New Standard for Vessel Underwater Noise

Maritime Activity Reports, Inc.

April 13, 2016

ISO 17208-1:2016, a new international standard for the measurement of underwater noise from ships, has been published by ISO. The full title of this standard is “Underwater acoustics – Quantities and procedures for description and measurement of underwater sound from ships – Part 1: Requirements for precision measurements in deep water used for comparison purposes”. The standard specifies the general measurement system, procedures, and methodology used for the measurement of underwater sound from ships under a prescribed operating condition. It is available for purchase from the ISO ans ANSI webstores.

Noise Control Engineering, LLC (NCE), a leader in the field of shipboard noise control, led the effort to develop this standard. “This is very similar to the American National Standard ANSI/ASA S12.64/1, developed in 2009, but with many improvements, most importantly the removal of the three grades,” noted Michael Bahtiarian, the working group chair.
The Acoustical Society of America's Standards Manager, Susan Blaeser, served as Secretary of ISO/TC 43/SC 3 which developed the new standard. She was a critical partner in moving the original ANSI/ASA S12.64 into the international arena.
Ms. Blaeser notes, “It was very satisfying to bring our American National Standard to the international underwater acoustics community. The new standard is the result of international collaboration between experts representing at least twelve countries.”

NCE is the only company in the United States that can test to both S12.64 and now ISO 17208. We use our proprietary BAMS; Buoy Acoustic Measurement System (data sheet attached) to perform calibrated, reliable and accurate ship noise measurements. BAMS does not require fixed underwater range as used by the US Navy so extensive travel is eliminated, saving significant transit time and money. It is easily deployed from the vessel being measured, and can be shipped anywhere in the world.
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