Articles | Volume 10, issue 2
Atmos. Meas. Tech., 10, 431–444, 2017

Special issue: Pushing the limits: The eXperimental Planetary boundary layer...

Atmos. Meas. Tech., 10, 431–444, 2017

Research article 06 Feb 2017

Research article | 06 Feb 2017

Vertical profiles of the 3-D wind velocity retrieved from multiple wind lidars performing triple range-height-indicator scans

Mithu Debnath1, G. Valerio Iungo1, Ryan Ashton1, W. Alan Brewer2, Aditya Choukulkar2, Ruben Delgado3, Julie K. Lundquist4,5, William J. Shaw6, James M. Wilczak2, and Daniel Wolfe7 Mithu Debnath et al.
  • 1Wind Fluids and Experiments (WindFluX) Laboratory, Mechanical Engineering Department, The University of Texas at Dallas, Richardson, TX, USA
  • 2National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Earth Sciences Research Laboratory, Boulder, CO, USA
  • 3Atmospheric Physics Department, University of Maryland Baltimore County, Baltimore, MD, USA
  • 4National Renewable Energy Laboratory, Golden, CO, USA
  • 5Department of Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences, University of Colorado at Boulder, Boulder, CO, USA
  • 6Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, Richland, WA, USA
  • 7Physical Sciences Division, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Boulder, CO, USA

Abstract. Vertical profiles of 3-D wind velocity are retrieved from triple range-height-indicator (RHI) scans performed with multiple simultaneous scanning Doppler wind lidars. This test is part of the eXperimental Planetary boundary layer Instrumentation Assessment (XPIA) campaign carried out at the Boulder Atmospheric Observatory. The three wind velocity components are retrieved and then compared with the data acquired through various profiling wind lidars and high-frequency wind data obtained from sonic anemometers installed on a 300 m meteorological tower. The results show that the magnitude of the horizontal wind velocity and the wind direction obtained from the triple RHI scans are generally retrieved with good accuracy. However, poor accuracy is obtained for the evaluation of the vertical velocity, which is mainly due to its typically smaller magnitude and to the error propagation connected with the data retrieval procedure and accuracy in the experimental setup.

Short summary
Triple RHI scans were performed with three simultaneous scanning Doppler wind lidars and assessed with lidar profiler and sonic anemometer data. This test is part of the XPIA experiment. The scan strategy consists in two lidars performing co-planar RHI scans, while a third lidar measures the transversal velocity component. The results show that horizontal velocity and wind direction are measured with good accuracy, while the vertical velocity is typically measured with a significant error.