50 Years Ago

Porpoises Can Teach Man Marine Diving, Detection

Excerpt from the September 7, 1963, issue of Science News Letter

2:43pm, August 23, 2013

Cetaceans—the technical term for whales and porpoises—can give scientists a fund of valuable information for developing our mechanical equipment, especially for target detection and identification, and for long-range underwater communication and navigation, stated Dr. Sidney R. Galler, head of the biology branch of the biological sciences division, Office of Naval Research…. The ability of a porpoise to detect and identify targets is highly interesting to the Navy, stated Dr. Galler, as is its accuracy in moving silently and rapidly towards them.… He also noted the porpoise’s ability to dive and surface efficiently and silently, as well as to calculate the trajectory of a ball or fish and catch the object.

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