APPENDIX 1A — Safe Diving Distances from Transmitting Sonar 1A-1
APPENDIX 1A
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1A-1 INTRODUCTION
The purpose of this appendix is to provide guidance regarding safe diving
distances and exposure times for divers operating in the vicinity of ships transmit-
ting with sonar. Table 1A-1 provides guidance for selecting Permissable Exposure
Limits Tables; Table 1A-2 provides additional guidance for helmeted divers.
Tables 1A-3 through 1A-5 provide specific procedures for diving operations
involving AN/SQS-23, -26, -53, -56; AN/SQQ-14, -30, and -32; AN/BSY-1, -2;
and AN/BQQ-5 sonars. Section 1A-6 provides guidance and precautions
concerning diver exposure to low-frequency sonar (160-320Hz). Contact
NAVSEA Supervisor of Diving (00C3B) for guidance on other sonars. This
appendix has been substantially revised from Safe Diving Distances from Trans-
mitting Sonar (NAVSEAINST 3150.2 Series) and should be read in its entirety.
1A-2 BACKGROUND
Chapter 18 of OPNAVINST 5100.23 Series is the basic instruction governing
hearing conservation and noise abatement, but it does not address exposure to
waterborne sound. Tables 1A-3 through 1A-6 are derived from experimental and
theoretical research conducted at the Naval Submarine Medical Research Labora-
tory (NSMRL) and Naval Experimental Diving Unit (NEDU). This instruction
provides field guidance for determining safe diving distances from transmitting
sonar. This instruction supplements OPNAVINST 5100.23 Series, and should be
implemented in conjunction with OPNAVINST 5100.23 Series by commands that
employ divers.
The Sound Pressure Level (SPL), not distance, is the determining factor for estab-
lishing a Permissible Exposure Limit (PEL). The exposure SPLs in Tables 1A-3
through 1A-6 are based upon the sonar equation and assume omni-directional
sonar and inverse square law spreading. Any established means may be used to
estimate the SPL at a dive site, and that SPL may be used to determine a PEL.
When the exposure level is overestimated, little damage, except to working sched-
ules, will result. Any complaints of excessive loudness or ear pain for divers
require that corrective action be taken. Section 1A-6 provides guidance for diver
exposure to low-frequency active sonar (LFA), which should be consulted if expo-
sure to LFA is either suspected or anticipated.
This appendix does not preclude the operation of any sonar in conjunction with
diving operations, especially under operationally compelling conditions. It is
based upon occupational safety and health considerations that should be imple-
mented for routine diving operations. It should be applied judiciously under
1A-2 U.S. Navy Diving Manual—Volume 1
special operational circumstances. The guidance in Tables 1A-3 through 1A-6 is
intended to facilitate the successful integration of operations.
1A-3 ACTION
Commanding Officers or Senior Officers Present Afloat are to ensure that diving
and sonar operations are integrated using the guidance given by this appendix.
Appropriate procedures are to be established within each command to effect coor-
dination among units, implement safety considerations, and provide efficient
operations using the guidance in Tables 1A-3 though 1A-6.
1A-4 SONAR DIVING DISTANCES WORKSHEETS WITH DIRECTIONS FOR USE
1A-4.1
General Information/Introduction.
Permissible Exposure Limits (PEL) in minutes
for exposure of divers to sonar transmissions are given in Tables 1A-3 through
1A-6.
1A-4.1.1
Effects of Exposure.
Tables 1A-3 through 1A-5 are divided by horizontal double
lines. Exposure conditions above the double lines should be avoided for routine
operations. As Sound Pressure Level (SPL) increases above 215 dB for hooded
divers, slight visual-field shifts (probably due to direct stimulation of the semicir-
cular canals), fogging of the face plate, spraying of any water within the mask, and
other effects may occur. In the presence of long sonar pulses (one second or
longer), depth gauges may become erratic and regulators may tend to free-flow.
