Numerical modeling of wave breaking induced by fixed or moving boundaries

Computational Mechanics, 17(6), 374-391, 1996.

Abstract :  

In this paper, several numerical aspects of an existing model for fully nonlinear waves are improved and validated to study wave breaking due to shoaling over a gentle plane slope and wave breaking induced by a moving lateral boundary.

The model is based on fully nonlinear potential flow theory and combines a higher-order Boundary Element Method (BEM) for solving Laplace's equation at a given time and Lagrangian Taylor expansions for the time updating of the free surface position and potential. An improved numerical treatment of the boundary conditions at the intersection between moving lateral boundaries and the free surface (corner) is implemented and tested in the model, and the free surface interpolation method is also improved to better model highly curved regions of the free surface that occur in breaking waves. Finally, a node regridding technique is introduced to improve the resolution of the solution close to moving boundaries and in breaker jets.

Examples are presented for solitary wave propagation, shoaling, and breaking over a 1:35 slope and for wave breaking induced by a moving vertical boundary. Using the new methods, both resolution and extent of computations are significantly improved compared to the earlier model, for similar computational efforts. In all cases computations can be carried out up to impact of the breaker jets on the free surface.

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