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Question Set: Sea States

NGSS Science and Engineering Practices:

NGSS Crosscutting Concepts:

NGSS Disciplinary Core Ideas:

  1. What factors determine the size of waves?
  2. Suggest a reason why the length of the fetch is important in wave size.
  3. What role do ripples play in wave formation?
  4. If a marine forecast predicts that winds will rise from calm (no winds) to 25 knots overnight, what kinds of changes can be expected in offshore waves?
    1. Estimate how long (duration) the winds must blow and over what distance (fetch) to produce fully developed seas. Refer to Table 4.7.
    2. If duration and fetch are long enough to form fully developed seas in 25-knot winds, what will the properties of the waves be? Use the terms height, length, and speed to describe them. Refer to Tables 4.6 and 4.7.
  5. Use Table 4.6 and Table 4.7 to compare the following:
    1. The speeds of long waves (212 m) and short waves (9 m)
    2. The heights of long waves and short waves
    3. The fetch required to produce a fully developed sea of short and long waves
    4. The characteristic conditions of waves produced by light breezes and storms
  6. Calculate the frequency of the waves listed in Table 4.7 using the equation F = 1/T


Table of Contents:

Exploring Our Fluid Earth, a product of the Curriculum Research & Development Group (CRDG), College of Education. University of Hawaii, 2011. This document may be freely reproduced and distributed for non-profit educational purposes.