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Remote Sensing

Photonics still on the job one year after Gulf of Mexico oil spill

One year ago, the Deepwater Horizon oil spill began in the Gulf of Mexico. Two new articles and a special session at SPIE Defense, Security and Sensing explore how photonics has helped track the oil, in the water and on shore.
19 April 2011, SPIE Newsroom. DOI: 10.1117/2.1201104.003575, 10.1117/2.1201103.003601

Two newly published SPIE Newsroom articles highlight work being done with photonics to track the oil in the Gulf of Mexico in the wake of the Deepwater Horizon explosion on April 20, 2010:

Satellites, models combine to track Deepwater Horizon oil spill

An integrated ocean observation system for tracking oil, implemented immediately after the well exploded, aided federal and state agencies in mitigation attempts.

Measurements in support of the Deepwater Horizon incident's response effort

The Deepwater Horizon incident required a wide variety of measurement techniques to find and track oil because of its deep source and the complicated ocean environment.

In addition, during the SPIE Defense, Security + Sensing (DSS) Symposium in Orlando, Florida, there will be two special sessions on Wednesday, 27 April, on Oil Spill and Ocean Monitoring, beginning at 10 am. These are joint sessions of the conferences Sensing Technologies for Global Health, Military Medicine, Disaster Response, and Environmental Monitoring (Conference 8029A) and Ocean Sensing and Monitoring III (Conference 8030).

Both SPIE Newsroom articles linked above are summaries of longer presentations that will be a part of the special sessions at DSS.

A conference plenary presentation by Paul E. Lewis of the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency will report on the EPA's Airborne Spectral Photometric Environmental Collection Technology (ASPECT), the country's only 24/7 operational airborne chemical, radiological, and situational awareness reporting capability. It was used in the Deepwater Horizon oil spill and numerous other disasters. The talk is on Wednesday, 27 April, at 5 pm in Conference 8048, Algorithms and Technologies for Multispectral, Hyperspectral, and Ultraspectral Imagery XVII.