Industry News

R2Sonic Introduces MultiSpectral Mode[sup]TM[/sup] Survey Capability

R2Sonic LLC, pioneers of Broadband Multibeam Sonar Technology, have developed MultiSpectral Mode™ survey capability, a new dimension for acoustic backscatter.

MultiSpectral Mode™ allows R2Sonic systems to collect backscatter data at multiple frequencies in a single pass, with one vessel and one sonar system. While most Multibeam Echosounders (MBES) have the capability to measure the acoustic backscatter intensity across the survey swath, in the past data collection has been limited to a single chosen frequency. As a result, traditional backscatter is typically displayed as a monochrome or single color image, representing a single data point for each bottom location. In contrast, multispectral data is collected at several widely spaced frequencies, providing an additional dimension of information compared to simple single frequency intensity. Multispectral backscatter combines several single frequency backscatter measurements to create a final comparative result. A multispectral backscatter mosaic can be generated as an RGB composite image, with each color representing backscatter intensity at a different frequency. No more one dimensional data!


Multi-frequency backscatter is an active area of research showing promising results. Potential uses include efficient mapping of seafloor characteristics, bottom type discrimination and feature identification, as well as habitat mapping for environmental applications. At GeoHab 2016, in May, Dr. Jonathan Beaudoin, Chief Scientist at QPS, and Dr. Craig Brown, NSERC Industrial Research Chair in Integrated Ocean Mapping Technologies at Nova Scotia Community College, presented the first results of using this mode with the Sonic 2026 in Bedford Basin, near Halifax in Nova Scotia, Canada. In addition to high-resolution 3D bathymetry, the Sonic 2026, (with Low Frequency option), also collected backscatter Snippets at 100kHz, 200kHz and 400kHz. MultiSpectral Mode™, accomplishes all of this in a single pass, drastically reducing survey time and eliminating any artifacts from environmental variables that might change between separate surveys. “We now have a purpose-built surficial geology and habitat mapping sonar, giving us the opportunity to use the multi-frequency capability for accurate identification and segmentation of seafloor features of interest and opportunities to explore new segmentation routines,” stated Dr. Brown.

At R2Sonic, we are excited to bring innovative technology to bear on leading edge problems in underwater acoustics. Our mission is to deliver superior performance and flexibility to meet evolving customer needs.

Learn more about the Sonic Series products at or contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for more information on these features.

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