Google Answers Logo
View Question
Q: Lake Wakatipu ( Answered,   0 Comments )
Subject: Lake Wakatipu
Category: Science > Earth Sciences
Asked by: atlytle-ga
List Price: $2.00
Posted: 04 Mar 2006 20:19 PST
Expires: 03 Apr 2006 21:19 PDT
Question ID: 703712
Why does Lake Wakatipu in New Zealand rise and fall?
Subject: Re: Lake Wakatipu
Answered By: denco-ga on 04 Mar 2006 22:00 PST
Howdy atlytle-ga,

Your question is the subject of a 1974 paper by one R. A. Heath of the New
Zealand Oceanographic Institute.  The paper is titled, quite aptly, "SURFACE
found on the Royal Society of New Zealand website.

The above paper goes into detail on the causes of the oscillations of the lake,
and the abstract of the paper may be found on the same site.

"Spectral analysis of lake level records from Lake Wakatipu reveals significant
energy in oscilations with periods near 52.0, 26.7, 18.5, 15.0 and 10.0 min.
Comparison with periods calculated by numerical integration indicate that these
periods correspond with the fundamental mode seiche for the whole length of the
lake and the next four modes. The most energetic mode is not the fundamental
but the second, with a period of 26.7 min, and this unusual situation is
explained by the method of generation in this dog-leg shaped lake."

The website of the School of Ocean and Earth Science and Technology (SOEST) at
the University of Hawai'i at Manoa provides more information on seiches.

"In simple terms, what is a seiche?
Every enclosed body of water has a number of natural resonances. If you sit in
a bathtub part full of water and rock back and forth you'll find that at the
right period (about a second) you can easily get the waves to grow until they
overflow the bath. The resonant oscillation of the water is a seiche."

If you need any clarification, please feel to ask.

Search strategy:

Google search on: "Lake Wakatipu" "New Zealand" seiche

Looking Forward, denco-ga - Google Answers Researcher
There are no comments at this time.

Important Disclaimer: Answers and comments provided on Google Answers are general information, and are not intended to substitute for informed professional medical, psychiatric, psychological, tax, legal, investment, accounting, or other professional advice. Google does not endorse, and expressly disclaims liability for any product, manufacturer, distributor, service or service provider mentioned or any opinion expressed in answers or comments. Please read carefully the Google Answers Terms of Service.

If you feel that you have found inappropriate content, please let us know by emailing us at with the question ID listed above. Thank you.
Search Google Answers for
Google Answers  

Google Home - Answers FAQ - Terms of Service - Privacy Policy