Divers at Naval Submarine Medical Research Laboratory experiencing these
phenomena during controlled research report that while these effects are
unpleasant, they are tolerable. Similar data are not available for un-hooded divers
but visual-field shifts may occur for these divers at lower levels. If divers need to
be exposed to such conditions, they must be carefully briefed and, if feasible,
given short training exposures under carefully controlled conditions. Because the
probability of physiological damage increases markedly as sound pressures
increase beyond 200 dB at any frequency, exposure of divers above 200 dB is
prohibited unless full wet suits and hoods are worn. Fully protected divers (full
wet suits and hoods) must not be exposed to SPLs in excess of 215 dB at any
frequency for any reason.
1A-4.1.2
Suit and Hood Characteristics.
There is some variation in nomenclature and
characteristics of suits and hoods used by divers. The subjects who participated in
the Naval Submarine Medical Research Laboratory experiments used 3/8-inch
nylon-lined neoprene wet suits and hoods. Subsequent research has shown that
3/16-inch wet suit hoods provide about the same attenuation as 3/8-inch hoods.
Hoods should be well fitted and cover the skull completely including cheek and
chin areas. The use of wet-suit hoods as underwater ear protection is strongly
recommended.
1A-4.1.3
In-Water Hearing vs. In-Gas Hearing.
A distinction is made between in-water
hearing and in-gas hearing. In-water hearing occurs when the skull is directly in
contact with the water, as when the head is bare or covered with a wet-suit hood.
In-gas hearing occurs when the skull is surrounded by gas as in the MK 21 diving
APPENDIX 1A — Safe Diving Distances from Transmitting Sonar 1A-3
helmet. In-water hearing occurs by bone conduction—sound incident anywhere on
the skull is transmitted to the inner ear, bypassing the external and middle ear. In-
gas hearing occurs in the normal way—sound enters the external ear canal and
stimulates the inner ear through the middle ear.
1A-4.2
Directions for Completing the Sonar Diving Distances Worksheet.
Follow the
steps listed below to determine Permissible Exposure Limits (PELs) for the case
when the actual dB Sound Pressure Level (SPL) at the dive site is unknown.
Figure 1A-1 is a worksheet for computing the safe diving distance/exposure time.
Figures 1A-2 through 1A-5 are completed worksheets using example problems.
Work through these example problems before applying the worksheet to your
particular situation.
Step 1. Diver Dress
. Identify the type of diving equipment—wet-suit un-hooded; wet-suit
hooded; helmeted. Check the appropriate entry on step 1 of the worksheet.
Step 2. Sonar Type(s)
. Identify from the ship’s Commanding Officer or representative the
type(s) of sonar that will be transmitting during the period of time the diver is
planned to be in the water. Enter the sonar type(s) in step 2 of the worksheet.
Step 3. PEL Table Selection
. Use the Table 1A-1 to determine which PEL table you will
use for your calculations. For swimsuit diving use wet suit un-hooded tables.
Check the table used in step 3 of the worksheet.
For guidance for sonars not addressed by this instruction, contact NAVSEA
(00C32) DSN 327-2766.
NOTE If the type of sonar is unknown, start divin
g
at 600–3,000 yards,
dependin
g
on divin
g
equipment (use
g
reater distance if helmeted), and
move in to limits of diver comfort.
Step 4. Distance to Sonar
.
Determine the distance (yards) to the transmitting sonar from
place of divers work. Enter the range in yards in step 4 of the worksheet.
Table 1A-1. PEL Selection Table.
SONAR
DIVER DRESS:
All except
AN/SQQ
-14, - 30, -32
AN/SQQ
-14, -30, -32
Unknown
Sonar
Wet suit - Un-hooded Table 1A-3 Table 1A-6 Start at 1000 yards and move
in to diver comfort
Wet suit - Hooded Table 1A-4 Table 1A-6 Start at 600 yards and move in
to diver comfort
Helmeted Table 1A-5 No restriction Start at 3000 yards and move
in to diver comfort
1A-4 U.S. Navy Diving Manual—Volume 1
SONAR SAFE DIVING DISTANCE/EXPOSURE TIME WORKSHEET
1. Diver dress: Wet Suit - Un-hooded
Wet Suit - Hooded
Helmeted
2. Type(s) of sonar:
3. PEL table 1 ; 2 ; 3 ; 4
4. Range(s) to sonar (yards):
5. Estimated SPL at range(s) in step 3 (from table/column in step 3):
Reminder: If range is between two values in the table, use the shorter range.
