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EX1105: Field Trials of EM302 Multibeam Sonar Water Column Backscatter on NOAA Ship Okeanos Explorer
During this OER project in partnership with NOAA?s National Marine Fisheries Service and the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation, and Enforcement (BOEMRE), two ships will work collaboratively in the Gulf of Mexico to map known targets of man-made or natural seeps to test the use of their sensors to detect these seeps. The NOAA Ship Pisces will utilize its ME70 multibeam sonar sensor and the Okeanos Explorer will use its state-of-the-art Kongsberg EM302 multibeam sonar system and its newly acquired EK60 echosounder. Of special interest to the objectives of this mission is the water column backscatter data component of the EM302 multibeam survey system. These data will be analyzed as they are collected over known natural and man-made seeps in the Gulf of Mexico and, along with the data from the newly acquired EK60 echosounder, will be compared to those data collected by the Pisces ME70 and single beam sonar sensors.