Sub-bottom Profilers are a special kind of singlebeam echosounders, that operate with very low frequencies, that allow to penetrate and scan the upper layers of the subseafloor. There are linear and nonlinear sub-bottom profilers, whereas the work principle of the latter is based on the parametric effect.
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Things to consider when selecting and buying a Sub-bottom Profiler
The hydrographic specialist should consider the type of survey they are conducting in order to determine the most suitable system. Pingers are simple and reliable, and can be used to distinguish between hard and soft areas in a survey site, but have a practical depth limit of approximately 20m and cannot penetrate calcarinite. Parametric Echo Sounders produce a primary frequency of 100kHz with secondary frequencies, and are suitable for most surveys, but have similar limitations as pingers in terms of water depth and calcarinite. Boomers and sparkers are suitable for deeper surveys, but have a limited penetration through caprock and gaseous sediments. All systems need to be used in conjunction with other equipment, such as GNSS, heave compensation and a gyrocompass.