A consistent approach to definitions and symbols in fisheries acoustics

David N. MacLennan, Paul G. Fernandes*, John Dalen

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

565 Citations (Scopus)


Long-standing problems with acoustical terminology in fisheries applications such as echo-integration indicate the need for a more consistent approach. Based where possible on existing terms, a scheme of explicitly named quantities is proposed, backed by clearly stated definitions and preferred symbols. The emphasis is on scattering phenomena because the terminology in this area presents the main source of difficulty. Starting with the scattering equations for a small target, the volume, area, and line coefficients relevant to multiple, distributed targets are defined, leading to practical formulas for the important application of remote biomass estimation from echo-integration. The aim is to incorporate, as far as possible, common practice in fisheries-acoustics terminology and related fields. The developed scheme has been commended by the ICES Fisheries Acoustics Science and Technology Working Group as a constructive approach to better communication standards in fisheries-acoustics publications.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)365-369
Number of pages5
JournalICES Journal of Marine Science
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2002


  • Acoustics
  • Definitions
  • Fisheries
  • ICES
  • Sonar
  • Symbols
  • Units

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oceanography
  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Aquatic Science
  • Ecology


Dive into the research topics of 'A consistent approach to definitions and symbols in fisheries acoustics'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this