Engineered Syntactic Systems Helps WHOI Monitor Sea Mammals Behavior
Attleboro, Ma. – June 2009 – Engineered Syntactic Systems today announced that its syntactic foam, containing 3MTM Glass Bubbles provides buoyancy for oceanographic applications enabling the retrieval of electronic monitoring devices. Definitive studies on the response of marine mammals to anthropogenic sound are hampered by the short surface time and deep-diving lifestyle of many species. A novel archival tag, called the Digital Acoustic Recording Tag, (DTAG), has been developed to monitor the behavior of marine mammals, and their response to sound, continuously throughout the dive cycle.
The tag contains a large array of solid-state memory and records continuously from a built-in hydrophone and suite of sensors. The sensors sample the orientation of the animal in three dimensions with sufficient speed and resolution to capture individual fluke strokes. Audio and sensor recording is synchronous so the relative timing of sounds and motion can be determined precisely.
The DTAG is noninvasive and is attached to the whale with 4 silicone suction cups using a 12 m cantilevered carbon fiber pole or a handheld carbon fiber pole. With the use of the poles, the tag is delivered without encroaching over the flukes of the animal. The tags are programmed to release from the animal by venting the suction cups at the end of the recording time if they are still attached. A VHF beacon in the tag aids in tracking and recovering the device. Once recovered, the tag data is off-loaded to a computer, checked for errors and archived.
About Engineered Syntactic Systems
Engineered Syntactic Systems is a global leader of high-performance syntactic solutions for subsea and oceanographic environments. Years of experience in the engineering, design and manufacturing of flotation technologies, enable ESS to provide customers with the optimal solution for their application. Products are available in standard shapes and sizes, as well as custom-formed geometries and are engineered to withstand depths ranging from several hundred meters to the bottom of the Mariana Trench. ESS also fabricates syntactic and composite/syntactic structures and assemblies for complete turnkey solutions.