Measurements and Modeling of the Variability in Normally Incident Reflections from the Seabed

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Journal of the Acoustical Society of America

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Ocean floor -- Surface properties -- Measurement, Backscattering, Acoustics


Normal incidence reflection measurements taken during the TREX13 experiment off the coast of Florida show substantial variability. One likely source of variability is due to scattering from the rough surface of the seabed. These data were taken from an omnidirectional source at a relatively low frequency (around 3 kHz). Systems being considered for measuring seabed properties (such as sound speed, density, and roughness) may use commercial echo-sounders that are directional and operate at much higher frequencies. Measurements from the TREX13 data as well as higher frequency systems are analyzed together with modeling to determine how surface roughness effects these measurements.The modeling uses an integral equation approach with a power law roughness spectrum to calculate backscattering of incident plane waves. The effects of changing the model parameters such as seabed type and roughness on the nature of backscattering are examined. The simulated results are compared with the measurements obtained from the experiments. The measurements are further used to calculate the statistical parameters to understand the nature of the normal reflection from a rough seabed.


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