2016 Distinguished Technical Achievement Award

For invention of the dual-beam and split-beam scientific echo sounders and contributions to the use of miniature acoustic tags in fisheries research.

Dr. John E. Ehrenberg

Over the past 45 years, John E. Ehrenberg has contributed to the advancement of fisheries acoustic research. In the 1970s while working as a research professor in electrical engineering at the Applied Physics Laboratory of the University of Washington, he developed the dual-beam and split-beam techniques for extracting fish target strength from acoustic echoes.  Results from this work were presented at the then budding OCEANS conference (1971-1974) and these methods are now used worldwide for directly measuring the target strength of fish in situ.  Miniature underwater acoustic tags attached on, or surgically implanted in fish have been a mainstay in fisheries research since their introduction in the early 1950s.  In the early 1990s, John Ehrenberg and colleagues at Hydroacoustic Technology Inc. (HTI) developed high-frequency (300 kHz) miniature tags with encoding schemes that made it possible to track simultaneously and uniquely thousands of tags in 3 dimensions.  Most recently, he has been working on innovative "digestible" underwater acoustic tags that help track a prey in the predator's guts.

President of HTI since 2007, John Ehrenberg was Director of Engineering & Information Technology at Boeing for 20 years, Vice-President and Chief Scientist at Biosonics Inc. for 4 years, Principal Engineer at the Applied Physics Laboratory and Research Professor in electrical engineering at the University of Washington for over 10 years.  He earned a PhD degree from the University of Washington (1973), an MS degree from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (1968), and a BS degree from Seattle University (1966), all in electrical engineering.

John Ehrenberg is a Life Senior Member of the IEEE Oceanic Engineering Society. He served as an Associate Editor for the IEEE Journal of Oceanic Engineering from July 1982 to January 2005.  He was Editor of a special issue of the Journal devoted to “Ocean Acoustic Remote Sensing” V.11(1), 1986.