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Budget analysis of the Boundary Layer grid flights during FIFE-1987

An aircraft grid pattern was flown by the Canadian Twin Otter to map the low‐level fluxes and structure over the First International Satellite Land Surface Climatology Project (ISLSCP) Field Experiment (FIFE) research area in 1987. The time dependence and horizontal advection of heat and moisture were extracted from these flights, combined with surface flux measurements and boundary layer top measurements from radiosondes, to analyze the boundary layer budget using a mixed layer model. The results confirm the suggestion of an earlier study that the boundary layer top entrainment (when parameterized using the buoyancy flux) is nearly double the value used by many modeling studies. Both surface and aircraft data have been revised, and it now appears that the direct measurements of the sensible and latent heat fluxes by the aircraft underestimated these fluxes by about 20%, because of filtering and undersampling of long wavelength contributions.

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Betts, A.K., R.L. Desjardins, and J.I. MacPherson, 1992: Budget analysis of the Boundary Layer grid flights during FIFE-1987. J. Geophys. Res., 97, 18533-18546.