on May 1, 2000 at 14:40:00:
Background: Several researchers have noted the existence of coherent km-scale kinematic
structures along boundaries. We recently have obtained high-resolution
surface data from a mobile mesonet that shows that vortices exist in the
DCVZ and some drylines with scales of 100-1000 m. Our observations show
that these vortices redistribute near-ground water vapor, and visual
observations show there may be an association between cumulus growth and
the existence of a vortex.
Hypothesis: Vortices (~vertical) in boundaries have similar structure aloft as at the
ground, extend through the same depth as the boundary itself, and are
associated with local horizontal maxima in virtual temperature.
NOTE: This is a "first-step" hypothesis. Note that we are not attempting to
explain the forcing of the vortices, nor their role in convection
initiation. Instead, we seek only to document their existence and the fact
that they are playing a role in vertical transport of heat and moisture.
Note also that the sampling strategy should provide enough data to do
preliminary investigation, and hypothesis-generation, concerning the
forcing of the vortices and role in convection initiation.