Unstable Rock Pillars Near Reservoirs Can Produce Dangerous Water Waves

In many coastal zones and gorges, unstable cliffs often fail when the foundation rock beneath them is crushed. Large water waves can be created, threatening human safety. In this week’s Physics of Fluids, scientists reveal the mechanism by which these cliffs collapse, and how large, tsunami-like waves are created. Few experimental studies of this phenomenon have been carried out, so this work represents valuable new data that can be used to protect from impending disaster.

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