Beautiful Natural Oceanic Diffraction Patterns

  • #1
Hi,

I was having a flick around Google maps whilst procrastinating and came across this when I looked at some islands off the Australian coast.

I'm not 100% certain that the pattern is caused by diffraction of the waves passing through the gap between Bernier and Dorre Islands, or simply by the superposition of waves coming in from the ocean through the gap different angles, giving a rounded effect. Anyway, it's a nice image and if someone confirms it, it could make a nice slide in a classroom talk.
 

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  • #2
Simon Bridge
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Welcome to PF: did you mean this one?
[attached]
 

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  • #4
Looks like diffraction to me. The water doesn't look as if it is approching the gap at different angles.
 
  • #5
olivermsun
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I agree, it looks like classic diffraction.

Also, see the name of the jpeg image file.
 
  • #6
Simon, did you just get the picture yourself and call if diff.jpg?
 
  • #7
Simon Bridge
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That's right.

The picture is a screen grab from Google-Earth, which I called diff.jpg so I could find it in my picture directory. Apart from cropping and the compression, the image has not been processed (by me). I kept the notes on where GE got the image as well as the lat and long so you good folks could find it for yourself.

The water in the gap is shallow - you can see the shelving. As the deep-water waves approach the islands, they bend towards them so the waves approach the gap almost dead-on. You can also see smaller multiple diffraction around the smaller islets - though I have not seen any obvious interference in there.

Perhaps someone can find an example of interference fringes appearing in waves off the sea around islands? The conditions must exist ... you'd need a bunch of smaller islets in the gap (probably a narrower gap).
 
  • #9
Simon Bridge
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Nice - those are streamlines though.
Nature produces so much beauty it would quickly overwhelm the thread if people kept posting images. The challenge here is to find diffraction patterns in naturally occurring waves.
 
  • #10
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I kept the notes on where GE got the image as well as the lat and long so you good folks could find it for yourself.
http://www.uklv.info/g.php [Broken]
 
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  • #11
NascentOxygen
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For double slit interference, we need a harbour facing the open sea, with a narrowed harbour mouth (or two sea walls) and a rocky island slap bang in the middle of the entrance. Any candidates come to mind? :smile:
 
  • #12
NascentOxygen
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Botany Bay, in eastern Australia, exhibits a good diffraction pattern in this aerial photo.
 
  • #13
davenn
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here's another Australian one from just up the NSW coast from home
found this on google earth when i was doing searches for microwave radio sites for sea path transmissions

attachment.php?attachmentid=41659&stc=1&d=1323245296.jpg


complete with intereference patterns from multiple diffractions

cheers
Dave
 

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  • #15
Both of those 'double slit' waves are very cool. I guess it's gonna be quite hard to find one that exhibits a perfect pattern due to the slight lack of coherency in this kind of wave!
 
  • #16
For double slit interference, we need a harbour facing the open sea, with a narrowed harbour mouth (or two sea walls) and a rocky island slap bang in the middle of the entrance. Any candidates come to mind? :smile:
Pulau Pangkor, Malaysia, might do it.
 
  • #17
NascentOxygen
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Pulau Pangkor, Malaysia, might do it.
A tiny island? It's clouded under.
 

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