Thursday, June 24, 2010

Rogue Waves Explained

Rogue waves a very large waves that can form in any weather. Strangely they do not form in groups. Therefore they almost stealth like in their approach. The combination of a massive, moving wall of water and the stealthy approach can lead to disaster on the sea.

A new study has discovered the probable cause of rogue waves. According to ScienceShot:

In a new paper to be published in Physical Review Letters, researchers use a computer model to simulate a rogue wave's birth and propagation. Two or more small waves, driven forward by strong currents, and at the same time resisted by powerful headwinds, suddenly combine and amplify their height into a single, giant wave. Once formed, the wave structure stabilizes itself and concentrates its energy in one direction. That enables it to travel many kilometers before breaking up, typically when either the driving currents or headwinds subside. Along the way, anyone unfortunate enough to be sitting in the wave's path is bound to remember the experience.
Research into rogue waves may help one day predict where these real life monsters of the sea can strike next. With prediction knowledge disasters like the March 2010 cruse ship strike may be avoided in the future.

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