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Interbasin Flux Measurements Using Simple Methods

Description: The Vertical Transport and Mixing (VTMX) campaign, sponsored by the US Department of Energy, took place in the Salt Lake Valley during October, 2000. The purpose of VTMX was to further understanding of meteorological processes that govern vertical transport and mixing in complex terrain, particularly during nocturnal stable periods and their morning and evening transition periods. These meteorological processes were the subject of numerous sponsored studies during VTMX. The Salt Lake (Salt Lake City) Basin and the Utah Basin to its south are separated by the Traverse Range. Near-surface airflow between the basins is channeled through the Jordan Narrows, also the channel for the Jordan River that flows from the Utah Basin into Salt Lake via the Salt Lake Basin. Jordan Narrows is thus a potentially significant corridor for pollutant transport between the two basins. This paper describes simple and direct pollutant (PM{sub 10}) measurements, with concurrent continuous meteorological monitoring, to characterize pollutant transport between the two basins via low-level stable nocturnal drainage flow, with an emphasis on its vertical variability when mixing is limited. The Jordan Narrows has similarities to other transport corridors where direct in-corridor monitoring of pollutant flux might enhance pollution forecasts during transport conditions. Thus their more general objective is to assess the usefulness of direct methods to characterize pollutant flux in similar environments.
Date: January 13, 2005
Creator: Watson, John & Freeman, Daniel
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Final Technical Report: Development of the DUSTRAN GIS-Based Complex Terrain Model for Atmospheric Dust Dispersion

Description: Activities at U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) training and testing ranges can be sources of dust in local and regional airsheds governed by air-quality regulations. The U.S. Department of Energy’s Pacific Northwest National Laboratory just completed a multi-year project to develop a fully tested and documented atmospheric dispersion modeling system (DUST TRANsport or DUSTRAN) to assist the DoD in addressing particulate air-quality issues at military training and testing ranges.
Date: May 1, 2007
Creator: Allwine, K Jerry; Rutz, Frederick C.; Shaw, William J.; Rishel, Jeremy P.; Fritz, Brad G.; Chapman, Elaine G. et al.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

An Improved WRF for Urban-Scale and Complex-Terrain Applications

Description: Simulations of atmospheric flow through urban areas must account for a wide range of physical phenomena including both mesoscale and urban processes. Numerical weather prediction models, such as the Weather and Research Forecasting model (WRF), excel at predicting synoptic and mesoscale phenomena. With grid spacings of less than 1 km (as is required for complex heterogeneous urban areas), however, the limits of WRF's terrain capabilities and subfilter scale (SFS) turbulence parameterizations are exposed. Observations of turbulence in urban areas frequently illustrate a local imbalance of turbulent kinetic energy (TKE), which cannot be captured by current turbulence models. Furthermore, WRF's terrain-following coordinate system is inappropriate for high-resolution simulations that include buildings. To address these issues, we are implementing significant modifications to the ARW core of the Weather Research and Forecasting model. First, we are implementing an improved turbulence model, the Dynamic Reconstruction Model (DRM), following Chow et al. (2005). Second, we are modifying WRF's terrain-following coordinate system by implementing an immersed boundary method (IBM) approach to account for the effects of urban geometries and complex terrain. Companion papers detailing the improvements enabled by the DRM and the IBM approaches are also presented (by Mirocha et al., paper 13.1, and K.A. Lundquist et al., paper 11.1, respectively). This overview of the LLNL-UC Berkeley collaboration presents the motivation for this work and some highlights of our progress to date. After implementing both DRM and an IBM for buildings in WRF, we will be able to seamlessly integrate mesoscale synoptic boundary conditions with building-scale urban simulations using grid nesting and lateral boundary forcing. This multi-scale integration will enable high-resolution simulations of flow and dispersion in complex geometries such as urban areas, as well as new simulation capabilities in regions of complex terrain.
Date: September 4, 2007
Creator: Lundquist, J K; Chow, F K; Mirocha, J D & Lundquist, K A
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

ASCOT 91 field experiment : PNL airsonde data summary.

