Enschede, The Netherlands

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Purpose of observation:

The weather and climate in cities is of high importance for the wellbeing of its citizens, for its liveability, as well as for the environmental quality. This climate is governed by the energy and water balance and determined by the relative contribution of their different components. We measure and monitor these components, like for example water consumption, heat and CO2 production and solar radiation among others, over Enschede and combine this information with remotely sensed observations from satellites, airplanes and drones.

This helps us to not only map the urban climate on the long term, but also yields information on the so-called Urban Heat Island effect (i.e. how much warmer is it in the city and its neighborhoods as compared to its surrounding?) and for example on local air-circulation patterns. This information can then be used for mitigation and/or adaptation measures that touch upon a suite of different aspects such as health (sleeping quality, air quality, mortality), public space (pressure on parks, drought damage to flora and fauna), liveability (labor productivity indoors and outdoors, comfort) and water (water quality, water demand, cooling water availability). 

In short, we monitor variables of the urban climate, hydrology and meteorology, which are then used to calibrate and validate remote sensing measurement techniques.

This monitoring occurs through an observational network of so-called Eddy-Covariance towers en Scintillometers that measure the turbulent flux exchanges (or output/input) of CO2, heat and water-vapor between the city and the overlying atmosphere, as explained in the video below:

In addition a spatially distributed sensor network is scheduled for implementation (early 2024) where at 11 locations in Enschede basic meteorological parameters (air temperature, air humidity, solar radiation, air pressure and at selected sites wind-speed and -direction as well as precipitation) will be measured to gain insight in local climatic conditions and its typical behavior in different neighborhoods and streets.

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