The acoustic theory is developed for a multibeam fisheries-type sonar employing a circular arc of transducer elements. Specifically, numerical relations for transmit and receive beam patterns are derived and methodologies set forth for the derivation of appropriately scaled acoustic target strength and acoustic volume backscattering strength from an ideally performing multibeam device. Predicted and measured beam characteristics of a realizable multibeam sonar, a Kongsberg Simrad-Mesotech SM 2000, are compared. Practical techniques for the extraction of calibrated acoustic volume backscattering strength from real systems are advanced.

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