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  • Created 15 Oct 2010

About the Group

Tsunamis are classified as long waves. These waves are generated by earthquakes and landslides, among other mechanisms. Tsunami waves travel rapidly inland, reaching high elevations, i.e., runup. These events can devastate entire communities and regions, as seen during the Boxing Day Tsunami in 2004. Tsunamis can cause widespread damage to homes, buildings, and other structures, and they can have long-lasting socioeconomic consequences. The project goal is to learn how tsunami waves respond to patches of macro-roughness. For example, how do patches of forest next to open land reduce the force of tsunami waves and change the landward distance tsunami waves travel? Two objectives will be pursued. Objective 1 is to understand the effects of macro-roughness patches on long-wave energy dissipation, refraction, and shadowing. Objective 2 is to investigate the effects of long-wave propagation in patches of macro-roughness on flow pathways and wave runup variation.

Expected research outcomes include: (1) long-wave energy dissipation as a function of macro-roughness coverage and (2) long-wave runup as a function of macro-roughness geometry. These datasets will reveal physics of long-wave propagation over complex sea bottoms. The above outcomes will lead to improved treatment of macro-roughness in models used to predict tsunami inundation. These outcomes will also lead to improved quantification of tsunami wave forces on buildings and other structures at the coast.

Project Overview