A meteor impact in the North Atlantic


A meteor impact in the North Atlantic


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Nils Berglund
Blue Marble Earth map, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Blue_Marble_2002.png

This is a simulation of the wave equation on a sphere, with reflecting boundary conditions given by the Earth’s continents. The initial state is a circular wave concentrated around a point in the Atlantic Ocean. The point of view rotates around the sphere in the course of the simulation, moving towards the east (which is opposite the Earth’s rotation).

The simulation can be seen as a crude model of the effect of a meteor impact. Note however that several factors, such as the Coriolis force, dissipation, shallow areas near the coast, and ice sheets are not taken into account. The vertical scale has been exaggerated to make the waves more visible. To make this simulation, I used the so-called Blue Marble Earth map, available at https://en. wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Blue_Marble_2002.png , in 2,560 × 1,280 resolution. I identified the dominant color of the Oceans, and declared all pixels having a nearby color as being in the domain of the wave, while the other pixels’ color is used to draw the continents. A few areas of shallow sea with a different color appear therefore as parts of the land masses.

Part 1 shows the wave height, while Part 2 shows the time-averaged energy. Parts 3 and 4 are time lapse versions of parts 1 and 2, accelerated by a factor 3.


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