discussion / Biologging  / 24 January 2023

Field testing of a radio telemetry system to be deployed in the sea.

Hello everyone

What kind of tests do you put aquatic tags through to get them field ready? 

Currently, we are testing a radio telemetry system. We are leaving the tags at 20 metres and 40 metres for a day to see if they can withstand sustained pressure. We are also doing some range and detection tests as well.

Curious about what you did to ensure an operational tag.




Hi Hari,

A simple test we do is pump the unit up slightly (maybe 1 psi), and check for bubbles.  It's like fixing a flat on a bicycle.  The positive internal pressure opens up and exposes any questionable seals.  Most of the leakage problems tend to be of the shallow water variety, which this test finds.  Deep water leaks are more rare, since the pressure tends to close up any cracks.

Otherwise the SOP is to lightly grease all O-rings and seals, and assemble the unit in the lab to prevent sand etc. from sticking to the greasy O-rings.