I have carried out a short research project at Arizona
State University on microbursts. These microbursts are intense and sudden
downdraughts of cold and water-loaded air from thunderclouds, and pose
a hazard to aviation. To investigate the flow characteristics, I carried
out laboratory experiments simulating the microburst with a salt water
plume impinging on the bottom of a tank filled with fresh water. Measurements
were taken of the propagation of the burst along the surface and the velocities
within the burst, and the results compared favourably with meteorological
Unfortunately, the text available
online here does not include any of the graphs and equations. If you
would like to receive a hardcopy of the full report, please let me know.
Frans de Rooij,
last modified 2 March 1999.
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