Simulations of Santa Barbara Sundowner Winds

Friday, 19 December 2014
Charles Jones and Leila V Carvalho, University of California Santa Barbara, Santa Barbara, CA, United States
The south slopes of the Santa Ynez Mountains experience mild to strong downslope winds 3-4 times per year. Known locally as Sundowners, these winds have occasionally reached severe levels. During strong to severe Sundowners, the main danger is not from the wind, but from wildfires as they can quickly advance downslope towards the city of Santa Barbara and the surrounding communities. This paper discusses the dynamical mechanisms of Sundowner winds simulated with the Weather and Research Forecasting (WRF) model. The presentation focuses on the Sundowner wind occurred during the Jesusita fire in Santa Barbara during 5-9 May 2009.