The Offshore Technology Research Center (OTRC) Deepwater, multidirectional wave basin, located in College Station, Texas, was commissioned in March of 1991. This model testing facility supports OTRC engineering science and research investigations into the unique challenges associated with deep-water operations. Scale model studies of wave kinematics and wave structure interactions in deep-water have been conducted.
The basin is 45.7 m x 30.5 m x 5.8 m. A 9.1 m x 4.6 m pit has an adjustable floor to allow depths from 5.8 m to 16.7 m. Forty-eight individually controlled, hydraulically actuated, hinged wave boards, located on one end of the basin, are used to generate regular, random, long-crested and short-crested seas. A progressive wave absorber consisting of variable porosity vertical screens is located opposite the wavemaker to minimize wave reflections.
Wave generation and data acquisition is accomplished using an integrated software package operating on a single workstation computer. Capabilities to simulate surface and sub-surface currents is currently being installed. Side wave absorbers and wind simulation capabilities are planned for installation next year. Video techniques will be developed to assist in measuring and characterizing short crested seas.