Underwater Acoustic Modeling and Simulation, Fourth Edition

Underwater Acoustic Modeling and Simulation, Fourth Edition

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  • Organizes the chapters based on a hierarchical method of sonar model construction
  • Explains how to properly apply the models and correctly interpret the results to assess prediction uncertainties
  • Describes changes in the ocean soundscape driven by anthropogenic activity and natural factors
  • Presents specific examples of each model type to illustrate model formulations and assumptions as well as algorithm efficiency
  • Includes discussion and analytic questions in each chapter to help readers assess their comprehension


Underwater Acoustic Modeling and Simulation, Fourth Edition continues to provide the most authoritative overview of currently available propagation, noise, reverberation, and sonar-performance models. This fourth edition of a bestseller discusses the fundamental processes involved in simulating the performance of underwater acoustic systems and emphasizes the importance of applying the proper modeling resources to simulate the behavior of sound in virtual ocean environments.

New to the Fourth Edition

  • Extensive new material that addresses recent advances in inverse techniques and marine-mammal protection
  • Problem sets in each chapter
  • Updated and expanded inventories of available models

Designed for readers with an understanding of underwater acoustics but who are unfamiliar with the various aspects of modeling, the book includes sufficient mathematical derivations to demonstrate model formulations and provides guidelines for selecting and using the models. Examples of each type of model illustrate model formulations, model assumptions, and algorithm efficiency. Simulation case studies are also included to demonstrate practical applications.

Providing a thorough source of information on modeling resources, this book examines the translation of our physical understanding of sound in the sea into mathematical models that simulate acoustic propagation, noise, and reverberation in the ocean. The text shows how these models are used to predict and diagnose the performance of complex sonar systems operating in the undersea environment.

Table of Contents

Measurements and Prediction
Developments in Modeling
Advances in Simulation
Operational Challenges
Inverse Acoustic Sensing of the Oceans
Standard Definitions

Acoustical Oceanography
Physical and Chemical Properties
Sound Speed
Dynamic Features

Propagation I: Observations and Physical Models
Nature of Measurements
Basic Concepts
Sea-Surface Boundary
Sea-Floor Boundary
Attenuation and Absorption in Sea Water
Surface Ducts
Deep Sound Channel
Convergence Zones
Reliable Acoustic Path
Shallow-Water Ducts
Arctic Half-Channel

Propagation II: Mathematical Models (Part One)
Theoretical Basis for Propagation Modeling
Ray-Theory Models
Normal-Mode Models
Multipath Expansion Models
Fast-Field Models
Parabolic Equation Models
The RAYMODE Model: A Specific Example
Numerical Model Summaries

Propagation II: Mathematical Models (Part Two)
Surface Duct Models
Shallow-Water Duct Models
Arctic Models
Data Support Requirements

Special Applications and Inverse Techniques
Stochastic Modeling
Broadband Modeling
Matched Field Processing
Transmutation Approaches
Nonlinear Acoustics and Chaos
Three-Dimensional Modeling
Ocean Fronts, Eddies, and Internal Waves
Coupled Ocean-Acoustic Modeling
Acoustic Tomography
Phase Conjugation and Time-Reversal Mirrors
Deductive Geoacoustic Inversion
Prediction Uncertainties in Complex Environments
Rapid Environmental Assessments
Underwater Acoustic Networks and Vehicles
Marine-Mammal Protection
Through-the-Sensor Parameter Estimation
Seismo-Acoustic Inversion

Noise I: Observations and Physical Models
Noise Sources and Spectra
Depth Dependence
Surf Noise
Arctic Ambient Noise
Acoustic Daylight
Geoacoustic Inversion
Acoustic Rain Gauges

Noise II: Mathematical Models
Theoretical Basis for Noise Modeling
Ambient-Noise Models
The RANDI Model: A Specific Example
The Noise Notch
Beam-Noise Statistics Models
Data Support Requirements
Numerical Model Summaries

Reverberation I: Observations and Physical Models
Volume Reverberation
Boundary Reverberation
Inversion Techniques

Reverberation II: Mathematical Models
Theoretical Basis for Reverberation Modeling
Cell-Scattering Models
The REVMOD Model: A Specific Example
Bistatic Reverberation
Point-Scattering Models
Numerical Model Summaries

Sonar Performance Models
Sonar Equations
The NISSM Model: A Specific Example
Model Operating Systems
Advanced Signal Processing Issues
Data Sources and Availability
Numerical Model Summaries

Model Evaluation
Past Evaluation Efforts
Analytical Benchmark Solutions
Quantitative Accuracy Assessments
The POSSM Experience: A Specific Example
Evaluation Guidelines
Documentation Standards

Hierarchical Levels
Simulation Infrastructure
High-Level Architecture


Appendix A: Abbreviations and Acronyms
Appendix B: Glossary of Terms
Appendix C: Web Sites
Appendix D: Problem Sets


Author Bio(s)

Editorial Reviews

This is a comprehensive review of models used in underwater acoustics. It is fully up to date, but also provides information about older models (which are often still used in legacy applications). Even with the Internet and search engines at our fingertips, this is a book that should be on every underwater acoustic model-user's bookshelf, or in the next office.
—Dale D. Ellis, DRDC Atlantic

Etter has produced a very timely update to a whole raft of topics. … The chapter on Special Applications and Inverse Techniques I find most interesting, as this introduces the theme of underwater acoustics modeling and simulation to potentially completely new audiences. … Etter discusses complex topics by providing clear, well-researched explanations that are based whenever possible on real-world data and which are always insightful. … a ‘must-have’ addition to anyone’s bookshelf.
—Peter Ward, Kongsberg Maritime Ltd.

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