Computer simulates Gulf oil flow into Atlantic
Scientists at the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) have conducted computer simulations to suggest how oil from the BP Deepwater Horizon blowout in the Gulf of Mexico might flow into the Atlantic Ocean in the coming weeks.
As has been suggested before, the researchers concluded that once the oil is swept up in the Gulf's fast-moving Loop Current, it will move quickly beyond the Gulf, in to the Gulf Stream, up the East Coast to Cape Hatteras, and from there far out into the Atlantic.
The simulations aren't perfect. They're based on the predicted behavior of a dye, not oil. Precisely how oil and its various components would behave in different depths of seawater is not well understood. But the scientists say their simulations do represent an "envelope of possible scenarios."
Whatever, the animations released by the NCAR folks are fascinating, and troubling.