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JOURNAL ARTICLE

The oil spill model OILTRANS and its application to the Celtic Sea

Alan Berry, Tomasz Dabrowski, Kieran Lyons
Marine Pollution Bulletin 2012, 64 (11): 2489-501
22901703
This paper describes details of an oil spill model, OILTRANS, developed by the authors. The model is an off-line particle-transport model coupled to the most up to date operational met-ocean model forecasts. Formulations for the dominant oil fate processes of spreading, advection, diffusion, evaporation, emulsification and dispersion have been encoded, providing the model with the ability to accurately predict the horizontal movement of surface oil slick, the vertical entrainment of oil into the water column and the mass balance of spilled oil. The application of the OILTRANS model to an accidental release during a ship-to-ship fuel transfer in the Celtic Sea in February 2009 is presented to validate the system. Comparisons with aerial observations of the oil slick at the time of the incident, and subsequent model simulations, indicate that the OILTRANS model is capable of accurately predicting the transport and fate of the oil slick.

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