Trochoidal, the Shape of Ocean Waves

This is a follow up to a tutorial video posted on Youtube explaining what trochoid is and how it relates to the motion of ocean waves.

Ocean waves seem like it moves up and down along the water surface, but the fact is that ocean waves move in a circular motion in the shape of trochoidal wave.

What is trochoid?

Trochoid is a type of curve created by drawing a line on a disk like a circle where the circle is rotated and translated along an axis. Imagine a circle that is rotated along an axis, like a straight line. And as the circle travels along the line, you trace a pen on the edge of the circle. The result is a wavey line up and down that resembles the shape of ocean waves.

Animated Trochoid

Animated Trochoid

Spiral Stairs (trochoidal shape curve)

Spiral Stairs (trochoidal shape curve)

There are many things in life shaped in the form of a trochoid curve, like spiral stairs, screws, springs, and DNA helix diagrams.



 

Ocean Waves

The motion of water in ocean waves move in a circular pattern resembles a trochoidal wave.

Trochoidal Ocean Wave

Trochoidal Ocean Wave