NW-MILO Acoustic Data Collection

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There is an enduring requirement to improve our ability to detect potential threats and discriminate these from the legitimate commercial and recreational activity ongoing in the nearshore/littoral portion of the maritime domain. The Northwest Maritime Information and Littoral Operations (NW-MILO) Program at PNNL’s Coastal Security Institute in Sequim, Washington is establishing a methodology to detect and classify these threats - in part through developing a better understanding of acoustic signatures in a near-shore environment. The purpose of the acoustic data collection described here is to investigate the acoustic signatures of small vessels. The data is being recorded continuously, 24 hours ... continued below

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Matzner, Shari; Myers, Joshua R.; Maxwell, Adam R. & Jones, Mark E. February 17, 2010.

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Description

There is an enduring requirement to improve our ability to detect potential threats and discriminate these from the legitimate commercial and recreational activity ongoing in the nearshore/littoral portion of the maritime domain. The Northwest Maritime Information and Littoral Operations (NW-MILO) Program at PNNL’s Coastal Security Institute in Sequim, Washington is establishing a methodology to detect and classify these threats - in part through developing a better understanding of acoustic signatures in a near-shore environment. The purpose of the acoustic data collection described here is to investigate the acoustic signatures of small vessels. The data is being recorded continuously, 24 hours a day, along with radar track data and imagery. The recording began in August 2008, and to date the data contains tens of thousands of signals from small vessels recorded in a variety of environmental conditions. The quantity and variety of this data collection, with the supporting imagery and radar track data, makes it particularly useful for the development of robust acoustic signature models and advanced algorithms for signal classification and information extraction. The underwater acoustic sensing system is part of a multi-modal sensing system that is operating near the mouth of Sequim Bay. Sequim Bay opens onto the Straight of Juan de Fuca, which contains part of the border between the U.S. and Canada. Table 1 lists the specific components used for the NW-MILO system. The acoustic sensor is a hydrophone permanently deployed at a mean depth of about 3 meters. In addition to a hydrophone, the other sensors in the system are a marine radar, an electro-optical (EO) camera and an infra-red (IR) camera. The radar is integrated with a vessel tracking system (VTS) that provides position, speed and heading information. The data from all the sensors is recorded and saved to a central server. The data has been validated in terms of its usability for characterizing the signatures of small vessels. The sampling rate of 8 kHz and low pass filtering to 2 kHz results in an alias-free signal in the frequency band that is appropriate for small vessels. Calibration was performed using a Lubell underwater speaker so that the raw data signal levels can be converted to sound pressure. Background noise is present due to a nearby pump and as a result of tidal currents. More study is needed to fully characterize the noise, but it does not pose an obstacle to using the acoustic data for the purposes of vessel detection and signature analysis. The detection range for a small vessel was estimated using the calibrated voltage response of the system and a cylindrical spreading model for transmission loss. The sound pressure of a typical vessel with an outboard motor was found to be around 140 dB mPa, and could theoretically be detected from 10 km away. In practical terms, a small vessel could reliably be detected from 3 - 5 km away. The data is archived in netCDF files, a standard scientific file format that is "self describing". This means that each data file contains the metadata - timestamps, units, origin, etc. - needed to make the data meaningful and portable. Other file formats, such as XML, are also supported. A visualization tool has been developed to view the acoustic data in the form of spectrograms, along with the coincident radar track data and camera images.

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  • Report No.: PNNL-19169
  • Grant Number: AC05-76RL01830
  • DOI: 10.2172/989033 | External Link
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 989033
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc1014479

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Office of Scientific & Technical Information Technical Reports

Reports, articles and other documents harvested from the Office of Scientific and Technical Information.

Office of Scientific and Technical Information (OSTI) is the Department of Energy (DOE) office that collects, preserves, and disseminates DOE-sponsored research and development (R&D) results that are the outcomes of R&D projects or other funded activities at DOE labs and facilities nationwide and grantees at universities and other institutions.

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  • February 17, 2010

Added to The UNT Digital Library

  • Oct. 14, 2017, 8:36 a.m.

Description Last Updated

  • Oct. 24, 2017, 9:54 p.m.

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Matzner, Shari; Myers, Joshua R.; Maxwell, Adam R. & Jones, Mark E. NW-MILO Acoustic Data Collection, report, February 17, 2010; Richland, Washington. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc1014479/: accessed December 15, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.