Test Tank

Image of the Acousto-Optic Test TankThis state-of-the-art underwater optic and acoustic test tank is a resource for local academic, government and industrial researchers and product developers.

The 90,000-gallon tank is designed for development and testing of underwater measurement concepts and devices. It is built half below floor level and half above.

Fully supported on vibration isolators, noise level measurements indicate that, acoustically, the tank is at least two times quieter than Sea State.

Six 3x4-foot optical ports, each consisting of high-quality, low-iron glass, are built around the tank walls several feet above the floor.

The instrumentation suite, which is under computer control, includes a variety of acoustic and laser-signal sources and power amplifiers. The tank holds either fresh or salt water, which have very different optical properties.

The filter system consists of a sand filter, bag filters, and an UV sterilizer, which provides excellent water quality without the use of biocides.

Some of the applications for which the test tank is used are:

  • optical experimentation such as the study of the non-linear effects of high-power lasers in the water medium
  • the use of lasers for underwater and through-the-surface communication
  • the study of the generation and response of aquatic organisms to light energy.

Because of its very low background noise, the tank is also an important resource in studying the generation of, and response to, acoustic energy by aquatic organisms.

For more information contact: Eric Lyonnais, Facilities Manager 508-910-6304 • elyonnais@umassd.edu

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