Transmission beam pattern and echolocation signals of a harbor porpoise (Phocoena phocoena)

J Acoust Soc Am. 1999 Dec;106(6):3699-705. doi: 10.1121/1.428221.


The transmission beam pattern of an echolocating harbor porpoise (Phocoena phocoena) was measured in both the vertical and horizontal planes. An array of seven Brüel and Kjaer 8103 hydrophones connected to an amplifier-line driver module was used to measure the beam patterns. The porpoise was trained to station in a hoop and echolocate a cylindrical target located at a range between 7 and 9 m while the array was located 2 m in front of the hoop. The 3-dB beamwidth in both the vertical and horizontal planes was the same at approximately 16 degrees and the beam was pointed toward the forward direction. The individual hydrophones in both the vertical and horizontal arrays measured signal waveforms that were similar throughout the 40-degree span of the array. The porpoise emitted signals with intervals that were 20 to 35 ms longer than the round trip travel time between the animal and the target. The average source level, peak frequency, and bandwidth were 157 dB, 128 kHz, and 16 kHz, respectively.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Amplifiers, Electronic
  • Animals
  • Echolocation / physiology*
  • Humans
  • Porpoises / physiology*