Environmental Fluid Mechanics

, Volume 16, Issue 1, pp 1–23 | Cite as

RANS simulation of neutral atmospheric boundary layer flows over complex terrain by proper imposition of boundary conditions and modification on the k-ε model

Original Article


In this study, a modelling methodology is proposed for RANS simulations of neutral Atmospheric Boundary Layer (ABL) flows on the basis of the standard k-ε model, which allows the adoption of an arbitrary shear stress model. This modelling methodology is first examined in the context of an open flat terrain in an empty domain to ascertain there are no substantial changes in the prescribed profiles. The results show that relatively good homogeneity can be achieved with this modelling methodology for various sets of inflow boundary profiles. In addition, to extend the solutions derived from the standard k-ε model to RNG k-ε model, the RNG k-ε model is in detail assembly and tuned. Finally, the topographic effects on surface wind speeds over a complex terrain are assessed with the combined use of the proposed methodology and the modified RNG model. The numerical results are in good agreement with wind tunnel testing results and long-term field observations. A discussion of the effects of horizontal homogeneity and turbulence models on the simulated wind flows over a complex terrain is also given.


Computational fluid dynamics (CFD) Atmospheric boundary layer (ABL) Horizontal homogeneity Complex terrain Wind tunnel test Field observation 



The work described in this paper was fully supported by a grant from the Research Grants Council of Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, China (Project No: CityU 118213) and research Grants from the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Project No. 51278439 and 51478405).


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Architecture and Civil EngineeringCity University of Hong KongKowloonHong Kong
  2. 2.Hong Kong ObservatoryKowloonHong Kong

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