Observations of the Morning Development of the Urban Boundary Layer Over London, UK, Taken During the ACTUAL Project

Observations of the Morning Development of the Urban Boundary Layer Over London, UK, Taken During... The study of the boundary layer can be most difficult when it is in transition and forced by a complex surface, such as an urban area. Here, a novel combination of ground-based remote sensing and in situ instrumentation in central London, UK, is deployed, aiming to capture the full evolution of the urban boundary layer (UBL) from night-time until the fully-developed convective phase. In contrast with the night-time stable boundary layer observed over rural areas, the night-time UBL is weakly convective. Therefore, a new approach for the detection of the morning-transition and rapid-growth phases is introduced, based on the sharp, quasi-linear increase of the mixing height. The urban morning-transition phase varied in duration between 0.5 and 4 h and the growth rate of the mixing layer during the rapid-growth phase had a strong positive relationship with the convective velocity scale, and a weaker, negative relationship with wind speed. Wind shear was found to be higher during the night-time and morning-transition phases than the rapid-growth phase and the shear production of turbulent kinetic energy near the mixing-layer top was around six times larger than surface shear production in summer, and around 1.5 times larger in winter. In summer under low winds, low-level jets dominated the UBL, and shear production was greater than buoyant production during the night-time and the morning-transition phase near the mixing-layer top. Within the rapid-growth phase, buoyant production dominated at the surface, but shear production dominated in the upper half of the UBL. These results imply that regional flows such as low-level jets play an important role alongside surface forcing in determining UBL structure and growth. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Boundary-Layer Meteorology Springer Journals

Observations of the Morning Development of the Urban Boundary Layer Over London, UK, Taken During the ACTUAL Project

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Publisher
Springer Netherlands
Copyright
Copyright © 2017 by The Author(s)
Subject
Earth Sciences; Atmospheric Sciences; Meteorology; Atmospheric Protection/Air Quality Control/Air Pollution
ISSN
0006-8314
eISSN
1573-1472
D.O.I.
10.1007/s10546-017-0300-z
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

The study of the boundary layer can be most difficult when it is in transition and forced by a complex surface, such as an urban area. Here, a novel combination of ground-based remote sensing and in situ instrumentation in central London, UK, is deployed, aiming to capture the full evolution of the urban boundary layer (UBL) from night-time until the fully-developed convective phase. In contrast with the night-time stable boundary layer observed over rural areas, the night-time UBL is weakly convective. Therefore, a new approach for the detection of the morning-transition and rapid-growth phases is introduced, based on the sharp, quasi-linear increase of the mixing height. The urban morning-transition phase varied in duration between 0.5 and 4 h and the growth rate of the mixing layer during the rapid-growth phase had a strong positive relationship with the convective velocity scale, and a weaker, negative relationship with wind speed. Wind shear was found to be higher during the night-time and morning-transition phases than the rapid-growth phase and the shear production of turbulent kinetic energy near the mixing-layer top was around six times larger than surface shear production in summer, and around 1.5 times larger in winter. In summer under low winds, low-level jets dominated the UBL, and shear production was greater than buoyant production during the night-time and the morning-transition phase near the mixing-layer top. Within the rapid-growth phase, buoyant production dominated at the surface, but shear production dominated in the upper half of the UBL. These results imply that regional flows such as low-level jets play an important role alongside surface forcing in determining UBL structure and growth.

Journal

Boundary-Layer MeteorologySpringer Journals

Published: Oct 29, 2017

References

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