The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Kansas City District collaborated with the St. Paul District, of the Mississippi Valley Division, to bring the Dredge Goetz onto the Missouri River from late October through early November 2021 to participate in a pilot project to dredge sediment that had created shallow areas in the shipping channel.
According to the Corps, the Goetz has provided critical assistance to the Kansas City District through this pilot program. Thanks to the program, the district was able to assess the dredging effectiveness of the larger dredge normally used on the Mississippi River for its deeper channels and higher volume of commercial traffic.
“While the Missouri River can self-maintain the shipping channel by a series of engineered structures, damage to those structures from flooding can prevent them from performing their intended job. When this happens, shallow areas form and prevent large barges from transporting their goods through these areas. By coordinating with St. Paul District, we are assessing the effectiveness of dredging as another tool to maintain the Missouri River navigation channel,” said Maj. John Chambers, deputy commander of the Kansas City District.
The Goetz looks like a built-up barge with its own control tower and a detachable discharge tube or tail that allows for dredged material to be released an adjustable distance away from the downstream edge of the boat. In the use on the Missouri, that tail was assembled to be about 500 meters.