A Whale of a Monitoring Study and an Acoustic Tool that Could Help Offshore Energy
July 5, 2019

Protecting whales and other marine mammals from the potential effects of sound is critical to developing new energy resources. Whether it’s noise from oil and gas exploration or from marine renewable energy devices, to assess and mitigate environmental impacts requires measuring and understanding the sources of sound beneath the sea. Two Integral scientists will present their research on sound at the International Conference on the Effects of Noise on Aquatic Life, on July 7–12, 2019, in Den Haag (The Netherlands).

On July 7–9, Integral ecologist Michael Macrander, Ph.D., will present results of a 9-year monitoring study of the effects of oil and gas activities on migration of bowhead whales. The study, described in his poster presentation “Observations on Bowhead Whale (Balaena mysticetus) Movements and Behaviour in Relation to Oil and Gas Exploration Activities” will be presented during evening poster sessions. Using multifaceted monitoring that included acoustics and observer data, the researchers were able to characterize human-made sources of sound and to detect sounds generated by marine mammals. The study documents the calling behavior and shifts in movements of the bowhead whale.

Also on July 7–9, Integral oceanographer Kaus Raghukumar, Ph.D., will present his research on a new state-of-the-art tool called NoiseSpotter—a compact array of three vector sensors that measure acoustic pressure and 3-dimensional particle velocities associated with propagation of an acoustic wave. The tool is being developed to support environmental impact assessment of noise effects from marine renewable energy installations for offshore energy projects. His poster is titled “Characterization of Near-Bed Particle Motion by the NoiseSpotter: A Three-Dimensional Vector Sensor Array.”

For more information, contact Dr. Macrander at mmacrander@integral-corp.com or Dr. Raghukumar at kraghukumar@integral-corp.com.

Learn more about the conference.