Articles | Volume 18, issue 2
Research article
11 Mar 2011
Research article |  | 11 Mar 2011

Resurrecting dead-water phenomenon

M. J. Mercier, R. Vasseur, and T. Dauxois

Abstract. We revisit experimental studies performed by Ekman on dead-water (Ekman, 1904) using modern techniques in order to present new insights on this peculiar phenomenon. We extend its description to more general situations such as a three-layer fluid or a linearly stratified fluid in presence of a pycnocline, showing the robustness of dead-water phenomenon. We observe large amplitude nonlinear internal waves which are coupled to the boat dynamics, and we emphasize that the modeling of the wave-induced drag requires more analysis, taking into account nonlinear effects.

Dedicated to Fridtjöf Nansen born 150 yr ago (10 October 1861).