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Blog: Whale tales

Paul Chai journeyed up the NSW coastline during the 2012 whale migrating season. Recount his trip.

Whales at the forefront of technology

Posted by: Wild About Whales | 30 June 2011 | 0 comments

By copying the ears of killer whales, scientists have designed underwater microphones that could one day help track migrating whales, guide robots toward leaking undersea oil wells and monitor exotic cosmic particles plunging into the ocean.

 

Now researchers have developed an ultra-sensitive hydrophone that can detect a wide spectrum of underwater sounds, from the weakest ones to those 100 million times stronger.

To design the new hydrophone, Kilic and his colleagues analyzed ears they knew already worked very well underwater, such as those of killer whales, also known as orcas.

 

The new hydrophone could have an impact on a wide range of research, from standard applications such as sonar and studying fisheries populations to more exotic endeavors

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