Shipboard wave measurements in the Southern Ocean

Björn Lund, Christopher J. Zappa, Hans C. Graber, Alejandro Cifuentes-Lorenzen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations


Surface wave measurements from ships pose difficulties because of motion contamination. Cifuentes-Lorenzen et al. analyzed laser altimeter and marine X-band radar (MR) wave measurements from the Southern Ocean Gas Exchange Experiment (SOGasEx). They found that wave measurements from both sensors deteriorate precipitously at ship speeds > 3 m s-1. This study demonstrates that MR can yield accurate wave frequency-direction spectra independent of ship motion. It is based on the same shipborne SOGasEx wave data but uses the MR wave retrieval method proposed by Lund et al. and a novel empirical transfer function (ETF). The ETF eliminates biases in the MR wave spectra by redistributing energy from low to high frequencies. The resulting MR wave frequency-direction spectra are shown to agree well with laser altimeter wave frequency spectra from times when the ship was near stationary and with WAVEWATCH III (WW3) model wave parameters over the full study period.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2113-2126
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Atmospheric and Oceanic Technology
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 1 2017


  • Atmosphere-ocean interaction
  • Lidars/Lidar observations
  • Radars/Radar observations
  • Sea state
  • Ship observations
  • Southern Ocean

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ocean Engineering
  • Atmospheric Science


Dive into the research topics of 'Shipboard wave measurements in the Southern Ocean'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this