A lot of people still think GPS Tracking is just a minor business “bean counting” tool that’s useful for saving fractionally on fuel costs or driver overtime. But it can be way more thna that as a tool for understanding and managing world economy.
Scientists have come up with the first comprehensive map of global shipping routes based on actual itineraries. The team pieced together a year’s worth of travel itineraries from 16,693 cargo ships using data from LLoyd’s Register Fairplay and the Automatic Identification System, which tracks vessels using a VHF receiver and GPS.
A few hot spots logged the majority of journeys. The busiest port was the Panama Canal, followed by the Suez Canal and Shanghai.
“There is a strong similarity of statistical properties between shipping and aviation networks,” lead author Bernd Blasius, a mathematical modeler at Carl von Ossietzky University, wrote in an e-mail. “But different ship types (e.g., container ships vs. bulk carriers or oil tankers) are characterized by different movement patterns.”
The study will be published in a forthcoming Journal of the Royal Society: Interface.
Factoring in both the volume of ships and the number of other ports each is connected to, these are the top ports in the world:
1 Panama Canal
2 Suez Canal
13 New York and New Jersey
16 Le Havre
17 St Petersburg
19 Las Palmas
Image: Bernd Blasius
Citation: “The complex network of global cargo ship movements” Pablo Kaluza, Andrea Kölzsch, Michael T. Gastner and Bernd Blasius, J. Royal Society: Interface
Read More http://www.wired.com/wiredscience/2010/01/global-shipping-map/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+wired%2Findex+(Wired%3A+Index+3+(Top+Stories+2))&utm_content=Google+Feedfetcher#ixzz0yjugtNzV