Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Wind concentrates pollutants with unexpected order in an urban environment

Date:
August 24, 2012
Source:
American Institute of Physics (AIP)
Summary:
When blown by chaotic winds in an urban environment, pollutants tend to accumulate in specific neighborhoods.

Cities -- with their concrete canyons, isolated greenery, and congested traffic -- create seemingly chaotic and often powerful wind patterns known as urban flows. Carried on these winds are a variety of environmental hazards, including exhaust particles, diesel fumes, chemical residues, ozone, and the simple dust and dander produced by dense populations.

Related Articles


In a paper published in the American Institute of Physics (AIP) journal Physics of Fluids, researchers present the unexpected finding that pollutant particles, rather than scattering randomly, prefer to accumulate in specific regions of the urban environment and even form coherent structures. "The unexpected finding is coherent patterns in fluid flows were thought to have no real analog in nature," said Wenbo Tang of Arizona State University in Tempe. "In previous studies, the existence of these patterns in fluid flows was only verified with idealized 'theoretical' flows. It was not known if such structures were robust enough to manifest in the environment."

The researchers were able to verify this by using a new mathematical formula, the first of its kind, to simulate the long-term random motion of pollutant particles as would be found in the real world. These more realistic simulations revealed that coherent patterns emerged from the random motions of particles carried along by the urban flow. The results can be used to generate maps of well and poorly mixed regions and highlight urban areas that are most susceptible to high concentrations of pollutants, indicating locations that should be avoided or remedied.

According to the researchers, the modeling capabilities developed in this project directly benefit decision makers addressing issues related to urban pollution, human comfort, and the effects of climate change on urban areas. The research also aims to understand the interconnection of urban flows with the regional and global atmosphere.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by American Institute of Physics (AIP). Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Wenbo Tang, Brent Knutson, Alex Mahalov, Reneta Dimitrova. The geometry of inertial particle mixing in urban flows, from deterministic and random displacement models. Physics of Fluids, 2012; 24 (6): 063302 DOI: 10.1063/1.4729453

Cite This Page:

American Institute of Physics (AIP). "Wind concentrates pollutants with unexpected order in an urban environment." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 24 August 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/08/120824081917.htm>.
American Institute of Physics (AIP). (2012, August 24). Wind concentrates pollutants with unexpected order in an urban environment. ScienceDaily. Retrieved March 27, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/08/120824081917.htm
American Institute of Physics (AIP). "Wind concentrates pollutants with unexpected order in an urban environment." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/08/120824081917.htm (accessed March 27, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Earth & Climate News

Friday, March 27, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Clean-Up Follows Deadly Weather in Okla.

Clean-Up Follows Deadly Weather in Okla.

AP (Mar. 26, 2015) Gov. Mary Fallin has declared a state of emergency for 25 Oklahoma counties after powerful storms rumbled across the state causing one death, numerous injuries and widespread damage. (March 26) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
At Least Four Dead After Floods in Northern Chile

At Least Four Dead After Floods in Northern Chile

Reuters - News Video Online (Mar. 26, 2015) At least four people have been killed by severe flooding in northern Chile after rains battered the Andes mountains and swept into communities below. Rob Muir reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Oklahomans "devastated" By Tornado Damage

Oklahomans "devastated" By Tornado Damage

Reuters - US Online Video (Mar. 26, 2015) Buildings and homes lay in ruins and a semi-truck gets flipped following a fierce tornado that left at least one person dead. Rough Cut (no reporter narration). Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Tornado Tears Through Oklahoma Town

Tornado Tears Through Oklahoma Town

Reuters - US Online Video (Mar. 26, 2015) Aerial video shows the moment a tornado ripped across the town of Moore, Oklahoma, sending sparks flying. Rough Cut (no reporter narration). Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Plants & Animals

Earth & Climate

Fossils & Ruins

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins