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Open AccessArticle

Estimations of the Mexicali Valley (Mexico) Mixing Height

Instituto Nacional de Electricidad y Energías Limpias, Programa de Sustentabilidad Ambiental, Cuernavaca 62490, Mexico
Centro de Ciencias de la Atmósfera, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, Mexico City 04510, Mexico
Facultad de Derecho y Ciencias Sociales, Benemérita Universidad Autónoma de Puebla, Puebla 72570, Mexico
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Atmosphere 2020, 11(5), 505;
Received: 15 March 2020 / Revised: 30 April 2020 / Accepted: 12 May 2020 / Published: 14 May 2020
(This article belongs to the Section Meteorology)
We report estimations of the Mexicali Valley (Mexico) mixing height for three seasons. Surface and upper air meteorological measurements were carried out nearby Cerro Prieto geothermal power plant during July 2010 (summer), January 2012 (winter), and October 2016 (autumn). Four different methods were applied to estimate the convective boundary layer (CBL) height from radiosonde (RS) profiles: the parcel method, the gradients method, the least-squares variational approach based on the slab model of the CBL structure, and a covariance method. For nocturnal conditions, we used diagnostic models based on friction velocity and Monin–Obukhov length. Under unstable conditions, we obtained (on average) mixing heights of 497 m at 06:00 LST, 1242 m at 12:00 LST, 1404 m at 15:00 LST, and 482 at 18:00 LST during summer; 754 m at 12:00 LST during winter; and 1195 m at 12:00 LST and 13:00 m between the 14:00 and 15:00 LST during the autumn. The results allowed adjusting a semiempirical model to evaluate mixing height from turbulent sensible heat flux and friction velocity data. Our results provide practical tools that could facilitate the application of regulatory dispersion models to assess air quality in the region. View Full-Text
Keywords: atmospheric sounding; mixing height; Mexicali Valley atmospheric sounding; mixing height; Mexicali Valley
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Salcido, A.; Celada-Murillo, A.-T.; Carreón-Sierra, S.; Castro, T.; Peralta, O.; Salcido-González, R.-S.; Hernández-Flores, N.; Tamayo-Flores, G.-A.; Martínez-Flores, M.-A. Estimations of the Mexicali Valley (Mexico) Mixing Height. Atmosphere 2020, 11, 505.

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