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On Natural Modulational Bandwidth of Deep-Water Surface Waves

Department of Infrastructure Engineering, University of Melbourne, Melbourne, Victoria 3010, Australia
Dipartimento di Fisica, Università di Torino and INFN, 10125 Torino, Italy
ISMAR, Istituto di Scienze Marine, 30122 Venice, Italy
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Fluids 2019, 4(2), 67;
Received: 28 February 2019 / Revised: 22 March 2019 / Accepted: 27 March 2019 / Published: 8 April 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nonlinear Wave Hydrodynamics)
PDF [398 KB, uploaded 8 April 2019]


We suggest that there exists a natural bandwidth of wave trains, including trains of wind-generated waves with a continuous spectrum, determined by their steepness. Based on laboratory experiments with monochromatic waves, we show that, if no side-band perturbations are imposed, the ratio between the wave steepness and bandwidth is restricted to certain limits. These limits are consistent with field observations of narrow-banded wind-wave spectra if a characteristic width of the spectral peak and average steepness are used. The role of the wind in such modulation is also discussed. View Full-Text
Keywords: modulational instability; nonlinear waves; wave groups modulational instability; nonlinear waves; wave groups

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Babanin, A.V.; Onorato, M.; Cavaleri, L. On Natural Modulational Bandwidth of Deep-Water Surface Waves. Fluids 2019, 4, 67.

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