SonTek RiverSurveyor® S5 and M9

SonTek Riversurveyor M9 S5 ADCP

RiverSurveyor S5 and M9

RiverSurveyor M9 and Hydroboard II - UK

The patented and award-winning RiverSurveyor®, S5/M9 systems give a new perspective to the notion of measuring open channel hydraulics. Using SonTek's exclusive SmartPulseHD®, multiple acoustic frequencies are fused with precise bandwidth control for the most robust and continuous shallow-to-deep discharge measurements ever.

  • Features
  • Specifications
  • Software
  • Webinars

A deterministic microcontroller expertly apportions the proper acoustics, pulse scheme, and cell size to get the highest definition possible so you can focus on the measurement, not the instrument setup. The system even has a vertical beam for precise channel definition and it's all designed to work intuitively.And just like the name implies - SmartPulseHD (just like your TV) lets you see the clearest velocity picture possible with cell sizes down to 2 cm.


  • Multi-Band - Multiple acoustic frequencies1,2
  • Vertical acoustic beam1
  • SmartPulseHD® (Patent Pending)
  • Internally computed discharge and secure data1
  • Standard 360º compass and two-axis tilt sensor
  • Reverberation control with ping rates to 70Hz
  • Bottom-tracking
  • RTK GPS (optional)

1 U.S. Patent #8,125,849
2 U.S. Patent #8,411,530


  • Balances the highest resolution with the greatest range of depths
  • Superior channel definition, extends the maximum measurable discharge depth
  • An intelligent algorithm that looks at water depth, velocity and turbulence, and then acoustically adapts to those conditions using pulse-coherent, broadband, and incoherent techniques. High-def cell sizes down to 2 cm.
  • All discharge computations are done within the S5 or M9 unit internally (not in the computer!) – No lost data from communications drop outs
  • Compensates for vessel motion due to surface conditions.
  • High ping rates ensure extremely robust data collection.
  • High precision vessel tracking and depth measurement without GPS requirement.
  • Ultra precise earth-referenced positioning as an alternative to bottom tracking in moving bed or other difficult situations.
Specification S5 M9
Profiling Range — Distance 0.06 to 5m 0.06 to 40m
Profiling Range1 — Velocity ±20 m/s ±20 m/s
Velocity1 — Accuracy ±0.25% of measured velocity ±0.25% of measured velocity
Velocity — Resolution 0.001 m/s 0.001 m/s
Number of Cells Up to 128 Up to 128
Cell Size 0.02 to 0.5m 0.02 to 4m
Number of Transducers Five (5) Nine (9)
Beam Configuration 4-beam
3.0 MHz
Dual 4-beam
3.0 MHz/1.0 MHz
Janus 25° Slant Angle 25° Slant Angle
Vertical Beam Frequency 1.0 MHz 0.5 MHz
Depth — Range 0.20 to 15 m 0.20 to 80m
Depth — Accuracy 1% 1%
Depth — Resolution 0.001 m 0.001 m
Discharge Measurement Range — Bottom-Track 0.3 to 5m 0.3 to 40m
Discharge Measurement Range — RTK GPS 0.3 to 15 m 0.3 to 80 m
Discharge Measurement — Computations Internal Internal

1Please contact SonTek for accuracies better than 1% or velocities >10 m/s


52 MB
Note: Version 3.80 and later does not support Q-phone.

Exceed your expectations both during and after measurement with RiverSurveyor LIVE software (now optimized for Dell Venue 8 tablet). RSL v3.9.50 is a Windows 7/8 compatible package with the latest advancements for open channel hydraulics visualization. This software includes language support for English, Chinese, Japanese, Spanish, Catalan, French, German, Italian, Korean, Portuguese, Turkish, Polish, Hungarian Afrikaans and Russian.

RiverSurveyor LIVE with SmartPulseHD™ contains intelligent algorithms that look at water depth, velocity and turbulence, and then adapts the acoustic pulse scheme to those conditions. See the clearest velocity picture possible with cell sizes down to 2 cm!


