The effect of surface tension on trapped modes in water-wave problems

Robert Harter, I. David Abrahams, Michael J. Simon

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


    In this paper the effect of surface tension is considered on two two-dimensional water-wave problems involving pairs of immersed bodies. Both models, having fluid of infinite depth, support localized oscillations, or trapped modes, when capillary effects are excluded. The first pair of bodies is surface-piercing whereas the second pair is fully submerged. In the former case it is shown that the qualitative nature of the streamline shape is unaffected by the addition of surface tension in the free surface condition, no matter how large this parameter becomes. The main objective of this paper, however, is to study the submerged body problem. For this case it is found, by contrast, that there exists a critical value of the surface tension above which it is no longer possible to produce a completely submerged pair of bodies which support trapped modes. This critical value varies as a function of the separation of the two bodies. It can be inferred from this that surface tension does not always play a qualitatively irrelevant role in the linear water-wave problem. © 2007 The Royal Society.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)3131-3149
    Number of pages18
    JournalProceedings of the Royal Society A: Mathematical, Physical and Engineering Sciences
    Issue number2088
    Publication statusPublished - 8 Dec 2007


    • Localized oscillations
    • Submerged body
    • Surface tension
    • Trapped modes
    • Water waves


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