Workshop on Abnormal Wave Events
5-6June 2014 Nice, France
* /weɪv to͞o ˈfôrˌtēn/

Modulational instability, wave breaking and formation of large scale dipoles in the atmosphere

Miguel Onorato
Università di Torino
The Direct Numerical Simulation (DNS) of the Navier-Stokes equation for a two-phase flow (water and air) is used to study the dynamics of the modulational instability of free surface waves and its contribution to the interaction between ocean and atmosphere. If the steepness of the initial wave is large enough, we observe a wave breaking and the formation of large scale dipole structures in the air. Because of the multiple steepening and breaking of the waves under unstable wave packets, a train of dipoles is released and propagate in the atmosphere at a height comparable with the wave length.