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W. M. Porch


Studies of wind over complex terrain have been conducted at three times and two locations in Northern California. Instrumentation included conventional cup-vane anemometers and optical anemometers with spatial averaging over path lengths of 0.6-1 km. Autospectra of the path-normal component of wind from the cup-vane and optical anemometers show consistent differences in slope for periods shorter than four hours. The spectral differences are associated more with changes in wind direction than with changes in wind speed.

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W. M. Porch, S. Barr, W. E. Clements, J. A. Archuleta, A. B. Fernandez, C. W. King, W. D. Neff, and R. P. Hosker

Smoke pot and oil fog smoke tracers have been used to plan meteorological instrument placement and quantitatively estimate air volume flow from a tributary during nocturnal drainage wind conditions. The estimated volume flow agrees well with estimates of the flow using tethered-balloon and remotely obtained wind velocity measurements. The smoke visualization shows a very complex flow structure caused by tributary flow interactions with the flow down the main valley. The magnitude of the outflow volume from the tributary was greater than expected. If the tributary studied is representative of the other tributaries in the valley, most of the volume flow in the main valley may enter through the tributaries.

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J. J. DeLuisi, P. M. Furukawa, D. A. Gillette, B. G. Schuster, R. J. Charlson, W. M. Porch, R. W. Fegley, B. M. Herman, R. A. Rabinoff, J. T. Twitty, and J. A. Weinman


The experimental results in Part I are used in the theoretical interpretation of the radiation flux measurements which were taken with an aircraft. The absorption term of the complex refractive index of aerosols is estimated to be approximately 0.01 for a real part of 1.5 for the wavelength bandwidth 0.32–0.68 μm. A regional variation in the refractive index is noted.

Atmospheric heating and cooling rates due to aerosol and molecular absorption in the solar and terrestrial wavelengths are determined from the radiation flux measurements. The magnitudes of these rates are compared and their relative importance is discussed.

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J. J. Deluisi, P. M. Furukawa, D. A. Gillette, B. G. Schuster, R. J. Charlson, W. M. Porch, R. W. Fegley, B. M. Herman, R. A. Rabinoff, J. T. Twitty, and J. A. Weinman


An exploratory field experiment was undertaken to determine the practicality of a method specifically designed to obtain the optical properties of aerosols as they relate to the earth's radiation balance. The method requires a basic set of data consisting of the vertical distribution of aerosol concentrations, size distribution, optical depth, and net radiation fluxes. From these data radiation absorptions are determined, and effective aerosol refractive indices consistent with the actual absorption are deduced through the application of precision radiative transfer calculations. The results of 11 experiment episodes involving a combined aircraft and surface-based measurement system are described. The episodes took place in an arid desert region located near Blythe, California, and in a semiarid agricultural region located near Big Spring, Texas. Part I deals with the physical-numerical depiction of such aerosol properties as optical depth, size distribution, and vertical profiles of concentration. Part II will deal with the analysis of measurements of the radiation field leading to the deduction of the effective aerosol refractive index compatible with the absorption of solar radiation.

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The Arm Program's Water Vapor Intensive Observation Periods

Overview, Initial Accomplishments, and Future Challenges

H. E. Revercomb, D. D. Turner, D. C. Tobin, R. O. Knuteson, W. F. Feltz, J. Barnard, J. Bösenberg, S. Clough, D. Cook, R. Ferrare, J. Goldsmith, S. Gutman, R. Halthore, B. Lesht, J. Liljegren, H. Linné, J. Michalsky, V. Morris, W. Porch, S. Richardson, B. Schmid, M. Splitt, T. Van Hove, E. Westwater, and D. Whiteman

A series of water vapor intensive observation periods (WVIOPs) were conducted at the Atmospheric Radiation Measurement (ARM) site in Oklahoma between 1996 and 2000. The goals of these WVIOPs are to characterize the accuracy of the operational water vapor observations and to develop techniques to improve the accuracy of these measurements.

