Wind Speed Amplification

Wind Speed Amplification

Wind Speed Amplification (WSA) is a crucial concept in understanding how wind speed is influenced by various topological or structural features in a given area. This metric is represented as a percentage, indicating the difference between the local wind speed (Ulocal) and a regional reference wind speed (Uref) measured at the same height. The formula for Wind Speed Amplification is given by:

$$ \text{WSA} = \left( \frac{U_{\text{local}} - U_{\text{ref}}}{U_{\text{ref}}} \right) \times 100% $$

This percentage helps to quantify how much faster or slower the wind is at a particular location compared to a broader regional standard.

Importance of Wind Speed Amplification

  1. Urban Planning and Architecture: In urban environments, buildings and other structures can significantly influence wind patterns. Understanding WSA helps architects and urban planners design buildings and spaces that either harness beneficial wind flows or mitigate negative effects such as wind tunnels and vortices.


  1. Safety and Comfort: High wind speeds in urban areas can pose risks to pedestrians and cyclists. Analyzing WSA helps in creating safer and more comfortable outdoor environments. For example, it can guide the placement of windbreaks or the orientation of buildings to reduce the impact of strong winds.


Factors Influencing Wind Speed Amplification

  • Topography: Natural features like hills, valleys, and mountains can accelerate or decelerate wind speeds. Wind tends to speed up when it flows over a ridge or gets channeled between obstacles, leading to positive WSA values. Conversely, porous media like trees can slow down the wind, resulting in negative WSA values.
  • Man-made Structures: Buildings, bridges, and other structures can significantly alter local wind speeds. Tall buildings, for instance, can create areas of both high-speed wind (around corners and edges) and low-speed wind (area in the wake tail).