Simulation of a beamforming SONAR algorithm

Submarine sonar simulation
simulation diagram of systemview


SystemView DSP Simulation tool

Developing in Microsoft C++

Skills Used
  • Digital Signal Processing algorithms
  • Microsoft C++ under Windows
  • Simulation

Beamforming SONAR

Our client wanted to be able to simulate his beamforming algorithms in an easy to use simulation environment. At the time (1996) we were selling SystemView by Elanix Inc. Elanix Inc was sold to Eagleware in 2004, which was then acquired by Agilent (now called Keysight Technologies) in 2005. SystemView was a PC based tool and was fast becoming the tool of choice for simulating mixed (DSP and analog) designs.

Simulation Solution

The simulation engine supported developers writing their own algorithms using a DLL (dynamic linked library) interface as well as a rich library of algorithmic blocks called “tokens”. We coded into C++ the mathematics of the Chief Scientists algorithms and even wrote a sonar type monochrome graphical display token.


The net result was a platform in which the Chief Scientist could experiment with leading parameters in the design on an easy to use simulation environment. The algorithms in Sonar make heavy use of Fourier Transforms. To make the application software execute as fast as possible, Intel Performance Primitive’s were used for the FFT’s. SystemView supported waveform display in the form of graphs but not 2 dimensional grey scale plots that Sonar requires, so we wrote a “token” to display the 2 dimensional matrix using grey scale for the amplitude.