SOFAR channel

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Acronym for the SOund Fixing And Ranging channel, a zone in the oceanic water column at a depth of about 1500 m where the velocity of sound is at a minimum value. Sound passing through the zone is refracted upwards or downwards back into the zone, with little loss of energy, causing sound energy to be trapped in a zone of well-defined depth. The SOFAR channel may be used for the transmission of sound over long distances, exceeding 28 000 km, and can be used to track free-drifting, subsurface, neutrally buoyant floats.

Subjects: Ecology and Conservation — Earth Sciences and Geography.

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