A laboratory study of spray generation in high winds

D. G. Ortiz-Suslow, B. K. Haus, S. Mehta, N. J.M. Laxague

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Characterizing the vertical distribution of large spray particles (i.e., spume) in high wind conditions is necessary for better understanding of the development of the atmospheric boundary layer in extreme conditions. To this end a laboratory experiment was designed to observe the droplet concentration in the air above actively breaking waves. The experiments were carried out in hurricane force conditions (U 10 equivalent wind speed of 36 to 54 m/s) and using both fresh water and salt water. While small differences between fresh and salt water were observed in profiles of radius-integrated spray volume fraction, the profiles tend to converge as the wind forcing increases. This supports the assumption that the physical mechanism for spume production is not sensitive to salinity and its corresponding link to the bubble size distribution.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number012008
JournalIOP Conference Series: Earth and Environmental Science
Issue number1
StatePublished - May 20 2016
Externally publishedYes
Event7th International Symposium on Gas Transfer at Water Surfaces - Seattle, United States
Duration: May 18 2015May 21 2015

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Science(all)
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences(all)


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