Reliable Acoustic Path Vertical Line Array
Navy SBIR FY2008.2

Sol No.: Navy SBIR FY2008.2
Topic No.: N08-171
Topic Title: Reliable Acoustic Path Vertical Line Array
Proposal No.: N082-171-0511
Firm: LewTech Company, Inc.
7112 Nighthawk Drive
Fort Wayne, Indiana 46835-9395
Contact: Sara Wagar
Phone: (260) 402-0353
Abstract: The U.S. Navy has researched the use of various acoustic sensing technologies that exploit the deep water reliable acoustic path (RAP) using vertical line arrays (VLA's) of vector sensors with success. The buoys used were, however, large, over-the-side deployed, research systems to demonstrate the approach. What is desired is a viable approach that is smaller and can be ideally packaged to facilitate ease of handling for Naval crewmen. Phase I will perform analytical modeling studies of the required system and subsystem components to determine the suitability for RAP VLA operation and do some sensor proof-of-concept evaluations to supplement the modeling. The objective is to establish a cost effective, easily deployable, RAP sensor system that can be prototyped and demonstrated in Phase II. Component level technologies to be evaluated include miniature low noise vector sensors, array electronics and telemetry, DC power generation and distribution, and acoustic communications between the array and a surface platform. System level technologies include end-to-end array design, conventional and advanced signal processing techniques suitable for a deep water vector sensor line array, packaging and deployment concepts, and communication modalities.
Benefits: The overall commercial market need for such a long range passive detection system is considered to be substantial with variants applicable to researchers engaged in ocean ambient noise surveys, deep water acoustic propagation studies, long range acoustic communication, bio-acoustic monitoring of marine life, and seismic surveys in support of geophysical prospecting. The direct DoD benefit would be to enhance the overall Anti-submarine Warfare (ASW) mission.