The flow field of tornado vortices simulated in the 1/11 scaled model of the Wind Engineering, Energy and Environment (WindEEE) Dome is characterized. Particle Image Velocimetry measurements were performed to investigate the flow dynamics for a wide range of Swirl ratios (0.12≤S≤1.29) and at various heights above the surface. It is shown that this simulator is capable of generating a wide variety of tornado like vortices ranging from a single-celled laminar vortex to a multi-celled turbulent vortex. Radial profiles of the tangential velocity demonstrated a clear variation in the experimental values with height at and after the touch-down of the breakdown bubble. Also, the comparison between experimental tangential velocities and the Rankine model estimations resulted in good agreement at only the upper levels (Z>0.35). Radial velocity values close to the surface rose as the swirl increased which is mainly due to the intensified tangential velocities in that region. In addition, variation of the radial velocity with height is more noticeable for higher swirls which can be explained by the flow regime being fully turbulent for S≥ 0.57.

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