Engineering and Expeditionary Warfare Center

Completed Projects

Main Needs Proposals Current Projects Completed Projects Publications SOST Partnership LMR News Annual Reports
Marine Mammal Monitoring on Ranges (Project #LMR-1)
Principal Investigator: David Moretti

This project finalized hardware/infrastructure for the Marine Mammal Monitoring on Ranges (M3R) system which automated passive acoustic marine mammal detection, localization, classification, and display tools using the Navy’s existing undersea hydrophone ranges. The M3R system aids visual and tagging methods, and enables comprehensive marine mammal monitoring to investigate long-term abundance and behavioral changes in the presence of sonar.

SOCAL Behavioral Response Study (Project #LMR-2)
Principal Investigator: John Calambokidis and Brandon Southall

This project increased our understanding of marine mammal reactions to sound and provided a robust scientific basis for estimating the effect of Navy mid-frequency active sonar (MFAS) on marine mammal behavior. Project was co-funded by ONR and SERDP.

All publications resulting from this project are too numerous to list here. Project #LMR-2 Publications related to behavioral response to sonar include:

DeRuiter S.L., Southall B.L., Calambokidis J., Zimmer W.M.X., Sadykova D., Falcone E.A., Friedlaender A.S., Joseph J.E., Moretti, D., Schorr G.S., Thomas L., Tyack P.L. (2013). First direct measurements of behavioural responses by Cuvier’s beaked whales to mid-frequency active sonar. Biology Letters 9:20130223.

Goldbogen J.A., Southall B.L., DeRuiter S.L., Calambokidis J., Friedlaender A.S., Hazen E.L., Falcone E.A., Schorr G.S., Douglass A., Moretti D.J., Kyburg C., McKenna M.F., Tyack P.L. (2013). Blue whales respond to simulated mid-frequency military sonar. Proceedings of the Royal Society B: 20130657.

Stimpert, A. K., DeRuiter, S. L., Southall, B. L., Moretti, D. J., Falcone, E. A., Goldbogen, J. A., Friedlaender, A., Schorr, G.S., & Calambokidis, J. (2014). Acoustic and foraging behavior of a Baird's beaked whale, Berardius bairdii, exposed to simulated sonar. Scientific Reports, 4: 7031.

Friedlaender, A.S., E.L. Hazen, J.A. Goldbogen, A.K. Stimpert, J. Calambokidis, and B.L. Southall. (2016). Prey-mediated behavioral responses of feeding blue whales in controlled sound exposure experiments. Ecological Applications, 26(4): 1075-1085.

Southall, B. L., Nowacek, D.P., Miller, P.J.O., and Tyack, P.L.T. (2016). Synthesis of Experimental Behavioral Response Studies Using Human Sonar and Marine Mammals. Endangered Species Research 31, 291-313.

DeRuiter, S. D., Langrock, R, Skirbutas, Goldbogen, J. A., Calambokidis, J., Friedlaender, A. S. and Southall, B. L. (2017). A multivariate mixed hidden Markov model to analyze blue whale diving behaviour during controlled sound exposures. Annals of Applied Statistics 11, 362–392.

Kvadsheim, P. H., DeRuiter, S., Sivle, L. D., Goldbogen, J., Roland-Hansen, R., Miller, P. J. O., Lam, F-P. A., Calambokidis, J. Friedlaender, A. S., Visser, F., Tyack, P. L., Kleivane, L., and Southall, B. L. (2017). Avoidance Responses of Minke Whales to 1-4 kHz Naval Sonar. Marine Pollution Bulletin, 121 (1-2): 60-68.

Southall, B. L., DeRuiter, S. L., Friedlaender, A., Stimpert, A. K., Goldbogen, J. A., Hazen, E., Casey, C., Fregosi, S., Cade, D. E., Allen, A. N. et al. (2019). Behavioral responses of individual blue whales (Balaenoptera musculus) to mid-frequency military sonar. Journal of Experimental Biology 222: jeb190637.

Simple Performance-characterized Automatic Detection of Marine Mammal Sounds (Project #LMR-3)
Principal Investigator: Dave Mellinger

This project developed user interfaces and training courses to facilitate usage of the Ishmael signal-processing toolkit by Navy staff and contractors, reducing the need for expensive external expert staffing.

Project #LMR-3 Publication:
Mellinger, D.K., Lending C., Nieukirk, S.L., and Heimlich, S.L. (2018). Extensible detection and classification in Ishmael. The Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, 143, 1727.

Demonstration of High-performance PAM Glider and Profiler Float (Project #LMR-4)
Principal Investigator: Haru Matsumoto

This project compared two alternative passive acoustic monitoring (PAM) technologies (gliders and drifting floating systems) to assess cost and performance relative to existing Navy PAM systems (moored and towed systems). The technologies demonstrated during this project are now available for use by the Navy’s marine species monitoring program.

Project #LMR-4 Final Report:

Matsumoto, H., Mellinger, D., Klink, H., Baumann-Pickering, S., Moretti, D., and Martin, S. (2018). Demonstration of commercially available high-performance PAM glider and float. Final Report to the Navy’s Living Marine Resources Program for Contract #N39430-14-C-1435.

Developing Automated Whistle and Click Detectors and Classifiers for Odontocete Species (Project #LMR-5)
Principal Investigator: Julie Oswald

This project developed automated ondontocete detectors and classifiers using both whistles and clicks. The detectors and classifiers developed during this project increase the effectiveness of analyzing passive acoustic monitoring data. These tools are now available for use by the Navy’s marine species monitoring program and the scientific community.

