A Density-Based Measure of Port Seaside Space-Time Utilization

  • Behnam NikparvarEmail author
  • Jean-Claude Thill
Conference paper
Part of the Advances in Geographic Information Science book series (AGIS)


The space-time study of seaside space use by vessels may support traffic and operation management practices at ports. In this paper, we quantify space utilization using a volumetric index resulting from a density-based generalization of vessel movements. We use an extension of the kernel density estimation method in a 3D space where the third dimension is time and voxels are the basic elements of this space. Vessel trajectories are represented as line features passing through these voxels. To measure the utilization of space at different times, we aggregate the presence of vessels in a voxel using a prime shape kernel. We applied this approach to study space utilization at a terminal in the Port of Rotterdam during September 2017. Our results show that this measure of space-time utilization is practical and informative to monitor how intensively vessels use space across the waterside assets of the port, along the time line and at various temporal scales.


Space-time utilization Space-time cube Vessel trajectory Port 


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Infrastructure and Environmental Systems ProgramUniversity of North Carolina at CharlotteCharlotteUSA
  2. 2.Department of Geography and Earth SciencesUniversity of North Carolina at CharlotteCharlotteUSA

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