Navigation Links
University of Miami-led study finds winds played important role in keeping oil away from S. Fla.
Date:7/9/2012

MIAMI July 9, 21012 -- The Deepwater Horizon oil spill in spring 2010 is the largest oil spill in the history of the United States, with more than 200 million gallons of crude oil released at about 1,500 m. depth off the Mississippi Delta in the Gulf of Mexico. At the time of the accident, the proximity of the intense Loop Current, flowing from the Yucatan Channel to the Florida Straits, raised major concerns that the oil at the surface of the ocean would be headed toward the South Florida and East Atlantic coastal areas. However, the dominant transport of oil and oil products was toward the Northern Gulf coastline, and no oil was observed to reach the Atlantic Ocean.

In a new study published in the journal Environmental Science & Technology, University of Miami (UM) scientists Matthieu Le Hnaff, Villy Kourafalou, Claire Paris, Judith Helgers, and Ashwanth Srinivasan, in collaboration with Zachary Aman from the Colorado School of Mines, and Patrick Hogan from the Naval Research Laboratory, use numerical simulations performed at the High Performance Computing core of UM's Center for Computational Science (CCS) to explain an important aspect of the observed oil transport.

The group has demonstrated the crucial role of the wind-induced surface drift on the fate of the oil in the Gulf of Mexico. This drift was found to have a strong influence on the displacement of oil, accounting for the influence of winds on the top surface of ocean waters through the generation of waves and additional circulation. These particular wind effects are generally not represented in ocean circulation models and were missing from real time ocean circulation predictions during the Deepwater Horizon oil spill.

Incorporating this wind effect to the ocean currents, the UM scientists performed a novel 3D modeling study of the oil's spread from the bottom of the Gulf of Mexico to the ocean's surface, which allowed a realistic representation of the evolution of the 2010 oil spill. The oil spill simulations were verified through observational composites from UM's Center for Southeastern Tropical Advanced Remote Sensing (CSTARS) and from Roffer's Ocean Fishing Forecasting System, and benefited from regional circulation models that assimilate real ocean data; no change in the oil spill extent took place to match observations. Results from this study showed that the model simulation including the wind-induced drift led to substantially improved results over an identical simulation that excluded wind drift effects.

"It is striking to notice how a large part of the surface oil erroneously made it to the Atlantic coast of Florida in the simulations that ignored the wind-induced drift. The simulation taking the drift into account correctly calculated the final destination of the oil along the Northern Gulf coastline, in remarkable agreement with observations," says Le Hnaff, a research scientist at the UM Rosenstiel School, who is also affiliated with NOAA's Cooperative Institute for Marine and Atmospheric Studies (CIMAS). "The dominant northward winds during spring and summer of 2010 led the surface oil to be pushed onto the Northern Gulf shelf areas and toward the coasts, away from the interior of the Gulf and the Loop Current southward transport. This effect, together with the evolution of the Loop Current, was crucial in maintaining the oil from the Deepwater Horizon rig within the Gulf of Mexico and away from the South Florida coral reefs and beaches."


'/>"/>
Contact: Barbra Gonzalez, UM Rosenstiel School
barbgo@rsmas.miami.edu
305-421-4704
University of Miami Rosenstiel School of Marine & Atmospheric Science
Source:Eurekalert  

Related biology news :

1. New York University scientists discover possible treatment to reduce scarring
2. Royal Astronomical Society and Oxford University Press partnership announced
3. Mainz University coordinates new EU project on the origins of human settlement
4. University of Tennessee professor receives funding for clean coal research
5. University of North Texas Health Science Center Advances Forensic Research by Investing in Semiconductor DNA Sequencing Technology
6. IOC recognizes University of Calgary Sports Injury Research Prevention Centre
7. Loss of biodiversity increasingly threatens human well-being: UBC, University of Michigan research
8. NIH supporting Arizona State University research to help in fight against kidney disease
9. University of Tennessee anthropologists find American heads are getting larger
10. Wells Fargo fosters environmental conservation through University of Miamis RJD program
11. University of Leicester study finds low agreeableness linked to a preference for aggressive dogs
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
University of Miami-led study finds winds played important role in keeping oil away from S. Fla.
(Date:4/19/2017)... The global military biometrics market ... by the presence of several large global players. The ... major players - 3M Cogent, NEC Corporation, M2SYS Technology, ... 61% of the global military biometric market in 2016. ... military biometrics market boast global presence, which has catapulted ...
(Date:4/17/2017)... NXT-ID, Inc. (NASDAQ: NXTD ) ("NXT-ID" ... its 2016 Annual Report on Form 10-K on Thursday April 13, ... ... the Investor Relations section of the Company,s website at http://www.nxt-id.com ... http://www.sec.gov . 2016 Year Highlights: ...
(Date:4/13/2017)... April 13, 2017 According to a new market ... Identity Analytics, Identity Administration, and Authorization), Service, Authentication Type, Deployment Mode, Vertical, ... Market is expected to grow from USD 14.30 Billion in 2017 to ... of 17.3%. ... MarketsandMarkets Logo ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:8/15/2017)... 15, 2017 After spending the past two years building ... data collection, GeneFo now offers this platform to healthcare stakeholders (hospitals, ... support, adherence, and data collection vis a vis their members, under ... successful launch of this offer. ... GeneFo ...
(Date:8/15/2017)... PA (PRWEB) , ... August 15, 2017 , ... ... one of the largest Asian exhibitions for analytical and scientific instruments. This year’s ... will be “New Approaches in Mass Spectrometry for Bioanalytical Applications.” This dynamic presentation ...
(Date:8/15/2017)... York, NY (PRWEB) , ... August 15, 2017 , ... ... the first time on Immuno-Oncology 360° (IO360°) programming through a series of upcoming panels ... be held February 7-9, 2018, at The Roosevelt Hotel in New York City. , ...
(Date:8/14/2017)... ... August 14, 2017 , ... ... performing antibodies. Key researchers in the antibody community have recently come together to ... for antibodies in the laboratory. , The team at Thermo ...
Breaking Biology Technology: