In 1999, the Minerals Management Service of the U.S. Department of Interior engaged HNEI to participate in a joint study with researchers from MIT and Clarkson University to Investigate the consequences of a deep ocean oils spill and to begin development of predictive models to support oil spill resonders and assess environmental impacts.  Following the 2010 Deepwater Horizon accident, interest in deep oil spill science increased significantly and HNEI has received funding from GoMRI, Chevron (via MIT), and SINTEF to conduct experimental laboratory studies on the effects of dispersants on oil jet breakup and the subsequent evolution of oil droplets rising through the water column.  The ultimate goal of these studies is to provide droplet size information that can be incorporated into predictive models to track the released contaimants in the ocean.

Point Person: Stephen Masutani