The Ultimate Wave Pool Quiz

By: Staff

4 Min Quiz

Image: refer to hsw

About This Quiz

Modern civilization loves to re-create nature. We have artificial light, artificial Christmas trees, artificial grass, artificial hearts and even artificial beaches! Curious as to how an artificial beach actually works? Take our quiz and get a behind-the-scenes glimpse at the workings of the giant wave pool "Thunder Bay" in Greensboro, North Carolina.

In the ocean, how are waves created?

In the ocean, waves are created when the wind pushes on the water, disturbing the molecules and creating a domino effect of disturbed water along the ocean's surface.


What do you need to recreate a simple wave in a pool of water?

You need some means of creating a periodic disturbance, like a blast of air, a rotating paddle or an oscillating plunger.


What is the name of the kid's wave pool at Emerald Pointe's water park?

The kid's wave pool, Splash Island, is created using the simple wave model.


What does Splash Island use to generate a disturbance in the water?

Splash Island uses a high speed fan to blow periodic blasts of air into a wide metal pipe, through an exhaust port and out onto the water.


What kind of valve is used inside the wide metal pipe at Splash Island?

A butterfly valve, a wide disc attached to a revolving metal axis rod, is used. It enables the air from the fan to blast periodically: when the disc is horizontal, it blocks the air; when it revolves to a vertical position, it allows the air to pass through.


What makes the butterfly valve rotate?

An hydraulic piston moves a rod, to which the butterfly valve is attached, at regular intervals.


Why can't Splash Island's wave generating system be used to create enormous, surfable waves?

To create enormous, surfable waves, you would need too large a force, like a giant fan or an extra strength plunger, to create a strong enough disturbance. A large wave pool relies on the surge created by dumping huge amounts of water into the deep end of a pool.


How many basic parts are there to a large wave pool?

There are five main parts to a large wave pool: a water pumping system, a water collection reservoir, a number of release valves at the bottom of the reservoir, a slanted swimming pool and a return canal.


What can the functioning of the giant wave pool, Thunder Bay, be compared to?

The giant wave pool functions in a similar way to a toilet: when the water level is high enough, release valves are opened, dumping water into the pool or into the toilet.


How is Thunder Bay kept sanitary?

Thunder Bay has six powerful filters that work 24 hours a day to purify the water from dirt particles.


How much water does Thunder Bay hold?

Thunder Bay contains two million gallons (7.6 million liters) of water. The wave it generates contains 90, 000 gallons (341, 000 liters)of water.


What are the measurements of Thunder Bay's pool?

Thunder Bay measures 84 feet (26 meters) across at the deep end and is 400 feet (122 meters) long.


How many water pumps does Thunder Bay have?

Thunder Bay has three pumps, at 100 horsepower, 200 horsepower and 300 horsepower respectively. The pump drives 40,000 gallons (150,000 liters) of water per minute.


What is a valve seat?

Waves are generated by dumping huge amounts of pumped water from water reservoirs into the deep end of the pool. The valve seat is the opening between the reservoir and the pool.


What plugs and unplugs the valve seat?

The valve plate, a piece of metal which fits snugly over the valve seat and moves across it, continually plugs and unplugs the valve seat.


What makes the valve plate move?

The valve plate is attached to a metal strut, which is connected to an hydraulic piston and a steel beam. Pressurized oil is directed into the hydraulic piston, causing it to move with great force. This in turn moves the metal beam to which the valve plate is attached back and forth.


Why is Thunder Bay's hydraulic piston fuelled by vegetable oil instead of regular machine oil?

An hydraulic pump sends a continual stream of vegetable oil into the hydraulic piston. Vegetable oil is used instead of regular machine oil, because there is a chance that some oil may leak into the pool water.


In a hydraulic piston, if the pressure is higher on the left side, in which direction will the piston move?

A hydraulic pump sends oil into the piston from hoses on both sides of the piston head. When it pumps oil from the left hose, the pressure from the oil will be higher, pushing the piston to the right. When oil is pumped from the right hose, the pressure will be higher on the right side, pushing the piston head to the left.


What is a solenoid?

A solenoid is an electromagnetic switch controlled by an electromagnetic current. In this hydraulic piston, the piston is controlled by a solenoid, which works on a timer at two-minute intervals.


What is so amazing about this wave generating system?

What is so amazing about this wave generating system is its durability. In the summer, the system is turned on at the crack of dawn and not shut down until the evening, every day of the week.


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