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Chapter 7 Waves in the Ocean ©2003 Jones and Bartlett Publishers.

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Presentation on theme: "Chapter 7 Waves in the Ocean ©2003 Jones and Bartlett Publishers."— Presentation transcript:

1 Chapter 7 Waves in the Ocean ©2003 Jones and Bartlett Publishers

2 Definition: Waves are the undulatory motion of a water surface. Two general wave categories: –Progressive waves Surface waves Internal waves Tsunamis –Standing waves Seiches 7-1Properties of Ocean Waves

3 Characteristics of progressive waves: Parts of a wave are: –wave crest –wave trough Wave parameters: –wave height (H) –wave amplitude (1/2H) –wave length (L) –wave period (T). Wave period provides a basis for classifying waves as capillary waves, chop, swell, seiches, tsunamis, and. 7-1Properties of Ocean Waves

4 Idealized Wave Spectrum

5 10 1 10 0 10 -1 10 -2 (m)

6 Most of the waves present on the oceans surface are wind-generated waves. Size and type of wind-generated waves are controlled by: –wind velocity –wind duration –Fetch –original state of the sea surface. As wind velocity increases wavelength, period and height increase, but only if wind duration and fetch are sufficient. 7-1Properties of Ocean Waves

7 A fully developed sea is a sea state where the waves generated by the wind are as large as they can be under current conditions of wind velocity and fetch. Significant wave height is the average of the highest 1/3 of the waves present. –Good indicator of potential for wave damage to ships and for erosion of shorelines. 7-1Properties of Ocean Waves

8 Progressive waves are waves that move forward across a surface. As waves pass, wave form and wave energy move forward, but not the water. Water molecules move in an orbital motion as the wave passes. Diameter of orbit increases with increasing wave size and decreases with depth below the water surface. 7-2Wave Motions

9 7-2Wave Motions

10 Orbit Diameter and Stokes Drift

11 Wave base is the depth to which a surface wave can move water. If the water is deeper than wave base: –orbits are circular –no interaction between the bottom and the wave. If the water is shallower than wave base –orbits are elliptical –orbits become increasingly flattened towards the bottom. 7-2Wave Motions

12 Deep- and Shallow-Water Motion

13 There are three types of waves defined by water depth –Deep-water wave (d>or=1/2 of L) –Intermediate-water wave (d>1/20 and <1/2 of L) –Shallow-water wave (d<or= 1/20 of L) Celerity is the velocity of the wave form and not of the water. –Celerity equations. 7-2Wave Motions

14 Fetch is the area of contact between the wind and the water and is where wind- generated waves begin. Seas is the term applied to the sea state of the fetch when there is a chaotic jumble of new waves. Waves continue to grow until the sea is fully developed or becomes limited by fetch restriction or wind duration. 7-3Life History of Ocean Waves

15 Wave interference is the momentary interaction between waves as they pass through each other. Wave interference can be constructive or destructive.

16 Chaotic Sea exhibiting complex surface wave forms.

17 7-3Life History of Ocean Waves Dispersion: Gradual separation of wave types based on their relative wavelengths and speeds Because celerity increases as wavelength increases: -long waves travel faster than short waves. -This causes dispersion outside of the fetch and regular ocean swell.

18 7-3Life History of Ocean Waves

19 7-3Life History of Ocean Waves Swells: wave type found outside the fetch. Chaotic seas inside fetch area.

20 7-3Life History of Ocean Waves A Rogue wave occurs when there is a momentary appearance of an unusually large wave formed by constructive interference of many smaller waves.

21 7-3Life History of Ocean Waves

22 7-3Life History of Ocean Waves

23 The shallower the water, the greater the interaction between the wave and the bottom alters the wave properties, eventually causing the wave to collapse. Wave speed decreases as depth decreases. Wavelength decreases as depth decreases. Wave height increases as depth decreases. Troughs become flattened and the wave profile becomes extremely asymmetrical. Period remains unchanged. Period is a fundamental property of a wave. Celerity equation of shallow water wave. 7-3Life History of Ocean Waves

24 Wave refraction is the bending of a wave crest into an area where it travels more slowly.

25 Wave steepness is a ratio of wave height divided by wavelength (H/L). In shallow water, wave height increases and wave length decreases. When H/L is larger than or equals 1/7 (H/L 1/7), the wave becomes unstable and breaks. There are three types of breakers: spilling breakers, plunging breakers, and surging breakers. 7-3Life History of Ocean Waves

26 Spilling, Plunging and Surging Breakers Spilling breaker: Top of wave crest spills over wave. Energy released gradually across entire surf zone. Plunging breaker: Crest curls over front of wave. Energy dissipates quickly. Common at shorelines with steep slopes Surging breaker: Never breaks as it never attains critical wave steepness. Common along upwardly sloping beach faces or seawalls. Energy released seaward.

27 Storm surge is the rise in sea level resulting from low atmospheric pressure and the accumulation of water driven shoreward by storm winds. Water is deeper at the shore area, allowing waves to progress farther inland. Storm surge is especially severe when superimposed upon a spring high tide. 7-3Life History of Ocean Waves

28 Storm surge damage


30 Standing waves or seiches consist of a water surface seesawing back and forth. Node : The line about which the surface oscillates. –Located in centers of enclosed basins and toward the seaward side of open basins. Antinodes: Points where there are the maximum displacement of the surface as it oscillates. –Antinodes usually located at the edge of the basin. 7-4Standing Waves

31 Natural Period of Standing Waves

32 Geometry of the basin controls the period of the standing wave. A basin can be closed or open. Standing waves can be generated by storm surges. Resonance amplifies the displacement at the nodes and occurs when the period of the basin is similar to the period of the force producing the standing wave. 7-4Standing Waves

33 Internal waves form within the water column along the pycnocline. Because of the small density difference between the water masses above and below the pycnocline, wave properties are different compared to surface waves. Internal waves display all the properties of surface progressive waves including reflection, refraction, interference, breaking, etc. Any disturbance to the pycnocline can generate internal waves, including: flow of water related to the tides, flow of water masses past each other, storms, or submarine landslides. 7-5 Other Types of Progressive Waves

34 Internal waves form within the water column along the pycnocline. 7-5 Other Types of Progressive Waves

35 Tsunamis were previously called tidal waves, but are unrelated to tides. Tsunamis consist of a series of long-period waves characterized by very long wavelength (up to 100 km) and high speed (up to 760 km/hr) in the deep ocean. Because of their large wavelength, tsunamis are shallow-water to intermediate-water waves as they travel across the ocean basin. They only become a danger when reaching coastal areas where wave height can reach 10 m. Tsunamis originate from earthquakes, volcanic explosions, or submarine landslides. 7-5 Other Types of Progressive Waves

36 Generation of a Tsunami


38 Tsunami damage

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