A Hybrid Numerical Model for Simulating Atmospheric Dispersion

Document Type

Conference Proceeding

Publication Date


Publication Title

2005 ASME International Mechanical Engineering Congress and Exposition


American Society of Mechanical Engineers

First page number:


Last page number:



A hybrid numerical model for simulating atmospheric contaminant dispersion is developed. The hybrid numerical scheme employs an hp-adaptive finite element method coupled with a Lagrangian particle transport technique to solve the governing equations for atmospheric flow and species transport. A random walk/stochastic approach is used to generate Lagrangian particles that define the contaminant dispersion traces. A coarse mesh using low order shape functions is initially generated. Both the mesh and shape function order are subsequently refined and enriched in those regions where high computational error exist. Compared with fine mesh and high order numerical solutions, the hybrid scheme produces highly accurate solutions with reduced computational cost. A general probability distribution is used in the particle transport module for the random component of motion due to turbulent diffusion. Results depicting contaminant transport and dispersion in the atmosphere are presented. The computational efficiency of the hybrid numerical model is also discussed.


Air pollution; Computer simulations; Diffusion; Pollutants; Turbulent diffusion (Meteorology)


Computer Engineering | Electrical and Computer Engineering | Environmental Sciences | Mechanical Engineering | Meteorology | Numerical Analysis and Computation




ASME 2005 International Mechanical Engineering,
Orlando, Florida, USA, November 5 – 11, 2005


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