[ExI] Supercomputer oil slick sims predict greasy Atlantic

Tomasz Rola rtomek at ceti.pl
Thu Aug 5 22:35:29 UTC 2010

On Wed, 4 Aug 2010, Tomasz Rola wrote:

> This is not new news, but rather a month old one:

Oh, this was to be months old, not month.

>  [ http://www.theregister.co.uk/2010/06/07/ncar_oil_slick_sim/ ]
> Note: the simulations had been done with ink, not oil. To check for oil 
> they would have to change the code, I think.

On the other hand, as oil disperses into zilions of droplets (which is 
going to happen, as everybody happily states), it will behave much more 
like dye, viscosity-wise. But there is still a question about how sea 
water would carry on such droplets compared to ink particles. And besides, 
oil could be in full spectrum of different states of dissolution, so this 
complicates computations a lot (it is not just oil - no oil).

Anyway, it could be interesting to compare future reality to this sim - I 
wonder if there will be much talk about it. US gov agencies seem to be 
rather optimistic, while some scientists are not:

"MacDonald also pointed out that NOAA officials denied the existence of 
underwater plumes of oil for weeks, until a university research vessel 
discovered them 75 miles from the spill site. Now, NOAA officials say that 
49 percent of the oil has been dispersed into the water."

[ http://news.discovery.com/earth/oil-spill-estimates-report.html ]

Ian MacDonald is professor at Florida State University:


[ http://www.gulfbase.org/person/view.php?uid=imacdonald ]

One such underwater plume:

"On May 15, researchers from the National Institute for Undersea Science 
and Technology,[81] aboard the research vessel RV Pelican, identified oil 
plumes in the deep waters of the Gulf of Mexico,[82] including one as 
large as 10 miles (16 km) long, 3 miles (4.8 km) wide and 300 feet (91 m) 
thick in spots."


Quite interesting, I think. Rather interesting than scary, however.

Tomasz Rola

** A C programmer asked whether computer had Buddha's nature.      **
** As the answer, master did "rm -rif" on the programmer's home    **
** directory. And then the C programmer became enlightened...      **
**                                                                 **
** Tomasz Rola          mailto:tomasz_rola at bigfoot.com             **

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