Abstract

This article investigates the effect of air conditioning (AC) systems on air temperature and examines their electricity consumption for a semiarid urban environment. We simulate a 10 day extreme heat period over the Phoenix metropolitan area (U.S.) with the Weather Research and Forecasting model coupled to a multilayer building energy scheme. The performance of the modeling system is evaluated against 10 Arizona Meteorological Network weather stations and one weather station maintained by the National Weather Service for air temperature, wind speed, and wind direction. We show that explicit representation of waste heat from air conditioning systems improved the 2 m air temperature correspondence to observations. Waste heat release from AC systems was maximum during the day, but the mean effect was negligible near the surface. However, during the night, heat emitted from AC systems increased the mean 2 m air temperature by more than 1°C for some urban locations. The AC systems modified the thermal stratification of the urban boundary layer, promoting vertical mixing during nighttime hours. The anthropogenic processes examined here (i.e., explicit representation of urban energy consumption processes due to AC systems) require incorporation in future meteorological and climate investigations to improve weather and climate predictability. Our results demonstrate that releasing waste heat into the ambient environment exacerbates the nocturnal urban heat island and increases cooling demands. Key Points AC systems increased the mean air temperature over 1°C in some urban locations Waste heat from AC improved the air temperature correspondence to observations Releasing waste heat into the ambient environment increases cooling demands

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)5949-5965
Number of pages17
JournalJournal of Geophysical Research: Atmospheres
Volume119
Issue number10
DOIs
StatePublished - May 27 2014

Fingerprint

air conditioning
Air conditioning
waste heat
Waste heat
heating
Heating
air temperature
air
Air
weather
weather stations
releasing
weather station
Temperature
climate
temperature
heat islands
Cooling
cooling
Thermal stratification

Keywords

  • air conditioning
  • built environment
  • energy consumption
  • regional climate modeling
  • urban climate
  • urban heat island

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Atmospheric Science
  • Geophysics
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Space and Planetary Science

Cite this

@article{b9692766c60946369e1f42f1e9c73223,
title = "Anthropogenic heating of the urban environment due to air conditioning",
abstract = "This article investigates the effect of air conditioning (AC) systems on air temperature and examines their electricity consumption for a semiarid urban environment. We simulate a 10 day extreme heat period over the Phoenix metropolitan area (U.S.) with the Weather Research and Forecasting model coupled to a multilayer building energy scheme. The performance of the modeling system is evaluated against 10 Arizona Meteorological Network weather stations and one weather station maintained by the National Weather Service for air temperature, wind speed, and wind direction. We show that explicit representation of waste heat from air conditioning systems improved the 2 m air temperature correspondence to observations. Waste heat release from AC systems was maximum during the day, but the mean effect was negligible near the surface. However, during the night, heat emitted from AC systems increased the mean 2 m air temperature by more than 1°C for some urban locations. The AC systems modified the thermal stratification of the urban boundary layer, promoting vertical mixing during nighttime hours. The anthropogenic processes examined here (i.e., explicit representation of urban energy consumption processes due to AC systems) require incorporation in future meteorological and climate investigations to improve weather and climate predictability. Our results demonstrate that releasing waste heat into the ambient environment exacerbates the nocturnal urban heat island and increases cooling demands. Key Points AC systems increased the mean air temperature over 1°C in some urban locations Waste heat from AC improved the air temperature correspondence to observations Releasing waste heat into the ambient environment increases cooling demands",
keywords = "air conditioning, built environment, energy consumption, regional climate modeling, urban climate, urban heat island",
author = "{Salamanca Palou}, Francisco and Matei Georgescu and Alex Mahalov and Mohamed Moustaoui and M. Wang",
year = "2014",
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T1 - Anthropogenic heating of the urban environment due to air conditioning

AU - Salamanca Palou, Francisco

AU - Georgescu, Matei

AU - Mahalov, Alex

AU - Moustaoui, Mohamed

AU - Wang, M.

PY - 2014/5/27

Y1 - 2014/5/27

N2 - This article investigates the effect of air conditioning (AC) systems on air temperature and examines their electricity consumption for a semiarid urban environment. We simulate a 10 day extreme heat period over the Phoenix metropolitan area (U.S.) with the Weather Research and Forecasting model coupled to a multilayer building energy scheme. The performance of the modeling system is evaluated against 10 Arizona Meteorological Network weather stations and one weather station maintained by the National Weather Service for air temperature, wind speed, and wind direction. We show that explicit representation of waste heat from air conditioning systems improved the 2 m air temperature correspondence to observations. Waste heat release from AC systems was maximum during the day, but the mean effect was negligible near the surface. However, during the night, heat emitted from AC systems increased the mean 2 m air temperature by more than 1°C for some urban locations. The AC systems modified the thermal stratification of the urban boundary layer, promoting vertical mixing during nighttime hours. The anthropogenic processes examined here (i.e., explicit representation of urban energy consumption processes due to AC systems) require incorporation in future meteorological and climate investigations to improve weather and climate predictability. Our results demonstrate that releasing waste heat into the ambient environment exacerbates the nocturnal urban heat island and increases cooling demands. Key Points AC systems increased the mean air temperature over 1°C in some urban locations Waste heat from AC improved the air temperature correspondence to observations Releasing waste heat into the ambient environment increases cooling demands

AB - This article investigates the effect of air conditioning (AC) systems on air temperature and examines their electricity consumption for a semiarid urban environment. We simulate a 10 day extreme heat period over the Phoenix metropolitan area (U.S.) with the Weather Research and Forecasting model coupled to a multilayer building energy scheme. The performance of the modeling system is evaluated against 10 Arizona Meteorological Network weather stations and one weather station maintained by the National Weather Service for air temperature, wind speed, and wind direction. We show that explicit representation of waste heat from air conditioning systems improved the 2 m air temperature correspondence to observations. Waste heat release from AC systems was maximum during the day, but the mean effect was negligible near the surface. However, during the night, heat emitted from AC systems increased the mean 2 m air temperature by more than 1°C for some urban locations. The AC systems modified the thermal stratification of the urban boundary layer, promoting vertical mixing during nighttime hours. The anthropogenic processes examined here (i.e., explicit representation of urban energy consumption processes due to AC systems) require incorporation in future meteorological and climate investigations to improve weather and climate predictability. Our results demonstrate that releasing waste heat into the ambient environment exacerbates the nocturnal urban heat island and increases cooling demands. Key Points AC systems increased the mean air temperature over 1°C in some urban locations Waste heat from AC improved the air temperature correspondence to observations Releasing waste heat into the ambient environment increases cooling demands

KW - air conditioning

KW - built environment

KW - energy consumption

KW - regional climate modeling

KW - urban climate

KW - urban heat island

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