Asee peer logo

Real World Ultrasonic Signals and their Application in Teaching Signal Processing

Download Paper |


2012 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


San Antonio, Texas

Publication Date

June 10, 2012

Start Date

June 10, 2012

End Date

June 13, 2012



Conference Session

CoED General Technical Session I

Tagged Division

Computers in Education

Page Count


Page Numbers

25.1098.1 - 25.1098.9



Permanent URL

Download Count


Request a correction

Paper Authors


Thad B. Welch Boise State University

visit author page

Thad B. Welch, Ph.D., P.E. received the B.E.E., M.S.E.E., E.E., and Ph.D. degrees from the Georgia Institute of Technology, Naval Postgraduate School, Naval Postgraduate School, and the University of Colorado in 1979, 1989, 1989, and 1997, respectively. He was commissioned in the U.S. Navy in 1979 and has been assigned to three submarines and a submarine repair tender. He has been deployed in the Atlantic Ocean, Mediterranean Sea, and Arctic Ocean. From 1994-1997, he was an instructor and Assistant Professor teaching in the Electrical Engineering Department at the U.S. Air Force Academy, Colorado Springs, Colo. During 1996-1997, he was recognized as the Outstanding Academy Educator for the Electrical Engineering Department. From 1997-2007, he was an Assistant Professor, Associate Professor, and Permanent Military Professor teaching in the Electrical Engineering Department at the U.S. Naval Academy, Annapolis, Md. During 2000-2001, he was recognized as the Outstanding Academy Educator for the Electrical Engineering Department. During 2001-2002, he received the Raouf outstanding engineering educator award. During 2002-2003, he was recognized as the Outstanding Researcher for the Electrical Engineering Department. He was an invited scholar at the University of Wyoming, fall 2004, where he was recognized as an Eminent Engineer and inducted into Tau Beta Pi. In 2006, he co-authored “Real-time Digital Signal Processing, from MATLAB to C with the TMS320C6x DSK.” The second edition of this text was published in 2012. From 2007-2010, he was professor and Chair of the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department at Boise State University, Boise, Ind. From 2011-2012, he was the inaugural Signal Processing Education Network (SPEN) Fellow. His research interests include real-time digital signal processing (DSP), the implementation of DSP-based systems, communication systems analysis, IED defeat, efficient simulation of communication systems, spread-spectrum techniques, and ultra-wideband systems.

visit author page


Cameron H.G. Wright P.E. University of Wyoming Orcid 16x16

visit author page

Cameron H. G. Wright, Ph.D., P.E., is an Associate Professor with the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at the University of Wyoming, Laramie, Wyo. He was previously professor and Deputy Department Head in the Department of Electrical Engineering at the U.S. Air Force Academy, and served as an R&D engineering officer in the U.S. Air Force for more than 20 years. He received the B.S.E.E. (summa cum laude) from Louisiana Tech University in 1983, the M.S.E.E. from Purdue University in 1988, and the Ph.D. from the University of Texas, Austin in 1996. Wright's research interests include signal and image processing, real-time embedded computer systems, biomedical instrumentation, and engineering education. He is a member of ASEE, IEEE, SPIE, BMES, NSPE, Tau Beta Pi, and Eta Kappa Nu. His teaching awards include the Tau Beta Pi WY-A Undergraduate Teaching Award (2011), the IEEE Student Branch's Outstanding Professor of the Year (2005 and 2008), the Mortar Board "Top Prof" award (2005 and 2007), the Outstanding Teaching Award from the ASEE Rocky Mountain Section (2007), the John A. Curtis Lecture Award from the Computers in Education Division of ASEE (1998, 2005, and 2010), and the Brigadier General R. E. Thomas Award for outstanding contribution to cadet education (both 1992 and 1993) at the U.S. Air Force Academy. Wright currently serves as Associate Department Head, Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering.

visit author page


Michael G. Morrow University of Wisconsin, Madison

visit author page

Michael G. Morrow, M.Eng.E.E., P.E., is a Faculty Associate in the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department at the University of Wisconsin, Madison. He previously taught at Boise State University and the U.S. Naval Academy. He is the Founder and President of Educational DSP (eDSP), LLC, developing affordable DSP education solutions. He is a Senior Member of the IEEE and a member of the American Society for Engineering Education (ASEE).

visit author page

Download Paper |


Title: Real World Ultrasonic Signals and their Application in Teaching Signal ProcessingThe authors have recorded or obtained, a number of naturally occurring ultrasonic signals (e.g.,bat echolocation sounds and dolphin whistles) as well as hardware generated ultrasonic signals(e.g., a dog whistle and a variety of signals from a ThinkGeek Annoy-a-tron 2.0). Theseultrasonic signals present a unique andragogical opportunity in any course where signalprocessing theory and techniques are taught.This paper will discuss the utilization of these signals to teach, demonstrate, and reinforce theconcepts of time dilation/compression, frequency translation, envelope recovery/detection,spectral analysis/estimation, and aliasing. These teaching moments may be provided using eitheroffline or real-time signal processing techniques.Should this paper be selected for publication, a number of live demonstrations will be providedduring its presentation at the annual ASEE conference. Additionally, the required ultrasonicsignals and recorded versions of these and other presentations will be made available on theauthors’ website as well as through the Connexions ecosystem (

Welch, T. B., & Wright, C. H., & Morrow, M. G. (2012, June), Real World Ultrasonic Signals and their Application in Teaching Signal Processing Paper presented at 2012 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, San Antonio, Texas. 10.18260/1-2--21855

ASEE holds the copyright on this document. It may be read by the public free of charge. Authors may archive their work on personal websites or in institutional repositories with the following citation: © 2012 American Society for Engineering Education. Other scholars may excerpt or quote from these materials with the same citation. When excerpting or quoting from Conference Proceedings, authors should, in addition to noting the ASEE copyright, list all the original authors and their institutions and name the host city of the conference. - Last updated April 1, 2015