In fluid dynamics, wind-generated waves, or wind waves, are surface waves which take place on any free surface of seas, oceans, lakes, canals, and rivers or even on tiny ponds and puddles. They arise from the wind blowing over a fluid surface area. Waves in various oceans can travel several miles before reaching the land. Wind waves vary in size from tiny ripples to waves more than 30 m (100 ft.) high.
When directly formed and influenced by the local winds, a system of wind wave is known as a wind sea. After the wind stops to blow, wind waves are referred to as swells. More usually, a swell comprises of wind-generated waves which aren’t substantially influenced by the local wind at that period. They’ve been developed elsewhere or some time ago. Wind waves that occur in the ocean are known as ocean surface waves.
Sources of wind wave formation: Sea water wave is created by several types of disturbances like gravity, crossing the wind, and Seismic events. The formation of wind wave is started by the disturbances of cross wind field on the sea water surface. Two primary mechanisms of surface wave generation by winds (The Miles-Phillips Mechanism) and any other sources (such as earthquakes) of wave generation can explain the development of wind waves.
Nonetheless, if one set any flat water surface and sudden cross wind flows on the water surface, then the formation of surface wind waves can be easily explained by following 2 mechanisms that initiated by standard pressure fluctuations of parallel wind shear flows and turbulent winds.
Wind waves have a particular amount of randomness: subsequent waves differ in shape, height, and duration with low predictability. So, they can also be described as a stochastic process, in combination with the physics that governs their propagation, growth, generation, and decay -as well as determining the interdependence between flow amounts like the movements of water surface, water pressure, and flow velocities. The wind wave models can easily predict the significant statistics of wind waves (both swells and seas) in various evolving sea states.
Even though waves are often regarded in the water seas of the Earth, the hydrocarbon seas of the Titan may also have some wind-driven waves.
Wave power varies significantly in various regions of the world. Parts of the world with sufficient wave power resource include northern Canada, the western coasts of Scotland, Australia, southern Africa, and the northwestern coast of the US, specifically Alaska.
It feels great going to the beach and having heaps of fun and laughter in the water, but have you ever asked yourself how sometimes the water can just pull you in a different direction or even how ocean waves are formed? One of the things several people love about oceans is the waves. People like to surf the waves, play in the waves, and the sound of the waves only crashing on the beach. The water in different oceans is always moving. On the water surface, we see water flowing in the form of waves. Below the surface, the water flows in great currents. The ocean surface is in a continuous motion. Waves are as a result of water surface disturbance; waves themselves represent a restoration force only to calm the surface.
1. The tallest ocean waves ever measured was 1719 feet at Lituya Bay, Alaska.
2. The tallest ocean wave recorded in the open ocean was about 95 feet during a storm near Scotland.
3. Surface current is crucial to ships as they can make it difficult or easy to travel based on the direction of the current.
4. Some marine animals often take advantage of currents to migrate several miles to and from breeding areas.
5. Many waves that are observed at sea are progressive wind wave’s i.e. they are developed by winds. The distance over water, where the wind always blows in a single direction is known as fetch.
6. Progressive waves are transverse, longitudinal or orbital based on the pattern of particle oscillation. Particles in ocean waves usually move in orbital paths.
Now there is all you need to understand about currents and waves. Isn’t fascinating stuff it?