Joint ICTP/SISSA Statistical Physics seminar:
Series of lectures on: 'Singularities and asymptotics'
Starts 20 May 2008 12:00
Ends 20 May 2008 20:00
Central European Time
SISSA Main Bldg., Room 'D'
For most of their propagation, tsunamis are linear dispersive waves whose speed is limited by the depth of the ocean and which can be regarded as diffraction-decorated caustics in spacetime. For constant depth, uniform asymptotics gives a very accurate compact description of the tsunami profile generated by an arbitrary initial disturbance. Vartiations in depth can focus tsunamis onto cusped caustics, and this ‘singularity on a singularity’ constitutes an unusual diffraction problem, whose solution indicates that focusing can amplify the tsunami energy by an order of magnitude.