Description: Pacific Northwest Laboratory (PNL) participated in the Winter 1991 Atmospheric Studies in Complex Terrain (ASCOT) field experiment conducted in the vicinity of the Rocky Flats Plant between Boulder and Denver, Colorado. This report contains a summary of operations and data associated with free-release-ball oon-borne atmospheric soundings made by PNL between January 29 and February 8, 1991. Given here are descriptions of the site and instrumentation, a brief summary of the soundings, and a description of the data post processing. The appendices contain a detailed summary of all soundings and ASCOT plots of completed soundings.
Date: July 1, 1991
Creator: Allwine, JM Hubbe and KJ
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Scannerless terrain mapper

Description: NASA-Ames Research Center, in collaboration with Sandia National Laboratories, is developing a Scannerless Terrain Mapper (STM) for autonomous vehicle guidance through the use of virtual reality. The STM sensor is based on an innovative imaging optical radar technology that is being developed by Sandia National Laboratories. The sensor uses active flood-light scene illumination and an image intensified CCD camera receiver to rapidly produce and record very high quality range imagery of observed scenes. The STM is an all solid-state device (containing no moving parts) and offers significant size, performance, reliability, simplicity, and affordability advantages over other types of 3-D sensor technologies, such as scanned laser radar, stereo vision, and structured lighting. The sensor is based on low cost, commercially available hardware, and is very well suited for affordable application to a wide variety of military and commercial uses, including: munition guidance, target recognition, robotic vision, automated inspection, driver enhanced vision, collision avoidance, site security and monitoring, and facility surveying. This paper reviews the sensor technology, discusses NASA`s terrain mapping applications, and presents results from the initial testing of the sensor at NASA`s planetary landscape simulator.
Date: September 1, 1996
Creator: Sackos, J.; Bradley, B.; Diegert, C.; Ma, P. & Gary, C.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Dynamical processes in undisturbed katabatic flows

Description: Idealized analytical investigations of katabatic slope flows have usually sought to simplify the analysis by either assuming a particular force balance amenable to analytical solution or using integral (or bulk) models. In each case, steady state conditions are evaluated, with occasional exception. Historically, the modeling of idealized katabatic flows has focused analysis of model time where steady state conditions have been achieved. To investigate the true dynamics of evolving undisturbed katabatic flow, the Regional Atmospheric Modeling System (RAMS) is used. As described in Pielke et al (1992) RAMS is a prognostic numerical model that contains the three-dimensional primitive equations in terrain-following, non- hydrostatic, compressible form. In addition to standard variables, RAMS was configured to output the various components of the governing equations with high temporal resolution. Each of the simulations used idealized 2000m high mountain topography of a given slope (1{degree}, 2.5{degrees},5{degrees}, or 10{degrees}) on either side of the peak. In the 3-d simulations this mountain becomes an infinite north-south ridge (cyclic boundary conditions in the N-S direction). Vertical grid spacing was set to 20m for the first 500m {delta}z increases to a maximum of 400 m over 72 grid points to 10.5 km. Horizontal grid spacing was 500 m and the number of east-west grid points was 701, 301, 201 and 201 for the 1 {degree}, 2.5{degrees}, 5{degrees} and 10{degrees} mountains, respectively. Only results from the homogeneous with a vertical structure as follows: 0.0 m s{sup -1} to 3000 m AGL, standard atmospheric {theta} lapse rate of 2.5 K km {sup - 1} to 3000 m AGLl, standard atmospheric {theta} lapse rate of 3.4 K Km {sup -1} above that. The simulations ran for 12 hours after model sunset ({similar_to}1800 MST) so that only longwave radiative effects were active.
Date: August 1, 1996
Creator: Poulos, G.S.; Bossert, J.E.; McKee, T.B. & Pielke, R.A.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The interaction of katabatic winds and mountain waves

Description: The variation in the oft-observed, thermally-forced, nocturnal katabatic winds along the east side of the Rocky Mountains can be explained by either internal variability or interactions with various other forcings. Though generally katabatic flows have been studied as an entity protected from external forcing by strong thermal stratification, this work investigates how drainage winds along the Colorado Front Range interact with, in particular, topographically forced mountain waves. Previous work has shown, based on measurements taken during the Atmospheric Studies in Complex Terrain 1993 field program, that the actual dispersion in katabatic flows is often greater than reflected in models of dispersion. The interaction of these phenomena is complicated and non-linear since the amplitude, wavelength and vertical structure of mountain waves developed by flow over the Rocky Mountain barrier are themselves partly determined by the evolving atmospheric stability in which the drainage flows develop. Perturbations to katabatic flow by mountain waves, relative to their more steady form in quiescent conditions, are found to be caused by both turbulence and dynamic pressure effects. The effect of turbulent interaction is to create changes to katabatic now depth, katabatic flow speed, katabatic jet height and, vertical thermal stratification. The pressure effect is found to primarily influence the variability of a given katabatic now through the evolution of integrated column wave forcing on surface pressure. Variability is found to occur on two scales, on the mesoscale due to meso-gamma scale mountain wave evolution, and on the microscale, due to wave breaking. Since existing parameterizations for the statically stable case are predominantly based on nearly flat terrain atmospheric measurements under idealized or nearly quiescent conditions, it is no surprise that these parameterizations often contribute to errors in prediction, particularly in complex terrain.
Date: January 1, 1997
Creator: Poulos, G.S.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Path planning for complex terrain navigation via dynamic programming

