Evolution of wide-spectrum unidirectional wave groups in a tank: an experimental and numerical study

L. Shemer*, K. Goulitski, E. Kit

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Evolution of unidirectional nonlinear wave groups with wide spectra is studied experimentally and numerically. As an example of such an evolution, focusing of an initially wide wave train that is modulated both in amplitude and in frequency, to a single steep wave at a prescribed location along the laboratory wave tank is investigated. When numerous frequency harmonics arrive at the focusing location in phase, a very wave steep single emerges. The experimental study was carried out in two wave flumes that differ in size by an order of magnitude: a 330 m long Large Wave Channel in Hanover, and in 18 m long Tel-Aviv University wave tank. The spatial version of the Zakharov equation was applied in the numerical simulations. Detailed quantitative comparison is carried out between the experimental results and the numerical simulations. Spectra of the 2nd order bound waves are calculated using the theoretical model adopted. It is demonstrated that with the contribution of bound waves accounted for, a very good agreement between experiments and simulations is achieved.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)193-219
Number of pages27
JournalEuropean Journal of Mechanics, B/Fluids
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 2007


  • Bound (locked) waves
  • Freak waves
  • Nonlinear water waves
  • Spatial evolution
  • Zakharov equation


Dive into the research topics of 'Evolution of wide-spectrum unidirectional wave groups in a tank: an experimental and numerical study'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this