Hybrid Profile–Gradient Approaches for the Estimation of Surface Fluxes

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The Monin–Obukhov similarity theory-based wind speed and potential temperature profiles are inherently coupled to each other. We have developed hybrid approaches to disentangle them, and as a direct consequence, the estimation of Obukhov length (and associated turbulent fluxes) from either wind-speed or temperature measurements becomes an effortless task. Additionally, our approaches give rise to two easily measurable indices of atmospheric stability. We compare these approaches with the traditional gradient and profile methods that require both wind-speed and temperature profile data. Using Monte-Carlo-type numerical experiments we demonstrate that, if the input profiles are free of any random errors, the performance of the proposed hybrid approaches is almost equivalent to the profile method and better than the gradient method. However, the proposed hybrid approaches are less competitive in comparison to their traditional counterparts in the presence of random errors.

Original languageEnglish
Number of pages16
JournalBoundary-Layer Meteorology
Issue number1
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 2018


  • Gradient method
  • Obukhov length
  • Profile method
  • Similarity theory

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