Wind tunnel simulation of an atmospheric boundary layer
Burton, William V
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This thesis examines the simulation of a rural and suburban area using the Texas Tech wind tunnel. The objective was to simulate a rural and suburban type terrain by matching key parameters to a reasonable unifying scale factor. Passive devices such as spires, fence barriers, and roughness elements were implemented in the tunnel for the simulations. ASCE 7-98 standards were used for similarity criteria between the full-scale ABL flow characteristics and the simulations. Comparisons of the velocity profiles, turbulence intensities, and power spectrum were performed. The rural exposure was simulated with the installation of triangular-shaped spires, two fence barriers, and carpet as the roughness fetch. For the suburban exposure simulation, the installation of the spires, fence barriers, and 50 mm square roughness blocks were used as the roughness fetch. Various scale factors were investigated until a reasonable match for all the key parameters were obtained. A reasonable compromise was found at a model scale of 1:350 for the rural simulation and a 1:300 for the suburban simulation. Adequate simulations were performed at these scale factors with the exception of insufficient turbulence intensity in the lower boundary layer.