Application of synthetic aperture radar imagery for forward and backward tracking of oil slicks

  • The oil trajectories were calculated using the detected oil from SAR
  • Calculation of the optimal coefficients using various wind and tidal conditions
  • Performance evaluation of backward tracing to the oil position using SAR data

This paper presents a technique for tracking of oil slicks movement using synthetic aperture radar (SAR) and external force data with optimal coefficients. The detected oil from the SAR image is used as input data for tracking model, and wind and tidal current data are used as external forces to determine the displacement of oil slick. Forward and backward trackings were performed using a set of 4 SAR images observed at the time of the Hebei Spirit accident in 2007. The movement vectors are calculated using wind and tidal current with various coefficients. All tracking results show more than 56% accuracy. The new linear equations were calculated using coefficient values with the highest accuracy and velocity values of wind and tidal current. The modified equations were used to back-track from the satellite observation time to the accident occurrence time. The simulation results shows that most of the particles of the spread oil traced back around the point of the accident with little exceptions to some particles which shifted more than the oil spill. This is because the spill time of the particles are different from each other. Thus, the proposed method will contribute to the quick response activities and the estimation of location for the source of oil pollution.

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