A Study of the Inland Penetration of Sea Breezes on the Northern Gulf Coast (157)

Mary Reeves, University of South Alabama, Mobile, AL

Dr Sytske Kimball, University of South Alabama

 

Abstract:

A Study of the Inland Penetration of Sea Breezes on the Northern Gulf Coast Mary Reeves and Dr. Sytske Kimball University of South AlabamaDuring the warm season sea and bay breezes (SB and BB) are common in Mobile County. Since land heats up faster than water during the day, a land-sea temperature gradient forms, and a SB may develop. The leading edge of the SB flow is known as the sea breeze front (SBF). The top of a SB gravity current is turbulent and can affect air traffic. SBs can affect the distribution of pollutants such as ozone, which is a huge health factor in the warm summers of Mobile. On days when SBs last longer and penetrate further inland, the SB gravity current and the distribution of pollutants may be more predominant.The inland penetration distance of SBFs along the Mobile county gulf coast was determined using radar images. Five years of SB data (May - Oct) were considered in this study. This work provides a better understanding of how far SBs travel inland in the Mobile county area. Only SBs that do not interact with convection were considered in this study. On average, sea breezes last between 5.5 and 6 hours and penetrate less far inland as the season progresses. Extremes will be presented and related to background flow speed and direction.