Model simulation of meteorology and air quality during the Summer PUMA intensive measurement campaign in the UK West Midlands conurbation

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The Regional Atmospheric Modeling System (RAMS) and Urban Airshed Model (UAM IV) have been implemented for prediction of air pollutant concentrations within the West Midlands conurbation of the United Kingdom. The modelling results for wind speed, direction and temperature are in reasonable agreement with observations for two stations, one in a rural area and the other in an urban area. Predictions of surface temperature are generally good for both stations, but the results suggest that the quality of temperature prediction is sensitive to whether cloud cover is reproduced reliably by the model. Wind direction is captured very well by the model, while wind speed is generally overestimated. The air pollution climate of the UK West Midlands is very different to those for which the UAM model was primarily developed, and the methods used to overcome these limitations are described. The model shows a tendency towards under-prediction of primary pollutant (NOx and CO) concentrations, but with suitable attention to boundary conditions and vertical profiles gives fairly good predictions of ozone concentrations. Hourly updating of chemical concentration boundary conditions yields the best results, with input of vertical profiles desirable. The model seriously underpredicts NO2/NO ratios within the urban area and this appears to relate to inadequate production of peroxy radicals. Overall, the chemical reactivity predicted by the model appears to fall well below that occurring in the atmosphere.


Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)26-42
Number of pages17
JournalScience of the Total Environment
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2006