The theory of internal wave wakes

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Authors
  1. Tunaley, J.K.E.
Corporate Authors
Defence R&D Canada - Ottawa, Ottawa ONT (CAN);LONDON RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT CORPORATION, OTTAWA ON (CAN)
Abstract
In practice, maritime surveillance includes the detection and observation of surface ships and possibly submarines, which create various types of disturbances on the sea surface. The disturbances, which form a wake, can sometimes be detected by radar, which responds to surface flows and height variations as well as slicks. The radar may be on a terrestrial platform, on an aircraft or on a spacecraft. This report focuses on the characteristics of the surface flows created by the generation of internal waves by a moving body. The treatment involves the calculation of crest patterns on the surface; it is demonstrated that these can be derived simply from the numerical solutions of a second order differential equation that describes internal waves in an internal layer with a prescribed Brunt-Väisälä profile. Though other workers have performed similar calculations, they do not describe the methodology and its details. The numerical approach is based on a determination of eigenvectors and their eigenvalues. These represent the profiles of the waves in the layer and the horizontal wave vectors respectively. The extension to a determination of the wake wave amplitudes is outlined and the potential for the detection of submarines is discussed. This method, which embodies simple physical models, is designed to be straightforward and expected to be a precursor to an efficient full simulation of internal wave wakes.

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Report Number
DRDC-OTTAWA-CR-2012-119 — Contractor Report
Date of publication
01 Jun 2012
Number of Pages
58
DSTKIM No
CA038303
CANDIS No
538286
Format(s):
Electronic Document(PDF)

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