Preprint Article Version 1 Preserved in Portico This version is not peer-reviewed

A Specific Large-Scale Pressure Gradient Forcing for Computation of Realistic 3D Wind Fields Over a Canopy at Stand Scale

Version 1 : Received: 15 October 2018 / Approved: 15 October 2018 / Online: 15 October 2018 (18:19:27 CEST)

A peer-reviewed article of this Preprint also exists.

Journal reference: atmosphere 2020
DOI: 10.3390/atmos11121343


Turbulent flows over and within forest canopies have recently been modeled with success using Large Eddy Simulations (LES). Validation exercises against experimental data suggest that models can be applied with a high degree of confidence for many applications, mechanical and physiological plant/atmosphere interaction analysis, seed or pollen dispersal, wildfire spread and firebrand transport, or investigation of causes of eddy-covariance technique bias. Long distances required for shear-induced turbulence to equilibrate, result in the widespread use of cyclic boundary conditions in LES atmospheric boundary layer studies. Vegetation drag dissipates air momentum in the atmosphere, but equilibrium is often achieved through compensatory momentum source, supplied by macro-scale pressure gradient forcing. Unfortunately, both classical Ekman balance or simple spatially-constant pressure gradient techniques for implementing this forcing have major drawbacks in the context of cyclic boundary conditions for the applications listed above. Among them, it is difficult to specify aspects of the mean velocity profile such as a specific desired wind velocity and direction at a reference height. In the present paper, we propose a new technique for capturing the effects of a large-scale pressure gradient force (LSPGF) that can be used at stand scale and enables simulation of realistic and specifiable wind fields. Several variants of this LSPGF are developed and analyzed here and validated against experimental data. Although this LSPGF technique is developed in the context of HIGRAD/FIRETEC wildfire simulations, LSPGF can be used for any LES wind modeling application aimed at generating detailed stand-scale wind fields with resolved turbulence and shear profiles consistent with vegetation structure in the boundary layer.


Ekman balance - Forest canopy – Large-eddy simulation – Large-scale pressure gradient - Streaks


EARTH SCIENCES, Atmospheric Science

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