Characteristics of the Operational Noise from Full Scale Wave Energy Converters in the Lysekil Project: Estimation of Potential Environmental Impacts

Journal Article

Title: Characteristics of the Operational Noise from Full Scale Wave Energy Converters in the Lysekil Project: Estimation of Potential Environmental Impacts
Publication Date:
May 21, 2013
Journal: Energies
Volume: 6
Issue: 5
Pages: 2562-2582
Publisher: MDPI
Affiliation:
Stressor:
Technology Type:

Document Access

Website: External Link
Attachment: Access File
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Citation

Haikonen, K.; Sundberg, J.; Leijon, M. (2013). Characteristics of the Operational Noise from Full Scale Wave Energy Converters in the Lysekil Project: Estimation of Potential Environmental Impacts. Energies , 6(5), 2562-2582.
Abstract: 

Wave energy conversion is a clean electric power production technology. During operation there are no emissions in the form of harmful gases. However there are unsolved issues considering environmental impacts such as: electromagnetism; the artificial reef effect and underwater noise. Anthropogenic noise is increasing in the oceans worldwide and wave power will contribute to this sound pollution in the oceans; but to what extent? The main purpose of this study was to examine the noise emitted by a full scale operating Wave Energy Converter (WEC) in the Lysekil project at Uppsala University in Sweden. A minor review of the hearing capabilities of fish and marine mammals is presented to aid in the conclusions of impact from anthropogenic sound. A hydrophone was deployed to the seabed in the Lysekil research site park at distance of 20 and 40 m away from two operational WECs. The measurements were performed in the spring of 2011. The results showed that the main noise was a transient noise with most of its energy in frequencies below 1 kHz. These results indicate that several marine organisms (fish and mammals) will be able to hear the operating WECs of a distance of at least 20 m.

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