The dependence of meteorological measurements and plume dispersion on Bowen ratio and

albedo is very different than the dependence on surface roughness. Effective values for Bowen

ratio and albedo are used to estimate the strength of convective turbulence during unstable

conditions by determining how much of the incoming radiation is converted to sensible heat flux.

These estimates of convective turbulence are not linked as directly with tower measurements as

the linkage between the measured wind speed and the estimation of mechanical turbulence

intensities driven by surface roughness elements. While local surface characteristics

immediately upwind of the measurement site are very important for surface roughness, effective

values of Bowen ratio and albedo determined over a larger domain are more appropriate.

The recommended approach for processing digitized land cover data to determine the effective

Bowen ratio and albedo for input to AERMET is to average the surface characteristics across a

representative domain without any direction or distance dependency. The recommended default

domain is a 10km by 10km region centered on the measurement site. Use of the measurement

location to define the domain is likely to be adequate for most applications. However, a domain

representative of the application site may be more appropriate for some applications, particularly

if the majority of sources are elevated releases. The use of an alternative domain for Bowen

ratio and albedo should be documented and justified in a modeling protocol submitted to the

appropriate reviewing authority prior to conducting the modeling analysis.


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