Mode Tomography using Signals from the Long Range Ocean Acoustic Propagation EXperiment (LOAPEX)




Chandrayadula, Tarun K.

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Ocean acoustic tomography uses acoustic signals to infer the environmental properties of the ocean. The procedure for tomography consists of low frequency acoustic transmissions at mid-water depths to receivers located at hundreds of kilometer ranges. The arrival times of the signal at the receiver are then inverted for the sound speed of the background environment. Using this principle, experiments such as the 2004 Long Range Ocean Acoustic Propagation EXperiment have used acoustic signals recorded across Vertical Line Arrays (VLAs) to infer the Sound Speed Profile (SSP) across depth. The acoustic signals across the VLAs can be represented in terms of orthonormal basis functions called modes. The lower modes of the basis set concentrated around mid-water propagate longer distances and can be inverted for mesoscale e ffects such as currents and eddies. In spite of these advantages, mode tomography has received less attention. One of the important reasons for this is that internal waves in the ocean cause significant amplitude and travel time fluctuations in the modes. The amplitude and travel time fluctuations cause errors in travel time estimates. The absence of a statistical model and the lack of signal processing techniques for internal wave e ffects have precluded the modes from being used in tomographic inversions. This thesis estimates a statistical model for modes a ffected by internal waves and then uses the estimated model to design appropriate signal processing methods to obtain tomographic observables for the low modes. In order to estimate a statistical model, this thesis uses both the LOAPEX signals and also numerical simulations. The statistical model describes the amplitude and phase coherence across diff erent frequencies for modes at diff erent ranges. The model suggests that Matched Subspace Detectors (MSDs) based on the am- plitude statistics of the modes are the optimum detectors to make travel time estimates for modes up to 250 km. The mean of the travel time estimates is close to the mode travel times for the background SSP. The travel time estimates produced by the MSDs have a smaller variance than other signal processing methods that do not take into account the statistics of the mode signals. The MSDs are applied to the LOAPEX signals to make travel time estimates for modes received at ranges of 50 km and 250 km. The estimated sound speed inverse for the mid-water depths is consistent with spot measurements made during LOAPEX. Work sponsored by Office of Naval Research Grant N00014-06-1-0223.



Signal processing, Wave propagation, Ocean acoustics, Acoustic tomography, Random media