Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Surf's Up: Professor Using Models To Predict Huge Waves

Date:
February 23, 2005
Source:
Texas A&M University
Summary:
If you're a ship captain and there might be 50-foot waves headed your way, you'd appreciate some information about them, right? That's the idea behind a wave model system a Texas A&M University at Galveston professor has developed. His detailed wave prediction system is currently in use in the Gulf of Mexico and the Gulf of Maine.

GALVESTON, Feb. 15, 2005 - If you're a ship captain and there might be 50-foot waves headed your way, you'd appreciate some information about them, right?

That's the idea behind a wave model system a Texas A&M University at Galveston professor has developed. His detailed wave prediction system is currently in use in the Gulf of Mexico and the Gulf of Maine.

Vijay Panchang, head of the Department of Maritime Systems Engineering, doesn't make waves - he predicts what they'll do, when they'll do it and how high they'll get.

Using data provided daily from NOAA and his own complex mathematical models, Panchang and research engineer Doncheng Li provide daily wave model predictions for much of the Texas coast, the Gulf of Mexico and the Gulf of Maine. Their simulations, updated every 12 hours, provide a forecast for two days ahead.

"The models we provide are based on very detailed information, such as seabed topography, offshore wave conditions, wind speed and direction and other factors," Panchang explains.

"It's useful information for anyone in coastal waters. Texas has a huge coastline, and Maine has more than 3,000 miles of coast. Recreational and fishing boats, cruise ships, commercial ships, and others can use this information. Coastal wave information can also be used to predict sediment transport and for engineering design."

Because the models use wind data, tsunamis that are created by undersea earthquakes can't be predicted. But that's not to say his modeling system doesn't come up with some big waves.

His wave model predicted big waves in November 2003 in the Gulf of Maine, and it was accurate - waves as high as 30 feet were recorded during one storm even in coastal regions.

Last summer during Hurricane Ivan, a buoy located 60 miles south of the Alabama coast recorded a whopping 60-foot wave. "There may have been higher waves because right after recording the 60- foot wave, the buoy snapped and stopped functioning," he says.

"Also, the 50-foot wave is an average measure of the sea-state, and the highest waves could be nearly twice as big. Waves during storms can be quite high, and 50-foot waves are not uncommon," Panchang reports.

He notes that during a storm in 1995 off the Halifax coast, the captain of the Queen Elizabeth II reported a monstrous 95-foot wave.

Panchang is also developing a similar wave model prediction system for the Prince William Sound Oil Recovery Institute in the Alaska port of Valdez, site of the Exxon Valdez oil spill. That wave model system should be online by next year.

Anyone on the water wants to know how high the waves will be when they out at sea," he says. "We provide a valuable service to those on ships and boats who want to know what the wave conditions will be like in the next 24 hours."

###

Funding for his wave model prediction system is provided by NOAA Sea Grant, The Texas Coastal Management Program, the Prince William Sound Oil Spill Recovery Institute and the National Marine Fisheries Service.

For more information, go to http://www.tamug.edu/MASE and click on wave simulations.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Texas A&M University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Texas A&M University. "Surf's Up: Professor Using Models To Predict Huge Waves." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 23 February 2005. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/02/050222193810.htm>.
Texas A&M University. (2005, February 23). Surf's Up: Professor Using Models To Predict Huge Waves. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 21, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/02/050222193810.htm
Texas A&M University. "Surf's Up: Professor Using Models To Predict Huge Waves." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/02/050222193810.htm (accessed October 21, 2014).

Share This



More Earth & Climate News

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Traditional Farming Methods Gaining Ground in Mali

Traditional Farming Methods Gaining Ground in Mali

AFP (Oct. 20, 2014) He is leading a one man agricultural revolution in Mali - Oumar Diatabe uses traditional farming methods to get the most out of his land and is teaching others across the country how to do the same. Duration: 01:44 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
How Detroit's Money Woes Led To U.N.-Condemned Water Cutoffs

How Detroit's Money Woes Led To U.N.-Condemned Water Cutoffs

Newsy (Oct. 20, 2014) The United Nations says water is a human right, but should it be free? Detroit has cut off water to residents who can't pay, and the U.N. isn't happy. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Hey, Doc! Sewage, Beer and Food Scraps Can Power Chevrolet’s Bi-Fuel Impala

Hey, Doc! Sewage, Beer and Food Scraps Can Power Chevrolet’s Bi-Fuel Impala

3BL Media (Oct. 20, 2014) Hey, Doc! Sewage, Beer and Food Scraps Can Power Chevrolet’s Bi-fuel Impala Video provided by 3BL
Powered by NewsLook.com
White Rhino's Death In Kenya Means Just 6 Are Left

White Rhino's Death In Kenya Means Just 6 Are Left

Newsy (Oct. 20, 2014) Suni, a rare northern white rhino at Ol Pejeta Conservancy, died Friday. This, as many media have pointed out, leaves people fearing extinction. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Plants & Animals

Earth & Climate

Fossils & Ruins

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins