Boundary-Layer Meteorology

, Volume 83, Issue 3, pp 407–421




An analyticalone-dimensional model of momentum transferby vegetation with variable foliage distribution,sheltering and drag coefficientis developed. The model relies on a simpleparameterization of the ratio of theabove-canopy friction velocity, u*, to thewind speed at the top of the canopy,u(h), to predict vegetation roughness length(z0) and displacement height(d) as functions of canopy height (h) and dragarea index. Model predictionsof d/h and z/h compare very favorably withobserved values.A model sensitivity analysis suggests that shelteringeffects for momentum transfertend to make canopies with non-uniform foliagedistribution resemble canopies withmore uniform foliage distribution and that anyinfluence wind speed has on d/hand z0/h is more likely to be related to theinfluence that wind speed may haveon u*/u(h) rather than the influence windspeed may have on the foliage dragcoefficient. Model results indicate that z0/hand d/h are sensitive to uncertaintiesin the numerical values of the model parameters,foliage density and distribution,sheltering effects and variations in drag coefficientwithin the canopy. In additionz0/h is also shown to be sensitive to thepresence or absence of the roughnesssublayer. Given the simplicity of the model it issuggested that it may be of usefor land surface parameterizations in large scalemodels.

Momentum transfer by vegetation Vegetation roughness length Vegetation displacement height Variable foliage distribution 


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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1997

Authors and Affiliations

    • 1
  1. 1.USDA/Forest Service, Rocky Mountain StationFort CollinsU.S.A

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