Boundary-Layer Meteorology

, Volume 158, Issue 2, pp 331–350 | Cite as

On Turbulent Fluxes During Strong Winter Bora Wind Events

  • Nevio BabićEmail author
  • Željko Večenaj
  • Hrvoje Kozmar
  • Kristian Horvath
  • Stephan F. J. De Wekker
  • Branko Grisogono


Well known for its severity, the bora downslope windstorms have been extensively studied over the last several decades. This study focuses on the turbulence characteristics of bora at a topographically complex site near the eastern coast of the Adriatic Sea. For this purpose, a 3-month eddy-covariance dataset obtained at three levels (10, 22, 40 m) on a 60-m flux tower is used. After determining a suitable averaging time scale of 15 min using the fast Fourier transform and the ogive method, vertical fluxes of momentum and heat were calculated for 17 bora episodes. Up to a wind speed of \(12\,\mathrm {m\, s}^{-1}\), typical vertical profiles of momentum and heat were observed. However, for wind speeds >\(12\,\mathrm {m\, s}^{-1}\), several interesting observations arose. First, the nighttime heat flux at the 10-m level was often found to be positive rather negative. Second, vertical profiles of the momentum flux were larger at the 22-m level than at 10- and 40-m levels, mostly during nearly neutral to weakly stable thermal stratification. Third, these momentum flux profiles showed a large dependence on wind direction, with virtually no vertical transport of momentum for the largest observed wind speeds. For the first time, bora coherent structures have been analyzed using the so-called variable-interval time averaging (VITA) method. The method detected coherent structures in all three wind-speed components, with structure topologies similar to those observed over forest canopies. The momentum flux increase at the 22-m level, relative to the 10- and 40-m levels, is further supported by the VITA findings.


Bora Complex terrain Constant-flux layer Coherent structures Flux divergence 



Two anonymous reviewers are acknowledged for their valuable comments that led to a significant improvement of the manuscript. This study was funded by the Croatian Science Foundation project CATURBO, No. 09/151 , and the Croatian Ministry of Science, Education and Sports project BORA, No. 119-1193086-1311. Tower measurement campaign at Pometeno Brdo was organized within the UKF grant 16/8A WINDEX (, in collaboration with BORA grant. This work was also partially supported by the EU grant WILL4WIND (, contract no. IPA2007-HR-16IPO-001-040507. This work was also partially supported by Office of Naval Research award N00014-11-1-0709 and by NSF Grant ATM-1151445. We thank Sandip Pal for useful discussions. Temple R. Lee is acknowledged for proofreading the manuscript.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Environmental SciencesUniversity of VirginiaCharlottesvilleUSA
  2. 2.Department of GeophysicsUniversity of ZagrebZagrebCroatia
  3. 3.Faculty of Mechanical Engineering and Naval ArchitectureUniversity of ZagrebZagrebCroatia
  4. 4.Meteorological and Hydrological ServiceZagrebCroatia

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