- Bridges & Piers
- Offshore Wind Farms
Bridges & Piers
Anthropogenic noise has increased drastically in recent years due to the rise in ocean infrastructure development. Pile driving, the practice of pounding long hollow steel pipes called piles into the ocean floor, is required to support underwater structures such as turbines. Pile driving is used to dill turbines into the ocean floor for the purpose of tapping into natural energy sources such as oil, gas, and wind. Pile driving is also used to build bridges and piers. Pile driving has the potential to produce some of the loudest anthropogenic sounds that enter the marine environment.
Offshore Wind Farms
In some countries regulators have already made passive acoustic monitoring a permit or license requirement, either throughout the entire year, or during potentially sensitive seasons such as when whales are giving birth to their calves. Over the next few years scientists will start to reveal more about the effects of sound on marine mammals, and as technology advances it is safe to assume that passive acoustic monitoring will become a permanent and universal legal requirement.
Passive acoustic monitoring provides a unique opportunity to track noise levels, biological activities, and to characterize the local marine soundscape before, during and after piling operations. The loud impulses produced during pile driving are believed to be sufficiently powerful to affect the hearing of marine mammals. For this reason hydrophones are often used to monitor the area before and during piling operations. Ocean Sonics can manufacture a reduced sensitivity hydrophone specifically for pile driving operations.
Related Article on Monitoring Pile Driving Noise: