Turbulent Heat Fluxes in Urban Areas: Observations and a Local-Scale Urban Meteorological Parameterization Scheme (LUMPS)

C. S. B. Grimmond Atmospheric Science Program, Department of Geography, Indiana University, Bloomington, Indiana

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T. R. Oke Department of Geography, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada

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Abstract

A linked set of simple equations specifically designed to calculate heat fluxes for the urban environment is presented. This local-scale urban meteorological parameterization scheme (LUMPS), which has similarities to the hybrid plume dispersion model (HPDM) scheme, requires only standard meteorological observations and basic knowledge of surface cover. LUMPS is driven by net all-wave radiation. Heat storage by the urban fabric is parameterized from net all-wave radiation and surface cover information using the objective hysteresis model (OHM). The turbulent sensible and latent heat fluxes are calculated using the available energy and are partitioned using the approach of de Bruin and Holtslag, and Holtslag and van Ulden. A new scheme to define the Holtslag and van Ulden α and β parameters for urban environments is presented; α is empirically related to the plan fraction of the surface that is vegetated or irrigated, and a new urban value of β captures the observed delay in reversal of the sign of the sensible heat flux in the evening. LUMPS is evaluated using field observations collected in seven North American cities (Mexico City, Mexico; Miami, Florida; Tucson, Arizona; Los Angeles and Sacramento, California; Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada; and Chicago, Illinois). Performance is shown to be better than that for the standard HPDM preprocessor scheme. Most improvement derives from the inclusion of the OHM for the storage heat flux and the revised β coefficient. The scheme is expected to have broad utility in models used to calculate air pollution dispersion and the mixing depths of urban areas or to provide surface forcing for mesoscale models of urban regions.

Corresponding author address: Sue Grimmond, Department of Geography, Student Building 104, 701 E. Kirkwood Ave., Indiana University, Bloomington, IN 47405-7100. grimmon@indiana.edu

Abstract

A linked set of simple equations specifically designed to calculate heat fluxes for the urban environment is presented. This local-scale urban meteorological parameterization scheme (LUMPS), which has similarities to the hybrid plume dispersion model (HPDM) scheme, requires only standard meteorological observations and basic knowledge of surface cover. LUMPS is driven by net all-wave radiation. Heat storage by the urban fabric is parameterized from net all-wave radiation and surface cover information using the objective hysteresis model (OHM). The turbulent sensible and latent heat fluxes are calculated using the available energy and are partitioned using the approach of de Bruin and Holtslag, and Holtslag and van Ulden. A new scheme to define the Holtslag and van Ulden α and β parameters for urban environments is presented; α is empirically related to the plan fraction of the surface that is vegetated or irrigated, and a new urban value of β captures the observed delay in reversal of the sign of the sensible heat flux in the evening. LUMPS is evaluated using field observations collected in seven North American cities (Mexico City, Mexico; Miami, Florida; Tucson, Arizona; Los Angeles and Sacramento, California; Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada; and Chicago, Illinois). Performance is shown to be better than that for the standard HPDM preprocessor scheme. Most improvement derives from the inclusion of the OHM for the storage heat flux and the revised β coefficient. The scheme is expected to have broad utility in models used to calculate air pollution dispersion and the mixing depths of urban areas or to provide surface forcing for mesoscale models of urban regions.

Corresponding author address: Sue Grimmond, Department of Geography, Student Building 104, 701 E. Kirkwood Ave., Indiana University, Bloomington, IN 47405-7100. grimmon@indiana.edu

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