Enhancing the emergence rate of coherent wavefronts from ocean ambient noise correlations using spatio-temporal filters
Extracting coherent wavefronts between passive receivers using cross-correlations of ambient noise (CAN) provides a means for monitoring the seismoacoustic environment without using active sources. However, using cross-correlations between single receivers can require a long recording time in order to extract stable coherent arrivals from CAN. This becomes an issue if the propagation medium fluctuates significantly during the recording period. To address this issue, this article presents a general spatio-temporal filtering procedure to enhance the emergence rate for coherent wavefronts extracted from time-averaged ambient noise correlations between two spatially separated arrays. The robustness of this array-based CAN technique is investigated using ambient shipping noise recorded over 24 h in the frequency band [250–850 Hz] on two vertical line arrays deployed 143 m apart in shallow water (depth 20 m). Experimental results confirm that the array-based CAN technique can significantly reduce the recording duration (e.g., from 22 h to 30 min) required for extracting coherent wavefronts of sufficient amplitude (e.g., 20 dB over residual temporal fluctations) when compared to conventional CAN implementations between single pairs of hydrophones. These improvements of the CAN technique could benefit the development of noise-based ocean monitoring applications such as passive acoustic tomography.