, Volume 17, Issue 2, pp 247-264

An observational study of the structure of the nocturnal boundary layer

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Abstract

In an effort to describe the basic vertical structure of the nocturnal boundary layer, observations from four experiments are analyzed. During the night, the depth of significant cooling appears to increase with time while the depth of the turbulence and height of the low level wind maximum tend to remain constant or decrease with time. Since the inversion layer extends above the low level wind maximum and shear is small in the region of the low level jet, the Richardson number reaches a maximum at the jet level and then decreases again with height. As a result, turbulence is observed to be a minimum at the height of the low level wind maximum and then increases again above this height.

The National Center for Atmospheric Research is sponsored by the National Science Foundation.
Part of this work was performed while a visiting scientist at Oregon State University.