Model for refraction of water waves

Robert A. Dalrymple*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

30 Scopus citations


A simple explicit numerical model suitable for a personal computer is discussed that provides for the refraction and shoaling of linear and nonlinear water waves over irregular bathymetry, including wave-current interaction. Finite-differenced forms of the conservation of wave action and the irrotationality of the wave number equations are used in the model. Applications of the model to a planar shoreline, where Snell's law is valid, show that the model results are independent of the step size. Two other bathymetries are examined: One, an idealized coastline with a rip channel; and the other, a section of the New Jersey coastline. The model output is displayed in terms of wave height and direction vectors.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)423-435
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Waterway, Port, Coastal and Ocean Engineering
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jul 1988

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Water Science and Technology
  • Ocean Engineering


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