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Volume 125, Issue 6, June 2009
- UNDERWATER SOUND 
125(2009); http://dx.doi.org/10.1121/1.3117430View Description Hide Description
Multimegameter-range acoustic data obtained by bottom-mounted receivers show significant acoustic energy penetrating several hundred meters into geometric shadow zones below cusps (caustics) of timefronts computed using climatological databases [B. D. Dushaw et al., IEEE J. Ocean. Eng.24, 202–214 (1999)]. This penetration is much larger than predicted by diffraction theory. Because these receivers are horizontal arrays, they do not provide information on the vertical structure of the shadow-zone arrivals. Acoustic data from two vertical line array receivers deployed in close proximity in the North Pacific Ocean, together virtually spanning the water column, show the vertical structure of the shadow-zone arrivals for transmissions from broadband sources moored at the sound-channel axis and slightly above the surface conjugate depth at ranges of 500 and . Comparisons to parabolic equation simulations for sound-speed fields that do not include significant internal-wave variability show that early branches of the measured timefronts consistently penetrate as much as deeper into the water column than predicted. Subsequent parabolic equation simulations incorporating sound-speed fluctuations consistent with the Garrett–Munk internal-wave spectrum at full strength accurately predict the observed energy level to within rms over the depth range of the shadow-zone arrivals.