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AIS Data Case Study: St. Louis Area Commercial Vessel Fleeting Activity and Potential River Training Structures

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Technical Report

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ERDC Coastal and Hydraulics Laboratory Vicksburg United States

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The US Army Corps of Engineers USACE, St. Louis District MVS, needed to examine commercial river traffic patterns before designing new river training structures to reduce maintenance dredging costs in the St. Louis Harbor area of the Middle Mississippi River MMR. The MMR is considered to be that portion of the Mississippi River from the confluence of the Missouri River down to the Ohio River, and the Upper Mississippi River UMR is everything north of the Missouri River. MVS analyzed historic Automatic Identification System AIS data, which provide georeferenced and timestamped position reports for commercial vessels, to reveal river use patterns. The Mississippi River within the MVS area of responsibility is heavily trafficked by the shipping industry and includes numerous loading facilities and fleeting areas that are outside of the main navigation channel. This work identified previously unknown fleeting areas in locations that were being considered for siting of river training structures. These areas were then removed from potential construction consideration, thus avoiding conflict with shipping industry river use.

Subject Categories:

  • Civil Engineering

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