Underwater sounds from the semi-submersible drill rig SEDCO 708 drilling in the Aleutian Islands

Open Access Report 1986

American Petroleum Institute

Underwater sounds from the semisubmersible drilling rig SEDCO 708 were recorded during drilling operations in the Aleutians on 29 September 1982. The objective of the study, funded by the American Petroleum Institute, was to quantify the rig sounds in terms of acoustic pressure and frequency. The results were needed to assess the spatial extent of the radiated noise and the associated acoustic influence on marine mammals. The water depth was 114 m. Recordings were made at ranges of 0.1, 0.2, 0.5, 1, 2, 5 and 10 nm at depths of 2.5, 5, 10 and 30 m. Recordings were also made at depths of 10 and 30 m, range 0.5 nm, to the south, west, north and east of SEDCO 708 to test for azimuthal dependencies. The results showed that numerous tonal components of sound were received as far as 10 nm, although they were not strong. Broadband components were generally down to background levels for ranges of 1nm and greater. Background levels were estimated to be 149, 137, and 136 dB//1uPa /Hz at 100Hz. Source levels for tones at 60, 181, and 301 Hz are estimated to be 149, 137, and 136 dB//1uPa-m, respectively. The source levels for the 10-500 and 80-4000 Hz bands are both estimated to be 154 dB//1uPa-m. The variations with azimuth are on the same order as temporal variations. Signal level generally increased with depth, especially for low frequencies.

Link To Publication

Similar Research

Influences of man-made noise and other human actions on cetacean behaviour

Pay-walled Journal Article 1995

Marine and Freshwater Behaviour and Physiology

Behavioral reactions of cetaceans to man-made noises are highly variable, ranging from attraction (e.g. bow riding by dolphins) or no response through short-term changes in behaviour...
Read More

A Summary of Existing and Future Potential Treatments for Reducing Underwater Sounds from Oil and Gas Industry Activities

Pay-walled Conference 2007


This paper summarizes the efforts undertaken by the author to identify existing and future potential methods to reduce underwater sound levels created by nearly all oil...
Read More

Reactions of bowhead whales, Balaena mysticetus, to drilling and dredging noise in the Canadian Beaufort Sea

Pay-walled Journal Article 1990

Marine Environmental Research

Behavioural reactions of bowhead whales to seven 30–40 min underwater playbacks of recorded drillship and dredge noise were determined in 1982–1984. Some (but not all) bowheads...
Read More

Proximate Measurements of Acoustic Emissions Associated with the Installation and Operation of an Exploration Jackup Drilling Rig in the North Sea.

Pay-walled Peer Reviewed Publication 2012

The Effects of Noise on Aquatic Life: Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology

Underwater sound recordings were obtained from the Noble Kolskaya jackup gas-exploration drilling rig in the North Sea on the Dogger Bank. The aim was to document...
Read More

Drilling and operational sounds from an oil production island in the ice covered Beaufort Sea

Pay-walled Peer Reviewed Publication 2004

Journal of the Acoustical Society of America

Recordings of sounds underwater and in air, and of iceborne vibrations, were obtained at Northstar Island, an artificial gravel island in the Beaufort Sea near Prudhoe...
Read More

Characteristics of oil industry dredge and drilling sounds in the Beaufort Sea.

Pay-walled Peer Reviewed Publication 1987

Journal of the Acoustical Society of America

As part of a general study of underwater industrial noises and their effects on bowhead whales, sounds from drilling and dredging operations were measured in the...
Read More

Do harbour porpoises target offshore installations as feeding stations?

Open Access Journal Article 2007

IADC Environmental Conference & Exhibition

Two sets of field trials were performed from offshore installations in the German Entenschnabel sector of the Dogger Bank, North Sea. Trial 1 was undertaken from...
Read More

A brief review of known effects of noise on marine mammals.

Open Access Literature Review 2007

International Journal of Comparative Psychology

Marine mammals, especially cetaceans, are highly vocal and dependent on sound for almost all aspects of their lives, e.g. food-finding, reproduction, communication, detection of predators/hazards, and...
Read More

Review and Assessment of Underwater Sound Produced from Oil and Gas Sound Activities and Potential Reporting Requirements under the Marine Strategy Framework Directive.

Open Access Report 2011

Genesis Oil and Gas Consultants

Underwater sound and the potential impacts on marine life has received increased attention in recent years, with measures to assess underwater sound having been included within...
Read More

Marine Mammal Noise Exposure Criteria: Updated Scientific Recommendations for Residual Hearing Effects

Open Access Peer Reviewed Publication 2019

Aquatic Mammals

This article evaluates Southall et al. (2007) in light of subsequent scientific findings and proposes revised noise exposure criteria to predict the onset of auditory effects...
Read More