Effect of high-albedo materials on pedestrian thermal comfort in urban canyons

Evyatar Erell, David Pearlmutter, Daniel Boneh

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


Extensive use of high-albedo materials has been advocated as a means of mitigating the urban heat island, especially in warm-climate cities. The implicit assumptions of this strategy are that by lowering canopy layer air temperature, cities will enjoy a) reduced air conditioning loads in buildings and b) improved thermal comfort for pedestrians in outdoor urban spaces. The second of these assumptions is examined here by means of computer modelling, in a two-stage approach whereby thermal comfort (represented by the Index of Thermal Stress) is modelled using as input detailed microclimate simulated by a canyon model (CAT). The analysis suggests that although use of high-albedo materials in canyon surfaces may lower air temperature, the reduction is not enough to offset increased radiant loads. As a result, pedestrian thermal comfort may in fact be compromised.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationCUC8 – 8th International Conference on Urban Climates, 6th-10th August, 2012, UCD, Dublin Ireland
StatePublished - 2012
Event8th International Conference on Urban Climates - Dublin, Ireland
Duration: 6 Aug 201210 Aug 2012
Conference number: 8


Conference8th International Conference on Urban Climates
Abbreviated titleCUC


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