The Fluxes of Specific Enthalpy, Sensible Heat and Latent Heat near the Earth's Surface

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  • 1 Department of Atmospheric Sciences, University of Washington, Seattle 98195
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Abstract

Corrections to the sensible heat flux due to fluctuations in the specific humidity recently proposed by Brook (1978) have been shown to be incorrect by Frank and Emmitt (1981). However, it is easy to misinterpret Frank and Emmitt’s paper. Here an effort is made to clarify the issue and to sketch what its importance is to the energy balance of the hydrological cycle. By expanding the specific enthalpy flux into the fluxes of sensible heat and latent heat, it is found that a good first-order approximation shows that no corrections are necessary, which is in agreement with Frank and Emmitt's result.

Abstract

Corrections to the sensible heat flux due to fluctuations in the specific humidity recently proposed by Brook (1978) have been shown to be incorrect by Frank and Emmitt (1981). However, it is easy to misinterpret Frank and Emmitt’s paper. Here an effort is made to clarify the issue and to sketch what its importance is to the energy balance of the hydrological cycle. By expanding the specific enthalpy flux into the fluxes of sensible heat and latent heat, it is found that a good first-order approximation shows that no corrections are necessary, which is in agreement with Frank and Emmitt's result.

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