The Regional UHI

Its fun to share new results and updates on progress. Today is one of those days. I have been busy putting together the first UHI chapter of my dissertation and getting it ready for publication. This is a sneak peak.

The figure above shows the distribution of the urban and rural land cover classes in Orange, Durham and Wake Counties of North Carolina. These distributions were found by aggregating 20 land cover types from the NLCD 2011 data product into two groups: urban (white) and rural (dark gray). Open water appears black. Using GIS software and a thermal image of the study area taken from the Landsat-8 satellite, I calculated the average temperature of the two different land classes for a hot summer afternoon earlier this year (June 21, 2015, 3:52pm). The temperature of the rural land cover in this image is 2.1 degrees Celsius cooler than the urban areas. Additional results and a detailed analysis will appear in the chapter and publication.

I also posted this image to the maps section of my website. Check it out!

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Baby Steps

It took my first child 10 months to figure out how to get up on two feet and propel himself forward. From newly minted professional engineer in training (EIT!) fresh out of undergrad, it has taken me almost ten years to get my own two feet under me in this crazy academic profession.

A month later and the kiddo is toddling determinedly around the house poking his nose in any new place he can find — the dog food, under the sink, up the stairs. The water bowl seems to hold particular interest as we return again and again the the conundrum of an untouched bowl of water waiting, wanting to be touched, splashed, held in all its unholdable liquidyness.

Meanwhile, I have papers and books going out the door, data getting crunched, new chapters forming, job applications written and submitted…. if I stop to think about all these small things that are adding up to big change, I am overwhelmed. A new job, a new place to live, a new life for me and my family. Best to install those child locks on the cabinets and return to the daily practice of checking the proverbial water bowl, dipping my hand in the practice of writing, and data crunching, and meetings, and questions, and presentations, and applications.

We are walking, even if we don’t yet know it. Practically running. And the baby, he’s not so much a baby anymore.