The Under Keel Clearance (UKC) Project is a long-standing public-private partnership between CDIP, the Marine Exchange, PROTIDE, and SCCOOS. UKC improves local swell models at the Port of Los Angels and Long Beach (POLA/LB) harbor entrance, where three wave buoys (with one buoy supported by IOOS via SCCOOS) are critical to delivering customized information to ship captains and harbor pilots. Maximum operational vessel draft has increased by four feet, thereby decreasing the number of vessels lightering, which means less fuel consumption, quicker loading/offloading (more revenue) and improved working conditions.
The decision for a vessel to transit the harbor entrance takes into account many factors, including water level, ocean currents, wave conditions, channel depth, vessel course and speed, as well as the vessel dimensions. These factors are incorporated into the PROTIDE program. PROTIDE computes vessel motion based on these factors, and calculates the under keel clearance and probability of touching the seafloor.