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 Coastal Engineering




Jen Berlinghoff
Environmental Scientist/Coastal GIS Analyst

Resume (pdf)  


Link to Other Personnel: 

Areas of Expertise
  Conduct GIS data manipulations, analyses, and presentations
  Conduct computer mapping/CAD data entry, manipulations, and analysis tasks
  Conduct project data/document/information archival and recording
  Assist with preparation of project reports, presentations, and proposal efforts


2009 B.S. Environmental Studies, University of Buffalo
Professional Science Master’s; Coastal & Ocean Administration, Science, & Technology; UMass Dartmouth School for Marine Science & Technology; in progress

Ms. Berlinghoff graduated from the University at Buffalo with a Bachelor in Environmental Studies and a minor in Geography: Earth Systems Science.  Her coursework included Geographic Information Systems, Maps & Mapping, Water Quality, Climatic Geomorphology, Soil Science, Field & Lab Techniques, Field Ecology, and Environmental Chemistry. Her internship with the Erie County Soil & Water Conservation District in East Aurora, NY (fall 2008) provided experience with erosion control projects and database management. Since joining Applied Coastal Research and Engineering (Mashpee, MA) in September 2009, Ms. Berlinghoff has provided technical support for geographic information system (GIS) applications, as well as research and writing for coastal science and engineering projects. A majority of her work has been related to wetland change and sediment transport in the Gulf of Mexico. In addition to working full time for Applied Coastal, she is working towards a Professional Science Master's Degree in Coastal & Ocean Administration, Science, and Technology from UMass Dartmouth School for Marine Science & Technology. Her graduate coursework thus far has included Geological Oceanography.

Relevant Experience

Development of a Sediment Budget for Mississippi Sound Barrier Islands.

Dredging data, including quantities and placement areas, were researched and compiled for Federal navigation channels within Mississippi Sound. This information was used to help track the movement of sand within the littoral system of the Mississippi Sound Barrier Islands and aid in the development of a comprehensive sediment budget. Support also was provided in the organization of source data and creation of figures using GIS.

Shoreline and Marsh Transect Surveys in Southeastern Louisiana.

Fifty-seven sites that were classified as having varying degrees of oiling were visited in Terrebonne and Barataria Bays. Using geodetic global positioning system (GPS) instrumentation, the precise location of marsh shoreline position and transect poles was collected. This information was later compiled in GIS and used to document changes in shoreline position and influence of oiling. In addition, assistance was provided for recording and documenting marsh vegetation.

Mapping Marsh Edge in Southeastern Louisiana.

Historical and recent orthorectified aerial imagery was used to map and document net changes in marsh shoreline position using GIS. Shoreline change was calculated for various segments of coast, and historical erosion rates were compared with rates determined for oiled marsh shorelines.

Restoration Projects in the Gulf of Mexico.

Case studies were evaluated for 11 habitat restoration projects throughout the Gulf of Mexico. Emphasis was placed on the application of regional sediment management (RSM) principles. By documenting lessons learned from past restoration projects, better sediment management decisions can be applied towards future projects. The report was written to be included in the Technical Framework for the Gulf Regional Sediment Management Master Plan (GRSMMP).

Development of a Sediment Budget for Mobile Bay, Alabama.

Historical bathymetric and shoreline datasets were used to document the elevation and shoreline position changes that have taken place in Mobile Bay. Two new shoreline datasets were produced using GIS; a shoreline for 1847-50 was created by georeferencing and digitizing United States Coast and Geodetic Survey (USC&GS) T-Sheets and a shoreline for 2010-11 was interpreted and digitized from high-resolution orthoimagery. In addition, dredging data were researched to assemble a detailed history of the development of the Mobile Bay Ship Channel.

Shoreline Compilation and Change Assessment for Open-Coast Shorelines of South Louisiana.

As part of the Louisiana Barrier Island Comprehensive Monitoring (BICM) Program, historical shoreline positions between the 1850s and 2012 were provided in a database for the purpose of quantifying shoreline change, as well as producing shoreline change maps. Techniques employed for evaluating existing data and creating new datasets included georeferencing and digitizing historical USC&GS T-sheets, interpreting and digitizing shorelines from orthoimagery, and utilizing shoreline change analysis software to quantify changes between different time periods. Areas of focus include the Mississippi River Deltaic Plain, the Chenier Plain of southwest Louisiana, the Lake Pontchartrain Basin, and the Acadiana Bays. These data will be used to aid in the planning, design, evaluation, and maintenance of current and future barrier island/coastal restoration projects.

Wave Action and Sediment Transport Modeling Effort for the Oak Bluffs Shoreline  

Ms. Berlinghoff obtained and analyzed historical shorelines in ARCGIS for the Oak Bluffs, Martha’s Vineyard region.  This consisted of georeferencing historical topographic sheets and digitizing the shorelines, as well as digitizing shorelines from more recent orthoimagery,  using LIDAR data. These shorelines were then overlayed onto 2005 orthoimagery and the change was examined.

The Effect of Jetties and Other Coastal Structures on Shorelines in Lake Montauk, New York    

Historical shorelines were obtained and analyzed.  Shoreline change was calculated with ASAP and displayed on a map. Conclusions were then made about the effects of the harbor jetties on the beaches; littoral transport of sediment was halted by the east jetty, leading to accretion on that side. Erosion then occurred on the beaches west of the west jetty due to the blocking of the long-shore sediment transport.

Dredging Histories for North Pacific Harbors     

Ms. Berlinghoff compiled dredging histories for Grays Harbor, Washington and Coos Bay, Oregon, focusing on outer bar and entrance channels. The information was extracted from USACE annual reports dating back to 1878 and organized. Graphs were made to display quantities dredged. This information is useful in determining sediment budgets.


Byrnes, M.R. and Berlinghoff, J.L., 2012. Gulf Regional Sediment Management Master Plan: Case Study Compilation. In: Khalil, S.M., Parson, L.E., and Waters, J.P. (eds.), Technical Framework for the Gulf Regional Sediment Management Master Plan (GRSMMP), Journal of Coastal Research, Special Issue, No. 60. West Palm Beach (Florida), ISSN 0749-0208, pp. 72-124.

Byrnes, M.R.; Rosati, J.D.; Griffee, S.F., and Berlinghoff, J.L., 2012. Littoral Sediment Budget for the Mississippi Sound Barrier Islands. Vicksburg, Mississippi: U.S. Army Engineering Research and Development Center, Technical Report ERDC/CHL TR-12-9, 171p.

Byrnes, M.R.; Berlinghoff, J.L., and Griffee, S.F., 2013. Sediment Dynamics in Mobile Bay, Alabama: Development of an Operational Sediment Budget. Mobile, Alabama: Technical Report to the Mobile Bay National Estuary Program, 134 p.

Byrnes, M.R.; Rosati, J.D.; Griffee, S.F., and Berlinghoff, J.L., 2013. Historical Sediment Transport Pathways and Quantities for Determining an Operational Sediment Budget: Mississippi Sound Barrier Islands. In: Brock, J.C., Williams, S.J., and Barras, J. (eds.), Understanding and Predicting change in Coastal Ecosystems of the Northern Gulf of Mexico, Journal of Coastal Research, Special Issue, No. 63. West Palm Beach (Florida), ISSN 0749-0208, pp. 166-183.



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