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) On the time evolution of the turbulent kinetic energy spectrum for decaying turbulence in the convective boundary layer

Goulart A, Bodmann BEJ, Vilhena MT, Soares PMM, Moreira DM
Boundary Layer Meteorology, 138:6175, DOI: 10.1007/s10546-010-9546-4

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Abstract

Our focus is the time evolution of the turbulent kinetic energy for decaying turbulence in the convective boundary layer. The theoretical model with buoyancy and inertial transfer terms has been extended by a source term due to mechanical energy and validated against large-eddy simulation data. The mechanical effects in a boundary layer of height z i at a convective surface-layer height z = 0.05z i are significant in the time evolution of the vertical component of the spectrum, i.e. they enhance the decay time scale by more than an order of magnitude. Our findings suggest that shear effects seem to feedback to eddies with smaller wavenumbers, preserving the original shape of the spectrum, and preventing the spectrum from shifting towards shorter wavelengths. This occurs in the case where thermal effects only are considered.