Acoustic Lens

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acoustic lens

[ə′küs·tik ′lenz]
Selected materials shaped to refract sound waves in accordance with the principles of geometrical optics, as is done for light. Also known as lens.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Lens, Acoustic


a device used to modify the convergence of (that is, to focus) sound beams.

Like optical lenses, acoustic lenses are bounded by two working surfaces. Acoustic lenses are made of a material for which the speed of sound differs from that in the surrounding medium, so that the refractive index n is a number other than unity. In order to attain maximum transmittance, the wave drag of the material should approximate that of the ambient and the viscous losses should be minimal.

Acoustic lenses may be solid, liquid, or gas. In a liquid or gas lens, the lens’s solid casing should exhibit maximum transmittance. For work in liquid media, the material for the lens may be plastic (n = 0.5–0.8), chloroform, or carbon tetrachloride (n = 1.3–1.4). Lenses filled with hydrogen or carbon dioxide are used along with nonhomogenous acoustic lenses filled with pellets or mesh for work in gases (for example, air). Nonhomogeneous diverging air lenses are used to improve the directivity characteristics of loudspeakers. Solid and liquid lenses are used for acoustic images, flaw detection, medical diagnosis, and the concentration of ultrasound for a variety of technological and biological purposes.


Bergmann, L. Ul’trazvuk i ego primenenie v nauke i technike, 2nd ed. Moscow, 1957. (Translated from German.)
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
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