Deepwater Horizon Surface Oil

On April 20, 2010, the Deepwater Horizon oil rig experienced a series of malfunctions and subsequent explosions that disengaged the rig from its drill and killed eleven workers onboard. The explosion damaged the wellhead 5,000 feet below the surface, and crude oil flowed from the damaged wellhead until a containment cap was put in place on July 15, 2010.
The Earth Scan Laboratory tracked surface oil with several satellite sensors in near real-time. Our research of the event led to collaborations and publications on the oceanographic factors relevant to surface oil's fate as well as exposure effects for Gulf fishes.


MODIS image of the Deepwater Horizon oil slick in the northern Gulf of Mexico