ASA 128th Meeting - Austin, Texas - 1994 Nov 28 .. Dec 02

3pID2. Hot topics in acoustical oceanography.

Lawrence A. Crum

Appl. Phys. Lab., Univ. of Washington, 1013 N.E. 40th St., Seattle, WA 98105-6698

Michael J. Buckingham

Scripps Inst. of Oceanogr., La Jolla, CA 92093-0213

Since acoustical oceanography was given full Technical Committee status within the ASA in November 1991, there has been a rapid development of novel techniques for interrogating the ocean using sound. For example, the total global precipitation amount is poorly known; however, by examining the underwater noise produced by rainfall, it may be possible to use underwater acoustic monitoring devices to obtain an estimate of this precipitation and from that better estimates of the global heat flux. Recently, it has been demonstrated that the sound pulses can be propagated over extremely large distances in the ocean; consequently, a precise timing of the arrival of these sound pulses over extended periods would enable changes in the average ocean temperature to be monitored, and thus provide information on global warming. Similarly, ambient noise provides the basis of a new acoustic imaging technique, designated acoustic daylight, that is analogous to conventional photography but based on sound rather than light. These and a variety of other topics will be presented.