Background noise cancellation for improved acoustic detection of manatee vocalizations

  • Yan Z
  • Niezrecki C
  • Beusse D
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The West Indian manatee (Trichechus manatus latirostris) has become endangered partly because of an increase in the number of collisions with boats. A device to alert boaters of the presence of manatees, so that a collision can be avoided, is desired. A practical implementation of the technology is dependent on the hydrophone spacing and range of detection. These parameters are primarily dependent on the manatee vocalization strength, the decay of the signal's strength with distance, and the background noise levels. An efficient method to extend the detection range by using background noise cancellation is proposed in this paper. An adaptive line enhancer (ALE) that can detect and track narrow band signals buried in broadband noise is implemented to cancel the background noise. The results indicate that the ALE algorithm can efficiently extract the manatee calls from the background noise. The improved signal-to-noise ratio of the signal can be used to extend the range of detection of manatee vocalizations and reduce the false alarm and missing detection rate in their natural habitat.

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  • Zheng Yan

  • Christopher Niezrecki

  • Diedrich O Beusse

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