USA: BioSonics Introduces MX Aquatic Habitat Echosounder
BioSonics offered a preview of an entirely new technology in March at the Oceanology International (OI) exhibition in London. The MX Aquatic Habitat Echosounder has now been widely released and the response to this habitat assessment and mapping system has been strong, with immediate orders generated from around the World.
“Since OI, we are shipping systems to Australia, Brazil, Spain, Germany, China, and the UK, and new inquiries are coming in daily”, stated Director of Sales and Marketing, Eric Munday.
The MX Aquatic Habitat Echosounder System is a complete hardware-software solution for mapping and quantitative assessment of submerged plants, substrate classification, and bathymetry. The MX utilizes scientific single beam sonar housed in a rugged Pelican Case with an integrated DGPS and storage for the transducer, cable, and fittings. The MX comes complete with Visual Habitat MX software, a powerful new data processing and visualization tool developed specifically for the MX.
Visual Habitat MX software was developed in tandem with the MX sounder as a means to quickly and effectively present information in a clear and visually captivating display. Users can instantly generate color-coded maps showing data parameters for each transect including bathymetry, plant coverage, and substrate type. A toggle function connects each echogram data file with a map view of the transect plan. An integrated utility provides instant background mapping imagery over which habitat information can be superimposed. Data can be processed and maps can be generated within minutes of data collection, all with very little training. User selectable color gradients allow for easy identification of substrate types such as rock, mud, sand as well as plant density and height. The output is a stunning visual representation of results that can be easily interpreted and quickly communicated.
Development of the MX was driven by requests from resource managers and consultants who needed a scientific instrument for assessing the aquatic environment at a reasonable price point. Effective data visualization capabilities and ease-of-use were always top-of-mind during the MX design process. “The MX is a revolutionary new technology for the environmental industry … there is nothing else like it”, stated BioSonics President, Tim Acker.
Subsea World News Staff , May 18, 2012; Image: BioSonics