Physics of waves

Warning from the deep

Insights from the emerging field of branched flow are directing us towards a way of anticipating the effects of tsunamis. A framework linking bathymetric fluctuations to wave physics marks a promising step forward.

Access options

Rent or Buy article

Get time limited or full article access on ReadCube.


All prices are NET prices.

Figure 1: Branched flow seen in a National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration wave energy map produced after the 2011 Sendai earthquake in Japan.



  1. 1

    Degueldre, H., Metzger, J. J., Geisel, T. & Fleischmann, R. Nat. Phys. 12, 259–262 (2016).

  2. 2

    Heller, E. J., Kaplan, L. & Dahlen, A. J. Geophys. Res. 113, C09023 (2008).

  3. 3

    Höhmann, R., Kuhl, U., Stöckmann, H.-J., Kaplan, L. & Heller, E. J. Phys. Rev. Lett. 104, 093901 (2010).

  4. 4

    Topinka, M. A. et al. Nature 410, 183–186 (2001).

  5. 5

    Wolfson, M. A. & Tomsovic, S. J. Acoust. Soc. Am. 109, 2693–2703 (2001).

  6. 6

    Mattheakis, M., Pitsios, I. J., Tsironis, G. P. & Tzortzakis, S. Chaos Soliton. Fract. 84, 73–80 (2016).

Download references

Author information

Correspondence to Eric Heller.

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Verify currency and authenticity via CrossMark

Cite this article

Heller, E. Warning from the deep. Nature Phys 12, 824–825 (2016).

Download citation

Further reading