Url https://www.cimne.com/sgp/rtd/Project.aspx?id=30
LogoEntFinanc LogoPlan
Acronym AIDMAR
Project title Sistema de Apoyo a la Investigación del Origen de Vertidos Ilegales en el Mar /Support System for the Investigation of Illegal Spills into the Marine
Reference CTM2008-06565-C03-03
Principal investigator Pedro Antonio ARNAU DEL AMO - parnau@cimne.upc.edu
Start date 01/01/2009 End date 31/12/2011
Coordinator UPC
Consortium members
  • LIM
Program LIA2. Proy.I+D: Investigación Fundamental Call Convocatoria 2008
Subprogram Investigación Fundamental No Orientada Category Nacional
Funding body(ies) MICINN Grant 145.200,00 €
Abstract It is estimated that more than half million tons of oil are spilled into sea every year, as a result of marine operations, accidents and illegal spills. Among the different origins of this type of contamination, it is of special relevance the one that takes place during the technical operations of the merchant ships, mainly the cleaning and unballasting of tanks. The unballast of the ship tanks at sea causes not only the chemistry impact due to the oil water spills, but biological with the invasion of species of invertebrates, seaweed, bacteria and viruses that travel around the world in the ballast water of the ships. Although the International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships (MARPOL 73/78), prohibits the unloading of oil and other polluting agents into the sea, except in conditions that are specifically defined, the reality is that most of the illegal spills into the sea are done with total impunity. The main reason is that the spills are detected several hours after taking place, once the ship who caused it, is too many miles away and is practically impossible its identification. The goal of this project is to develop a tool for the maritime administrations allowing to finish with that impunity, by identifying the ship that with maximum probability has caused the spill, although it have happened several hours before its detection. For this purpose, this proposal aims to develop a support system for the investigation of illegal spills into the marine environment, based in the processing of the information of the transit of ships obtained by means of automatic identification systems (AIS) and probability maps obtained from algorithms of inverse tracking of polluting agents. The relevance of the development and implantation of such an application is easily deduced from the dissuasive effect than can have in the culprits of illegal spills. And consequently in the reduction of the enormous amount of illegal polluting spills emitted annually. The originality of this proposal becomes evident, considering that the AIS technology on which it is based is available few months since (the installation and use in the ships is compulsory since 2005 and the first implantation, still partial of system AIS-SW of Puertos del Estado, is available since the end of year 2006).