If the SPL is measured at the dive site, use the measured value.
6. Depth Reduction
dB
Reminder: 0 if not
helmeted, see table in instructions if helmeted.
7. Corrected SPL (Step 5 minus Step 6)
8. Estimated PEL at SPL (from table/column in step 3 of the appendix):
9. Duty Cycle Known: Yes (do step 9); No (stop)
Adjusted PEL for actual duty cycle
Actual DC % = 100
×
sec. (pulse length / sec. (pulse repetition period)
Actual DC % =
Adjusted PEL = PEL (from step 8) min.
×
20 / actual duty cycle (%) = min.
PEL1 = minutes; PEL2 = minutes
Reminder: Do not adjust the PEL if duty cycle is unknown.
10. Multiple Sonars: Yes
(do step 10); No (stop)
Sonar 1: DT1 = (Desired dive duration)
PEL1 = (from Step 8 or 9, as applicable)
DT1/PEL1 =
.
Sonar 2: DT1 = (Desired dive duration)
PEL1 = (from Step 8 or 9, as applicable)
DT1/PEL1 =
.
ND = + = (This is less than 1.0, so dive is acceptable and may proceed.)
Reminder: The Noise Dose must not exceed a value of 1.0.
Figure 1A-1.
Sonar Safe Diving Distance/Exposure Time Worksheet.
APPENDIX 1A — Safe Diving Distances from Transmitting Sonar 1A-5
NOTE Note: If ran
g
e is between two values in the table, use the shorter ran
g
e.
This will insure that the SPL is not underestimated and that the PEL is
conservative.
Step 5. Estimated SPL
. In the PEL selection table (Table 1A-1) determined in step 3 of
the worksheet (Figure 1A-1), locate the diving distance (range) in the appropriate
sonar equipment column. Read across to the leftmost column to find the SPL in
dB. For ranges intermediate to those shown use the shorter range. Enter this SPL
value in step 5 of the worksheet. If the SPL value in dB can be determined at the
dive site, enter the measured SPL value in step 5.
Step 6. Helmeted Dive Depth Reduction
.
If the diver dress is not
helmeted, enter 0 in step 6 of the worksheet and go to step
7 of these instructions.
Helmeted divers experience reduced sensitivity to sound pressure as depth
increases. The reductions listed in Table 1A-2 may be subtracted from the SPLs
for helmeted divers in Table 1A-5. Enter the reduction in step 6 of the worksheet.
If the depth is between two values in the table, use the lesser reduction since that
value will produce a conservative PEL.
Step 7. Corrected SPL
. The corrected SPL equals the Estimated SPL from step 5 minus
the reduction in dB from step 6. Enter the corrected SPL in step 7 of the
worksheet.
Step 8. PEL Determination
. Go to the SPL in the appropriate table and read one column
right to find the PEL for the SPL shown in step 7 of the worksheet. Enter in step 8
of the worksheet.
Step 9. Duty Cycle/Adjusted PEL Calculation
.
Tables 1A-3 through 1A-6 assume a
transmit duty cycle of 20 percent. Duty cycle (DC) is the percentage of time in a
given period that the water is being ensonified (sonar transmitting). Sonar
operators may use various means of computing DC that are valid for the purpose
of this instruction. If the actual duty cycle is different from 20 percent, PELs may
Table 1A-2. Depth Reduction Table.
Depth (FSW) Reduction (dB) Depth (FSW) Reduction (dB)
9 1 98 6
19 2 132 7
33 3 175 8
50 4 229 9
71 5 297 10
1A-6 U.S. Navy Diving Manual—Volume 1
be extended or shortened proportionally. Use step 9 of the worksheet to calculate
and enter the corrected PEL.
The formula for duty cycle is:
DC = 100 × Pulse length (sec.) / Pulse Repetition Period (sec.)
The formula for the adjusted PEL is:
Adjusted PEL = PEL × 20 / actual duty cycle; Equation 1
Example Problem.
