Contrasts between the summertime surface energy balance and boundary layer structure at Dome C and Halley stations, Antarctica
The Antarctic research stations of Dome C and Halley lie at similar latitudes (∼75°S) and are thus subject to similar diurnal variation of solar radiation at the top of the atmosphere. However, the response of the atmospheric boundary layer to this diurnally varying forcing differs greatly at the two stations. At Dome C during summer there is a strong diurnal cycle in near-surface temperature and wind speed, and a shallow (∼350 m) convective boundary layer is observed to grow in response to diurnal heating. At Halley, diurnal variations in temperature and wind speed are smaller than those at Dome C, and there is no clear diurnal variability in boundary layer depth. Analysis of the summertime surface energy budget for both stations indicates that the main reason for the different diurnal variability at the two stations is the greater partitioning of available energy into latent heat flux at the warmer Halley station. We argue that the diurnally varying convective boundary layer observed at Dome C will not be typical of the whole of the East Antarctic plateau.