Southeastern Section–56th Annual Meeting (29–30 March 2007)

Paper No. 10
Presentation Time: 11:20 AM


WICKER, J. Neil, Athena Technologies, Inc, 3700 Rosewood Drive, Columbia, SC 29205 and SEXTON, Walter J., Athena Technologies, 3700 Rosewood Drive, Columbia, SC 29205,

The rapid urbanization and industrial devolpment along the coastline of the United States during the last fifty years has put enormous pressure on scientists and engineers.

Shallow sediment sampling technologies, particularly vibracore technology, has become a useful tool in the assessment and planning of coastal zone projects such as shipping channel maintenance and construction, remediation of contaminated sediments, and beach restoration projects. Working in conjunction with shallow seismic and bathymetric data gathered, geoscientists and engineers can gain needed knowledge of subsurface conditions. This info is critical in the decision making process involved in these types of projects.

Despite the quantum leap in the amount and quality of data available to the coastal geoscientist, there are still pitfalls in planning construction projects. Potential gaps in the data collected can occur by abrupt lateral or vertical facies changes that are missed by the standard 1000 foot vibracore spacings completed on most projects.

As our coastlines become more developed, the beneficial uses of dredged material have become apparent.

Pressures on the geoscientist come from the engineering, political, financial, and regulatory sectors. It is up to geoscientists to navigate these potential pitfalls by utilizing the data collected and the geoscientist's knowledge and experience regarding coastal processes to improve overall assessment and performance of shallow sediment construction projects.