THE ROLE OF SURFACE TENSION IN BREAKING WAVES

Robert L. Miller

Abstract


Breaking criteria in the vicinity of the crest, such as limit crest angle and limit form, and larger dimensions such as limit height (H/L) and breaker height (Hb/db)» are found experimentally to be significantly affected by change in surface tension. A number of wave types were examined, including periodic waves, solitary waves, and standing waves, over both constant depth and uniform slopes. Variations in natural waters in some cases were found to be of equivalent magnitude to those induced for the experiments. The conclusion is drawn that surface tension should be taken into account in development of a satisfactory theory of breakers. It is also an important factor in experimental studies, particularly engineering model studies involving breaking waves.

Keywords


surface tension; breaking waves

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