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WP5: The Seafloor Soundscape

Work Package Management Site()

This WP investigates specific phenomena associated with seismological noises ources: whales, shipping, icequakes and underwater noise pollution. These are exploratory tasks to identify these sources and investigate what can be learned about them using OBS recordings, in collaboration with bio-acousticians, noise modellers and submarine acousticians. We will investigate the specific soundscapes of various oceans and latitudes. Developments performed for ship detection and tracking (Trabattoni et al., 2020) such as acoustic intensity, azigram and cepstrum analyses will be applied - and adapted if necessary - for whales. Tools developed in WP4 will be used to improve soundscape signals.



Number Title Responsable Status
T5.1 Whale Sources Samaran, CDD not started
T5.2 Noise Pollution Kinda not started
T5.3 Ship Noise Barruol, CDD not started
T5.4 Cryoseismic signals Barruol, CDD not started


Number Title Due Date Status
D5.1 Catalog of soundscape noise sources M36 not started
D5.2 Scientific Articles and Reports M12-48 not started


Task 5.1 - Whales:

We will analyse the ability of OBS to provide observations baleen whales, to provide new insights into their ecology and to assess their conservation status. We will use datasets from regions where passive acoustic monitoring of baleen whales is almost absent (e.g. southern Atlantic Ocean, middle and south Pacific), to complete research conducted by the Acoustic Trends Steering group of the International Whaling Commission (IWC) Southern Ocean non lethal Research Partnership. We will focus on the occurrence and distribution of the endangered blue and fin whales, their seasonal migration patterns and their acoustic behaviour on the ocean basin scale.

Task 5.2 - Noise pollution

Long-term OBS data will be used to ground truth noise models in several ocean basins, especially for shipping noise. We will focus on the North Atlantic and Indian Oceans where shipping noise may dominate [1-100]Hz ambient noise. We may also statistically study the distribution of marine animals as a function of noise levels.

Task 5.3 - Ship

We will use OBS data to characterise ship noise and investigate the ability of OBSs to passively detect, decipher and track moving sources. We will investigate imaging solid-earth structure using ship noise.

Task 5.4 - Icequakes

We will search for ice tremor signals on OBS data. Where possible, we will compare ocean bottom detections with hydro-acoustic observations. We will complement this approach with data acquired by a few OBSs deployed offshore Antarctica starting in January 2022 (SEIS-ADELICE cryo- seismic experiment).


Accessing data is no risk: high frequency (1-100 Hz) data from numerous OBS experiments in various oceans are available on FDSN-compatible data centers. Improving soundscape signals from the processes developed in WP4 is at no risk for the rest of the project. The richness of the OBS data in the high frequencies ensures that noise sources will provide many new promising and original research fields. Using data from OBSs in Antarctica coastal waters is high risk / high gain, but this risk is primarily supported by another project (SEIS-ADELICE, PI G. Barruol) and any problem would not impact other BRUIT-FM tasks.