An un-hooded wet suited diver is 16 yards from an AN/SQQ-
14 sonar transmitting a 500 msec pulse (.5 seconds) every 10 seconds.
Solution.
The actual duty cycle (DC) % is:
Actual DC % = 100 × .5 / 10 = 5 percent.
Locate the PEL from the table (which is for a 20% duty cycle). Compute the
adjusted PEL as:
Using worksheet step 9, Adjusted PEL = PEL (from step 8) 170
× 20/5=680
minutes.
If variable duty cycles are to be used, select the greatest percent value.
Step 10. Multiple Sonar/Noise Dose Calculation
. When two or more sonars are operating
simultaneously, or two or more periods of noise exposure of different values
occur, the combined effects must be considered. In the following formula, ND is
the daily noise dose and must not exceed a value of 1.0, DT is the dive
(exposure) time (left surface to reach surface), and PEL is the PEL for each noise
exposure condition computed as described above:
ND = DT1/PEL1 + DT2/PEL2 + .... DTn/PELn; Equation 2
Note: DT1/PEL1 is for the first sonar, DT2/PEL2 is for the second sonar, up to the
total number of sonars in use.
To use the worksheet, go through the steps 1-9 for each sonar, entering the appro-
priate values in each step of the worksheet. Enter the PELs into the worksheet step
10. There is room for two sonars in the worksheet. If more than two are being
used, follow the same format and continue the calculations in the white space at
the end of the worksheet.
Example Problem.
A hooded wet suited diver is 100 yards from a transmitting
AN/SQS-53A sonar and a transmitting AN/SQS-23 sonar for fifteen minutes.
Solution.
DT1 = 15 minutes
APPENDIX 1A — Safe Diving Distances from Transmitting Sonar 1A-7
PEL1 (for SQS-53A) = 50 minutes
DT1/PEL1 = 15/50 = .3
DT2 = 15 minutes
PEL2 (for SQS-23) = 285 minutes
DT2/PEL2 = 15/285 = .05
ND = .3 + .05 = .35
This is less than 1.0 and therefore is acceptable.
1A-8 U.S. Navy Diving Manual—Volume 1
Example 1:
You are planning a routine dive for 160 minutes using wet-suited divers without hoods at a dive
site 17 yards from an AN/SQQ-14 sonar. The duty cycle for the AN/SQQ-14 sonar is unknown. Is this dive
permitted? Provide justification for your decision.
SONAR SAFE DIVING DISTANCE/EXPOSURE TIME WORKSHEET
1. Diver dress: Wet Suit - Un-hooded X
Wet Suit - Hooded
Helmeted ______
2. Type(s) of sonar: AN/SQQ-14
3. PEL table 1 __; 2 ; 3 __; 4 X
4. Range(s) to sonar (yards): 17
5. Estimated SPL at range(s) in step 3 (from table/column in step 3): SPL = 198 dB
Reminder: If range is between two values in the table, use the shorter range.
If the SPL is measured at the dive site, use the measured value.
6. Depth Reduction 0
dB
Reminder: 0 if not helmeted, see table in instructions if helmeted.
7. Corrected SPL (Step 5 minus Step 6) SPL1 198 – 0 = 198 dB
8. Estimated PEL at SPL (from table/column in step 3 of the appendix): PEL1 = 170 minutes
9. Duty Cycle Known: Yes ______ (do step 9); No X (stop)
Adjusted PEL for actual duty cycle
Actual DC % = 100
× _____
sec. (pulse length /
_____
sec. (pulse repetition period)
Actual DC % = ______
Adjusted PEL = PEL (from step 8) ___ min.
×
20 / actual duty cycle (%) ___ = ___ min.
Reminder: Do not adjust the PEL if duty cycle is unknown.
10. Multiple Sonars: Yes _____ (do step 10); No X (stop)
Sonar 1: DT1 =
(Desired dive duration)
PEL1 =
(from Step 8 or 9, as applicable)
DT1/PEL1 =
.
Sonar 2: DT1 = (Desired dive duration)
PEL1 =
(from Step 8 or 9, as applicable)
DT1/PEL1 =
.
