Skip to main content

Statistical characteristics of long waves nearshore

The random long wave runup on a beach of constant slope is studied in the framework of the rigorous solutions of the nonlinear shallow water theory. These solutions are used for calculation of the statistical characteristics of the vertical displacement of the moving shoreline and its horizontal velocity. It is shown that probability characteristics of the runup heights and extreme values of the shoreline velocity coincide in the linear and nonlinear theory. If the incident wave is represented by a narrow-band Gaussian process, the runup height is described by a Rayleigh distribution. The significant runup height can also be found within the linear theory of long wave shoaling and runup. Wave nonlinearity nearshore does not affect the Gaussian probability distribution of the velocity of the moving shoreline. However the vertical displacement of the moving shoreline becomes non-Gaussian due to the wave nonlinearity. Its statistical moments are calculated analytically. It is shown that the mean water level increases (setup), the skewness is always positive and kurtosis is positive for weak amplitude waves and negative for strongly nonlinear waves. The probability of the wave breaking is also calculated and conditions of validity of the analytical theory are discussed. The spectral and statistical characteristics of the moving shoreline are studied in detail. It is shown that the probability of coastal floods grows with an increase in the nonlinearity. Randomness of the wave field nearshore leads to an increase in the wave spectrum width.