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This paper reviews the physical fundamentals and engineering implementations for efficient information exchange via wireless communication using physical waves as the carrier among nodes in an underwater sensor network. The physical waves under discussion include sound, radio, and light. The authors first present the fundamental physics of different waves; then the authors discuss and compare the pros and cons for adopting different communication carriers (Acoustic, radio, and optical) based on the fundamental first principles of physics and engineering practice. The discussions are mainly targeted at underwater sensor networks with densely deployed nodes.
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