ND = ____ + _____ = ____ (This is less than 1.0, so dive is acceptable and may proceed.)
Reminder: The Noise Dose must not exceed a value of 1.0.
The dive time of 160 minutes is permitted because the PEL is 171 minutes.
Figure 1A-2.
Sonar Safe Diving Distance/Exposure Time Worksheet (Completed Example).
APPENDIX 1A — Safe Diving Distances from Transmitting Sonar 1A-9
Example 2:
You are planning a routine dive for 75 minutes using wet-suited divers without hoods at a dive
site which is 1000 yards from an AN/SQS-23 sonar. The SPL was measured at 185 dB. The duty cycle for
the AN/SQS-23 sonar is unknown. Is this dive permitted? Provide justification for your decision.
SONAR SAFE DIVING DISTANCE/EXPOSURE TIME WORKSHEET
1. Diver dress: Wet Suit - Un-hooded X
Wet Suit - Hooded
Helmeted ______
2. Type(s) of sonar: AN/SQS-23
3. PEL table 1 X ; 2 ; 3 __; 4
4. Range(s) to sonar (yards): 1000
5. Estimated SPL at range(s) in step 3 (from table/column in step 3): SPL = 185 dB
Reminder: If range is between two values in the table, use the shorter range.
If the SPL is measured at the dive site, use the measured value.
6. Depth Reduction 0
dB
Reminder: 0 if not helmeted, see table in instructions if helmeted.
7. Corrected SPL (Step 5 minus Step 6) SPL1 185 – 0 = 185 dB
8. Estimated PEL at SPL (from table/column in step 3 of the appendix): PEL1 = 170 minutes
9. Duty Cycle Known: Yes ______ (do step 9); No X (stop)
Adjusted PEL for actual duty cycle
Actual DC % = 100
× _____
sec. (pulse length /
_____
sec. (pulse repetition period)
Actual DC % = ______
Adjusted PEL = PEL (from step 8) ___ min.
×
20 / actual duty cycle (%) ___ = ___ min.
Reminder: Do not adjust the PEL if duty cycle is unknown.
10. Multiple Sonars: Yes _____ (do step 10); No X (stop)
Sonar 1: DT1 =
(Desired dive duration)
PEL1 =
(from Step 8 or 9, as applicable)
DT1/PEL1 =
.
Sonar 2: DT1 = (Desired dive duration)
PEL1 =
(from Step 8 or 9, as applicable)
DT1/PEL1 =
.
ND = ____ + _____ = ____ (This is less than 1.0, so dive is acceptable and may proceed.)
Reminder: The Noise Dose must not exceed a value of 1.0.
The dive time of 75 minutes is permitted because the PEL is 170 minutes.
Figure 1A-3.
Sonar Safe Diving Distance/Exposure Time Worksheet (Completed Example).
1A-10 U.S. Navy Diving Manual—Volume 1
Example 3:
You are planning a 98 fsw dive for 35 minutes using the MK 21 at a dive site which is 3000
yards from an AN/SQS-53C sonar. The duty cycle for the AN/SQS-53C sonar is unknown. Is this dive
permitted? Provide justification for your decision.
SONAR SAFE DIVING DISTANCE/EXPOSURE TIME WORKSHEET
1. Diver dress: Wet Suit - Un-hooded
Wet Suit - Hooded
Helmeted X
2. Type(s) of sonar: AN/SQS-53C
3. PEL table 1 ; 2 ; 3 X ; 4
4. Range(s) to sonar (yards): 3000
5. Estimated SPL at range(s) in step 3 (from table/column in step 3): SPL1 = 181 dB
Reminder: If range is between two values in the table, use the shorter range.
If the SPL is measured at the dive site, use the measured value.
6. Depth Reduction 6
dB
Reminder: 0 if not helmeted, see table in instructions if helmeted.
7. Corrected SPL (Step 5 minus Step 6) SPL1 181 – 6 = 175 dB
8. Estimated PEL at SPL (from table/column in step 3 of the appendix): PEL1 = 50 minutes
9. Duty Cycle Known: Yes ______ (do step 9); No X (stop)
Adjusted PEL for actual duty cycle
Actual DC % = 100
× _____ sec.
