Acoustics Research Group
What is the Acoustics Research Group?
The acoustics research group's primary research is in Synthetic Aperture Sonar (SAS), a technique for high-resolution undersea imaging. We design and build our own sonars for collecting field data; so far we have collected data in Lyttelton, Auckland and Sydney. Our research concentrates on fast-reconstruction, interferometry, positioning, simulation, and autofocus.
To find out about the research projects being offered see the postgraduate study page.
Synthetic aperture sonar (SAS) is used for creating high-resolution acoustic images of the sea-floor. A high-end SAS is capable of imaging a golf-ball at 500m underwater. In Lyttelton (where we do sea-trials) divers' vision extends only about 1.5 m making sonar essential for object finding.
Traditionally sonar resolution is determined by the size of physical receiver used. For high-resolution imaging (20 mm X 20 mm) at long range (>200 m) very large (about 10 m long) receivers are needed. SAS uses the forward motion of the sonar to synthesise the larger receiver. This lets the SAS fake using a large receiver with a small one and gives it high, range-independent resolution.
University SAS research groups
- SAS group at Herriot Watt
- Edgetech are a commercial sidescan sonar company. Recently announced deployment of a SAS system on the Hugin 1000.
- QinetiQ construct and run experimental SAS hardware.
- Geoacoustics are in partnership with QinetiQ on a commercial SAS venture.
- Sonatech have built (build?) experimental SAS systems. They also support Hua Lee's research at UCSB and won the US Navy LMRS contract.
- Northrop Grumman built CSS's SAS and the US-NAVY slow-speed SAS system.
- NATO Undersea Research Centre (NURC), La Spezia, Italy.
- Reson are a commercial multi-beam echo-sounder and sonar company.
Find research groups
Search our Research database
News, events and seminars
The University of Canterbury Motorsport (UCM) team took home five trophies from the Formula Student competition in ...
Working with the University of Canterbury, Christchurch aims to be at the centre of New Zealand’s burgeoning aerospace ...