52 MB
The RiverSurveyor Stationary Live real-time and post-processing softwaret, was designed specifically for use in rivers. The features in this software make the RiverSurveyor S5/M9 a more powerful tool, and allows you to reliably use this system in more places than ever before.

NOTE: You can install RSSL to view stationary data; however, a firmware license is required to collect stationary data.



18.49 MB
(NOTE: Please refer to "RiverSurveyor LIVE" software for use with RiverSurveyor S5 & M9)

ADP real-time and postprocessing software for discharge data applications - typically rivers, streams, estuaries. Requires down looking, mobile, bottom-tracking ADP (with or without GPS). Includes the RiverSurveyor System Manual.

A software license is required to run this program, which requires that the ADP has the bottom-track option. If your ADP has the bottom-track option installed, but you have not received a software license to run RiverSurveyor, you can request a RiverSurveyor software license.

Important: If you have a version of RiverSurveyor that is earlier than v4.20, we recommend that you UNINSTALL the "old" version before installing the "new" version. This is REQUIRED for any of our beta testers.



15.08 MB
Become an instant velocity-indexing pro! FlowPack allows you to generate easy to interpret Velocity-Index ratings. Promising to make your data reporting process a whole lot friendlier (and faster), FlowPack also provides a simple method to store flow, velocity, and stage measurements — all through one software program. FlowPack can produce comprehensive reports that assist you in making better, more informed decisions.


586 KB
New RiverSurveyor S5/M9 firmware for use with RiverSurveyor LIVE and RiverSurveyor Stationary LIVE 3.80 or later.

Support for new factory test procedures
IMPORTANT: For more detailed information, download the firmware file, unzip it and read the Release Notes for complete installation instructions.


2017, Feb 7th - RiverSurveyor 4.0: Collecting Acoustic Stationary and Moving Boat Discharge Data

2016, May - Below the surface in ports: topography, navigation and pollution

Increasing ship size and higher demands for more efficient ports have increased the responsibilities for port and navigational authorities. This application oriented webinar will show how solutions from Aanderaa, HYPACK and SonTek help one harbour deal with increasing demands:

  • HydroSurveyor M9 compact high performance systems to measure bathymetry and currents in ports and harbors
  • CastAway CTD offers seamless integration of sound speed information
  • HYPACK software powerful tool to plan missions and analyze data
  • HydroSurveyor M9, CastAway and HYPACK - a complete survey package from Xylem
  • Aanderaa have offered turn key hydro-meteorological soltuions for ports and harbors globally
  • Side looking insturments suitable for pier mounting
  • New buoys combine single point and profiling Doppler current sensors to cover the entire water column
  • Mulitparameter insturuments like SeaGuard RCM and SeaGuard II DCP are suitable for lead detection and pollution spreading studies from wrecks

Related Products

Options & Accessories

SonTek Castaway CTD meter

Castaway CTD

Each Castaway kit includes a hard plastic storage/shipping case, Polyurethane jacket, 15m deployment line, Bluetooth dongle, (2) locking carabineers, (3) magnetic stylus pens, and cleaning brush. Download Brochure.

Hydroboard II

Floatable Platform

The flexible design of the RiverSurveyor and HydroSurveyor systems enables use either over the side of a boat, or on a small floating/tetherable platform such as the SonTek Hydroboard or Trimaran. Watch Video or Download Brochure.

Riversurveyor PCM box


Features operation from AA batteries, 2.4 GHz telemetry, and optional integrated DGPS, or RTK GPS. Technical Overview.



Easy to use and an incredibly precise, fully integrated position solution that can augment or be an alternative to bottom tracking.




A grant from the U.S. National Aeronautics and Space Administratio(NASA) Cryosphere Program is yielding fascinating data on glacial stream dynamics from the Greenland Ice Sheet. Correlating lake and stream bathymetry data with imagery from the WorldView2 satellite will help scientists to produce bathymetric maps that will allow them to estimate the volume of water that is stored in melt ponds and conveyed through stream channels on the surface of the Greenland Ice Sheet, says Overstreet. Eventually, they hope to create a budget of ice and water under a full array of conditions.