(pulse length /
_____
sec. (pulse repetition period)
Actual DC % = ______
Adjusted PEL = PEL (from step 8) ___ min.
×
20 / actual duty cycle (%) ___ = ___ min.
Reminder: Do not adjust the PEL if duty cycle is unknown.
10. Multiple Sonars: Yes _____ (do step 10); No X (stop)
Sonar 1: DT1 =
(Desired dive duration)
PEL1 =
(from Step 8 or 9, as applicable)
DT1/PEL1 =
.
Sonar 2: DT1 = (Desired dive duration)
PEL1 =
(from Step 8 or 9, as applicable)
DT1/PEL1 =
.
ND = ____ + _____ = ____ (This is less than 1.0, so dive is acceptable and may proceed.)
Reminder: The Noise Dose must not exceed a value of 1.0.
The dive time of 35 minutes is permitted because the PEL is 50 minutes.
Figure 1A-4.
Sonar Safe Diving Distance/Exposure Time Worksheet (Completed Example).
APPENDIX 1A — Safe Diving Distances from Transmitting Sonar 1A-11
Example 4:
You are planning a routine dive for 120 minutes using wet-suited divers with hoods at a dive site
which is 200 yards from an AN/SQS-53A sonar and 120 yards from an AN/SQS-23 sonar. The AN/SQS-53A
sonar is transmitting an 800 msec pulse (0.8 sec) every 20 seconds. The duty cycle for the AN/SQS-23
sonar is unknown. Is this dive permitted? Provide justification for your decision.
SONAR SAFE DIVING DISTANCE/EXPOSURE TIME WORKSHEET
1. Diver dress: Wet Suit - Un-hooded
Wet Suit - Hooded X
Helmeted
2. Type(s) of sonar: AN/SQS-53A and AN/SQS-23
3. PEL table 1 ; 2 X ; 3 ; 4
4. Range(s) to sonar (yards): 200 (from SQS-53A); 120 (from SQS-23)
5. Estimated SPL at range(s) in step 3 (from table/column in step 3): SPL1 = 201; SPL2 = 196
(per reminder, use SPL for 112 yard range)
Reminder: If range is between two values in the table, use the shorter range.
If the SPL is measured at the dive site, use the measured value.
6. Depth Reduction 0 dB
Reminder: 0 if not
helmeted, see table in instructions if helmeted.
7. Corrected SPL (Step 5 minus Step 6) SPL1 201 – 0 = 201 dB; SPL2 196 – 0 = 196 dB;
8. Estimated PEL at SPL (from table/column in step 3 of the appendix): PEL1 = 143 min; PEL 2 = 339 min
9. Duty Cycle Known: Yes X (do step 9); No (stop)
Adjusted PEL for actual duty cycle
Actual DC % = 100
×
0.8
sec. (pulse length / 20 sec. (pulse repetition period)
Actual DC % = 4
Adjusted PEL = PEL (from step 8) 143 min.
×
20 / actual duty cycle (%) 4 = 715 min.
PEL1 = 715
minutes; PEL2 = 339 minutes
Reminder: Do not adjust the PEL if duty cycle is unknown.
10. Multiple Sonars: Yes X
(do step 10); No (stop)
Sonar 1: DT1 = 120 (Desired dive duration)
PEL1 = 715
(from Step 8 or 9, as applicable)
DT1/PEL1 = 120/715 = 0.17
.
Sonar 2: DT1 = 120 (Desired dive duration)
PEL1 = 339
(from Step 8 or 9, as applicable)
DT1/PEL1 = 120/339 = .35
.
ND = 0.17
+ 0.35 = 0.52 (This is less than 1.0, so dive is acceptable and may proceed.)
Reminder: The Noise Dose must not exceed a value of 1.0.
The dive time of 120 minutes is permitted because the ND is less than 1.0.
Figure 1A-5.
Sonar Safe Diving Distance/Exposure Time Worksheet (Completed Example).
1A-12 U.S. Navy Diving Manual—Volume 1
Table 1A-3. Wet Suit Un-Hooded.
