Study of the geometry effect on land surface temperature retrieval in urban environment

Jinxin Yang, Man Sing Wong, Massimo Menenti, Janet Elizabeth Nichol

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

32 Citations (Scopus)


(ISPRS). This study presents a Single Channel Method using Urban Exitance Model (UEM-SCM) to retrieve land surface temperature (LST) from satellite data in an urbanized city, and evaluates the geometry effect on land surface temperature retrieval using single channel method and split-window algorithm. The UEM-SCM incorporates the effect of urban geometry and considers both reflection caused by the target pixel and its neighboring pixels. In order to evaluate the geometry effect, the retrieved LSTs with and without geometry effect were studied. Results show that the LSTs without geometry effect are generally higher than the LSTs with geometry effect. The temperature difference occurs because the material emissivity is always lower than the effective emissivity caused by multiple scattering and reflection in urban areas (cavity effect). The LST without geometry effect also cannot fully capture the variability and complexity of urban thermal patterns. The temperature difference between with and without the geometry effect can reach 2 K in built-up areas. A comparison was also conducted between LST retrieved by split-window algorithm with and without geometry effect. Results show that the LST retrieved by split-window algorithm without geometry effect has generally higher values than the one with the geometry effect, e.g. 1.1 K on average and 1.5-2 K in built-up areas. The geometry effect will be removed and mis-deemed as atmospheric effect when the split-window algorithm without geometry effect is applied in urban areas. The split-window algorithm with the geometry effect can be used to distinguish between geometry and atmospheric effect in further study.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)77-87
Number of pages11
JournalISPRS Journal of Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2015


  • Geometry effect
  • Urban exitance model
  • Urban surface temperature

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
  • Engineering (miscellaneous)
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Computers in Earth Sciences

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