A new algorithm from MIT could protect ships from ‘rogue waves’ at sea

mit rogue waves

Predictive analytics can already help prevent churn and anticipate equipment failures, but MIT has applied it to a new realm altogether: protecting ships at sea from so-called “rogue waves.”

Also known as killer waves, rogue waves swell up seemingly out of nowhere and can be eight times higher than the surrounding sea. They can strike in otherwise calm waters with virtually no warning, causing untold devastation even to large ships and ocean liners.

Now, MIT has developed a predictive tool it says can give ships and their crews a two- to three-minute advanced warning, allowing them to shut down essential operations on a ship or offshore platform.

In the past, scientists have approached the problem by trying to simulate every individual wave in a body of water to produce a high-resolution picture of the sea state. It’s proven computationally expensive and time-consuming.

In this case, the MIT researchers took a different tack based on their observation that waves sometimes cluster together in a group, rolling through the ocean together. Certain wave groups, they found, end up “focusing” or exchanging energy in a way that eventually leads to a rogue wave.

“These waves really talk to each other,” said Themis Sapsis, the American Bureau of Shipping Career Development assistant professor of mechanical engineering at MIT. “They interact and exchange energy. It’s not just bad luck. It’s the dynamics that create this phenomenon.”

Combining ocean-wave data available from measurements taken by ocean buoys with a nonlinear analysis of the underlying water wave equations, Sapsis’ team quantified the range of wave possibilities for a given body of water. They then developed a simpler and faster way to predict which wave groups will evolve into rogue waves.

The resulting tool is based on an algorithm that sifts through data from surrounding waves. Depending on a wave group’s length and height, the algorithm computes a probability that the group will turn into a rogue wave within the next few minutes.

“It’s precise in the sense that it’s telling us very accurately the location and the time that this rare event will happen,” Sapsis said. “We have a range of possibilities, and we can say that this will be a dangerous wave, and you’d better do something.”

A paper describing the tool was published this week in the Journal of Fluid Mechanics.

[“source -pcworld”]

Galaxy Note 6 to land in the UK from the beginning, S7 edge+ not at all

Last year Samsung managed to anger many Note series fans in Europe by not officially launching theGalaxy Note5 on the continent in 2015. For some reason, Samsung decided that only the Galaxy S6 edge+ was to be sold in Europe, at least at first. While the Note5 did eventually become available too, many early adopters didn’t like how they were forced to pick the phablet with the curved screen even if they wanted the one with the S Pen.

Amazingly, Samsung seems to have learned something from that ordeal. If a new report is to be believed, the Korean company will not repeat that story. What’s more, its strategy for this year’s flagship phablets seems to be exactly the opposite, at least for the UK. Namely, it’s said that Samsung will bring the Note 6 to the UK from the beginning, while the Galaxy S7 edge+ will not see an official launch in the country. Ever.

It’s probably safe to assume that the same thing will happen in Continental Europe. The information allegedly comes from a “source high up at one of the UK’s major networks”. The reason for the change in strategy has to do with a “backlash from loyal Note fans” over what happened last year. And sales of the S6 edge+ (pictured above) in the UK were quite disappointing, which is possibly why that market won’t see its successor.

The Galaxy Note 6 is due for release in August. The 5.1-inch Galaxy S7 and the 5.5-inch S7 edge are going to be unveiled on February 21 at MWC in Barcelona, and they are to go on sale in early March according to the same source.

Hopefully you have taken all of this with a grain of salt, since we’re still many months away from the Note 6’s announcement – hence, even if these plans are true right now, there’s still time for them to change.


[“source -cncb”]