Measurement of Prandtl number as a function of Richardson number avoiding self-correlation

The empirical dependence of turbulence Prandtl number (Pr) on gradient Richardson number (Ri) is presented, derived so as to avoid the effects of self-correlation from common variables. Linear power relationships between the underlying variables that constitute both Pr and Ri are derived empirically from flux and profile observations. Pr and Ri are then reconstructed from these power laws, to indicate their interdependence whilst avoiding self-correlation. Data are selected according to the stability range prior to regression, and the process is iterated from neutral to higher stability until error analysis indicates the method is no longer valid. A Butterworth function is fitted to the resulting Pr (-1)(Ri) regression to give an empirical summary of the analysis. The form suggests that asymptotically Pr (-1) decreases as Ri (3/2). Scatter in the data increases above Ri similar to 1, however, indicating additional constraints to Pr are not captured by Ri alone in this high stability regime. The Butterworth function is analytic for all Ri > 0, and may be included in suitable boundary-layer parameterisation schemes where the turbulent diffusivity for heat is derived from the turbulent diffusivity for momentum.


Publication status:
Authors: Anderson, Philip S.

1 January, 2009
Boundary-Layer Meteorology / 131
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