Complimentary ultrasound methods for the estimation of sound speed in macroalgae

Jo Randall, Jean Pierre Hermand, Marie Elise Arnould, Jeff Ross, Craig Johnson

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review


Temperate kelp forests are amongst the most productive ecosystems in the world. However, there is mounting evidence that these habitats are in decline, both in range and productivity. Acoustic propagation modelling has been used to identify primary productivity in seagrass beds, and work is ongoing in development as a method of providing large scale measurements of productivity in macroalgae forests. Acoustic predictive models require knowledge of the material properties of interest, yet little is known about the acoustic properties of seaweed species. As a preliminary step towards acoustic modelling of seaweed systems, this study investigates the acoustic properties of Ecklonia radiata, a key species in temperate Australian marine systems. Measuring sound speed in macroalgae, as with other biological material, provides unique challenges due to their intrinsic morphological and anatomical characteristics. Using a range of frequencies between 2-10 MHz different methods are proposed to measure sound speed both directly and indirectly. The measurements show a consistent result, with variation according to tissue type. This research provides an important first step towards the development of acoustic propagation models in kelp forest ecosystems.

Original languageEnglish
Article number005025
Pages (from-to)1-6
Number of pages6
JournalProceedings of Meetings on Acoustics
Publication statusPublished - 19 Jun 2013
Externally publishedYes
Event21st International Congress on Acoustics, ICA 2013 - 165th Meeting of the Acoustical Society of America - Montreal, QC, Canada
Duration: 2 Jun 20137 Jun 2013


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