The impact of synoptic-scale flow on sea breeze front propagation and intensity at Eglin Air Force Base
Weaver, James C.
Nuss, Wendell A.
Jonsson, Haflidi H.
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This study investigates the impact of the synoptic-scale flow on the propagation and intensity of the sea breeze front at Eglin Air Force Base. The 925 mb wind direction and speed from the 12 UTC Tallahassee sounding was used to categorize 509 summer days as having an offshore, onshore, or coast parallel synoptic-scale flow regimes. Days with similar synoptic-scale flows were then composited together to create hourly surface analyses for each regime. Sea breeze frontogenesis, location and intensity were analyzed on hourly plots of temperature, winds and frontogenesis. Results indicate that the most intense sea breeze fronts formed under 3-5 1 ms- offshore, 7-9 1 ms- coast parallel easterly, and 3-5 1 ms- coast parallel westerly synoptic-scale flow while the weakest fronts formed under 0-3 1 ms- onshore and coast parallel westerly flow. The inland penetration of the sea breeze front was restricted under offshore flow but propagated through the Eglin Range Complex under onshore flow. The intensity of the sea breeze front was found to be a balance between convergence (frontogenetic) and turbulent mixing (frontolytic). Under onshore flow the sea breeze front formed late in the afternoon when convergence at the front was maximized and turbulent mixing decreased. Under offshore flow, the strongest sea breeze fronts formed early in the afternoon due to strong convergence between offshore and onshore winds and weak turbulent mixing.
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