The effect of cloud cover on the amount of solar UV radiation that reaches pedestrians under tree cover was evaluated with a three-dimensional canopy radiation transport model. The spatial distribution of UVB irradiance at the base of a regular array of spherical tree crowns was modeled under the full range of sky conditions. The spatial mean relative irradiance (Ir) and erythemal irradiance of the entire below-canopy domain and the spatial mean relative irradiance and erythemal irradiance in the shaded regions of the domain were determined for solar zenith angles from 15° to 60°. The erythemal UV irradiance under skies with 50% or less cloud cover was not remarkably different from that under clear skies. In the shade, the actual irradiance was greater under partly cloudy than under clear skies. The mean ultraviolet protection factor for tree canopies under skies with 50% or less cloud cover was nearly equivalent to that for clear sky days. Regression equations of spatially averaged Ir as a function of cloud cover fraction, solar zenith angle and canopy cover were used to predict the variation in erythemal irradiance in different land uses across Baltimore, MD.
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Vol. 82 • No. 2