Phase-measuring Sidescan Sonar: Mapping the Seafloor in Very Shallow Waters

Mark Borrelli
Associate Research Scientist

Center for Coastal Studies
Provincetown, Massachusetts

Friday, Mar. 6, 2015, 3:00pm
Chase 130

The use of phase-measuring sidescan sonars (PMSS) is becoming more prevalent in very shallow waters (0-20m). The Seafloor Mapping Program, within the Marine Geology Department, at The Center for Coastal Studies in Provincetown, Massachusetts was started in 2009 and specializes in nearshore, vessel-based acoustic surveys using a PMSS. Examples of ongoing and recent projects include: the mapping of natural resources including seagrasses, shellfish beds and other benthic habitats; the location and identification of marine debris; and science-based research in the nearshore relating to coastal evolution and sediment transport.


Mark Borrelli is an Associate Research Scientist at the Center for Coastal Studies in Provincetown Massachusetts and Research Faculty at the School for the Environment at the University of Massachusetts in Boston.

He received a B.S. in Geology from Tufts University (1999), an M.S. in Geological Sciences from the University of Chapel Hill (2001), and a Ph.D. in Geosciences from the University of Rhode Island (2008). He worked with the Massachusetts Office of Coastal Zone Management from 2003 to 2005 and with the National Park Service from 2007 to 2009, both as a Coastal Geologist.

His research interests include coastal sedimentary processes in general and understanding how storms, sea level rise, and anthropogenic impacts affect the coast in particular. Recent and ongoing research includes: mapping the seafloor in shallow coastal waters, studying bedforms and sediment transport in the nearshore, understanding the morphodynamics of tidal inlets and quantifying change in salt marshes.