Normandeau_Associates_Inc.
FAQ

 

Contact Us

ReBAT ® | FAQ

Regulatory Compliance
Q. Is ReBAT accepted by regulators in place of other systems?
Q. How does ReBAT help utility companies comply with the Land-Based Wind Energy Guidelines (USFWS 2012)?

Equipment Installation and Deployment
Q. Are there geographic limits on where I can deploy a ReBAT?
Q. Can I deploy a ReBAT outside of the United States?
Q. What do I need to provide for a ReBAT deployment?
Q. What kind of structure is required to deploy ReBAT?
Q. Will the co-deployment of ReBAT on the meteorological tower interfere with meteorological data collection?
Q. How high above ground level can ReBAT monitor?
Q. How long can ReBAT run unattended in a remote isolated location?
Q. Can you ensure a high rate of uptime?
Q. Can you modify the standard ReBAT for my situation?
Q. Can the tower be equipped when it is raised so that monitoring can start later?
Q. What is the difference between ReBAT and PreBAT TK?
Q. Can my tower crew install the PreBAT TK kit?
Q. Can my tower crew install the ReBAT?
Q. Can you install ReBAT at any time during the project?

Data Collection and Analysis
Q. Why are bats difficult to study?
Q. Why acoustically monitor bat activity?
Q. What situations, activities, and events could benefit from using bat acoustic monitoring?
Q. What types of bat detectors are most commonly used?
Q. How do I select a bat detector?
Q. How does the type of detector influence the data collected?
Q. Why are some bat calls so difficult to classify?
Q. Why is species identification important?

Regulatory Compliance

Q. Is ReBAT accepted by regulators in place of other systems?

A. Yes. To date, ReBAT has been universally accepted by regulators, including the State of New York, Bureau of Land Management, and Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources. This acceptance is due to the high-quality data and increased system uptime that ReBAT provides. [TOP]

Q. How does ReBAT help utility companies comply with the Land-Based Wind Energy Guidelines (USFWS 2012)?

A. The Land-Based Wind Energy Guidelines (USFWS 2012) suggest that full-spectrum detectors should be used when species identification is important. ReBAT is a full-spectrum detector system. The guidelines state that "Myotis species can be especially difficult to discriminate with zero-crossing detectors (Kunz et al. 2007)" and that "either type of detector may be useful in most situations except where species identification is especially important and zero-crossing methods are inadequate to provide the necessary data." [TOP]

Equipment Installation and Deployment

Q. Are there geographic limits on where I can deploy a ReBAT?

A. ReBAT can use cell or satellite communications so there is no geographic limit on where you can deploy the system. Cell-based ReBATs have full functionality because they can access cellular networks up to 20 miles from the site. Satellite-based ReBATs typically have limited functionality (e.g., no transmission of data) due to the high cost of satellite bandwidth. [TOP]

Q. Can I deploy a ReBAT outside of the United States?

A. Yes. ReBAT can use GSM or CDMA technology for cellular communication and therefore can be deployed in Canada, Mexico, Europe, and elsewhere. Additionally, with satellite communication, even areas without cell communication can use ReBAT. [TOP]

Q. What do I need to provide for a ReBAT deployment?

A. If ReBAT will be attached to a tall structure, such as a meteorological tower, this is typically provided by the client. All ReBAT-related materials are included with the equipment lease. [TOP]

Q. What kind of structure is required to deploy ReBAT?

A. ReBAT has been installed on a wide variety of meteorological towers from monopoles to trailer-mounted lattice towers, as well as nacelles and other tall structures. ReBAT can also be installed at lower heights on tripods, tall fence posts, temporary poles or towers. [TOP]

Q. Will the co-deployment of ReBAT on the meteorological tower interfere with meteorological data collection?

A. No. ReBAT is entirely independent of the meteorological equipment. It is installed on the portions of the tower unoccupied by the meteorological equipment and uses independent hoist, power supply, and data transmission systems. [TOP]

Q. How high above ground level can ReBAT monitor?

A. Theoretically, there is no limit. Currently, upper detector units are typically positioned 3 to 5 m below the maximum meteorological tower height (e.g., 55 m on a 60 m tower). This accommodates the meteorological equipment and still monitors acoustic activity within the rotor swept zone at a wind energy facility. [TOP]

Q. How long can ReBAT run unattended in a remote isolated location?

A. Theoretically, there is no limit. Practically, annual or semi-annual site visits are recommended to physically check the system components. [TOP]

Q. Can you ensure a high rate of uptime?

A. Yes. In 2010 and 2011, the average uptime exceeded 95%. If a system fails to operate, the ReBAT computer alerts Normandeau immediately. In most instances, the system function is restored via remote intervention. If it cannot be restored remotely, the client is notified and the cost of a site visit can be balanced with the time sensitivity or urgency of restarting the system. [TOP]

