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Electrical and Computer Engineering Seminar: Techniques for Extracting Useful Information from Ocean Noise
Friday, October 13, 2006 - 2:00pm to Friday, October 13, 2006 - 3:50pm

The Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE) at PSU's Maseeh College of Engineering and Computer Science presents as part of the ECE507 Seminar fall 2006 Series: Techniques for Extracting Useful Information from Ocean Noise.

Title: "Techniques for Extracting Useful Information from Ocean Noise"

Speaker: Martin Siderius, HLS Research Inc., San Diego, CA

Date: Friday, October 13, 2006

Time: 2:00 - 3:50 p.m.

Location: Cramer Hall, Room 53

This series is free and open to the public. For further information, contact the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, (503) 725-3806 or

For more information on upcoming seminars, please visit the Department Web site:


In acoustics, noise has often been defined as unwanted sound. Given this definition, it may be surprising that ocean acoustic noise can itself be used in ways that rival or surpass what is produced with complex sonar systems that have controlled sound sources. For example, recentwork has shown a rather remarkable property of ocean noise: by correlating the noise field measured by two sensors one can recover the two-point Green's function representing the impulse response between the two sensors. There are several ways to exploit this two-point Green's function and in this presentation an ambient noise fathometer will be described which can be used to image sediment layering. Other examples of noise processing will be given including techniques for identifying sediment type (e.g. mud, sand, rock), and ways to exploit the "noise-notch". The value of processing the noise field as opposed to using sonar systems with sound projectors will be discussed. In addition, a brief overview of ocean acoustic applications will be presented to give context to these new noise processing techniques.

Speaker Biography

Martin Siderius received his B.S. degree in physics from Western Washington University in 1986, and his M.S. and Ph.D. degrees from the University of Washington in 1992 and 1996 respectively, both in electrical engineering.

His primary research field is ocean acoustics and includes experimental and theoretical studies of acoustic propagation physics and signal processing. Dr. Siderius has developed several R&D programs which include seabed geoacoustic inversion techniques and methods to exploit the ocean ambient noise field for sonar performance improvements and for passive environmental monitoring and characterization. He is a co-investigator on several other projects including: underwater acoustic communications, passive sonar for persistent shallow water surveillance, and studies on the effects of sound on the marine environment.