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User expectations for multibeam echo sounders backscatter strength data-looking back into the future

Lucieer, V ORCID: 0000-0001-7531-5750, Roche, M, Degrendele, K, Malik, M, Dolan, M and Larmarche, G 2018 , 'User expectations for multibeam echo sounders backscatter strength data-looking back into the future' , Marine Geophysical Research, vol. 39, no. 1-2 , pp. 23-40 , doi: 10.1007/s11001-017-9316-5.

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With the ability of multibeam echo sounders(MBES) to measure backscatter strength (BS) as a functionof true angle of insonification across the seafloor, came anew recognition of the potential of backscatter measurementsto remotely characterize the properties of the seafloor.Advances in transducer design, digital electronics,signal processing capabilities, navigation, and graphicdisplay devices, have improved the resolution and particularlythe dynamic range available to sonar and processingsoftware manufacturers. Alongside these improvements theexpectations of what the data can deliver has also grown. Inthis paper, we identify these user-expectations and explorehow MBES backscatter is utilized by different communitiesinvolved in marine seabed research at present, and theaspirations that these communities have for the data inthe future. The results presented here are based on a usersurvey conducted by the GeoHab (Marine Geological andBiological Habitat Mapping) association. This paper summarisesthe different processing procedures employed to extract useful information from MBES backscatter data andthe various intentions for which the user community collectthe data. We show how a range of backscatter output productsare generated from the different processing procedures,and how these results are taken up by different scientificdisciplines, and also identify common constraints in handlingMBES BS data. Finally, we outline our expectationsfor the future of this unique and important data source forseafloor mapping and characterisation.

Item Type: Article
Authors/Creators:Lucieer, V and Roche, M and Degrendele, K and Malik, M and Dolan, M and Larmarche, G
Keywords: multibeam acoustic backscatter, habitat mapping, marine geology, seafloor facies
Journal or Publication Title: Marine Geophysical Research
Publisher: Kluwer Academic Publ
ISSN: 0025-3235
DOI / ID Number: 10.1007/s11001-017-9316-5
Copyright Information:

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2017

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