Meteotsunamis and other anomalous "tidal surge" events in Western Europe in Summer 2022

E. Renzi*, C. Bergin, T. Kokina, D. S. Pelaez-Zapata, D. Giles, F. Dias

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


We investigate occurrences of anomalous tidal activity in coastal waters of north-west Europe during Summer 2022. Sightings of an anomalous "tidal surge"occurred on 18 June 2022 in Wales, followed by similar observations in Ireland, France, and Spain. Several anomalous long-wave events were also reported in south England and Wales in the morning of 19 July 2022. We analyzed surface and high-altitude air pressure fields, and sea level oscillations for both days. Our detailed analysis reveals that the 18 June events were a series of meteotsunamis, propagating over several countries in Western Europe and triggered by localized pressure perturbations, originating within a low-pressure area over the North Atlantic Ocean. A local analysis of the southern coast of Ireland suggests that Proudman resonance was the determinant mechanism that amplified the meteotsunami traveling eastward in the afternoon of 18 June. A similar analysis of the 19 July events suggests that the tidal surge reported in the UK and anomalous signals recorded in Ireland and France were episodes of seiching triggered by infragravity waves, resonated subharmonically by wind waves. Numerical simulations of the 18 June event were performed with Volna-OP2, which solves the non-linear shallow water equations using a finite volume discretization. The influence of the atmospheric wave velocity on the amplification of the sea surface elevation is analyzed.

Original languageEnglish
Article number046605
Pages (from-to)1-23
Number of pages23
JournalPhysics of Fluids
Issue number4
Early online date20 Apr 2023
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2023
Externally publishedYes

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