Project #LMR-5 Final Report:

Oswald, J.N. and Yack, T.M. (2017). Development of automated whistle and click classifiers for odontocete species in the western Atlantic Ocean, temperate Pacific and the waters surrounding the Hawaiian Islands. Final Report to the Navy’s Living Marine Resources Program for Contract #N39430-14-C-1431.

Technology Demonstration for Navy Passive Acoustic Monitoring (Project #LMR-7)
Principal Investigator: John Hildebrand

This project developed and demonstrated improvements to the High-frequency Acoustic Recording Package (HARP) moored passive acoustic monitoring (PAM) systems. The HARPs are being widely used by the Navy’s marine species monitoring program.

Project #LMR-7 Final Report:

Wiggins, S.M. and Hildebrand, J.A. (2016). Final Report Living Marine Resources: Technology Demonstration for Fleet Passive Acoustic Monitoring. MPL Technical Memorandum 608.

Improving the Navy’s Automated Methods for Passive Underwater Acoustic Monitoring of Marine Mammals (Project #LMR-8)
Principal Investigator: Tyler Helble

This project developed a suite of automated signal conditioning tools for normalizing data sets from different ambient acoustic regimes prior to submitting such data to standardized automated signal processing systems.

Electrophysiological Correlates of Subjective Loudness in Marine Mammals (Project #LMR-9)
Principal Investigator: Jim Finneran

This project investigated potential reasons why hearing data obtained by measuring auditory evoked potentials (AEPs) were not reliable for use in determining marine mammal weighting functions. Research found that low frequency stimuli produced both low and high frequency AEPs, and therefore the AEP measurements were not reliable at predicting perceived loudness in marine mammals at low frequencies.

Project #LMR-9 Publications:

Finneran, J.J., Mulsow, J., Houser, D.S., and Burkard, R.F. (2015). Place specificity of dolphin auditory evoked potentials assessed with high-pass masking noise. The Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, 137:2219.

Mulsow, J., Finneran, J. J., Schlundt, C. E. (2015). Equal-latency curves and auditory weighting functions for bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) and California sea lions (Zalophus californianus). The Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, 137(4):2219.

Mulsow, J., Schlundt, C. E., Brandt, L., Finneran, J. J. (2015). Equal latency contours for bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) and California sea lions (Zalophus californianus). The Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, 138(5):2678.

Audiograms of Hearing in Baleen Whales: A Model System for Mitigating Sound Impacts (Project #LMR-11)
Principal Investigator: Darlene Ketten

This project predicted a range of best hearing for the humpback whale based on a finite element model (FEM) of the middle ear.

Project #LMR-11 Publication:

Tubelli, A., Zosuls, A., Ketten, D. and Mountain, D. (2018). A model and experimental approach to the middle ear transfer function related to hearing in the humpback whale (Megaptera novaeangliae). Journal of Acoustical Society of America, 144, 525.

Integrated Real-time Autonomous Passive Acoustic Monitoring System (Project #LMR-12)
Principal Investigator: Phil Abbot

This project demonstrated the Integrated Real-time Autonomous Passive Acoustic Monitoring (IRAP) system on a powered autonomous underwater vehicle (REMUS-600).

Project #LMR-12 Final Report:
Premus, V. and Abbot, P. (2019). Integrated Real-time Autonomous Passive Acoustic Montoring (IRAP) System. Technical Memorandum No. 148. Prepared by Ocean Acoustical Services and Instrumentation Systems (OASIS). Final Report to the Navy’s Living Marine Resources Program for Contract #N39430-14-C-1437.

Standardization of AEP Audiometry Methods to Ensure Comparable Data Inclusion in a National Marine Mammal AEP Database (Project #LMR-13)
Principal Investigator: Dorian Houser

This project team published an ANSI standard to standardize data collection approaches for measuring Auditory Evoked Potential (AEP) hearing thresholds in toothed whales.

Project #LMR-13 Publication:

ANSI/ASA S3/SC1.6-2018 Procedure for Determining Audiograms in Toothed Whales through Evoked Potential Methods.

Behavioral Audiometry in Multiple Killer Whales (Project #LMR-14)
Principal Investigator: Brian Branstetter

The study provided the first demographic hearing data from killer whales by measuring behavioral audiograms for animals of multiple ages.

Project #LMR-14 Publication:

Branstetter, B. K., St. Leger, J. Acton, D., Stewart, J., Houser, D., Finneran, J. J., and Jenkins, K. (2017). Killer whale (Orcinus orca) behavioral audiograms. The Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, 141(4), 2387–2398.

Jawphone Simulations to Maximize the Utility of Psychoacoustic and Auditory Evoked Potential Experiments (Project #LMR-15)
Principal Investigator: Ted Cranford

This project produced surface sensitivity maps for three odontocete species. Surface maps were also generated comparing in-air vs. in-water. Results suggest there may be significant consequences for sound reception mechanisms and optimal placement and use of jawphones.

Project #LMR-15 Publication:

Manuscript has been submitted for peer review.

Passive Acoustic Density Estimation of Baleen Whales: Using Sonobuoys to Estimate Call-Rate Correction Factors (Project #LMR-16)
Principal Investigator: Shannon Rankin

This project served as a “proof of concept” for density estimation of baleen whales using sonobuoy data. The development work completed under this project can be used to improve analysis of sonobuoy data in general. The final report summarizes best practices, including suggested changes to data collection, acoustic software modifications; and identified analytical approaches appropriate for working with arrays of sonobuoys.

Project #LMR-16 Final Report:
Rankin, S., Sakai, T., and Stevenson, B. (2018). Passive Acoustic Density Estimation of Baleen Whales: Using Sonobuoys to Estimate Whale Density. Final Report to the Navy’s Living Marine Resources Program for Project #16.


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