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.
“Ocean Networks Canada performed a wide range of tests on the hydrophones prior to deployment to verify the manufacturer’s specifications. The hydrophone instruments met all the manufacturer’s specifications and were easy to use. Both models satisfy our requirements for dynamic range, sensitivity and, most importantly, reliability. When coupled with the fast and friendly customer support we have received, these LF and HF hydrophones are a good choice for our ocean observatory.”Tom Dakin Sensor and Technology Business Development Officer and Resident Ocean Acoustician Ocean Networks Canada
“We have been working with Ocean Sonics in our technology demonstration program since the first prototypes. Our science users have been very impressed with the very high quality data sets. Ocean Networks Canada is expanding our hydrophone network with Ocean Sonic icListen HF smart hydrophones across our observatory including new sites across coastal BC, as part of the Smart Oceans™ program. The compact size, Ethernet interface, high reliability and exceptional performance make these systems ideal for ocean observing applications such as mammal classification, vessel and ambient noise studies.”Scott McLean Director(Former) Ocean Networks Canada
“I have used many different hydrophones on different systems, but these icListen hydrophones are the best I’ve seen in many years. They’re calibrated to very low frequencies where I’ve never been able to get reliable data.”
Ross Chapman Professor Emeritus University of Victoria
The Ocean Observatories Initiative (OOI) Regional Scaled Nodes (RSN) had requirements for very broadband hydrophones with good noise floor characteristics and a wide dynamic range. The icListen HF hydrophones satisfied these requirements at a reasonable cost. The hydrophones were quite easy to use out of the box, and easily passed our intensive First Article tests centered on assuring any instrument will not interfere with or corrode any other instrument. Customer support has been quite good, with very detailed questions answered quickly and accurately.
Skip Denny Principal Ocean Engineer, RSN Applied Physics Lab, University of Washington.