The third and last HIGHWAVE public meeting explaining the 5-year project (2019-2024) took place on Inis Oírr on 27 November 2019. It was well attended despite bad weather over the Aran Islands for the past couple of days. Professor Dias and Research Engineer Arnaud Disant were asked a lot of questions on wave breaking, environmental issues, instrumentation but also on the future of the project after 2024. 

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Professor Frédéric Dias delivered today on Inis Meáin the second talk on extreme wave generation and wave breaking related to the HIGHWAVE project on the Aran Islands. The presentation took place at Halla Naomh Eoin. The local fishing community was represented and the support of Ciara (Bainisteoir, Comhlacht Forbartha Inis Meáin) is kindly acknowledged. The project is already receiving unconditional support from the local community. The project will return benefits in kind, such as data which can be used to backup grant applications. Regular progress meetings will be organised on Inis Meáin.

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Halla Pobail Public Meeting (Inis Oírr)
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ESA Advanced Ocean Synergy Training Course 2019 took place in the beautiful city of Chania, Greece from 4 to 8 November 2019.

The days were packed with theory lectures, interactive lectures and group work. Every day was dedicated to a particular subject ranging from Wind Waves and Wave/Current Interaction to Polar Oceans. There were 42 participants of 18 different nationalities and backgrounds. This made the above-mentioned group work interesting and challenging, as mathematicians had to work together with marine biologists and photogrammetry engineers, to name a few.

The lectures were presented by outstanding lecturers and leading researchers. It was amazing to see how different instruments can be used in synergy to tackle a wide range of problems. Not only scientific, but also societal problems such as climate change.

Tatjana Kokina attended the course, as a part of the HIGHWAVE project. It was a great opportunity to see the wealth of Earth Observation data and the tools available. The training provided insights into using remote sensing in synergy with in situ measurements. This sparked some ideas for HIGHWAVE and how remote sensing can be incorporated into the project.

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public meeting gaeilge Inis Meáin

Halla Naomh Eoin Public Meeting (Inis Meain)
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Ireland's Atlantic nearshore coastal waters experience storms several times every year. Over the last few Winters/Springs, the UCD Wave Group has deployed a Teledyne Sentinel V acoustic Doppler current profiler (ADCP) device into these waters to measure the sea state over a period of months, in the hope of observing these stormy conditions.
In our new paper in Scientific Reports, we present results from two such storms. One was from our 2015 measuring campaign off Killard Point, and the other from the 2017 campaign off the Aran Islands. We analyze the non-stationary surface-elevation series and compare the distributions of crest and wave heights observed with theoretical predictions based on the Forristall, Tayfun, and Boccotti models. Adapting and applying these models in the nearshore, and compensating for the significant variability of both sea states in time, was a novel approach.
The largest nearshore waves observed during the two storms do not exceed the rogue thresholds as the Draupner, Andrea, Killard or El Faro rogue waves do in intermediate or deep-water depths. However, the story does not end here. Our analysis reveals that modulational instabilities are ineffective, third-order resonances negligible and the largest waves observed here have characteristics quite similar to those displayed by rogue waves for which second order bound nonlinearities are the principal factor that enhances the linear dispersive focusing of extreme waves.
Wave measurements and statistics in the nearshore is a challenging topic, with many new and exciting results yet to be discovered!

Giant rogue waves on the ocean are a mysterious phenomenon as much the stuff of legend as of science. Despite much anecdotal evidence of their destructive power, their scientific study has proven elusive, mainly because of the danger and difficulty of making measurements in the natural environment of the open sea. This changed dramatically in 2007, however, when researchers showed that injecting powerful ultrafast laser pulses into an optical fibre could generate similar large amplitude waves – but waves of light and not of water.

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Figure above: Timeline illustrating the parallel developments in fibre optics (top) and hydrodynamics (bottom).

On 2 October 2019, Professor Frédéric Dias gave an official presentation of the ERC project HIGHWAVE. There was a variety of guests including the UCD VP for Research, Orla Feely, the head of the School of Mathematics and Statistics, Brendan Murphy, and representatives of the following institutions: Met Eireann, Commissioners of Irish Lights, Royal Irish Academy, Irish Air Corps, Marine Institute, ICHEC, The Office of Public Works. Several members of UCD College of Engineering and Architecture, as well as the Wave Group led by Professor Dias, also attended.

presentation 021019Professor Dias explaining the occurrence of wave breaking.