The velocity and temperature fields on both sides of an air-water interface were examined experimentally in order to understand better the physical processes of momentum and heat transfer through the surface layers about the interface. An examination of temperature and velocity profiles plotted in “law-of-the-wall” coordinates leads to the conclusion that, both in the air and in the water, the mechanism of momentum transfer is affected by surface roughness changes, but the mechanism of heat transfer is not. In the water surface layer the velocity fluctuations due to the wave-related motions are of the same order as the purely turbulent motions. The turbulent components closely resemble those found in boundary layers over solid walls. The measured total energy flux from the interface agrees well with the measured single-phase, vertical heat transport through the water surface layer.

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