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Advances in Meteorology
Volume 2016, Article ID 8364134, 13 pages
Research Article

Severe Weather Caused by Heat Island and Sea Breeze Effects in the Metropolitan Area of São Paulo, Brazil

Departamento de Ciências Atmosféricas, Instituto de Astronomia, Geofísica e Ciências Atmosféricas, Universidade de São Paulo, 05508–090 São Paulo, SP, Brazil

Received 18 June 2015; Revised 21 August 2015; Accepted 3 September 2015

Academic Editor: Shahaboddin Shamshirband

Copyright © 2016 Felipe Vemado and Augusto José Pereira Filho. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The Metropolitan Area of São Paulo (MASP) is one of the most populated regions of the planet with one of the largest impervious regions as well. This research work aims to characterize MASP heat island (HI) effect and its interaction with the local sea breeze (SB) inflow in rainfall amounts and deep convection. The combined SB-HI produces direct circulation over the MASP and produces severe weather and socioeconomic impacts. All SB-HI episodes between 2005 and 2008 are identified and analyzed with surface and upper air measurements, weather radar, and satellite data. The current work indicates that intense SB-HI episodes are related to air and dew point temperatures above 30°C and 20°C, respectively, right after the passage of the SB front over MASP. Results indicate that the precipitation related to SB-HI episodes is up to 600 mm or about four times higher than that in rural or less urbanized areas in its surroundings. Measurements indicate that 74% of SB-HI episodes are related to NW winds in earlier afternoon hours. Moving cold fronts in southern Brazil tend to intensify the SB-HI circulation in MASP. A conceptual model of these patterns is presented in this paper.