LABORATORY SIMULATION OF SEA WAVES.
STANFORD UNIV CA DEPT OF CIVIL ENGINEERING
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An investigation was undertaken to answer the question To what extent and in what sense can wind-generated sea waves by reliably simulated in a laboratory. Experimental data were collected in a wind-wave facility that measures 3 ft wide, 6 ft high and 115 ft long with a 70 ft glass-walled test section. By using a suction fan to draw air over water with a nominal depth of 3 ft, more than 150 sea conditions were measured at twelve fetches ranging from 9 to 64 ft and ten wind speeds from 20 to 80 fps. Water surface elevation was sensed by capacitance wire transducers, recorded in analog form on magnetic tape, and then digitized for analysis. Graphical data summaries of sea conditions in the channel illustrate the nature of the wave energy spectrum and generally verify certain hypotheses concerning the statistical character of sea data. Wave height statistical character of sea data. A normalized form of the energy spectrum demonstrates the apparent similarity of laboratory and ocean wave spectra. It is concluded that certain important stochastic properties of ocean wind waves can be properly simulated in the laboratory on a relatively small scale. The hypothesis due to Longuet-Higgins that the wave heights are statistically distributed according to the Rayleigh probability distribution is shown to be as valid for the laboratory waves as it is for prototype conditions.
- Fluid Mechanics