Date of Award

Winter 2010

Project Type


Program or Major

Ocean Engineering

Degree Name

Master of Science

First Advisor

Thomas C Weber


The backscatter information available from many modern multibeam echosounder systems (MBES) has been shown to be useful for a number of purposes such as habitat classification and bottom type classification. Linearity of the system response is posited to be an important requirement for many backscatter processing techniques. A procedure to measure the system linearity is developed for the Reson 7125. These measurements are performed both in a controlled test tank environment and with systems installed on operational platforms. The linearity of the system with respect to power, gain, and the returned signal level is evaluated. It is possible to drive the Reson 7125 to nonlinear behavior. The consequences of nonlinearity on both bathymetric measurements and backscatter intensity values are developed theoretically and tested against experimental observations. Nonlinear performance generally complicates and degrades both backscatter and bathymetric data products.