The initial focus of these experiments was on the lower atmosphere, for which the goal is an absolute accuracy of better than 2% in total column water vapor, corresponding to ~1 W m−2 of infrared radiation at the surface. To complement the operational water vapor instruments during the WVIOPs, additional instrumentation including a scanning Raman lidar, microwave radiometers, chilled-mirror hygrometers, a differential absorption lidar, and ground-based solar radiometers were deployed at the ARM site. The unique datasets from the 1996, 1997, and 1999 experiments have led to many results, including the discovery and characterization of a large (> 25%) sonde-to-sonde variability in the water vapor profiles from Vaisala RS-80H radiosondes that acts like a height-independent calibration factor error. However, the microwave observations provide a stable reference that can be used to remove a large part of the sonde-to-sonde calibration variability. In situ capacitive water vapor sensors demonstrated agreement within 2% of chilled-mirror hygrometers at the surface and on an instrumented tower. Water vapor profiles retrieved from two Raman lidars, which have both been calibrated to the ARM microwave radiometer, showed agreement to within 5% for all altitudes below 8 km during two WVIOPs. The mean agreement of the total precipitable water vapor from different techniques has converged significantly from early analysis that originally showed differences up to 15%. Retrievals of total precipitable water vapor (PWV) from the ARM microwave radiometer are now found to be only 3% moister than PWV derived from new GPS results, and about 2% drier than the mean of radiosonde data after a recently defined sonde dry-bias correction is applied. Raman lidar profiles calibrated using tower-mounted chilled-mirror hygrometers confirm the expected sensitivity of microwave radiometer data to water vapor changes, but it is drier than the microwave radiometer (MWR) by 0.95 mm for all PWV amounts. However, observations from different collocated microwave radiometers have shown larger differences than expected and attempts to resolve the remaining inconsistencies (in both calibration and forward modeling) are continuing.

The paper concludes by outlining the objectives of the recent 2000 WVIOP and the ARM–First International Satellite Cloud Climatology Project (ISCCP) Regional Experiment (FIRE) Water Vapor Experiment (AFWEX), the latter of which switched the focus to characterizing upper-tropospheric humidity measurements.

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J. C. Doran, F. J. Barnes, R. L. Coulter, T. L. Crawford, D. D. Baldocchi, L. Balick, D. R. Cook, D. Cooper, R. J. Dobosy, W. A. Dugas, L. Fritschen, R. L. Hart, L. Hipps, J. M. Hubbe, W. Gao, R. Hicks, R. R. Kirkham, K. E. Kunkel, T. J. Martin, T. P. Meyers, W. Porch, J. D. Shannon, W. J. Shaw, E. Swiatek, and C. D. Whiteman

A field campaign was carried out near Boardman, Oregon, to study the effects of subgrid-scale variability of sensible- and latent-heat fluxes on surface boundary-layer properties. The experiment involved three U.S. Department of Energy laboratories, one National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration laboratory, and several universities. The experiment was conducted in a region of severe contrasts in adjacent surface types that accentuated the response of the atmosphere to variable surface forcing. Large values of sensible-heat flux and low values of latent-heat flux characterized a sagebrush steppe area; significantly smaller sensible-heat fluxes and much larger latent-heat fluxes were associated with extensive tracts of irrigated farmland to the north, east, and west of the steppe. Data were obtained from an array of surface flux stations, remote-sensing devices, an instrumented aircraft, and soil and vegetation measurements. The data will be used to address the problem of extrapolating from a limited number of local measurements to area-averaged values of fluxes suitable for use in global climate models.

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J. C. Doran, S. Abbott, J. Archuleta, X. Bian, J. Chow, R. L. Coulter, S. F. J. de Wekker, S. Edgerton, S. Elliott, A. Fernandez, J. D. Fast, J. M. Hubbe, C. King, D. Langley, J. Leach, J. T. Lee, T. J. Martin, D. Martinez, J. L. Martinez, G. Mercado, V. Mora, M. Mulhearn, J. L. Pena, R. Petty, W. Porch, C. Russell, R. Salas, J. D. Shannon, W. J. Shaw, G. Sosa, L. Tellier, B. Templeman, J. G. Watson, R. White, C. D. Whiteman, and D. Wolfe

A boundary layer field experiment in the Mexico City basin during the period 24 February–22 March 1997 is described. A total of six sites were instrumented. At four of the sites, 915-MHz radar wind profilers were deployed and radiosondes were released five times per day. Two of these sites also had sodars collocated with the profilers. Radiosondes were released twice per day at a fifth site to the south of the basin, and rawinsondes were flown from another location to the northeast of the city three times per day. Mixed layers grew to depths of 2500–3500 m, with a rapid period of growth beginning shortly before noon and lasting for several hours. Significant differences between the mixed-layer temperatures in the basin and outside the basin were observed. Three thermally and topographically driven flow patterns were observed that are consistent with previously hypothesized topographical and thermal forcing mechanisms. Despite these features, the circulation patterns in the basin important for the transport and diffusion of air pollutants show less day-to-day regularity than had been anticipated on the basis of Mexico City's tropical location, high altitude and strong insolation, and topographical setting.

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