It was emerged that high UHI classes are associated with anticyclonic conditions or advection in the lower troposphere, while low UHI classes are associated with strong northeasterly winds. Anticyclonic conditions which frequently occur in spring and early summer, reduce or reverse the UHI to Urban Cooling Island.


Wind Speed Urban Heat Island Bound Layer Meteorol Total Cloud Cover Total Cloud Amount 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  • P. A. Kassomenos
    • 1
  • B. D. Katsoulis
    • 1
  1. 1.Laboratory of Meteorology, Department of PhysicsUniversity of IoanninaIoanninaGreece

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