Modelling of road surface temperature from a geographical parameter database. Part 2: Numerical

Lee Chapman, John Thornes, AV Bradley

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

48 Citations (Scopus)


A new ice prediction strategy is presented based on the numerical modelling of surveyed geographical parameters. This approach enables the thermal projection of road surface temperatures across the road network entirely by model predictions and without the need for thermal maps. The influence of eight geographical parameters (latitude, altitude, sky-view factor, screening, roughness length, road construction, traffic density and topography) is investigated by means of sensitivity analyses. The sky-view factor is highlighted as the dominant control on road surface temperature, particularly at high levels of atmospheric stability. A numerical road weather model incorporating all eight parameters was run over 20 nights using forecast and retrospective meteorological data. The model has the ability to explain up to 72% of the variation in road surface temperature purely by thermally projecting surface temperature using geographical variables. Retrospective results produce an average r.m.s. error of 1degreesC which is comparable to existing UK road weather models.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)421-436
Number of pages16
JournalMeteorological Applications
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2001


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