Q. Can you modify the standard ReBAT for my situation?

A. Yes. ReBAT can be modified for use in a variety of situations. From hard to reach mine openings to wind energy facilities with unique needs, we can fit ReBAT to meet most requirements. This includes increasing the number of detectors, changing the method of attachment, adjusting data collection parameters, and adjusting data transmission and monitoring in areas with limited cell coverage. [TOP]

Q. Can the tower be equipped when it is raised so that monitoring can start later?

A. Yes. A PreBAT TK tower mounting kit can be installed when the tower is being raised. PreBAT TK includes the pulley system and the receptacle/locking system, which will later hoist and secure the weatherproof housing and ReBAT monitoring equipment when you are ready to start monitoring. [TOP]

Q. What is the difference between ReBAT and PreBAT TK?

A. ReBAT is a monitoring system that includes the equipment and services needed for acoustic monitoring of bats. PreBAT TK is a tower mounting kit that only includes the system components necessary to later deploy the ReBAT monitoring equipment without lowering the tower. PreBAT TK installations are typically used when the tower deployment substantially precedes the starting date of the bat monitoring program. [TOP]

Q. Can my tower crew install the PreBAT TK kit?

A. Yes. The PreBAT TK tower mounting kit contains all of the hardware needed for the installation as well as a detailed installation manual. Normandeau also provides 24 hour support for installation. [TOP]

Q. Can my tower crew install the ReBAT?

A. No. Due to the complexity of the system, Normandeau staff will install all ReBAT systems. [TOP]

Q. Can you install ReBAT at any time during the project?

A. Yes. For tower installations, ReBAT can be installed when the tower is being raised or later by either dropping the tower or using a crane. Or a PreBAT TK tower mounting kit can be installed when the tower is being raised, which allows the ReBAT monitoring equipment to be installed later without lowering the tower. For nacelles, ReBAT can be installed on operational wind farms. [TOP]

Data Collection and Analysis

Q. Why are bats difficult to study?

A. Bats are difficult to study and monitor due to their natural history. They are small, highly mobile, and active primarily at night and under low light conditions. They use roosts that are remote or otherwise difficult to access, and they are not evenly distributed across the landscape. [TOP]

Q. Why acoustically monitor bat activity?

A. Acoustic detection overcomes the difficulties of studying bats and provides an index of bat activity, which is one of the few readily available indicators of bat density and distribution. [TOP]

Q. What situations, activities, and events could benefit from using bat acoustic monitoring?

A. Acoustic monitoring is useful for the following:

  • Studies of population patterns and trends across time or space, such as timing of migration, seasonal shifts in distribution, and population changes caused by white-nose syndrome
  • General ecological studies such as identifying roost usage, habitat preferences, and timing of foraging
  • Assessments of land management actions such as proposed cave or mine closures and timber harvest or planting. [TOP]

Q. What types of bat detectors are most commonly used?

A. The most commonly used bat detectors are frequency division detectors (including zero-crossing detectors) and full-spectrum detectors, such as ReBAT. [TOP]

Q. How do I select a bat detector?

A. A bat detector should be selected based on its ability to meet study requirements (USFWS 2012). The Land-Based Wind Energy Guidelines (USFWS 2012) differentiate between the two most common detection systems, stating that full-spectrum detectors provide "nearly complete species discrimination" whereas zero-crossing detectors provide only "estimates of total bat use at a site and some species discrimination." The guidelines further state that "Myotis species can be especially difficult to discriminate with zero-crossing detectors (Kunz et al. 2007)" and that "either type of detector may be useful in most situations except where species identification is especially important and zero-crossing methods are inadequate to provide the necessary data." [TOP]

Q. How does the type of detector influence the data collected?

A. For wind energy facilities, full-spectrum acoustic monitoring is the best available measure of mortality risk. For more information, see the USFWS Wind Energy website, which includes the Land-Based Wind Energy Guidelines and a related factsheet. [TOP]

Q. Why are some bat calls so difficult to classify?

A. The difficulty is rooted in the fact that bat calls are dynamic. Bats modify their calls to suit their environment (e.g., open versus cluttered habitat) and there is no one standard call for each species. For example, bats that forage in similar environments tend to use similar frequencies and call structures (e.g., call slope and duration) because it represents an optimum call structure for that environment. [TOP]

Q. Why is species identification important?

A. Species level identification helps determine the presence or absence of protected species (e.g., Indiana bat), which is critical for regulatory compliance with the Endangered Species Act and other wildlife laws.

 

For non-protected species, reduced bat fatalities may still be desirable because of other regulatory expectations (e.g., NEPA, Public Service Commission rules), environmental stewardship, or white-nose syndrome. [TOP]

Contact us by email or call 352.372.4747 to find out more.