Paddle Generated Waves in Laboratory Channels

by Reinhard E. Flick, Asst. Research Oceanographer; Academic Administrator, Shore Processes Lab., Scripps Inst. Oceanography, La Jolla, Calif.,
Robert T. Guza, Asst. Prof.; Shore Processes Lab., Scripps Inst. Oceanography, La Jolla, Calif.,

Serial Information: Journal of the Waterway, Port, Coastal and Ocean Division, 1980, Vol. 106, Issue 1, Pg. 79-97

Document Type: Journal Paper


The wave field generated by single frequency and biharmonic motion of a plane paddle wavemaker is investigated theoretically and in laboratory experiments. Regardless of the detailed paddle geometry, nonlinear effects associated with the paddle boundary conditions introduce free waves which are the order of forced nonlinear corrections (Stokes type) associated with nonlinearities of the surface boundary conditions. For simple harmonic paddle motion at frequency σ, the largest free waves have frequency 2σ. For biharmonic paddle motions of frequencies σ1 and σ2, additional free difference frequency (—σ1 - σ2—) long waves are generated. These can resonate in a closed basin, leading to undesired modulations of breaker location and other shallow water phenomenon.

Subject Headings: Frequency response | Nonlinear waves | Wave generation | Long waves | Field tests | Boundary conditions | Geometrics | Nonlinear response

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