### ASA 125th Meeting Ottawa 1993 May

## 5aUW5. The correlation between ocean wave energy dissipation and ambient
noise.

**Francis C. Felizardo
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*R. M. Parsons Lab., MIT, Cambridge, MA 02139
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**W. Kendall Melville
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*Scripps Inst. of Oceanogr., U.C.S.D., La Jolla, CA 92093-0213
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An experiment that measured the NSL between 2 to 25 kHz, the wind speed U,
and the directional wave spectrum was conducted off the coast of Oregon to
examine the correlation between the ambient noise spectrum level (NSL) and
surface wave parameters. These measurements show that although the correlation
between the ambient NSL and the rms wave height is poor, the NSL and wave
height spectrum energy levels at frequencies somewhat higher than the spectral
peak give correlation coefficients that are comparable to that between the
well-known correlation between U and NSL. Estimates of wave energy dissipation
due to breaking waves using models proposed by Komen et al. [J. Phys. Ocean.
14, 1271--1285 (1984)] and Phillips [J. Fluid Mech. 156, 505--531 (1985)]
likewise give comparable correlation coefficients. These results are consistent
with the laboratory experiments [M. R. Loewen and W. K. Melville, J. Fluid
Mech. 224, 601--623 (1991)] which show that the energy dissipated by wave
breaking scales with the acoustic energy radiated. The implications of these
results for acoustic remote sensing of breaking waves and associated processes
of air--sea interaction are discussed.