Structure of Offshore Low-Level Jet Turbulence and Implications to Mesoscale-to-Microscale Coupling

Balaji Jayaraman, Eliot Quon, Jing Li, Tanmoy Chatterjee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus Citations


This paper explores realistic nonstationary atmospheric boundary layer (ABL) turbulence arising from nonstationarity at the mesoscale, particularly within offshore low-level jets with implications to offshore wind farms, using high-fidelity multiscale large-eddy simulations (LES). To this end, we analyzed the single-point turbulence statistical structure of a North-Atlantic offshore LLJ event simulated using high-resolution LES (AMR-Wind). The nonstationary LLJ is simulated using a mesoscale-to-microscale coupled (MMC) simulation procedure involving data assimilation of mesoscale velocity and temperature data from the Weather Research and Forecasting (WRF) model. Unlike the assimilation of mesoscale velocity data into the LES, the direct assimilation of temperature profiles had a strong impact on turbulence stratification, thereby causing erroneous predictions of turbulence both above and within the jet layer. Various approaches to mitigate this effect have resulted in multiple (four) variants of this MMC strategy. Outcomes from this work clearly show that the turbulence within the low-level jet is a strong function of the MMC approach as the turbulence structure within the low-level jet is dependent on the flux of residual turbulence from outside the jet, which in turn depends on the temperature forcing history. Additionally, the turbulence predicted by all these different methods (as well as the observation data) show similar deviations from equilibrium as evidenced by comparisons with idealized atmospheric turbulence structure obtained using the same numerical method. In general, we observe that the predicted LLJ turbulence tends to differ from canonical ABL turbulence with comparable shear. Particularly, the combination of shear and turbulence observed in such nonstationary low-level turbulence cannot be matched using equilibrium settings and therefore, represents a critical use-case for both testing and leveraging meso-micro coupling strategies.

Original languageAmerican English
Article numberArticle No. 022064
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Physics: Conference Series
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2 Jun 2022
Event2022 Science of Making Torque from Wind, TORQUE 2022 - Delft, Netherlands
Duration: 1 Jun 20223 Jun 2022

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© Published under licence by IOP Publishing Ltd.

NREL Publication Number

  • NREL/JA-5000-81954


  • atmospheric boundary layer
  • atmospheric structure
  • atmospheric thermodynamics
  • atmospheric turbulence
  • numerical methods


Dive into the research topics of 'Structure of Offshore Low-Level Jet Turbulence and Implications to Mesoscale-to-Microscale Coupling'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this