How waves grow
While tsunamis are generally created by catastrophic disturbances on the sea floor, regular waves are generated by wind. The area of water affected by wind is called a ?fetch.’
As wind blows across the fetch, tiny “capillary” waves form. They’re about the thickness of a hair. These tiny waves eventually create little ripples, which cause more friction with the wind, and more energy is transferred from the wind to the water.
“The rougher the water becomes, the easier it is for the wind to transfer its energy,” said David Wang, also of the NRL.
When wind blows harder of over a longer time period, more energy is transferred to the water. The biggest waves don’t come from the fastest winds, which can blow erratically over a small area, but rather from winds that blow more constantly across large stretches of water, creating a longer fetch.
Hurricanes create large, local waves over small areas, but the waves don’t always make it all the way to the shore. The big waves that crash on our shores are from large storms that move steadily over across thousands of miles of ocean.
Stanford study: California moving toward more extreme weather
structure collapses on itself… “buffering” and “adjusting to” extreme…”pressures”….