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ARTICLE

Waves as energy transfer

‘Wave’ is a common term for a number of different ways in which energy is transferred: In electromagnetic waves, energy is transferred through vibrations of electric and magnetic fields. In sound ...

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ARTICLE

Behaviour of waves

All waves behave in certain characteristic ways. They can undergo refraction, reflection, interference and diffraction. These basic properties define the behaviour of a wave – anything that ...

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ARTICLE

Fundamentals of waves

Seeing, hearing, feeling warmth, surfing, tuning the radio, using a cellphone – these and many more activities involve waves. But what is a wave? In this article, we get to grips with the ...

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ARTICLE

Tsunami shoaling

Many of us imagine tsunamis as tall, surf-like waves, but in the deep ocean, their amplitude is actually quite small. Tsunamis get much taller as they approach the continental shelf and ...

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ARTICLE

Comparing tsunamis and surf

So you want to surf a tsunami? In this article, you’ll learn why that’s not possible – and how dangerous it would be to try. Tsunamis have much more energy than a surf wave, so they last for ...

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ACTIVITY

Similarities and differences: tsunamis and surf waves

In this activity, students use an interactive or paper-based Venn diagram to illustrate the key similarities and differences between tsunami waves and surf waves. By the end of this activity ...

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ARTICLE

Kaikōura earthquake

The 2016 Mw 7.8 Kaikōura earthquake was a complex sequence of ruptures that included 12 major faults and nine lesser faults. The initial rupture started on a fault near Culverden and then jumped ...

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ARTICLE

Tsunamis and surf – introduction

Tsunamis are unique in their destructive power, but they share many features with other ocean waves. Learn how the two wave types differ, and how ocean waves of all kinds affect New Zealand’s ...

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ARTICLE

Studying storm surge and coastal hazards

Dr Rob Bell, a NIWA scientist, studies storm surges and their impact on New Zealand coasts. A storm surge is a very long wave formed by low-pressure storms over the ocean. Because they are ...

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ARTICLE

Voyages of discovery

One of the world’s largest scientific research ships is in New Zealand waters for six expeditions to probe some of the 21st century’s biggest science questions. The 143 metre-long JOIDES ...

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ACTIVITY

Wave tank modelling

In this activity, students use a shallow tray of water to demonstrate wave generation and behaviour. By the end of this activity, students should be able to: demonstrate how surf and tsunami ...

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ARTICLE

Modelling tsunamis and protecting the coast

Dr Willem de Lange is a researcher and senior lecturer in the Department of Earth and Ocean Sciences at the University of Waikato. He studies many aspects of tsunamis and sits on the Tsunami ...

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ACTIVITY

Making Mexican waves

In this activity, students use a Mexican wave to demonstrate how waves transfer energy and to visualise the wave behaviours of reflection, constructive interference and shoaling. By the end of ...

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ARTICLE

The development of electrical sensors – timeline

Artificial sensors and probes enable us to overcome the limitations of our human senses and extend them in novel and useful ways, using the scientific concepts of electricity and waves. Find out ...

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Artificial sensors explained

Extending human senses involves finding ways to monitor our environment so that we can ‘see’, ‘feel’ or ‘hear’ things beyond what our senses allow us to do and enable us to respond to changes ...

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ARTICLE

Hikurangi subduction zone expedition #375 – blog 1

In March 2018, JOIDES Resolution, a large scientific research vessel, headed out to sea to research the Hikurangi subduction zone on expedition #375. This article is the first blog by Aliki ...

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TEACHER PLD

SLH and the Physical World

Many resources on the Science Learning Hub explore ideas relating to the Physical World strand in the NZC. This online PD session recorded on 11 March 2015 shows primary teachers how to navigate ...

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ARTICLE

Scientific inquiry: a personal view

Hands up who thinks of scientists as people in white lab coats who spend their days mixing coloured liquids in test tubes. This view is inaccurate, of course. In reality, every scientist works ...

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ARTICLE

Hikurangi subduction zone expedition #375 – blog 3

In March 2018, JOIDES Resolution, a large scientific research vessel, headed out to sea to research the Hikurangi subduction zone on expedition #375. This article is the third blog from Aliki ...

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ARTICLE

Dr Willem de Lange

Position: Senior Lecturer Field: Earth and ocean sciences Organisation: Department of Earth and Ocean Sciences, Faculty of Science and Engineering, University of Waikato Dr Willem de Lange, an ...

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ARTICLE

Dr Rob Bell

Position: Principal Scientist, National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research (NIWA), Hamilton Field: Coastal and estuarine research Dr Rob Bell is a research scientist at NIWA in Hamilton ...

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ARTICLE

Sensing the Earth

Using super sense technology, changes in the Earth’s structure can be measured without having to actually be there: Motion sensors called seismographs record tremors or small earthquakes that ...

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