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The University of Southampton

Reducing underwater radiated noise

Published: 2024-05-29 00:00:00
Dr Seyedvahid Vakili
Dr Seyedvahid Vakili

A new study reveals that both shipowners and the environment can benefit by reducing underwater radiated noise.


Dr Seyedvahid Vakili and colleagues led a study commissioned by the International Chamber of Shipping . It highlighted synergies between the implementation of energy efficiency measures and the reduction of underwater radiated noise (URN).

URN is the sound generated by vessels while operating in the water. Studies have found that URN generated negative impacts on marine life, particularly marine mammals, both in the short and long term.

As the maritime industry moves forward with reducing greenhouse gas emissions to meet net zero emissions by or around 2050, the new study reviews the International Maritime Organization’s (IMO) initiatives and strategies for decarbonising the shipping industry and identifies the measures and tools available that can contribute to expediting the transition whilst at the same time reducing URN.

Seyedvahid, is a Research Fellow in Sustainability, Energy and Net Zero Emissions in Maritime Industries and part of the Southampton Marine and Maritime Institute (SMMI) . He explains, “By adopting certain energy efficiency strategies that also reduce URN, shipowners and the environment can both benefit.
This synergy is key and is a win-win for shipowners as they embrace energy efficiency technologies, our report should help in choices being made for future ship design and operation that reduce the overall environmental impact of shipping and promote sustainable shipping.”

Professor of Maritime Fluid Dynamics Stephen Turnock and Professor of Statistical Signal Processing Paul White were part of the team who produced the report.

Read The impact of shipping’s energy efficiency measures on reduction of underwater radiated noise, and opportunities for co-benefit report.


Sound generated by vessels while operating URN in the water
Sound generated by vessels while operating URN in the water
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