Ships burn thick oil known as residual fuel. Residual fuel comes from the bottom of barrel and is the leftover black liquid from gasoline and diesel. This highly toxic substance has caused more than 60,000 premature deaths because it contains high concentrations of sulfur, nitrogen and carbon. The fuel is hazardous to the coastal environment and port communities.

The United Nations decided to limit sulfur concentration in such fuel by 2020. And, locally, the California Air Resources Board requires ocean-going vessels to switch to cleaner marine gas fuels within 200 nautical miles from shore. Efficient and effective enforcement mechanisms are needed to ensure these requirements are being met in practice by shipping vessels entering ports. Our team’s mission was to learn whether shippers are complying with these sulfur limitations through the use of aerial drones equipped with sensors.

Final report: UAV-Based Gas Sensor Systems Help Control Air Pollution From Ocean-Going Vessels

 

Student Team: Ryan Hallman, Anthony Rosas, Luna Bai, Gray Strandberg, Victor Vu, and Sherry Yan
Advisor: Dr. Pablo Saide (IoES Professor, UCLA)
Client: Mr. Alex Spataru (President, The Adept Group, Inc.)


Special thanks to…

Bob Arp
VP, University Advancement
California State University Maritime Academy

Barry Brennan
President
Flying Lion, Inc.

Jack Broadbent
Chief Exec. Officer
Bay Area Air Quality Management District

Rick Cameron
Deputy Executive Director
Port of Long Beach

Marc Carreras
Air Quality Specialist
South Coast Air Quality Management District

Michael Carter
Acting Associate Administrator for Environment and Compliance
Maritime Administration, United States Department of Transportation

Nicole Cleary
Deputy Director
Center for Environmental Research and Technology, UC Riverside

Mario Cordero
Exec. Director
Port of Long Beach

John Coyle
Chief Engineer
California State University Maritime Academy

RADM Thomas Cropper
President
California State University Maritime Academy

Kent Johnson
Research Engineer
Center for Environmental Research and Technology, UC Riverside

Peter Kareiva
Director
UCLA Institute of the Environment and Sustainability

Debbi Klossing
Manager
California Air Resources Board

Jon & Bettina Knudsen
CEO, CMO/COO
EXPLICIT

Sang-Mi Lee
Program Supervisor
South Coast Air Quality Management District

Jason Low
Asst. Deputy Exec. Officer
South Coast Air Quality Management District

Joe Lyou
South Coast Air Quality Management District & Coalition for Clean Air
Board Member, President

Mary Nichols
Chair
California Air Resources Board

Captain Sam Pecota
Director of Marine Programs
California State University Maritime Academy

Andrea Polodori
Atmospheric Measurements Manager
South Coast Air Quality Management District

Todd Sax
Chief, Enforcement Division
California Air Resources Board

Heather Tomley
Managing Director of Planning and Environmental Affairs
Port of Long Beach

Robert Wimmer
Sr. Instrumentation Specialist
South Coast Air Quality Management District

Daniel Yuska
Office of the Environment
Maritime Administration, United States Department of Transportation