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  • Writer's pictureEric Munday

Two Unique Technologies Combine to Fight Jellyfish Swarms and Protect Power Plant Intakes

Updated: Jun 20, 2022

"Smart Screens" Sonar-Actuated Bubble Screen Deterrent System

Seattle-based sonar manufacturer, BioSonics, has joined forces with, manufacturers of BubbleTubing products used for underwater deterrent systems, in a unique partnership to help protect nuclear and other power plants plagued by swarms of jellyfish known to appear suddenly and clog water intake screens. This combination of underwater technologies will provide plant managers with a complete "detect and deter" solution for protecting water intakes by preventing marine organisms such as jellyfish from entering water intakes and overwhelming the mechanical screens used to collect debris and keep intake water flowing.

BioSonics specializes in Automated Monitoring Systems (AMS), widely-used at power plants and other industrial facilities with high-volume water intakes used for cooling. These fixed-location sonar systems utilize an array of horizontally-aimed transducers capable of long-range detection combined with specialized real-time processing software for target classification and early warning alerts when targets of concern are approaching. BioSonics AMS provides real-time information that includes the speed/direction, location, and density of all detected objects including jellyfish, schools of baitfish, drifting plant material, and/or debris.

Canadianpond's Bubble Tubing® products are also used worldwide at power plants and other facilities. Bubble Tubing® systems consist of a linear aeration diffuser deployed along the seabed. The tubing emits underwater curtains of fast-rising, uniformly sized air bubbles creating a barrier to repel drifting debris and deter actively swimming organisms from entering sensitive areas, thus protecting them from entrainment while also preventing clogged intake screens. The bell-shaped body of jellyfish makes them naturally vulnerable to rising air bubbles that collect in the body cavity and cause them to gently rise vertically and away from submerged water intakes. Products Ltd begin to offer a unique CFD modelling service to predict, with high accuracy, the efficiency of Bubble Tubing® Bubble Curtains in any water intake configuration.

Integrating BioSonics' AMS with Canadianpond's BubbleTubing technology will provide power plant managers with early warning of approaching threats, such as jellyfish swarms, and the ability to actuate a BubbleTubing barrier screen only when necessary. The sonar AMS can be fully-automated to actuate the bubble screen based on user-defined thresholds, thus saving power, reducing maintenance costs, and prolonging equipment lifespan. "We have found an ideal technology partner in Canadianpond", stated BioSonics CEO, Tim Acker, who continued, "Detection and early warning is a critical step, but having an effective solution for deterrent is equally important." Canadianpond CEO, Mario Paris had this to say about their recent alignment with BioSonics, "We are thrilled to combine our expertise in bubble curtains to offer a comprehensive solution to power plant managers to reduce costly clogging and shutdown events".

Contact us today for more information on BioSonics AMS for power plant monitoring.

About BioSonics, Inc

BioSonics has been developing and manufacturing ground-breaking aquatic ecosystem monitoring systems since 1978. Our aquatic monitoring systems provide critical data and insights needed for making informed, environmentally responsible decisions about underwater resource management and development.

About Canadianpond Products Ltd. are located in Quebec, Canada and offer innovative aeration systems and services throughout the world.

Bubble Tubing® is a trademark owned by Products Ltd.

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