The realistic modelling of velocity and pressure fields in steep, irregular seaways is still a challenging task, especially when extreme events such as freak waves are under investigation. Conventional wave theories provide fast and reliable results while CFD-codes based on RANSE or potential theory are gaining more acceptance for simulating water waves even though they are still considerably time consuming. This paper presents an approach to approximate irregular wave trains with known surface elevations by interacting Stokes waves of up to third order. This is a fast method to determine the wave potential of wind generated waves for long lasting wave registrations with arbitrary origin. The technique is applied to a steep breaking wave package as well as to a realization of a wave train in a wave tank (scale 1:120) which contain a measured extreme wave sequence. Here, special attention is paid to the distinction between the kinematics of the wave crests in extremely high waves and their surrounding irregular wave field. The predicted wave kinematics are validated by experiments employing particle velocity measurements (by Laser Doppler Velocimetry) as well as by pressure recordings. Kinematics of breaking waves are not covered by concurrent analytical wave theories. To address this deficiency a coupling mechanism between a conventionally determined velocity field with a RANSE/VoF-method is applied.

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