Title: Modulational stability of ocean swell

Diane Henderson

Short Abstract
Narrow-banded plane waves at the air-water interface of an inviscid fluid were shown to be unstable to modulational perturbations by several investigators in the late 60s, including Benjamin & Feir. More recently, Segur et al showed, with theory and laboratory experiments, that dissipation stabilizes this Benjamin-Feir instability. Here we discuss this stability result in the context of ocean swell on deep water and its subsequent propagation onto water of finite depth with slowly-varying bathymetry.