, Volume 112, Issue 1, pp 129-157

Organised Motion and Radiative Perturbations in the Nocturnal Canopy Sublayer above an Even-Aged Pine Forest

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Abstract

Using time series measurements of velocity, carbon dioxideand water vapour concentration, and temperature collected justabove a 15 m tall even-aged pine forest, we quantify the roleof organized motion on scalar and momentum transport withinthe nocturnal canopy sublayer (CSL). We propose a frameworkin which the nocturnal CSL has two end-members, bothdominated by organised motion. These end-members representfully developed turbulent flows at near-neutral or slightly stablestratification and no turbulence for very stable stratification.Our analysis suggests that ramps dominate scalar transport fornear-neutral and slightly stable conditions, while linear canopywaves dominate the flow dynamics for very stable conditions.For intermediate stability, the turbulence is highly damped andoften dominated by fine scale motions. Co-spectral analysissuggests that ramps are the most efficient net scalar mass-transportingagent while linear canopy waves contribute little to net scalartransport between the canopy and atmosphere for averagingintervals that include complete wave cycles. However, canopywaves significantly contribute to the spectral properties of thescalar time series. Ramps are the most frequently occurringorganised motion in the nocturnal CSL for this site.Numerous night-time runs, however, resided between thesetwo end-members. Our analysis suggests that whenradiative perturbations are sufficient large (>20 W m-2 innet radiation), the flow can switch from being highly dampedfine-scale turbulence to being organized with ramp-like properties. We also found that when ramps are already the dominant eddymotion in the nocturnal CSL, radiative perturbations have aminor impact on scalar transport. Finally, in agreement withprevious studies, we found that ramps and canopy waves havecomparable length scales of about 30–60 metres. Consequencesto night-time flux averaging are also discussed.