Wave Forecasting for Construction in Mobile Bay

by Scott L. Douglass, Univ of South Alabama, Mobile, United States,
William W. Schroeder, Univ of South Alabama, Mobile, United States,
John T. Robinson, Univ of South Alabama, Mobile, United States,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Coastal Engineering Practice


Wave heights were forecast for day-to-day pipeline construction operations in the Main Pass area of Mobile Bay. A low-cost forecasting procedure was developed using the wave generation methodology outlined in the Shore Protection Manual (US Army Engineers 1984) and Weggel and Douglass (1985) with National Weather Service wind forecasts. The resulting wave forecasts were reasonable and useful. Overnight forecasting during the fall of 1990 was roughly 80% accurate (based on a criterion of overlapping ranges of forecast and observed wave heights). Wave forecast accuracy was limited by uncertainties in the National Weather Service wind forecasts and occasional swell energy entering the bay from the Gulf of Mexico.

Subject Headings: Forecasting | Water waves | Bays | Wind power | Water pipelines | Underwater pipelines | Wind engineering | United States | Gulf of Mexico

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