PhD Studentship: Developing Combined Deterrents to Protect Fish at Water Intakes Associated with Water Supply and Electricity Generating Infrastructure

University of Southampton - Water and Environmental Engineering, Faculty of Engineering and the Environment

Environmental impacts associated with commissioning water supply and electricity generating infrastructure can result in costly delays and difficulties in gaining consent. As a result, industry is increasingly showing interest in working with Universities to develop solutions that mitigate for environmental impacts, which include large scale fish kills at hydropower dams and similar facilities. Unfortunately, current screening technology that is based on the use of physical structures have been found to be inefficient in many cases, and which themselves carry risks of environmental impacts (e.g. through injuring or suffocating fish that pass along their surfaces or are impinged against them at high velocities). This project will focus on developing combined screening devices that utilise potential behavioural deterrents (e.g. acoustics or electricity) to improve the efficiency of traditional physical screens, while minimising adverse secondary impacts for fish that encounter them. We will work closely with representatives of the power industry in the UK, Brazil and the US who will provide substantial in-kind support to this project.

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South East England