Boundary-Layer Meteorology

, Volume 147, Issue 3, pp 569–578 | Cite as

Improvements in Sensible Heat-Flux Parametrization in the High-Resolution Regional Model (HRM) Through the Modified Treatment of the Roughness Length for Heat

  • T. J. Anurose
  • D. Bala SubrahamanyamEmail author
Research Note


We discuss the impact of the differential treatment of the roughness lengths for momentum and heat (\(z_{0\mathrm{m}}\) and \(z_{0\mathrm{h}}\)) in the flux parametrization scheme of the high-resolution regional model (HRM) for a heterogeneous terrain centred around Thiruvananthapuram, India (8.5°N, 76.9°E). The magnitudes of sensible heat flux (H) obtained from HRM simulations using the original parametrization scheme differed drastically from the concurrent in situ observations. With a view to improving the performance of this parametrization scheme, two distinct modifications are incorporated: (1) In the first method, a constant value of 100 is assigned to the \(z_{0\mathrm{m}}/z_{0\mathrm{h}}\) ratio; (2) and in the second approach, this ratio is treated as a function of time. Both these modifications in the HRM model showed significant improvements in the H simulations for Thiruvananthapuram and its adjoining regions. Results obtained from the present study provide a first-ever comparison of H simulations using the modified parametrization scheme in the HRM model with in situ observations for the Indian coastal region, and suggest a differential treatment of \(z_{0\mathrm{m}}\) and \(z_{0\mathrm{h}}\) in the flux parametrization scheme.


High-resolution regional model Louis scheme Numerical weather prediction Roughness lengths Sensible heat flux Surface-layer parametrization 



We express our sincere gratitude to Dr. Detlev Majewski and his colleagues from Deutscher Wetterdienst, Germany for their continuous support in setting up of the HRM model at SPL, VSSC and for providing the initial and lateral boundary conditions for the study period. We also thank Dr. K. Krishnamoorthy, Director, SPL and Dr. Radhika Ramachandran, IIST for their consistent encouragement. One of the authors Ms. TJA is thankful to the Indian Space Research Organization for sponsoring a fellowship for her Ph.D. research work. We also acknowledge an anonymous reviewer whose suggestions and comments helped improve the contents of this research note. The NCEP (National Centre for Environmental Predictions)-Final analysis data for this study are from the Research Data Archive which is maintained by the Computational and Information Systems Laboratory at the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR). NCAR is sponsored by the National Science Foundation.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Space Physics Laboratory, Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre, Department of SpaceGovernment of India, Indian Space Research OrganizationThiruvananthapuramIndia

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