Description: This work considers the problem of planning optimal paths for a mobile robot traversing complex terrain. In addition to the existing obstacles, locations in the terrain where the slope is too steep for the mobile robot to navigate safely without tipping over become mathematically equivalent to extra obstacles. To solve the optimal path problem, the authors use a dynamic programming approach. The dynamic programming approach utilized herein does not suffer the difficulties associated with spurious local minima that the artificial potential field approaches do. In fact, a globally optimal solution is guaranteed to be found if a feasible solution exists. The method is demonstrated on several complex examples including very complex terrains.
Date: December 31, 1998
Creator: Kwok, K. S. & Driessen, B. J.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Nocturnal wind direction shear and its potential impact on pollutant transport

Description: The estimation of transport and diffusion of airborne pollutants during the nighttime is challenging, especially over complex terrain where gravity driven drainage flows may be overlain with wind from a different direction. This study investigates the character of wind direction shear in the lowest 100 m using tower measurements from a complex, semi-arid site where local thermally-driven flows are common. The effects of wind direction shear on plume transport are studied by simulating a hypothetical elevated term release. This is accomplished by first simulating transport and dispersion using wind measurements from only the 12-m level from a network of towers. This case represents the approach commonly taken at many facilities where a network of short towers is available. Then the release is modeled using wind measurements made at four levels in the lowest 100 m. The differences between the two simulations are significant and would lead to very different responses in an emergency situation.
Date: December 31, 1998
Creator: Bowen, B.M.; Baars, J.A. & Stone, G.L.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

IFSAR for the Rapid Terrain Visualization Demonstration

Description: The Rapid Terrain Visualization Advanced Concept Technology Demonstration (RTV-ACTD) is designed to demonstrate the technologies and infrastructure to meet the Army requirement for rapid generation of digital topographic data to support emerging crisis or contingencies. The primary sensor for this mission is an interferometric synthetic aperture radar (IFSAR) designed at Sandia National Laboratories. This paper will outline the design of the system and its performance, and show some recent flight test results. The RTV IFSAR will meet DTED level III and IV specifications by using a multiple-baseline design and high-accuracy differential and carrier-phase GPS navigation. It includes innovative near-real-time DEM production on-board the aircraft. The system is being flown on a deHavilland DHC-7 Army aircraft.
Date: October 31, 2000
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department


Description: Sky view factor ({Psi}{sub sky}) is used in radiation balance schemes for the partitioning of longwave and shortwave radiation within urban and forest canopies and complex terrain. In the urban environment, ({Psi}{sub sky}) and 1-({Psi}{sub sky}) give a measure of how much radiation penetrates the canopy and how much will be intercepted by the canopy, respectively. As part of the Oct. 2000 URBAN field Experiment in Salt Lake City (Shinn et al., 2001), photographs were taken in the downtown area at ground level shooting upwards using a fisheye lens. Utilizing image analysis and in-house processing software, ({Psi}{sub sky}) was computed for each photograph. Sky view factor was also computed from 3D building databases using the methodology developed by Ratti and Richens (1999). Although photographic methods for obtaining sky view factor are very accurate, they are time consuming to acquire. Commercial 3D building databases are becoming increasingly more available and sky view factor can be computed from them quite easily. In the future, 3D building datasets might be used to readily compute sky view factor for cities and therefore better estimates of the urban climate could be made. Comparisons of the two methods for computing sky view factor are compared in this paper.
Date: July 1, 2001
Creator: BROWN, M. J.; GRIMMOND, S. & RATTI, C.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The mutual evolution of mountain waves and katabatic flow

Description: Typically, katabatic flows have been studied in their least complicated or idealized state. Further, these flows are generally regarded as having simple forcing and non-turbulent structure due to the strong atmospheric stability they are bedded within. Somewhat analogously, mountain waves and their effects have been mostly studied in their idealized state, i.e. for constant upstream flow and stability. Even in the numerous cases where these two atmospheric phenomena have been studied in their realistic state, seldom has their mutual interaction been considered. One exception that includes numerical modeling is Gross (1990). The express purpose of this work is to examine how each of these phenomena interact with each other in an evolving nocturnal atmosphere. This work is motivated by observations from the Atmospheric Studies in Complex Terrain (ASCOT) Program which clearly indicate non-idealized behavior in katabatic flows. Although numerous idealized simulations were also completed, discussion here focuses on the most realistic simulations of the case night 3--4 September 1993. This night was dominated by clear skies and light near surface winds. A high pressure system to the southwest of Colorado caused northwesterly flow at {approximately} 7 m s{sup {minus}1} upstream of the Rockies with a Froude number of 0.45 overnight. ASCOT observations indicated that katabatic and mountain wave flow were occurring.
Date: August 1, 1996
Creator: Poulos, G.S.; Bossert, J.E.; McKee, T.B. & Pielke, R.A.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Assessing the interaction of mountain waves and katabatic flows using a mesoscale model

