Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS

Geophysical seafloor exploration with a towed array in shallow water

During the present project, a new perspective on acoustic seafloor remote sensing has been opened. The results obtained fall into two main categories: one is computational and method based, and the other is technological and operational.

In the computational aspect, it has been proved that adaptive global search methods have the possibility to solve this ill-posed inverse problem, not only for geoacoustic parameters, but also for sediment layering. A powerful alternative method, based on a radial basis function mapping of the inverse forward model, has proved successful for estimating compressional and shear velocities with a small computational burden on near real time. The output estimates of data collected at sea, in a geophysically known area, gave a high-resolution picture of the seafloor and layering structure that could be validated with independent ground truth in situ measurements.

On the technological side, it was shown that a moderate aperture towed array could be used for inversion, but the relevance (for the inversion) of the precise knowledge of the sensor positions was stressed. In the short term, it can be forseen to explore large coastal areas in a rapid fashion with ship survey systems using the methodology developed under this project.

Reported by

Universidade do Algarve
Campus de Gambelas
8004 Faro
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