Kraken Sonar Systems Inc.

Posted by Irina Tabakina

50 Harbor Drive, St. John’s,
Newfoundland & Labrador, Canada A1C6J4
T: +1 508 822 7330
CEO/President: Karl Kenny
No. Of Employees: 9


Kraken is a marine technology company engaged in the design and development of high performance sonars and acoustic sensors for military and commercial applications.
It is leading developers of Synthetic Aperture Sonar (SAS), a sonar technology for ultra-high resolution seabed imaging. SAS uses sophisticated signal processing of successive acoustic pings to form an image with much higher resolution than conventional sonars.
SAS was initially developed for military applications such as naval mine detection and classification. As SAS technology becomes more affordable, it’s expected to find wide use in civilian markets and become a valuable supplement to, or even a replacement for, conventional sonar technology. SAS is also emerging as an ideal sensor for unmanned underwater vehicle applications. By using vehicle motion to create a long synthetic array, image resolution can be increased by an order of magnitude or more compared to traditional side scan sonars. SAS technology is also well suited for interferometric processing, facilitating very high resolution imaging and 3D bathymetry imaging from the same sensor. 
SAS, a fairly new technology, provides ultra-high image resolution combined with very efficient area coverage rates. Kraken has successfully developed AquaPix, an advanced, ultra-high resolution Interferometric Synthetic Aperture Sonar (InSAS) with 3D bathymetric capabilities. AquaPix is primarily designed for use on AUVs, ROTVs, ROVs and Tow Bodies and is capable of generating practical image resolutions of 3cm across swath widths of 600m. It can also produce bathymetric data with a resolution better than 25cm out to full range while delivering very high depth accuracy. In parallel with the hardware design, senior sonar scientists at Kraken have developed a complete software package for InSAS imaging called INSIGHT (INterferometric Sas ImagingGeoreferenced High-fidelity Toolbox).
Both AquaPix and INSIGHT were developed by Kraken’s team of scientists and engineers over a record time span of less than 18 months. The first system was successfully integrated and deployed onboard DRDC’s Arctic Explorer AUV in Halifax, Nova Scotia in August, 2012. All of the InSAS software processing was performed by Kraken’s INSIGHT toolbox.

(As published in the July/Aug 2014 edition of Marine Technology Reporter -

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