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Program for Estimating Whale Migration Statistics

Award Information

Department of Commerce
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
Award ID:
Program Year/Program:
2011 / SBIR
Agency Tracking Number:
Solicitation Year:
Solicitation Topic Code:
Solicitation Number:
Small Business Information
Toyon Research Corp.
6800 Cortona Drive Goleta, CA -
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Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No
Phase 1
Fiscal Year: 2011
Title: Program for Estimating Whale Migration Statistics
Agency / Branch: DOC / NOAA
Contract: WC133R-11-CN-149
Award Amount: $95,000.00


Toyon proposes to develop software that can process infrared video streams to automatically detect gray whale blows. Additionally, the software will count the number of blows and estimate the speed and the number of whales that are present. We will make use of a novel technique for whale blow detection that Toyon has demonstrated on infrared video of humpback whales. The approach makes use of both the spatial and temporal characteristics of the whale blow to effectively detect it without large numbers of false alarms. In order to estimate the speed and number of whales, we will use a particle filter. We will prove the feasibility of our algorithms in Phase I by processing video supplied by the government and video collected by Toyon at a nearby gray whale migration route. We propose to work with the Gray Whales Count organization, whose whale counting site is located within five miles of Toyon, and/or other organizations specified by the government to collect infrared video of migrating whales and to compare our results with the results collected by trained humans.

Principal Investigator:

Kevin J. Sullivan
VP & Senior Scientist
(805) 968-6787

Business Contact:

Marcella R. Lindbery
Director of Contracts
(805) 968-6787
Small Business Information at Submission:

Toyon Research Corporation
6800 Cortona Drive Goleta, CA -

EIN/Tax ID: 953526665
Number of Employees:
Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No