Singapore. Credit: Unsplash/CC0 Public Domain

According to the Singapore Meteorological Service, Singapore is getting hotter. Twice as fast as the rest of the world.

Due to the effects of global warming, increasing And Boywas 2023. Hottest year on record in Singapore..

A rise in temperature may result in adverse climate impacts such as increased frequency of heat waves, droughts, heavy rains and floods.

Another factor contributing to rising temperatures is Singapore’s densely built-up city and urban infrastructure such as buildings, roads and vehicles.

Urban structures can trap and release heat to the atmosphere, especially at night.

The Urban Heat Island (UHI) effect or trapped urban heat explains why temperature differences Seven degrees Celsius Between urban and less built-up areas of Singapore.

The consequences of rising temperatures can be dire for humans.

In addition to thermal discomfort, As a result, can increase Or excess heat is trapped in the body.

Heat stress occurs when the human body is unable to cool itself adequately or dissipate excess heat.

“In an effort to cool urban heat, the Cooling Singapore 2.0 project was launched in 2021. This research project is in collaboration with ETH Zurich at the Singapore-ETH Center,” Research Assistant Grace Chung told the Office of Research. Informed?

“Climate research has been my focus since my undergraduate studies. Since graduation, I have been involved in researching the impact of trees and plants on ‘beating the heat’ in Singapore,” she added. .

“When the opportunity to work on the Cooling Singapore 2.0 project was presented to me, I jumped at it for three reasons. My curiosity in climate research stemmed from my earlier work. I was also interested, people, and the environment. And I wanted to be part of a team for development. One of Southeast Asia’s leading computational projects to mitigate urban warming” he continued.

“The focus of Cooling Singapore 2.0 is to create a Digital Urban Climate Twin (DUCT) system, which models urban spaces using a system of models. Different scenarios can be built on the system. For example, different sizes, shapes or vegetation density. can be modeled so that we can develop a deeper understanding of how different scenarios affect the microclimate in surrounding areas,” he explained.

About the Digital Urban Climate Twin

The Digital Urban Climate Twin (DUCT) is essentially a digital representation and simulation of a physical climate system.

DUCT incorporates all relevant computational models to account for environmental factors such as wind and sunlight, land surfaces, traffic, industrial and building energy models, as well as the movement of people.

It also values ​​available UHI and outdoor thermal comfort (OTC) research data and models, as well as previous findings. It can also replicate past historical data with current data being collected. This ensures that the models developed are correct, accurate and robust.

DUCT can be used to isolate urban warming effects. It can quantify urban heat in selected areas to determine climate outcomes such as temperature. It can also quantify the average radiant temperature, which is the heat exchange between a person and the surrounding environment, humidity and wind speed.

“Given that it’s a powerful visualization tool, we wanted to design and develop DUCT for urban planners and policymakers—those who Yet those who have neither the expertise nor the in-depth knowledge of urban heat, to make sound and informed decisions for urban planning to make Singapore residents more heat-resistant and thermally efficient. A comfortable environment can be created,” said Chung.

Chung continued, “We want them to use DUCT to invent, design, simulate and test different scenarios to reduce urban warming. If the scenarios test well and there is high confidence That they will work well, so they can go ahead and build. Scenarios in reality.”

Research progress

The project is progressing as per schedule. Recently, a beta version of DUCT was released for testing by urban planners and policy makers.

In addition to gathering feedback from a select team of users from various government agencies in Singapore, the researchers have begun work on the next phase of the project, which will examine the impacts of heat hazards and urban warming on human and biodiversity ecosystems. The focus is on review.

Insights from research

One of the main insights of the research so far relates to the impact of trees and parks.

While Considered the best solution to reducing urban warming, there appears to be a saturation point where a decrease in temperature is observed.

Additionally, poor tree management, especially due to overcrowding, can reduce wind speed, increase humidity, and trap air pollutants. This results in detrimental effects on thermal comfort.

That said, trees in a park contribute to cooler temperatures that can be felt up to 300 meters away in housing development board (HDB) estates.

This effect, known as the Park Cool Island effect, can lower the average radiative temperature during the day. The sun is most intense between 11 am and 3 pm. .

Trees also provide needed shade from the sun, and help cool surrounding areas through evapotranspiration, which is the process of drawing heat from the atmosphere and losing it through evaporation.

Trees and parks have been found to provide other ecosystem effects, such as improved mental well-being and carbon sequestration, which reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

Reference: Addressing Singapore’s urban heat island effect (2024, February 23) Retrieved February 23, 2024, from https://phys.org/news/2024-02-singapore-urban-island-effect.html

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