Turbulence structure of the hurricane boundary layer between the outer rainbands

Jun A. Zhang, William M Drennan, Peter G. Black, Jeffrey R. French

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

66 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

As part of the Coupled Boundary Layers Air-Sea Transfer (CBLAST)-Hurricane program, flights were conducted to directly measure turbulent fluxes and turbulence properties in the high-wind boundary layer of hurricanes between the outer rainbands. For the first time, vertical profiles of normalized momentum fluxes, sensible heat and humidity fluxes, and variances of three-dimensional wind velocities and specific humidity are presented for the hurricane boundary layer with surface wind speeds ranging from 20 to 30 m s-1. The turbulent kinetic energy budget is estimated, indicating that the shear production and dissipation are the major source and sink terms, respectively. The imbalance in the turbulent kinetic energy budget indicates that the unmeasured terms, such as horizontal advection, may be important in hurricane boundary layer structure and dynamics. Finally, the thermodynamic boundary layer height, estimated based on the virtual potential temperature profiles, is roughly half of the boundary layer height estimated from the momentum flux profiles. The latter height where momentum and humidity fluxes tend to vanish is close to that of the inflow layer and also of the maximum in the tangential velocity profiles.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2455-2467
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of the Atmospheric Sciences
Volume66
Issue number8
DOIs
StatePublished - 2009

Fingerprint

rainband
hurricane
boundary layer
turbulence
momentum
humidity
energy budget
kinetic energy
wind velocity
potential temperature
sensible heat flux
velocity profile
surface wind
temperature profile
vertical profile
dissipation
advection
inflow
thermodynamics
flight

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Atmospheric Science

Cite this

Turbulence structure of the hurricane boundary layer between the outer rainbands. / Zhang, Jun A.; Drennan, William M; Black, Peter G.; French, Jeffrey R.

In: Journal of the Atmospheric Sciences, Vol. 66, No. 8, 2009, p. 2455-2467.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Zhang, Jun A. ; Drennan, William M ; Black, Peter G. ; French, Jeffrey R. / Turbulence structure of the hurricane boundary layer between the outer rainbands. In: Journal of the Atmospheric Sciences. 2009 ; Vol. 66, No. 8. pp. 2455-2467.
@article{0936919051d646b888dbd5bf064312ad,
title = "Turbulence structure of the hurricane boundary layer between the outer rainbands",
abstract = "As part of the Coupled Boundary Layers Air-Sea Transfer (CBLAST)-Hurricane program, flights were conducted to directly measure turbulent fluxes and turbulence properties in the high-wind boundary layer of hurricanes between the outer rainbands. For the first time, vertical profiles of normalized momentum fluxes, sensible heat and humidity fluxes, and variances of three-dimensional wind velocities and specific humidity are presented for the hurricane boundary layer with surface wind speeds ranging from 20 to 30 m s-1. The turbulent kinetic energy budget is estimated, indicating that the shear production and dissipation are the major source and sink terms, respectively. The imbalance in the turbulent kinetic energy budget indicates that the unmeasured terms, such as horizontal advection, may be important in hurricane boundary layer structure and dynamics. Finally, the thermodynamic boundary layer height, estimated based on the virtual potential temperature profiles, is roughly half of the boundary layer height estimated from the momentum flux profiles. The latter height where momentum and humidity fluxes tend to vanish is close to that of the inflow layer and also of the maximum in the tangential velocity profiles.",
author = "Zhang, {Jun A.} and Drennan, {William M} and Black, {Peter G.} and French, {Jeffrey R.}",
year = "2009",
doi = "10.1175/2009JAS2954.1",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "66",
pages = "2455--2467",
journal = "Journals of the Atmospheric Sciences",
issn = "0022-4928",
publisher = "American Meteorological Society",
number = "8",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Turbulence structure of the hurricane boundary layer between the outer rainbands

AU - Zhang, Jun A.

AU - Drennan, William M

AU - Black, Peter G.

AU - French, Jeffrey R.

PY - 2009

Y1 - 2009

N2 - As part of the Coupled Boundary Layers Air-Sea Transfer (CBLAST)-Hurricane program, flights were conducted to directly measure turbulent fluxes and turbulence properties in the high-wind boundary layer of hurricanes between the outer rainbands. For the first time, vertical profiles of normalized momentum fluxes, sensible heat and humidity fluxes, and variances of three-dimensional wind velocities and specific humidity are presented for the hurricane boundary layer with surface wind speeds ranging from 20 to 30 m s-1. The turbulent kinetic energy budget is estimated, indicating that the shear production and dissipation are the major source and sink terms, respectively. The imbalance in the turbulent kinetic energy budget indicates that the unmeasured terms, such as horizontal advection, may be important in hurricane boundary layer structure and dynamics. Finally, the thermodynamic boundary layer height, estimated based on the virtual potential temperature profiles, is roughly half of the boundary layer height estimated from the momentum flux profiles. The latter height where momentum and humidity fluxes tend to vanish is close to that of the inflow layer and also of the maximum in the tangential velocity profiles.

AB - As part of the Coupled Boundary Layers Air-Sea Transfer (CBLAST)-Hurricane program, flights were conducted to directly measure turbulent fluxes and turbulence properties in the high-wind boundary layer of hurricanes between the outer rainbands. For the first time, vertical profiles of normalized momentum fluxes, sensible heat and humidity fluxes, and variances of three-dimensional wind velocities and specific humidity are presented for the hurricane boundary layer with surface wind speeds ranging from 20 to 30 m s-1. The turbulent kinetic energy budget is estimated, indicating that the shear production and dissipation are the major source and sink terms, respectively. The imbalance in the turbulent kinetic energy budget indicates that the unmeasured terms, such as horizontal advection, may be important in hurricane boundary layer structure and dynamics. Finally, the thermodynamic boundary layer height, estimated based on the virtual potential temperature profiles, is roughly half of the boundary layer height estimated from the momentum flux profiles. The latter height where momentum and humidity fluxes tend to vanish is close to that of the inflow layer and also of the maximum in the tangential velocity profiles.

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=70349274226&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=70349274226&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1175/2009JAS2954.1

DO - 10.1175/2009JAS2954.1

M3 - Article

VL - 66

SP - 2455

EP - 2467

JO - Journals of the Atmospheric Sciences

JF - Journals of the Atmospheric Sciences

SN - 0022-4928

IS - 8

ER -