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Effects of Roughness and Thermal Inhomogeneities on Urban Flows

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Final rept. 1 Oct 2000-30 Jun 2004

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The Environmental Fluid Dynamics group at Arizona State University has been involved in research related to the studies of urban airsheds from the standpoint of multi-scale flow transport and analysis from regional to personal scales. The project described herein was supported by the Army Research Office in support of those efforts, especially to study the effects of topographic and thermal inhomogeneities on urban-scale flows. The emphasis was on the dispersion of pollutants in and from urban basins, effects of urban heat islands, and flow though urban canyons. Theoretical analyses, laboratory experiments, numerical modeling, and field studies were conducted to investigate the effects of topographic and thermal inhomogeneities on urban flows. The laboratory studies employed idealized urban flow geometries of general applicability, and the resulting flow, turbulence, and dispersion were studied using state-of-the-art flow diagnostic techniques. The field observational test beds have been a mock urban experiment conducted at the U.S. Army Dugway Proving grounds and large-scale experiments conducted at the Phoenix and Salt Lake City airsheds. Simple analytical models were developed, which were tested using laboratory and field experiments. Such modeling helped identify and parameterize processes occurring in sub-grid scales of urban models. The new parameterizations were implemented in community modeling systems, and their efficacy was evaluated by comparing modeling results with field observations. A three-dimensional, micro-scale model was also developed to study flow through street canyons. The latter model was nested to a meso-scale model, and the efficacy of this multi-scale nested modeling system was investigated by comparing their predictions with field results. An extensive bibliography of journal articles, conference papers, meeting presentations, and submitted manuscripts is included. 23 figures, 10 refs.

Subject Categories:

  • Meteorology
  • Geography
  • Fluid Mechanics
  • Thermodynamics
  • Air Pollution and Control

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