Boundary-Layer Meteorology

, Volume 98, Issue 1, pp 1–31 | Cite as

Modelling Regional Scale Surface Energy Exchanges And Cbl Growth In A Heterogeneous, Urban-Rural Landscape

  • H. A. Cleugh
  • C. S. B. Grimmond


Over the last decade, simple models of theconvective boundary layer (CBL) have beensuggested as an approach to inferring regionallyaveraged land-air exchanges of heat, water and tracegases, because the properties of the CBL respond toan average of the underlying small-scaleheterogeneity. This paper explores the use of anintegral CBL method to infer regionally averagedfluxes in a landscape that has at least three majorsources of heterogeneity – irrigated andnon-irrigated rural land use and a large urban area(Sacramento region, California).

The first part of the paper assesses the validity ofthe simple slab model of the CBL – this isintegrated forwards in time using local-scalemeasured heat and water vapour fluxes, to predictmixed-layer depth, temperature and humidity. Of thefour different CBL growth schemes used, the Tennekesand Driedonks model is found to give the bestperformance. Evaluation of the model performancewith different weightings of heat and water vapourfluxes based on the land use characteristics in theregion suggest that the source area for theboundary-layer sonde measurements is larger thanphysically-based estimates would suggest.

Finally, measured time series of potentialtemperature are used to infer regionally averagedsensible heat fluxes using an integral CBL (ICBL)method. These ICBL fluxes are compared with thosemeasured at the local scale over the three land usetypes that comprise the region of interest. They arefound to be closest to the heat fluxes calculated byappropriately weighting the measured heat fluxes inthe source area calculated for the ICBL. We concludethat the integral CBL budget method providesadequate estimates of regionally-averaged surfaceheat fluxes in a landscape that is characterised bysurface types with distinctly different surfaceenergy budgets.

CBL budget methods CBL (convective boundary layer) Microscale heterogeneity Regional fluxes 


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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 2001

Authors and Affiliations

  • H. A. Cleugh
    • 1
  • C. S. B. Grimmond
    • 2
  1. 1.CSIRO Land and Water, Pye LaboratoryCanberraAustralia
  2. 2.Atmospheric Science Program,Department of GeographyIndiana UniversityBloomingtonUSA

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