Forecasting Ocean waves: what information is available from models?


Jean Bidlot gives an overview on the ECMWF wave model products. 

Length: 50 min

Author: Jean Bidlot (ECMWF)


Wave models are able to give a very detailed description of the conditions at the surface of the oceans. The mean sea state is fully described by the 2d wave spectrum. This detailed description is however not always very practical and the bulk of the information contained in the 2d spectrum is usually reduced in the form of a set of integrated parameters, from a simple few such as significant wave height, mean wave direction and mean wave period, to more sophisticated parameters that described distinct part of the wave fields. Recent advances in the understanding of wave dynamics have lead to the development of new set of parameters that give information on the possible largest single wave that might exist over a certain area within a certain time frame. It is now possible to describe the sea state with different level of complexity depending on the user needs.


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