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The Sea Ears project aims at studying and further improving the performance of state of the art methods for passive underwater acoustic 3D localization of broadband sources relying on relative travel-time measurements of direct and surface-reflected arrivals on minimal hydrophone sets (pair of hydrophones) and taking into account refraction characteristics of the ocean sound channel and their effects on propagation geometry and travel times. To study the statistical relationships/behavior and localization performance a Bayesian estimation framework will be developed.

As a special case the localization of broadband sources lying on the seabed from time-of-arrival measurements at a single-hydrophone will be addressed; this is a simple and practical setting for deployment at accident sites for the localization of pingers (ULBs) mounted on black boxes.

A software system will be designed and developed to perform data acquisition support and localization of sound sources in the water column and on the seabed, allowing for real-time (field operation) and off-line (post analysis) use. Methods and software will be experimentally validated in two separate experiments at sea, one in shallow water and one in deep water.

Dissemination actions will include among others development of relevant e-learning education material to be integrated in education programs of FORTH/IACM on underwater acoustics.