On the Formation of an Elevated Nocturnal Inversion Layer in the Presence of a Low-Level Jet: A Case Study

Jakob Kutsher, Nitsa Haikin, Avi Sharon, Eyal Heifetz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

We report on observed nocturnal profiles, in which an inversion layer is located at the core of a low-level jet, bounded between two well-mixed layers. High-resolution vertical profiles were collected during a field campaign in a small plain in the Israeli desert (Negev), distant 100 km from the eastern shore of the Mediterranean Sea. During the evening hours, the synoptic flow, superposed on the late sea breeze, forms a low-level jet characterized by a maximum wind speed of 12 ms -1 at an altitude of 150 m above the ground. The strong wind shear at the jet maximum generates downward heat fluxes that act against the nocturnal ground cooling. As a result, the typical ground-based nocturnal inversion is "elevated" towards the jet centre, hence a typical early morning thermal profile is observed a few hours after sunset. Since the jet is advected into the region, its formation does not depend on the presence of a surface nocturnal inversion layer to decouple the jet from surface friction. On the contrary, here the advected low-level jet acts to hinder the formation of such an inversion. These unusual temperature and wind profiles are expected to affect near-ground dispersion processes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)441-449
Number of pages9
JournalBoundary-Layer Meteorology
Volume144
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 2012

Keywords

  • Low-level jet
  • Nocturnal inversion
  • Stable boundary layer
  • Turbulent mixing

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