One-Dimensional Numerical Simulation of the Effects of Air Pollution on the Planetary Boundary Layer

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  • 1 Department of Meteorology, University of Utah, Salt Lake City 84112
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Abstract

A dynamic-numerical model is utilized to study the impact of air pollution on the temperature and wind distributions of the planetary boundary layer. The mathematical model uses a rather complete radiative treatment which comprises the entire solar and infrared spectrum ranging from 0.29 to 100 µm. In the solar spectral range, the absorption by water vapor, nitrogen dioxide and industrial haze is fully accounted for in addition to multiple scattering by air molecules and haze particles. In the spectral region of the strong absorption hands of the infrared emission spectrum, the effect of aerosol is very small and is disregarded. The emissivity method is applied here, allowing full treatment of the overlapping effects of water vapor and carbon dioxide. In the window region, however, the effect of aerosol and water vapor absorption and emission is taken into account in addition to multiple scattering by aerosol particles. The radiative treatment accounts for the influence of relative humidity on the particle distribution function and on the complex index of refraction of the aerosol. The spherical harmonic method is used to handle the scattering problem.

The dynamical part of the analysis consists of the numerical solution of a coupled system of partial differential equations comprising the equation of horizontal mean motion, the thermodynamic equations of the air and the soil, and the transport equations of moisture and pollution. Various models of the exchange coefficient are used to study the impact of model assumptions on the computed distributions of temperature, pollutant material and wind. It is found that the choice of the exchange model is not critical but has some effect on the model computations. The present calculations show that the maximum impact of air pollution on the evolution of temperature and wind profiles is highly significant, thus verifying the previous conclusions of Zdunkowski and McQuage (1972).

Abstract

A dynamic-numerical model is utilized to study the impact of air pollution on the temperature and wind distributions of the planetary boundary layer. The mathematical model uses a rather complete radiative treatment which comprises the entire solar and infrared spectrum ranging from 0.29 to 100 µm. In the solar spectral range, the absorption by water vapor, nitrogen dioxide and industrial haze is fully accounted for in addition to multiple scattering by air molecules and haze particles. In the spectral region of the strong absorption hands of the infrared emission spectrum, the effect of aerosol is very small and is disregarded. The emissivity method is applied here, allowing full treatment of the overlapping effects of water vapor and carbon dioxide. In the window region, however, the effect of aerosol and water vapor absorption and emission is taken into account in addition to multiple scattering by aerosol particles. The radiative treatment accounts for the influence of relative humidity on the particle distribution function and on the complex index of refraction of the aerosol. The spherical harmonic method is used to handle the scattering problem.

The dynamical part of the analysis consists of the numerical solution of a coupled system of partial differential equations comprising the equation of horizontal mean motion, the thermodynamic equations of the air and the soil, and the transport equations of moisture and pollution. Various models of the exchange coefficient are used to study the impact of model assumptions on the computed distributions of temperature, pollutant material and wind. It is found that the choice of the exchange model is not critical but has some effect on the model computations. The present calculations show that the maximum impact of air pollution on the evolution of temperature and wind profiles is highly significant, thus verifying the previous conclusions of Zdunkowski and McQuage (1972).

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