Fluid viscosity and the attenuation of surface waves: A derivation based on conservation of energy
European Journal of Physics
More than a century ago, Stokes (1819-1903) pointed out that the attenuation of surface waves could be exploited to measure viscosity. This paper provides the link between fluid viscosity and the attenuation of surface waves by invoking the conservation of energy. First we calculate the power loss per unit area due to viscous dissipation. Next we calculate the power loss per unit area as manifested in the decay of the wave amplitude. By equating these two quantities, we derive the relationship between the fluid viscosity and the decay coefficient of the surface waves in a transparent way.
Original Publication Date
DOI of published version
Behroozi, F., "Fluid viscosity and the attenuation of surface waves: A derivation based on conservation of energy" (2004). Faculty Publications. 3198.