New solutions of the C.S.Y. equation reveal increases in freak wave occurrence

David Andrade, Michael Stiassnie

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


In this article we study the time evolution of broad banded, random inhomogeneous fields of deep water waves. Our study is based on solutions of the equation derived by Crawford, Saffman and Yuen in 1980, (Crawford et al., 1980). Our main result is that there is a significant increase in the probability of freak wave occurrence than that predicted from the Rayleigh distribution. This result follows from the investigation of three related aspects. First, we study the instability of JONSWAP spectra to inhomogeneous disturbances whereby establishing a wider instability region than that predicted by Alber's equation. Second, we study the long time evolution of such instabilities. We observe that, during the evolution, the variance of the free surface elevation and thus, the energy in the wave field, localizes in regions of space and time. Last, we compute the probabilities of encountering freak waves and compare it with predictions obtained from Alber's equation and the Rayleigh distribution.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number102581
JournalWave Motion
StatePublished - Sep 2020
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Modeling and Simulation
  • General Physics and Astronomy
  • Computational Mathematics
  • Applied Mathematics


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