Description: This paper has two main purposes. The first is to evaluate the interaction of two common complex terrain meteorological phenomena, katabatic flow and mountain waves. Although occasionally investigated together, generally, the large body of literature regarding them has treated each individually. The second purpose is to show the reader the utility of extracting high time resolution data sets of (1) standard meteorological variables, and (2) seldom used, components of the model equations. Using such time series, significant variability is found in the evolving, clear sky, nocturnal boundary layer, when meteorological variability is generally considered to be at its lowest point diurnally. The approach is to use results from three, 3-d, realistic topography simulations produced by the Regional Atmospheric Modeling System (RAMS). RAMS is a primitive equation mesoscale model formulated in {sigma} coordinates. The model is set up with five nested grids that focus on Eldorado Canyon, which is embedded in the Front Range slope of Colorado. On the finest grid {Delta}x = {Delta}y = 400 m and {Delta}z = 20 m for the lowest 400 m above ground level (AGL). The three simulations were: (1) a realistic simulation; (2) the same as (1) but without radiative forcing (referred to as mountain wave only or MWO) and (3) the same as (1) but without boundary nudging and no initial winds (referred to as katabatic flow only or KFO). The case night is 3--4 Sep 1993 from the Atmospheric Studies in Complex Terrain (ASCOT) 1993 field program near Rocky Flats, Colorado. Both mountain waves and katabatic flows were occurring on this night.
Date: July 1, 1996
Creator: Poulos, G.S.; Bossert, J.E.; McKee, T.B. & Pielke, A.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The effects of elevation data representation on mesoscale atmospheric model simulations

Description: Mesoscale atmospheric model simulations rely on descriptions of the land surface characteristics, which must be developed from geographic databases. Certain features of the geographic data, such as its resolution and accuracy, as well as the method of processing for use in the model, can be very important in producing accurate model simulations. The work described here is part of research effort into the relationship between these aspects of geographic data and the performance of mesoscale atmospheric models and is particularly focused on elevation data and how it is prepared for use in such models. A source for digital elevation data will typically not be at the resolution required for a given model simulation and so a resampling step is required. In addition, predictive non-linear model often cannot accept forcing at high spatial frequencies due to the terrain, thus smoothing is also required. The effect of different means of resampling and smoothing elevation data on two types of model simulations is investigated. At smaller spatial scales, nocturnal drainage winds in mountain valleys in Colorado are examined for effects on the general characteristics as well as the details of the flows. At the larger end of the mesoscale, extended simulations of California weather are examined for effects on orographic lifting, low-level convergence and divergence and ultimately rain and snow distribution.
Date: January 1, 1996
Creator: Walker, H.; Leone, J.M. Jr. & Kim, Jinwon
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

VALDRIFT 1.0: A valley atmospheric dispersion model with deposition

Description: VALDRIFT version 1.0 is an atmospheric transport and diffusion model for use in well-defined mountain valleys. It is designed to determine the extent of ddft from aedal pesticide spraying activities, but can also be applied to estimate the transport and diffusion of various air pollutants in valleys. The model is phenomenological -- that is, the dominant meteorological processes goveming the behavior of the valley atmosphere are formulated explicitly in the model, albeit in a highly parameterized fashion. The key meteorological processes treated are: (1) nonsteady and nonhomogeneous along-valley winds and turbulent diffusivities, (2) convective boundary layer growth, (3) inversion descent, (4) noctumal temperature inversion breakup, and (5) subsidence. The model is applicable under relatively cloud-free, undisturbed synoptic conditions and is configured to operate through one diumal cycle for a single valley. The inputs required are the valley topographical characteristics, pesticide release rate as a function of time and space, along-valley wind speed as a function of time and space, temperature inversion characteristics at sunrise, and sensible heat flux as a function of time following sunrise. Default values are provided for certain inputs in the absence of detailed observations. The outputs are three-dimensional air concentration and ground-level deposition fields as a function of time.
Date: May 1, 1995
Creator: Allwine, K.J.; Bian, X. & Whiteman, C.D.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Wind fluctuations in a nocturnal drainage flow

