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Hirofumi Sugawara and Junsei Kondo

Abstract

Screen-level air temperature measurements at surface observation stations are influenced by local-site-scale factors. These local influences may affect global-scale climate change studies. This study investigated the influence of surface obstacles on air temperature measurements at the screen level at climate observation stations in Japan. Screen-level air temperature was measured simultaneously at two neighboring sites (<100 m apart) that differed in terms of their openness. Daytime air temperature was 0°–1°C higher at the narrower site, and theoretical analysis revealed that this warming was caused by poor ventilation. At night, poor ventilation at the narrower site caused the air temperature to be 0°–0.2°C lower, which was demonstrated experimentally and by theoretical analysis. The range of temperature changes due to site narrowing shown in this study is not negligible in climate change studies. Guidelines for site maintenance and metadata recoding were consequently proposed in terms of site openness.

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Hirofumi Sugawara, Ken-ichi Narita, and Takehiko Mikami

Abstract

A method to measure an area-averaged ground air temperature based on the hydrostatic equation is shown. The method was devised to overcome the problem of finding the most representative surface air temperature over a wide region, a problem that has seriously hindered the description of urban heat islands. The vertical pressure gradient is used and the hydrostatic equation is applied to estimate the average air temperature between two barometers, which is here called the hydrostatic temperature. The error analysis shows that the hydrostatic temperature can be estimated with a systematic error of 1.8°C and a random error of 0.7°C in the case in which the two barometers have a vertical separation of 228 m. The measured hydrostatic temperature agreed with the average of the directly measured temperature within 0.7°C rms. For this barometer separation, the representative area of the hydrostatic temperature was experimentally found to be a 12-km-radius circle. The size of this area decreased when the vertical separation of the barometers decreased. The hydrostatic temperature is compared with the average directly measured temperature for various areas. The maximum correlation between them occurred for a circular area with a 12-km radius centered on the pressure measurements. The size of the representative area for this method is larger than that for the direct measurement of air temperature.

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Tsuyoshi Nakatani, Ryohei Misumi, Yoshinori Shoji, Kazuo Saito, Hiromu Seko, Naoko Seino, Shin-ichi Suzuki, Yukari Shusse, Takeshi Maesaka, and Hirofumi Sugawara
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