Permissible Exposure Limit (PEL) within a 24-hour period for exposure to AN/SQS-23, -26, -53, -56,
AN/BSY-1, -2 and AN/BQQ-5 sonars, including versions and upgrades. Exposure conditions shown
above the double line should be avoided except in cases of compelling operational necessity.
Estimated Ranges in yards for given SPL and PEL for sonar.
All ranges and SPLs are nominal.
*SPL is measured in dB/1
µ
PA at the dive site. To convert SPL for sound levels referenced to mbar,
subtract 100 dB from tabled levels.
(U) = upgrade
SPL
(dB)
PEL
(MIN)
BSY-1
SQS-53C
BQQ-5
BSY-2
SQS-26CX(U)
SQS-53A, SQS-53B
SQS-56(U)
SQS-23
SQS-26AX
SQS-26BX, SQS-26CX
SQS-56
200
199
198
197
196
195
194
193
192
191
13
15
18
21
25
30
36
42
50
60
316
355
398
447
501
562
631
708
794
891
224
251
282
316
355
398
447
501
562
631
71
79
89
100
112
126
141
158
178
200
A
VE
OX
IP
DO
S
TU
HR
IE
S
190
189
188
187
186
185
184
183
182
181
180
179
178
177
176
175
71
85
101
120
143
170
202
240
285
339
404
480
571
679
807
960
1,000
1,122
1,259
1,413
1,585
1,778
1,995
2,239
2,512
2,818
3,162
3,548
3,981
4,467
5,012
5,623
708
794
891
1,000
1,122
1,259
1,413
1,585
1,778
1,995
2,239
2,512
2,818
3,162
3,548
3,981
224
251
282
316
355
398
447
501
562
631
708
794
891
1,000
1,122
1,259
APPENDIX 1A — Safe Diving Distances from Transmitting Sonar 1A-13
Table 1A-4. Wet Suit Hooded.
Permissible Exposure Limit (PEL) within a 24-hour period for exposure to AN/SQS-23, -26, -53, -56,
AN/BSY-1, -2, and AN/BQQ-5 sonar, including versions and upgrades. Exposure conditions shown
above the double line should be avoided except in cases of compelling operational necessity.
Estimated Ranges in yards for given SPL and PEL for sonar.
All ranges and SPLs are nominal.
*SPL is measured in dB/1
µ
PA at the dive site. To convert SPL for sound levels referenced to mbar,
subtract 100 dB from tabled levels.
(U) = upgrade
SPL
(dB)
PEL
(MIN)
BSY-1
SQS-53C
BQQ-5
BSY-2
SQS-26CX(U)
SQS-53A, SQS-53B
SQS-56(U)
SQS-23
SQS-26AX
SQS-26BX, SQS-26CX
SQS-56
215
214
213
212
211
210
209
208
207
206
13
15
18
21
25
30
36
42
50
60
56
63
71
79
89
100
112
126
141
158
40
45
50
56
63
71
79
89
100
112
13
14
16
18
20
22
25
28
32
35
A
VE
OX
IP
DO
S
TU
HR
IE
S
205
204
203
202
201
200
199
198
197
196
195
194
193
192
191
190
71
85
101
120
143
170
202
240
285
339
404
480
571
679
807
960
178
200
224
251
282
316
355
398
447
501
562
631
708
794
891
1,000
126
141
158
178
200
224
251
282
316
355
398
447
501
562
631
708
40
45
50
56
63
71
79
89
100
112
126
141
158
178
200
224
1A-14 U.S. Navy Diving Manual—Volume 1
Table 1A-5. Helmeted.
Permissible Exposure Limit (PEL) within a 24-hour period for exposure to AN/SQS-23, -26, -53, -56,
AN/BSY-1, -2, and AN/BQQ-5 sonar, including versions and upgrades. Exposure conditions shown
above the double line should be avoided except in cases of compelling operational necessity.
Estimated Ranges in yards for given SPL and PEL for sonar.
All ranges and SPLs are nominal.
*SPL is measured in dB/1
µ
PA at the dive site. To convert SPL for sound levels referenced to mbar,
subtract 100 dB from tabled levels.