Description: In this paper we present an analysis of wind fluctuations observed during an experiment conducted in Brush Creek valley, Colorado, in September and October 1984. We show that in this valley wind fluctuations with periods around 15 min are very energetic. Coherence studies show that these fluctuations are organized and suggest the existence of secondary cross-valley circulations in the main drainage flow. Such circulations would play an important role in transporting heat, momentum, and pollutants within the valley.
Date: January 1, 1987
Creator: Stone, G.L. & Hoard, D.E.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Atwater Valley Deep-Towed Sidescan Sonar Imagery and Bathymetric Survey

Description: The purpose of this project was to conduct detailed surface mapping of one of the areas drilled by the Joint Industry Project with ChevronTexaco to understand gas hydrates in the Gulf of Mexico. The gently sloping, mostly flat floor of the Mississippi Canyon is interrupted by mounds and depressions that presumably reflect the complex geology and geohydrology related to turbidite deposition and pervasive salt tectonism. The seafloor mounds we mapped in this study occur in approximately 1300 water depth along the floor of the Mississippi Canyon in lease block areas Atwater Valley 13 and 14. High resolution sidescan sonar (100 kHz and 500 kHz) backscatter imagery, and chirp sub-bottom profiler data were collected using the DT1 deep-towed oceanographic mapping instrument, concentrating on the region directly adjacent to and surrounding two mounds identified as, mounds D and F, and in the region directly adjacent to and surrounding the mounds. The backscatter data have been mosaiced and normalized to provide information on the shape and extent of the mounds, the possible lateral extent of fauna, such as mussel and clam fields on the mounds, possible seep related flows and the occurrence of carbonate material. The extent of a mudflow can be mapped on the southeastern side of mound F. The backscatter data show extremely high-resolution detail about the shape, relief, and morphology of the mounds. This information, coupled with porewater chemistry , DTAGS and heatflow data form a coherent picture of possible mechanics for fluid venting and flora/fauna of the seeps in this region.
Date: November 22, 2005
Creator: Gardner, Joan M.; Czarnecki, Mike; Hagen, Rick; Nishimura, Clyde; Wood, Warren; Vaughn, Chad et al.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Water vapor retrieval over many surface types

Description: In this paper we present a study of of the water vapor retrieval for many natural surface types which would be valuable for multi-spectral instruments using the existing Continuum Interpolated Band Ratio (CIBR) for the 940 nm water vapor absorption feature. An atmospheric code (6S) and 562 spectra were used to compute the top of the atmosphere radiance near the 940 nm water vapor absorption feature in steps of 2.5 nm as a function of precipitable water (PW). We derive a novel technique called ``Atmospheric Pre-corrected Differential Absorption`` (APDA) and show that APDA performs better than the CIBR over many surface types.
Date: April 1, 1996
Creator: Borel, C.C.; Clodius, W.C. & Johnson, J.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

An exploration of measures for comparing measurements with the results from meteorological models for Mexico City

Description: Los Alamos National Laboratory and Instituto Mexicano del Petroleo have completed a joint study of options for improving air quality in Mexico City. We used a three-dimensional, prognostic, higher-order turbulence model for atmospheric circulation (HOTMAC) to treat domains that include an urbanized area. We tested the model against routine measurements and those of a major field program. During the field program, measurements included: (1) lidar measurements of aerosol transport and dispersion, (2) aircraft measurements of winds, turbulence, and chemical species aloft, (3) aircraft measurements of skin temperatures, and (4) Tethersonde measurements of winds and ozone. We made both graphical and statistical comparisons and we have reported some of the comparisons to provide insight into the meaning of statistical parameters including the index of agreement.
Date: December 31, 1995
Creator: Williams, M.D. & Brown, M.J.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The consequences of elevation characterization on simulations of drainage flows in mountain valleys

Description: Many important phenomena in mountain meteorology are sensitive to, or driven by, land surface characteristics. Thus, accurately representing surface-atmosphere interactions within an atmospheric model requires a realistic characterization of the land surface. Such a characterization must be based on data extracted from a geographical database and transformed so that it is consistent with the needs of the numerical model. In such a process, there are two major classes of error that must be understood and minimized whenever possible. The first class involves the accuracy, precision, and resolution of the geographical data itself. The second class is error introduced by the transformations used to assimilate the data into the atmospheric model. The general objectives of this research are twofold: to understand the effects of errors within a geographical database upon the accuracy of the atmospheric model simulation and to design optimal techniques for the transformation of the data.
Date: April 1, 1995
Creator: Walker, H. & Leone, J.M. Jr
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department