Pathway - Phase 3 - Tech Validation - Study 2 – Relative Performance of Surface-Deployed and Bottom-Mounted Echosounders in a Tidal Channel

Scientific echosounders are the standard tool in fisheries science for investigating the abundance, distribution, behavior, and ecology of fish, and have been used for monitoring around tidal energy devices. Echosounders have been deployed on the sea floor in a stationary upward-facing orientation for monitoring around gravity-based tidal energy devices but have also been deployed at the sea surface in a downward-facing orientation, either for mobile surveys or on ships at anchor. The advent of floating tidal energy platforms provides an opportunity to deploy echosounders at the sea surface in a long-term, stationary, downward facing orientation for monitoring. However, the strong currents that make tidal channels attractive for energy production are often dominated by turbulent hydrodynamic features and associated artefacts that can vary over the course of tidal cycles and may hinder the use of echosounders and other active acoustic technologies. Understanding the extent to which turbulent hydrodynamic features impact the use of a bottom-mounted or surface-deployed echosounder is important for designing effective monitoring systems