Rising Tide BioAcoustics receives funding for the initial development of an active underwater noise cancellation system for ships

The Government of Canada is committed to taking action to protect marine mammal populations, in particular the Southern Resident killer whales, the North Atlantic Right Whales, and the St. Lawrence Estuary Belugas. This includes putting in place measures to help reduce underwater noise, initiatives to help understand underwater noise and its effects, and investments in technology research and development to mitigate the impact of underwater vessel noise on marine ecosystems.

Most underwater vessel noise is generated by cavitation from propellers and shipboard machinery, and much of this can affect marine mammals.

Underwater vessel noise can impact the ability of marine mammals to navigate, communicate and find food. Anthropogenic noise is a source of noise pollution that we were unfamiliar with, and from now on, we will strive to mitigate its impact.  

Rising Tide BioAcoustics, seeking to help protect our whales, proposed an innovative project to reduce the impacts of underwater vessel noise. In August 2022, Transport Canada announced its support for our proposal, with funding of $149,000 to demonstrate an experimental active-noise-cancellation system for use in an underwater environment. The project adapts technologies currently available in the commercial market in order to assess whether they can be applied to commercial vessels operating in critical marine mammal habitats.

For more information about some of the projects funded through the Quiet Vessel Initiative, please visit The transport Canada Quiet Vessel Initiative.  

For more information about this topic:

Assessing sound exposure from shipping in coastal waters using a single hydrophone and Automatic Identification System (AIS) data by Philippe Blondel.

Ocean uproar: saving marine life, Nature