, Volume 61, Issue 1-2, pp 47-64

Large-eddy simulation of turbulent flow above and within a forest

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A large-eddy simulation has been performed of an atmospheric surface layer in which the lower third of the domain is occupied by a drag layer and heat sources to represent a forest. Subgridscale processes are treated using second-order closure techniques. Lateral boundaries are periodic, while the upper boundary is a frictionless fixed lid. Mean vertical profiles of wind velocity derived from the output are realistic in their shape and response to forest density. Similarly, vertical profiles of Reynolds stress, turbulent kinetic energy and velocity skewness match observations, at least in a qualitative sense. The limited vertical extent of the domain and the artificial upper boundary, however, cause some departures from measured turbulence profiles in real forests. Instantaneous turbulent velocity and scalar fields are presented which show some of the features obtained by tower instrumentation in the field and in wind tunnels, such as the vertical coherence of vertical velocity and the slope of structures revealed by temperature patterns.