High-Resolution Numerical Model for Predicting the Transport and Dispersal of Oil Spilled in the Black Sea


The coupled DieCAST-SSBOM (Shirshov-Stony Brook Oil spill transport Model) circulation-oil spill transport model is used to predict the transport and dispersal of contaminants resulting from representative hypothetical oil spills in the Black Sea. With climatological forcing, the DieCAST model realistically simulates many of the dominant mesoscale features of seasonally-varying large scale circulation and meso-scale features of the circulation including the Rim Current, anticyclonic coastal eddies, headland eddy shedding and vertical stratification. The oil spill model ingests DieCAST surface currents and employs a Lagrangian tracking algorithm to predict the motion of a large number of seeded particles, the sum of which (~1 million) form the oil plume. Basic processes affecting the transport of oil and its fate (advection, sinking, evaporation, etc.) are included as parameters. Various scenarios of hypothetical blowouts of oil in different regions of the sea are simulated and discussed as to their structure, transport and likelihood of coastal contamination. The ultimate objective is to develop an operational oil slick model forced with synoptic winds and air-sea interaction.

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