1. Introduction

The Urban Multi-scale Environmental Predictor (UMEP) is a climate services tool, designed for researchers, architects, urban planners, climatologists, and meteorologists. This tool can be used for a variety of applications related to outdoor thermal comfort, urban energy consumption, climate change mitigation etc. UMEP consists of a coupled modelling system which combines “state of the art” 1D and 2D models related to the processes essen tial for urban climate interactions.

UMEP is a community open source model that users can contribute to improve and extend the modelling capabilities. It is free to download. A major feature is the ability for a user to interact with spatial information to determine model parameters. The spatial data across a range of scales and sources are accessed through QGIS - a cross-platform, free, open source desktop geographic information systems (GIS) application – that provides data viewing, editing, and analysis capabilities.

This software is in continuous development. There are two types of releases:

  1. Long term release - this may be obtained from the QGIS plugin manager (see details).
  2. Current development version - this can be obtained from the plugin repository. This version you need to manually install yourself (see details).

The UMEP plugin consist of three parts; a pre-processor, a processor and a post-processor. The pre-processor prepares spatial and meteorological data as inputs to the modelling system. The processor includes all the main models for the main calculations. To provide initial “quick looks” the post-processor will enable results to be plotted, statistics calculated etc. based on the model output. For more information on the content and archetecture, see Plugin Architecture.

Detailed information on how to install can be found here.

Information on version history can be found here.

1.1. UMEP: How to Cite

Please use the reference below when UMEP is used:

*Lindberg F, Grimmond CSB, Gabey A, Huang B, Kent CW, Sun T, Theeuwes N, Järvi L, Ward H, Capel- Timms I, Chang YY, Jonsson P, Krave N, Liu D, Meyer D, Olofson F, Tan JG, Wästberg D, Xue L, Zhang Z (2017) Urban Multi-scale Environmental Predictor (UMEP) - An integrated tool for city-based climate services. Environmen tal Modelling and Software.99, 70-87 https://doi.org/10.1016/j.envsoft.2017.09.020 *

The manual should be cited as:

Lindberg F, Grimmond CSB, A Gabey, L Jarvi, CW Kent, N Krave, T Sun, N Wallenberg, HC Ward (2018) Urban Multi-scale Environmental Predictor (UMEP) Manual. https://umep-docs.readthedocs.io/ University of Reading UK, University of Gothenburg Sweden, SIMS China

1.2. Email list

To get updates and news, join our email list: www.lists.reading.ac.uk/mailman/listinfo/met-umep.

1.3. Plugin Architecture

The UMEP plugin consist of three different parts; a pre-processor, a processor and a post-processor. The pre-processor is used to prepare spatial and meteorological data as inputs to the modelling system. The processor includes all the main models for the main calculations. To provide initial “quick looks” the post-processor will be enable results to be plotted, statistics calculated etc. based on the model output.

Note

It is strongly recommended to transform all geodatasets into the same projected coordinate system (CRS) before any processing starts.

1.3.1. Pre-Processor

Meteorological Data

Prepare Existing Data Transforms meteorological data into UMEP format
Download data (WATCH) Prepare meteorological dataset from WATCH

Spatial Data

Spatial Data Downloader Plugin for retrieving geodata from online services suitable for various UMEP related tools
DSM generator Creation/manipulation of a DSM based on user-specified building footprint vector data and/or Open Street Map data (if available)
Tree generator Creation/manipulation of vegetation input data
LCZ Converter Conversion from Local Climate Zones (LCZs) in the WUDAPT database into SUEWS input data

Urban geometry

Sky View Factor Calculation of continuous maps of Sky View Factors (SVF) based on high resolution digital surface models (DSM). Solar access, urban heat island
Wall Height and Aspect Calculation of height and aspect of building walls based on a DSM

Urban land cover

Land Cover Reclassifier Reclassifies a grid into UMEP format land cover grid. Land surface models
Land Cover Fraction (Point) Land cover fractions estimates from a land cover grid based on a specific point in space
Land Cover Fraction (Grid) Land cover fractions estimates from a land cover grid based on a polygon grid

Urban Morphology

Morphometric Calculator (Point) Morphometric parameters from a DSM based on a specific point in space
Morphometric Calculator (Grid) Morphometric parameters estimated from a DSM based on a polygon grid
Source Area Model (Point) Source area calculated from a DSM based on a specific point in space. Interpretation of observations

