Behavior of Turbulence Statistics in the Convective Boundary Layer

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  • 1 Atmospheric Turbulence and Diffusion Division, NOAA, Oak Ridge, TN 37830
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Abstract

Velocity variances in the convective boundary layer are examined using data derived in PBL experiments over land (Minnesota) and ocean (the Coral Sea) supported by data from the Kansas study of the surface boundary layer. In the freely convective limit, the data clearly support scaling of σw by the convective Velocity w* instead of u*, as is common in modern treatments. The freely convective limit appears to be 0.59 for both σw/w* and σv/w*. The available data are compatible with relationships based on additive contributions to total variance by mechanical and buoyant forces. The resulting relations areThese relations collapse back to the neutral values derived from the Kansas experiment. Similar analyses for temperature variance are somewhat less revealing; however, the available data indicate that scaling by convective properties alone is quite adequate. Hence,where θ* = Hcpw*. These relations appear to apply over the bulk of the convective PBL, from z/zi ≈ 0.1 to at least z/zi = 0.6, but extend downwards to very near the surface in the case of σv

Abstract

Velocity variances in the convective boundary layer are examined using data derived in PBL experiments over land (Minnesota) and ocean (the Coral Sea) supported by data from the Kansas study of the surface boundary layer. In the freely convective limit, the data clearly support scaling of σw by the convective Velocity w* instead of u*, as is common in modern treatments. The freely convective limit appears to be 0.59 for both σw/w* and σv/w*. The available data are compatible with relationships based on additive contributions to total variance by mechanical and buoyant forces. The resulting relations areThese relations collapse back to the neutral values derived from the Kansas experiment. Similar analyses for temperature variance are somewhat less revealing; however, the available data indicate that scaling by convective properties alone is quite adequate. Hence,where θ* = Hcpw*. These relations appear to apply over the bulk of the convective PBL, from z/zi ≈ 0.1 to at least z/zi = 0.6, but extend downwards to very near the surface in the case of σv

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