Page 27 - Summer 2018
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 Cristina D. S. Tollefsen
Defence Research and Development Canada PO Box 1012 Dartmouth, Nova Scotia B2Y 3G8 Canada
Canadian Innovations in Naval Acoustics from World War II to 1967
Innovation at Canada’s two naval research laboratories advanced understanding of underwater acoustics to the benefit of researchers worldwide.
Canada’s two naval acoustics research laboratories conducted groundbreaking work in naval acoustics beginning in World War II and continuing to the present day. Early innovations included advances in acoustic mine and torpedo counter- measures, oceanography and acoustics of antisubmarine warfare, development of a variable depth sonar, and Arctic acoustics.
The motivation for early oceanographic and underwater acoustics research in Canada and worldwide was distinctly naval in nature, with the aim of detecting mines, submarines, and torpedoes (Muir and Bradley, 2016). Underwater acoustic research in Canada was spurred by Canada’s entrance into World War II in Sep- tember 1939; before that time, Canada did not have a specific defense research capability (Longard, 1993).
Figure 1. Convoy assembling in Bedford Basin, Nova Scotia, Canada, in 1941 to be escorted by the Royal Canadian Navy (RCN) through the U-boat-infested waters of the North Atlantic. Approximately 25,000 merchant ship voyages were made by 12,000 men and women serving in Canada’s Merchant Navy. It was dangerous work, with 1,500 Canadian lives and 59 Canadian-registered ships lost. Photo PA-128093 courtesy of Library and Archives Canada, Canada, Department of National Defence.
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