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Interactions between the nocturnal low-level jets and the urban boundary layer: a case study over London

Tsiringakis, A., Theeuwes, N. E. ORCID:, Barlow, J. F. and Steeneveld, G.-J. (2022) Interactions between the nocturnal low-level jets and the urban boundary layer: a case study over London. Boundary-Layer Meteorology. ISSN 0006-8314

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To link to this item DOI: 10.1007/s10546-021-00681-7


Understanding the physical processes that affect the turbulent structure of the nocturnal urban boundary layer (UBL) is essential for improving forecasts of air quality and the air temperature in urban areas. Low-level jets (LLJs) have been shown to affect turbulence in the nocturnal UBL. We investigate the interaction of a mesoscale LLJ with the UBL during a 60-h case study. We use observations from two Doppler lidars and results from two high-resolution numerical-weather-prediction models (Weather Research and Forecasting model, and the Met Office Unified Model for limited-area forecasts for the U.K.) to study differences in the occurrence frequency, height, wind speed, and fall-off of LLJs between an urban (London, U.K.) and a rural (Chilbolton, U.K.) site. The LLJs are elevated (≈ 70 m) over London, due to the deeper UBL, while the wind speed and fall-off are slightly reduced with respect to the rural LLJ. Utilizing two idealized experiments in the WRF model, we find that topography strongly affects LLJ characteristics, but there is still a substantial urban influence. Finally, we find that the increase in wind shear under the LLJ enhances the shear production of turbulent kinetic energy and helps to maintain the vertical mixing in the nocturnal UBL.

Item Type:Article
Divisions:Science > School of Mathematical, Physical and Computational Sciences > Department of Meteorology
ID Code:102131


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