Other

SUEWS Prepare Preprocessing and preparing input data for the SUEWS model

1.3.2. Processor

Outdoor Thermal Comfort

Comfort Index (PET/UTCI) (planned) Spatial variations of thermal comfort indices in complex urban environments
Mean Radiant Temperature (SOLWEIG) Spatial variations of Tmrt in complex urban environments. Human Health: Outdoor thermal comfort; Park planning; Heat/Health warning; Daily Operations: visitors to parks
Pedestrian Wind Speed (planned) Spatial variations of pedestrian wind speed in complex urban environments
ExtremeFinder Identify heat waves and cold waves for a certain location. Human Health: Outdoor thermal comfort; Daily City Operations: Energy use; Gas consumption

Urban Energy Balance

LQF Spatial variations anthropogenic heat release for urban areas
GQF Anthropogenic Heat (QF). Daily City Operations: Energy use; Gas consumption; Traffic heat loads
SUEWS (Simple) Urban Energy and Water Balance. Disaster Risk Management: Drought, Heat; Environment evaluation for construction, Water Management, Green infrastructure
SUEWS (Advanced) Urban Energy and Water Balance. Disaster Risk Management: Drought, Heat; Environment evaluation for construction, Water Management, Green infrastructure

Solar Radiation

Solar Energy on Building Envelopes (SEBE) Solar irradiance on building roofs and walls in urban environments. Economy and planning: Energy production, resource planning
Daily Shadow Patterns Shadow patterns on a DSM and CDSM. Economy and planning: Resource planning Human Health: Outdoor thermal comfort; Park planning

1.3.3. Post-Processor

Solar Radiation

SEBE Visualisation Plugin to visualse output irradiation from SEBE on building roofs, walls and ground

Outdoor Thermal Comfort

SOLWEIG analyzer Plugin for plotting, statistical analysis and post-processing of model results from SOLWEIG

Urban Energy Balance

SUEWS analyser Plugin for plotting and statistical analysis of model results from SUEWS simple and SUEWS advanced

Benchmark

Benchmark System For statistical analysis of model results, such as SUEWS

1.4. Tool Applications

A key element of UMEP is to facilitate the preparation of input data needed for City-Based Climate Services (CBCS). UMEP provides both guidance and tools that enable data preparation and manipulation. This is particularly important as many end-users have familiarity with some, but not the full spectrum, of the data needed for applications. Below you can find some examples on applications and workflows for the modelling procedure in UMEP and what tools that are connected to each other.

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Fig. 1.1 Workflow and geodata used for analysing urban energy balance using the SUEWS model. Bold outlined boxes are mandatory items. Yellow, orange and red indicates pre-processor, processor and post-processor tools, respectively. Grey boxes indicate geodatasets.

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Fig. 1.2 Workflow and geodata used for analysing mean radiant temperature using the SOLWEIG model. Bold outlines are mandatory items. Yellow, orange and red indicates pre-processor, processor and post-processor tools, respectively. Grey boxes indicate geodatasets.

Other application examples can be found here.

1.4.1. Evaluation and application studies

1.5. Road map for QGIS3 Version

The migration of UMEP into QGIS3 is planned for the Autumn of 2018 but it has already started. Below you see the status of the different tools regarding implemetation for QGIS3. An early adopter release is available from early August. Please report any issues to our repository

MetdataProcessor - READY

ShadowGenerator - READY

SkyViewFactorCalculator - READY

ImageMorphParam - READY

ImageMorphParmsPoint - READY

LandCoverFractionGrid - READY

LandCoverFractionPoint - READY

LandCoverReclassifier - READY

WallHeight - READY

TreeGenerator - READY

FootprintModel - READY

LCZ_converter - READY

UMEP_Data_Download # TODO: No data visible in plugin interface

DSMGenerator # TODO: Working except for OSMImport

WATCHData # TODO: Gives errors during download and/or processing

GreaterQF # TODO: Multiple changes required :Plugin blocker

ExtremeFinder

LQF # TODO: Multiple changes required :Plugin blocker

SEBE - READY

SuewsSimple - READY

SUEWSPrepare - READY

SUEWS - READY

SOLWEIG - READY

BenchMarking # TODO: KeyError: ‘input_cfgfiles’

SEBEVisual # TODO: Not able to run 2to3 converter :Plugin blocker

SolweigAnalyzer - READY

SUEWSAnalyzer - READY