Title: Comparison of the WRF and Sodar derived planetary boundary layer height

Authors: Maciej Kryza; Anetta Drzeniecka-Osiadacz; Małgorzata Werner; Paweł Netzel; Anthony J. Dore

Addresses: Department of Climatology and Atmosphere Protection, Wrocław University, ul. Kosiby 6/8 51-621 Wrocław, Poland ' Department of Climatology and Atmosphere Protection, Wrocław University, ul. Kosiby 6/8 51-621 Wrocław, Poland ' Department of Climatology and Atmosphere Protection, Wrocław University, ul. Kosiby 6/8 51-621 Wrocław, Poland ' Space Informatics Lab, University of Cincinnati, 2600 Clifton Ave., Cincinnati OH 45221, USA ' Centre for Ecology and Hydrology, Bush Estate, Penicuik, Midlothian, EH26 0QB, UK

Abstract: In this work, we compare the planetary boundary layer (PBL) height, calculated with the weather research and forecasting (WRF) model, with the measurements from an acoustic remote sounding system (Sodar) gathered at Wrocaw, SW Poland. The comparison was made for 15-30 November 2011. During this period, very high concentrations of PM2.5 were observed in SW Poland. For nine days, the 24-hour average PM2.5 concentrations reached the level 'unhealthy for sensitive groups' and for two days the 'unhealthy' level according to the air quality index. Four simulations were run with different PBL schemes for the innermost domain. The tested PBL schemes were: Yonsei University (sim1), Mellor-Yamada Nakanishi and Niino Level 3 (sim2), Asymmetric Convective Model 2 (sim3) and Bougeault-Lacarrère (sim4). The results show that all the schemes tested overestimate the PBL height, with the largest mean absolute errors for sim1 and sim2 (215 and 225 m, respectively). The mean error is significantly smaller for sim3 and sim4 (109 and 72 m, respectively). The agreement between the WRF and Sodar PBLH has a diurnal pattern and changes with the Pasquill stability classes. The overestimation of the PBL height might lead to the underestimation of air pollutant concentrations modelled with the air quality models.

Keywords: planetary boundary layer height; PBLH; PBL height; weather research; weather forecasting; WRF; Sodar; acoustic remote sounding; PM2.5; particulate matter; air pollution; simulation; modelling; air quality; Poland.

DOI: 10.1504/IJEP.2015.076579

International Journal of Environment and Pollution, 2015 Vol.58 No.1/2, pp.3 - 14

Available online: 15 May 2016 *

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