Measured Wave-Front Fluctuations in 1000-Km Pulse-Propagation in the Pacific-Ocean

Duda, TF, Flatte SM, Colosi JA, Cornuelle BD, Hildebrand JA, Hodgkiss WS, Worcester PF, Howe BM, Mercer JA, Spindel RC.  1992.  Measured Wave-Front Fluctuations in 1000-Km Pulse-Propagation in the Pacific-Ocean. Journal of the Acoustical Society of America. 92:939-955.

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Acoustic tomography, long-range, mesoscale


A 1000-km acoustical transmission experiment has been carried out in the North Pacific, with Pulses broadcast between a moored broadband source (250-Hz center frequency) and a moored sparse vertical line of receivers. Two data records are reported: a period of 9 days at a pulse rate of one per hour, and a 21 -h period on the seventh day at six per hour. Many wave-front segments were observed at each hydrophone depth, and arrival times were tracked and studied as functions of time and depth. Arrivals within the final section of the pulse are not trackable in time or space at the chosen sampling rates, however. Broadband fluctuations, which are uncorrelated over 10-min sampling and 60-m vertical spacing, are observed with about 40 (ms)2 variance. The variance of all other fluctuations (denoted as low-frequency) is comparable or smaller than the broadband value; this low-frequency variance can be separated into two parts: a wave-front segment displacement (with vertical correlation length greater than 1 km) that varies substantially between rays with different ray identifiers, and a distortion (with vertical correlation length between 60 m and 1 km) of about 2 (ms)2 variance. The low-frequency variance may be explained as the effect of internal waves, including internal tides. The variance of the broadband fluctuations is reduced somewhat but not eliminated if only high-intensity peaks are selected; this selection does not affect the statistics of the low-frequency fluctuations.