, Volume 59, Issue 3, pp 463-475
Date: 23 Jan 2009

Wind-driven wave heights in the German Bight

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Wind speed, friction velocity and significant wave height data from the FINO1 platform in the southern German Bight 45 km off the coast for the years 2004 to 2006 have been evaluated and related to each other. The data show a clear dependence of the hourly mean wave height to the hourly mean friction velocity and wind speed. Wave heights increase with decreasing stratification and increasing fetch. Synoptic weather patterns for the highest wave heights in the southern German Bight are determined. The analysis is made separately for four wind direction sectors. The two strongest storms in the evaluated period, “Britta” and “Erwin”, are analysed in more detail. Finally, the 50-year extreme significant wave height has been estimated to be about 11 m most probably coming from northerly directions.

Responsible Editor: Jörg-Olaf Wolff