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Lidar observations and numerical simulations of an atmospheric hydraulic jump and mountain waves
  • Alfredo Peña,
  • Pedro Santos
Alfredo Peña
Technical University of Denmark

Corresponding Author:aldi@dtu.dk

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Pedro Santos
Technical University of Denmark
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An atmospheric hydraulic jump was observed over the Alaiz mountain range and Elorz valley near Pamplona, Spain from radial velocity retrievals performed with two scanning lidars during October 5 and 6, 2018. The jump occurred on the lee side of the mountain range and moved more than two kilometers further downstream the mountain base inside the valley. Here, we simulate the two days using the multi-scale modeling capabilities of the Weather Research and Forecasting model. We find that the model is able to reproduce the hydraulic jump at Alaiz in high detail matching qualitatively well the timing and main features observed by both the scanning lidars and meteorological instruments on a series of masts deployed throughout the area. The simulation results shows that the jump starts at the beginning of the evening, right after the atmospheric conditions over the top of the Alaiz mountain become stable and the flow at the mountain top experiences a transition from subcritical to supercritical. The simulations also show that the jump lasts about 10 hours until it moves close to the mountain top; then lee-wave activity is mainly portrayed and lasts until late in the morning. The flow is only supercritical during the periods where the jump and the lee waves take place. The jump and lee-wave regimes can be distinguished from the simulation results by computing the ratio of the upstream depth-average Brunt–Väisälä frequency to the depth-average mean wind speed.
27 Feb 2021Published in Journal of Geophysical Research: Atmospheres volume 126 issue 4. 10.1029/2020JD033744