J. van Boxel
- The effect of turbulent flow structures on saltation sand transport in the atmospheric boundary layer
- Earth Surface Processes and Landforms
- Volume | Issue number
- 23 | 10
- Pages (from-to)
- Number of pages
- Document type
- Faculty of Science (FNWI)
- Institute for Biodiversity and Ecosystem Dynamics (IBED)
The effect of turbulent flow structures on saltation sand transport was studied during two convective storms in Niger, West Africa. Continuous, synchronous measurements of saltation fluxes and turbulent velocity fluctuations were made with a sampling frequency of 1 Hz. The shear stress production was determined from the vertical and streamwise velocity fluctuations. The greatest stress-bearing events were classified as turbulent structures, with sweep, ejection, inward interaction, and outward interaction described according to the quadrant technique. The classified turbulent structures accounted for 63·5 per cent of the average shear stress during the first storm, and 56·0 per cent during the second storm. The percentage of active time was only 20·6 per cent and 15·8 per cent, respectively. High saltation fluxes were associated with sweeps and outward interactions. These two structures contribute positively (sweeps) and negatively (outward interactions) to the shear stress, but have in common that the streamwise velocity component is higher than average. Therefore, the horizontal drag force seems primarily responsible for saltation sand transport, and not the shear stress. This was also reflected by the low correlation coefficients (r) between shear stress and saltation flux (0·12 and 0·14, respectively), while the correlation coefficients between the streamwise velocity component and saltation flux were much higher (0·65 and 0·57, respectively).
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