(U) = upgrade
SPL
(dB)
PEL
(MIN)
BSY-1
SQS-53C
BQQ-5
BSY-2
SQS-26CX(U)
SQS-53A, SQS-53B
SQS-56(U)
SQS-23
SQS-26AX
SQS-26BX, SQS-26CX
SQS-56
183
182
181
180
179
178
177
176
175
174
13
15
18
21
25
30
36
42
50
60
2,239
2,512
2,818
3,162
3,548
3,981
4,467
5,012
5,623
6,310
1,585
1,778
1,995
2,239
2,512
2,818
3,162
3,548
3,981
4,467
501
562
631
708
794
891
1,000
1,122
1,259
1,413
A
VE
OX
IP
DO
S
TU
HR
IE
S
173
172
171
170
169
168
167
166
165
164
163
162
161
160
159
158
71
85
101
120
143
170
202
240
285
339
404
480
571
679
807
960
7,079
7,943
8,913
10,000
11,220
12,589
14,125
15,849
17,783
19,953
22,387
25,119
28,184
31,623
35,481
39,811
5,012
5,623
6,310
7,079
7,943
8,913
10,000
11,220
12,589
14,125
15,849
17,783
19,953
22,387
25,119
28,184
1,585
1,778
1,995
2,239
2,512
2,818
3,162
3,548
3,981
4,467
5,012
5,623
6,310
7,079
7,943
8,913
APPENDIX 1A — Safe Diving Distances from Transmitting Sonar 1A-15
Table 1A-6. Permissible Exposure Limit (PEL) Within a 24-hour Period for Exposure to AN/SQQ-14, -30,
-32 Sonars.
Estimated Ranges in yards for given SPL and PEL for sonar.
Dry suit helmeted divers: no restriction for these sonars. All ranges and SPLs are nominal.
*SPL is measured in dB/1
µ
PA at the dive site. To convert SPL for sound levels referenced to mbar,
subtract 100 dB from tabled levels.
WET SUIT UN-HOODED
SPL
(dB)
PEL
(MIN)
Range
(yards)
200
199
198
197
196
195
194
193
192
191
190
189
188
120
143
170
202
240
285
339
404
480
571
679
807
960
13
14
16
18
20
22
25
28
32
35
40
45
50
WET SUIT HOODED
SPL
(dB)
PEL
(MIN)
Range
(yards)
215
214
213
212
211
210
209
208
207
206
205
204
203
120
143
170
202
240
285
339
404
480
571
679
807
960
2
3
3
3
4
4
4
5
6
6
7
8
9
1A-16 U.S. Navy Diving Manual—Volume 1
1A-5 GUIDANCE FOR DIVER EXPOSURE TO LOW-FREQUENCY SONAR (160–320 Hz)
If possible, you should avoid diving in the vicinity of low-frequency sonar (LFS).
LFS generates a dense, high-energy pulse of sound that can be harmful at higher
power levels. Because a variety of sensations may result from exposure to LFS, it
is necessary to inform divers when exposure is likely and to brief them regarding
possible effects; specifically, that they can expect to hear and feel it. Sensations
may include mild dizziness or vertigo, skin tingling, vibratory sensations in the
throat and abdominal fullness. Divers should also be briefed that voice communi-
cations are likely to be affected by the underwater sound to the extent that line
pulls or other forms of communication may become necessry. Annoyance and
effects on communication are less likely when divers are wearing a hard helmet
(MK 21) diving rig. For safe distance guidance, contact NAVSEA (00C3) Tele-
phone numbers are listed in Volume 1, Appendix C.
.
1A-6 GUIDANCE FOR DIVER EXPOSURE TO ULTRASONIC SONAR (250 KHz AND GREATER)
The frequencies used in ultrasonic sonars are above the human hearing threshold.
The primary effect of ultrasonic sonar is heating. Because the power of ultrasonic
sonar rapidly falls off with distance, a safe operating distance is 10 yards or
greater. Dive operations may be conducted around this type of sonar provided that
the diver does not stay within the sonars focus beam. The diver may finger touch
the transducers head momentarily to verify its operation as long as the sonar is
approached from the side.