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Statistical properties of mechanically generated surface gravity waves: a laboratory experiment in a three-dimensional wave basin

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  25 May 2009

M. ONORATO
Affiliation:
Dipartimento di Fisica Generale, Università di Torino, Via P. Giuria 1, Torino, Italy
L. CAVALERI
Affiliation:
ISMAR, Castello 1364/A, Venezia, Italy
S. FOUQUES
Affiliation:
Norwegian Marine Technology Research Institute A.S. (MARINTEK), PO Box 4125, Valentinlyst, Trondheim, Norway
O. GRAMSTAD
Affiliation:
Department of Mathematics, University of Oslo, PO Box 1053, Blindern, Oslo, Norway
P. A. E. M. JANSSEN
Affiliation:
ECMWF, Shinfield Park, Reading, UK
J. MONBALIU
Affiliation:
K.U. Leuven, Kasteelpark Arenberg 40, Heverlee, Belgium
A. R. OSBORNE
Affiliation:
Dipartimento di Fisica Generale, Università di Torino, Via P. Giuria 1, Torino, Italy
C. PAKOZDI
Affiliation:
Norwegian Marine Technology Research Institute A.S. (MARINTEK), PO Box 4125, Valentinlyst, Trondheim, Norway
M. SERIO
Affiliation:
Dipartimento di Fisica Generale, Università di Torino, Via P. Giuria 1, Torino, Italy
C. T. STANSBERG
Affiliation:
Norwegian Marine Technology Research Institute A.S. (MARINTEK), PO Box 4125, Valentinlyst, Trondheim, Norway
A. TOFFOLI
Affiliation:
Det Norske Veritas, Veritasveien 1, Høvik, Norway
K. TRULSEN
Affiliation:
Department of Mathematics, University of Oslo, PO Box 1053, Blindern, Oslo, Norway

Abstract

A wave basin experiment has been performed in the MARINTEK laboratories, in one of the largest existing three-dimensional wave tanks in the world. The aim of the experiment is to investigate the effects of directional energy distribution on the statistical properties of surface gravity waves. Different degrees of directionality have been considered, starting from long-crested waves up to directional distributions with a spread of ±30° at the spectral peak. Particular attention is given to the tails of the distribution function of the surface elevation, wave heights and wave crests. Comparison with a simplified model based on second-order theory is reported. The results show that for long-crested, steep and narrow-banded waves, the second-order theory underestimates the probability of occurrence of large waves. As directional effects are included, the departure from second-order theory becomes less accentuated and the surface elevation is characterized by weak deviations from Gaussian statistics.

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Papers
Copyright
Copyright © Cambridge University Press 2009

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