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An investigation of internal solitary waves in a two-fluid system

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  20 April 2006

C. Gary Koop
Fluid Mechanics Department, TRW/DSSG, One Space Park, Redondo Beach, California 90278
Gerald Butler
Fluid Mechanics Department, TRW/DSSG, One Space Park, Redondo Beach, California 90278


The results of an experimental investigation dealing with finite-amplitude internal solitary waves in a two-fluid system are presented. Particular attention is paid to characterizing solitons in terms of their shape and amplitude–wavelength scale relationship. Two cases are considered, viz., a shallow- and a deep-water configuration, in order to study the depth effect upon the propagational characteristics of the waves. Comparisons are made between the experimental results and existing internal-wave theories. In addition, discussion is presented describing how these existing theories may be extended to include higher-order nonlinear and viscous effects.

Research Article
© 1981 Cambridge University Press

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