Articles | Volume 11, issue 2
Nat. Hazards Earth Syst. Sci., 11, 323–330, 2011

Special issue: Extreme and rogue waves

Nat. Hazards Earth Syst. Sci., 11, 323–330, 2011

Research article 03 Feb 2011

Research article | 03 Feb 2011

Nonlinear random wave field in shallow water: variable Korteweg-de Vries framework

A. Sergeeva, E. Pelinovsky, and T. Talipova A. Sergeeva et al.
  • Institute of Applied Physics, Nizhny Novgorod, Russia

Abstract. The transformation of a random wave field in shallow water of variable depth is analyzed within the framework of the variable-coefficient Korteweg-de Vries equation. The characteristic wave height varies with depth according to Green's law, and this follows rigorously from the theoretical model. The skewness and kurtosis are computed, and it is shown that they increase when the depth decreases, and simultaneously the wave state deviates from the Gaussian. The probability of large-amplitude (rogue) waves increases within the transition zone. The characteristics of this process depend on the wave steepness, which is characterized in terms of the Ursell parameter. The results obtained show that the number of rogue waves may deviate significantly from the value expected for a flat bottom of a given depth. If the random wave field is represented as a soliton gas, the probabilities of soliton amplitudes increase to a high-amplitude range and the number of large-amplitude (rogue) solitons increases when the water shallows.

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