At present, high-speed underwater acoustic communication requires underwater transducers with the characteristics of low frequency and broadband. The low-frequency transducers also are expected to be low-frequency directional for realization of point-to-point communication. In order to achieve the above targets, this paper proposes a new type of flextensional transducer which is constructed of double mosaic piezoelectric ceramic rings and spherical cap metal shells. The transducer realizes broadband transmission by means of the coupling between radial vibration of the piezoelectric rings and high-order flexural vibration of the spherical cap metal shells. The low-frequency directional transmission of the transducer is realized by using excitation signals with different amplitude and phase on two mosaic piezoelectric rings. The relationship between transmitting voltage response (TVR), resonance frequency and structural parameters of the transducer is analyzed by finite element software COMSOL. The broadband performance of the transducer is also optimized. On this basis, the low-frequency directivity of the transducer is further analyzed and the ratio of the excitation signals of the two piezoelectric rings is obtained. Finally, a prototype of the broadband ring flextensional underwater transducer is fabricated according to the results of simulation. The electroacoustic performance of the transducer is tested in an anechoic water tank. Experimental results show that the maximum TVR of the transducer is 147.2 dB and the operation bandwidth is 1.5–4 kHz, which means that the transducer has good low-frequency, broadband transmission capability. Meanwhile, cardioid directivity is obtained at 1.4 kHz and low-frequency directivity is realized.
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