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Geoff Shilling

Principal Engineer





Department Affiliation

Ocean Physics


2000-present and while at APL-UW

Near-real-time acoustic monitoring of beaked whales and other cetaceans using a Seaglider

Klinck, H., D.K. Mellinger, K. Klinck, N.M. Bogue, J.C. Luby, W.A. Jump, G.B. Shilling, T. Litchendorf, A.S. Wood, G.S. Schorr, and R.W. Baird, "Near-real-time acoustic monitoring of beaked whales and other cetaceans using a Seaglider," Plos One, 7, e36128, doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0036128, 2012.

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18 May 2012

In most areas, estimating the presence and distribution of cryptic marine mammal species, such as beaked whales, is extremely difficult using traditional observational techniques such as ship-based visual line transect surveys. Because acoustic methods permit detection of animals underwater, at night, and in poor weather conditions, passive acoustic observation has been used increasingly often over the last decade to study marine mammal distribution, abundance, and movements, as well as for mitigation of potentially harmful anthropogenic effects. However, there is demand for new, cost-effective tools that allow scientists to monitor areas of interest autonomously with high temporal and spatial resolution in near-real time. Here we describe an autonomous underwater vehicle — a glider — equipped with an acoustic sensor and onboard data processing capabilities to passively scan an area for marine mammals in near-real time. The instrument developed here can be used to cost-effectively screen areas of interest for marine mammals for several months at a time. The near-real-time detection and reporting capabilities of the glider can help to protect marine mammals during potentially harmful anthropogenic activities such as seismic exploration for sub-sea fossil fuels or naval sonar exercises. Furthermore, the glider is capable of under-ice operation, allowing investigation of otherwise inaccessible polar environments that are critical habitats for many endangered marine mammal species.

Passive-acoustic monitoring of odontocetes using a Seaglider: First results of a field test in Hawaiian waters.

Klink, H., D.K. Mellniger, M.A. Roch, K. Klinck, N.M. Bogue, J.C. Luby, W.A. Jump, J.M. Pyle, G.B. Shilling, T. Litchendorf, and A.S. Wood, "Passive-acoustic monitoring of odontocetes using a Seaglider: First results of a field test in Hawaiian waters." J. Acoust. Soc. Am., 129, 2536, doi:10.1121/1.3588409, 2011.

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1 Apr 2011

In fall 2009 the University of Washington, Applied Physics Laboratory conducted in collaboration with the Oregon State University, a comprehensive field test of a passive-acoustic Seaglider along the western shelf-break of the island of Hawaii. During the 3 week mission, a total of approximately 170 h of broadband acoustic data [194 kHz sampling rate] were collected. The recordings were manually analyzed by an experienced analyst for beaked whale (Ziphiidae), dolphin (Delphinidae), and sperm whale (Physeter macrocephalus) echolocation clicks as well as echo sounder pings emitted by boats in the area. Here we present and discuss first results of these data analysis, which revealed that more than 50% of the recorded files (each of 1-minute duration) contain bioacoustic signals. Furthermore the recorded data and the results of the manual analysis are used to validate and optimize an automated classifier for odontocete echolocation clicks, which was developed in a collaborative effort with San Diego State University. The algorithm is intended to be implemented on the Seaglider to enable species identification by classifying detected echolocation clicks in (near) real-time during sea trials.


Passive Miniature Acoustic Recorder for Seaglider

Record of Invention Number: 47208

Ben Brand, Jason Gobat, Adam Huxtable, Geoff Shilling


22 Jan 2015

Science Processor for Seaglider

Record of Invention Number: 46344

Peter Sabin, Geoff Shilling, Jason Gobat


4 Jan 2013

ARM Processor Based Motherboard for Seaglider

Record of Invention Number: 46329

Peter Sabin, Chris Siani, Geoff Shilling, Jason Gobat


10 Dec 2012

More Inventions

Control Software for Deepglider

Record of Invention Number: 45824

James Bennett, Jason Gobat, Geoff Shilling


15 Oct 2011

Autonomous Logger Sensor Architecture for Seaglider

Record of Invention Number: 4273-Reg-0001

Jason Gobat, Geoff Shilling


27 Jan 2010

Seaglider Improvements (motherboard revisions and associated software support)

Record of Invention Number: 4149-Reg-0008

Jason Gobat, Peter Sabin, Geoff Shilling, Keith Van Thiel


23 Jun 2009

Acoustics Air-Sea Interaction & Remote Sensing Center for Environmental & Information Systems Center for Industrial & Medical Ultrasound Electronic & Photonic Systems Ocean Engineering Ocean Physics Polar Science Center