Articles | Volume 5, issue 3
Nonlin. Processes Geophys., 5, 127–136, 1998
https://doi.org/10.5194/npg-5-127-1998
Nonlin. Processes Geophys., 5, 127–136, 1998
https://doi.org/10.5194/npg-5-127-1998

  30 Sep 1998

30 Sep 1998

Dispersive mudslide-induced tsunamis

A. Rubino1, S. Pierini2, and J. O. Backhaus1 A. Rubino et al.
  • 1Institut für Meereskunde, Universität Hamburg, Troplowitzstraße 7, D-22529 Hamburg, Germany
  • 2Dipartimento di Fisica, Università dell' Aquila, Via Vetoio, I-67010 Coppito (l' Aquila), Italy

Abstract. A nonlinear nested model for mudslide-induced tsunamis is proposed in which three phases of the life of the wave, i.e. the generation, far-field propagation and costal run-up are described by means of different mathematical models, that are coupled through appropriate matching procedures. The generation and run-up dynamics are simulated through a nonlinear shallow-water model with movable lateral boundaries: in the generation region two active layers are present, the lower one describing the slide descending on a sloping topography. For the intermediate phase, representing wave propagation far from the generation region, the hydrostatic assumption is not assumed as appropriate in general and, therefore, a nonlinear model allowing for weak phase dispersion, namely a Kadomtsev-Petviashvili equation, is used. This choice is made in order to assess the relevance of dispersive features such as solitary waves and dispersive tails. It is shown that in some realistic circumstances dispersive mudslide-induced tsunami waves can be produced over relatively short, distances. In such cases the use of a hydrostatic model throughout the whole tsunami history turns out to give erroneous results. In particular, when solitary waves are generated during the tsunami propagation in the open sea, the resulting run-up process yields peculiar wave forms leading to amplified coastal inundations with respect to a mere hydrostatic context.