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Appears in Collections:Biological and Environmental Sciences Journal Articles
Peer Review Status: Refereed
Title: Latitude and lake size are important predictors of over-lake atmospheric stability: Atmospheric Stability Above Lakes
Author(s): Woolway, R Iestyn
Verburg, Piet
Merchant, Christopher J
Lenters, John D
Hamilton, David P
Brookes, Justin
Kelly, Sean
Hook, Simon
Laas, Alo
Pierson, Don
Rimmer, Alon
Rusak, James A
Jones, Ian D
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Keywords: lake
Issue Date: 16-Sep-2017
Date Deposited: 9-May-2019
Citation: Woolway RI, Verburg P, Merchant CJ, Lenters JD, Hamilton DP, Brookes J, Kelly S, Hook S, Laas A, Pierson D, Rimmer A, Rusak JA & Jones ID (2017) Latitude and lake size are important predictors of over-lake atmospheric stability: Atmospheric Stability Above Lakes. Geophysical Research Letters, 44 (17), pp. 8875-8883.
Abstract: Turbulent fluxes across the air‐water interface are integral to determining lake heat budgets, evaporation, and carbon emissions from lakes. The stability of the atmospheric boundary layer (ABL) influences the exchange of turbulent energy. We explore the differences in over‐lake ABL stability using data from 39 globally distributed lakes. The frequency of unstable ABL conditions varied between lakes from 71 to 100% of the time, with average air temperatures typically several degrees below the average lake surface temperature. This difference increased with decreasing latitude, resulting in a more frequently unstable ABL and a more efficient energy transfer to and from the atmosphere, toward the tropics. In addition, during summer the frequency of unstable ABL conditions decreased with increasing lake surface area. The dependency of ABL stability on latitude and lake size has implications for heat loss and carbon fluxes from lakes, the hydrologic cycle, and climate change effects.
DOI Link: 10.1002/2017gl073941
Rights: ©2017. The Authors. This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution‐NonCommercial‐NoDerivs License (, which permits use and distribution in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited, the use is non‐commercial and no modifications or adaptations are made.
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