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An Overview of the Urban Boundary Layer Atmosphere Network in Helsinki

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  • 1 Finnish Meteorological Institute, Helsinki, Finland
  • | 2 Department of Physics, University of Helsinki, Helsinki, Finland
  • | 3 Finnish Meteorological Institute, Helsinki, Finland, and Obukhov Institute of Atmospheric Physics, Moscow, Russia
  • | 4 Department of Physics, University of Helsinki, Helsinki, Finland
  • | 5 Finnish Meteorological Institute, Helsinki, Finland
  • | 6 Finnish Meteorological Institute, Helsinki, Finland, and Department of Meteorology, University of Reading, Reading, United Kingdom
  • | 7 Finnish Meteorological Institute, Helsinki, Finland, and Department of Physics, University of Helsinki, Helsinki, Finland
  • | 8 Department of Physics, University of Helsinki, Helsinki, Finland
  • | 9 Finnish Meteorological Institute, Helsinki, Finland
  • | 10 Department of Physics, University of Helsinki, Helsinki, Finland
  • | 11 Finnish Meteorological Institute, Helsinki, Finland
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The Helsinki Urban Boundary-Layer Atmosphere Network (UrBAN: http://urban.fmi.fi) is a dedicated research-grade observational network where the physical processes in the atmosphere above the city are studied. Helsinki UrBAN is the most poleward intensive urban research observation network in the world and thus will allow studying some unique features such as strong seasonality. The network's key purpose is for the understanding of the physical processes in the urban boundary layer and associated fluxes of heat, momentum, moisture, and other gases. A further purpose is to secure a research-grade database, which can be used internationally to validate and develop numerical models of air quality and weather prediction. Scintillometers, a scanning Doppler lidar, ceilometers, a sodar, eddy-covariance stations, and radiometers are used. This equipment is supplemented by auxiliary measurements, which were primarily set up for general weather and/or air-quality mandatory purposes, such as vertical soundings and the operational Doppler radar network. Examples are presented as a testimony to the potential of the network for urban studies, such as (i) evidence of a stable boundary layer possibly coupled to an urban surface, (ii) the comparison of scintillometer data with sonic anemometry above an urban surface, (iii) the application of scanning lidar over a city, and (iv) combination of sodar and lidar to give a fuller range of sampling heights for boundary layer profiling.

*CURRENT AFFILIATION: Forschungszentrum Jülich GmbH, Institut für Energie-und Klimaforschung: Troposphäre (IEK-8), Jülich, Germany

CORRESPONDING AUTHOR: C. R. Wood, Finnish Meteorological Institute, Erik Palménin aukio 1, FI-00101, Helsinki, Finland, E-mail: curtis.wood@fmi.fi

A supplement to this article is available online (10.1175/BAMS-D-12-00146.2)

The Helsinki Urban Boundary-Layer Atmosphere Network (UrBAN: http://urban.fmi.fi) is a dedicated research-grade observational network where the physical processes in the atmosphere above the city are studied. Helsinki UrBAN is the most poleward intensive urban research observation network in the world and thus will allow studying some unique features such as strong seasonality. The network's key purpose is for the understanding of the physical processes in the urban boundary layer and associated fluxes of heat, momentum, moisture, and other gases. A further purpose is to secure a research-grade database, which can be used internationally to validate and develop numerical models of air quality and weather prediction. Scintillometers, a scanning Doppler lidar, ceilometers, a sodar, eddy-covariance stations, and radiometers are used. This equipment is supplemented by auxiliary measurements, which were primarily set up for general weather and/or air-quality mandatory purposes, such as vertical soundings and the operational Doppler radar network. Examples are presented as a testimony to the potential of the network for urban studies, such as (i) evidence of a stable boundary layer possibly coupled to an urban surface, (ii) the comparison of scintillometer data with sonic anemometry above an urban surface, (iii) the application of scanning lidar over a city, and (iv) combination of sodar and lidar to give a fuller range of sampling heights for boundary layer profiling.

*CURRENT AFFILIATION: Forschungszentrum Jülich GmbH, Institut für Energie-und Klimaforschung: Troposphäre (IEK-8), Jülich, Germany

CORRESPONDING AUTHOR: C. R. Wood, Finnish Meteorological Institute, Erik Palménin aukio 1, FI-00101, Helsinki, Finland, E-mail: curtis.wood@fmi.fi

A supplement to this article is available online (10.1175/BAMS-D-12-00146.2)

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