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Underwater Noise Measurement

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Portable equipmen
Deployment of hand portable equipment for Underwater Noise Impact Assessment

The value of the seas and the seabed as a natural resource has increased greatly over recent years, with the number and scale of marine activities increasing in proportion. Many of man's offshore activities cause underwater noise. This may include noise from sources such as ship movements, to the extreme levels of underwater noise generated during piling and the use of explosives underwater. Activities that generate underwater sound in the marine environment have the potential to impact upon marine receptors.

Kongsberg Maritime has engineers and scientists experienced in working in the offshore environment, and in measuring and assessing underwater noise to stringent standards dictated by specific customer and government requirements.

Underwater noise measurement

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We offer high data rate, underwater noise recording systems to measure noise in the offshore environment. These systems use calibrated hydrophones, traceable to international standards, together with signal conditioning amplifiers and digital data acquisition systems.

Underwater Noise Recording Equipment

Kongsberg Low Noise, High Sensitvity Hydrophones

Kongsberg Maritime’s underwater noise recording equipment has been specifically developed for rapid deployment at incremental ranges to monitor and measure noise in and around offshore civil engineering and military activities. By measuring noise at many different ranges from the source (transect method), the propagation loss of the underwater noise in a particular environment can be measured and subsequently modelled. The equipment can be hand portable, and has been ruggedised for deployment in the offshore environment.

Underwater Noise Analysis

In support of underwater noise assessment activities Kongsberg Maritime are able to undertake the following services:

Software HMI during data acquisition

  • Estimation of Source Level and frequency content of underwater noise from offshore construction activities including pile-driving, drilling, seismic surveys, wellhead severance, cable trenching and pipeline laying, underwater blasting, boat movements and shipping, and aggregate suction dredging.
  • Modelling of underwater sound propagation using narrowband and broadband acoustic propagation models.
  • Modelling of underwater noise in the region of sonar and civil engineering and estimation of impact zones for marine mammals, fish and human divers. Modelling and measurements are usually undertaken using broadband peak, or peak to peak level, RMS Sound Pressure Level and Sound Exposure Level, and weighting scales such as the M-Weighting and dBht for species of marine mammal, fish and human divers.
  • Offshore data collection programmes to obtain calibrated measurements, from background sea noise levels to those encountered during underwater blasting.
  • Measurement of baseline (background sea noise), construction and operational noise to regulatory standards. Estimation of any impact zones or zones of audibility for fish and marine mammals by comparison with species hearing thresholds and background sea noise.

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