Sunday, 27 February 2011

A state-of-the-art review of oil spill trajectory and fate modeling*

Malcolm L. Spaulding
Applied Science Associates, Inc. 70 Dean Knauss Drive, Narragansett, RI 02882, USA

Available online 5 July 2005. 


A state-of-the-art review of numerical oil spill trajectory and fate modeling is presented to include advection, spreading, evaporation, dissolution, dispersion, emulsification, biodegradation and sedimentation. This paper represents an update of earlier reviews by Stolzenbach et aL (1977)Huang & Monastero (1982), and Huang (1983) and hence concentrates on recent advances. Particular attention isfocused on the dispersion of oil from the sea surface and its influence on spreading, the role of environmental data (currents, wind, temperature, ice conditions) used as input to the model, and the interaction of oil with a variety of shoreline types. Consideration is also given to oil behavior in Arctic environments where oil-ice interactions are important. Brief discussions of the linking of oil spill models with other models to assess environmental impact and the use of oil spill models as the core of an expert system are presented. The review concludes with a list of research needed to advance our ability to model the trajectory andfate of oil and trends in oil spill model development.
*This paper was presented at the International Seminar on Chemical and Natural Dispersion of Oil on Sea, held in Trondheim, Norway, 10–12 November 1986.