Boundary-Layer Meteorology

, Volume 115, Issue 1, pp 69–84

Variation Of Urban Momentum Roughness Length With Land Use In The Upwind Source Area, As Observed in Two U.K. Cities


DOI: 10.1007/s10546-004-2987-x

Cite this article as:
Rooney, G.G., Longley, I.D. & Barlow, J.F. Boundary-Layer Meteorol (2005) 115: 69. doi:10.1007/s10546-004-2987-x


The possibility of obtaining urban roughness length from satellite-derived maps of land cover is explored, using turbulence measurements taken above the urban canopy. The upwind land cover is identified using a source-area model. Firstly, from four sets of measurements taken in Birmingham (U.K.), it is shown that in an area mainly split between the land-cover types ‘urban’ and ‘suburban’, suburban cover in the upwind source area is the more important contributor to increasing measured roughness length. A smaller dataset obtained in a second U.K. city (Salford, Greater Manchester) shows a similar result. A roughness-length aggregation model is also applied to the data from both sites. This assigns values of roughness length to each of the land-cover classifications and uses the source-area model to predict the resultant roughness length based on the wind properties. The results from this are shown to agree with the earlier findings.


land usesource-area modelurban meteorology

Copyright information

© Springer 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Met Office Field siteCardington AirfieldShortstown,BedfordU.K.
  2. 2.Physics DepartmentUniversity of Manchester Institute of Science and Technology (UMIST)ManchesterU.K.
  3. 3.Department of MeteorologyUniversity of ReadingReadingU.K.