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🧑 Wave period vs wavelength
The mean of the highest third of the waves is historically known as significant wave height (sigH m). The square root of the zero order moment is how it’s described spectrally. It is the wave height that you would perceive if you were at sea, in more colloquial terms. It accurately depicts the magnitude of the wave area. Will there be bigger waves than the significant wave height predicted? Yes, but the sigH m calculation accurately depicts the sea conditions.
The overall displacement of the sea surface relative to the mean sea level (excluding waves) caused by barotropic forcing is known as sea surface displacement ((t) m) (i.e. pressure).
It is linked to local tides as well as the global response to pressure effects (large scale wind effects moving water). M2 is the largest tidal constituent in the LIS sea surface displacement.
The duration of the longest wave in the spectrum is known as the dominant wave period (Tp s) (long waves have longer periods and vice versa).
The largest wave in the wave spectrum corresponds to the dominant wave. This is the most powerful wave in the region (longest, fastest). Since the wave field has several waves on the surface at once, it’s easier to pick the dominant one to explain what’s going on.
❇ Dominant wave period 4 seconds
Shape and Spacing of Waves There were 10 ft swells at 6 seconds yesterday off Scripps pier, so while the dominant period in the report is a little longer, the actuals were a little shorter; the shorter the dominant period, the more local wind induced the swells are, and the more breaking wind waves you will experience. You’ll take a beating if you try to swim off the beach in big swells for short periods of time. This is not the time for a novice paddler to be out on the water. Long dominant intervals, such as 18 and 20 seconds, indicate huge, strong surf from afar, as well as a long time between waves to paddle out. But, if you are caught in a large swell with a 20 second span, it will have tremendous strength. Swells of 2 to 4 feet per second are common around here. If you have a little practice, you can launch and land from the beach in a reasonable amount of time. Register for Aqua-Adventures’ surfzone class.
As seadart previously said, gaining 4 feet in a short period of time is steep and far more likely to result in a sharp breaking peak. Many people who will be fine in long swells would be capsized. It can also make turning hard for paddlers who aren’t used to being on edge, locking them somewhere offshore they don’t want to be.
✌️ Wave period formula
where m0 denotes the variance of the time series of wave displacement acquired during the wave acquisition phase. However, since NDBC’s wave measurement systems do not return wave displacement time series, variance is measured using the nondirectional wave spectrum using the following formula:
where S(f) is the sum of spectral density over all frequency bands in the nondirectional wave spectrum, from lowest frequency fl to highest frequency fu, and d(f) is the bandwidth of each band. The frequency bandwidths of NDBC wave analysis systems usually range from 0.005 Hz at low frequencies to 0.02 Hz at high frequencies, with amounts ranging from 0.0325 to 0.485 Hz. Older devices have a constant bandwidth of 0.01Hz and sum from 0.03 to 0.40 Hz. Click here for more information on these spectra. Click here for an overview of how spectral wave data is obtained from buoy motion measurements.
The dominant or peak wave interval, DPD, corresponds to the frequency band in the nondirectional wave spectrum with the highest spectral density value. It’s fp: the reciprocal of peak frequency.
😍 Wave period and frequency
Forget about it – this is swell that is so small and weak when it is first formed by strong wind that it can almost never be surfed. The sea will appear lumpy and bumpy in this condition, but it will be difficult to see individual waves. When you see these kinds of waves predicted, you can be sure there will be heavy local winds because this kind of swell can’t spread far from the storms that cause it.
Most of what has been written about swells between 1 and 4 seconds also applies to swells in this range. However, if you’re desperate enough, you’ll start to see the occasional poor ridable wave face. Again, finding this kind of swell without the powerful onshore winds that produce it would be nearly impossible, so expect very poor surfing conditions.
This is a typical wind swell that many surfers consider surfable, particularly in areas where waves are scarce. This type of swell will usually remain in the path of the strong winds that produced it, but it may linger for a short time if the wind direction shifts, allowing for offshore conditions. Without simple sets, the waves will be weaker and more jumbled up. Big storm swells at the upper end of this range can create decent waves at the right place with the right local winds, and a strong sand bank or bit of reef can generate decent waves. These swells usually produce waves that is slightly smaller in height than the swell that created it, losing strength when it reaches deeper water, but at the upper end of this time range, a good reef will produce a wave face that is larger than the swell size.