Planes and birds aren’t good at sharing air space – bird strikes worldwide cause over a billion dollars in damage every year, and put passengers and crew at risk. To scare avians away, a new device will fire low-frequency sound waves at flocks as they near busy flight paths.
Noise makers are often used to scare birds away from airports or contaminated waterways. But loud sounds also annoy any humans within earshot.
Now a system developed by Technology International, based in Laplace, Louisiana, aims to deter birds using infrasound, below the range of human hearing.
The trial version of the Avian Infrasound Non-lethal Denial System has a passive infrasound detector that listens for an approaching flock, and activates a series of rotary subwoofers that generate high-intensity, but low-frequency sound. It worked well in tests.
Thunderstorms also emit lots of infrasound, which may be why birds are naturally averse to it, says Abdo Husseiny, the firm’s CEO.
Husseiny adds that the system could be used to keep pigeons away from public squares, or divert flocks away from wind turbines. He says that the equipment should be commercially available within two years.
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