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Peter Dahl

Faculty Photo

Mechanical Engineering

Senior Principal Engineer, Applied Physics Laboratory


  • PhD, Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, 1989
  • M.S., University of Washington, 1982
  • B.S., University of Washington, 1976

Research Statement

Professor Dahl's research is in the area of acoustics, with primary focus on underwater sound. He is a member of the Acoustics Department of the Applied Physics Laboratory.

Research areas include:

  • Underwater ambient and shipping noise
  • Vector acoustic properties of underwater and airborne sound
  • Underwater noise from high-energy explosives including the physical effects on fish

He has conducted several ocean-going experiments in underwater acoustics throughout the world’s oceans.  Professor Dahl is a Fellow of the Acoustical Society of America (ASA), has served as the chair of the ASA technical committee on Underwater Acoustics (2002-2005), on its Executive Council (2008-2011), and was the ASA Vice President (2013-2014).

Some examples representing his research are included the following works:

Select publications

  1. P. H. Dahl, A. K. Jenkins, B. Casper, S. E. Kotecki, V. Bowman, C. Boerger, D. R. Dall’Osto, M. A. Babina, and A. N. Popper,  Physical Effects of Sound Exposure from Underwater Explosions on Pacific Sardines (Sardinops sagax), J. Acoust. Soc. Am., 139, 311-319, May 2020.
  2. P. H. Dahl and D.R. Dall’Osto, Vector acoustic analysis of time-separated arrivals from explosive sound sources during the 2017 Seabed Characterization Experiment,   IEEE J. Oceanic Engineering, 45, 131-143, 2020.
  3. P. S. Wilson, D. P. Knobles, P. H. Dahl, A. R. McNeese, and M. C. Zeh, (2019). Short-range signatures of explosive sounds in shallow water used for seabed characterization, IEEE J. Oceanic Engineering, 45, 1-12, 2020.
  4. P. H. Dahl and D.R. Dall’Osto,  On the underwater sound field from impact pile driving: Arrival structure, precursor arrivals, and energy streamlines J. Acoust. Soc. Am., 142, 1141-1155, Aug. 2017.
  5. D.R. Dall’Osto, J. W. Choi and P. H. Dahl,  Measurement of acoustic particle motion in shallow water and its application to geoacoustic inversion,  J. Acoust. Soc. Am., 139, 311-319, Jan. 2016.
  6. A. G. Soloway, P. H. Dahl and R. I. Odom, Modeling explosion generated Scholte waves in sandy sediments with power law dependent shear wave speed, J. Acoust. Soc. Am., Express Letters, 138 370-374, Oct. 2015.
  7. A. G. Soloway and P. H. Dahl,  Peak sound pressure and sound exposure level from underwater explosions in shallow water, J. Acoust. Soc. Am.,  Express Letters 136, 218-223, Sep. 2014.
  8. D.R. Dall’Osto and P. H. Dahl, Elliptical acoustic particle motion in underwater waveguides,  J. Acoust. Soc. Am., 134, 109-118, July 2013.
  9. D.R. Dall’Osto and P. H. Dahl, Properties of the acoustic intensity vector field in a shallow water waveguide,   J. Acoust. Soc. Am., 131, 2023-2035, Mar.  2012