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Researchers race to produce 3D solution for BP oil spill: Weather & Economic Simulations

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posted on May, 26 2010 @ 05:40 PM

Scientists have embarked on a crash effort to use one the world's largest supercomputers to create 3D models to simulate how BP's massive Gulf of Mexico oil spill will affect coastal areas.

Acting within 24 hours of receiving a request from researchers, the National Science Foundation late last week made an emergency allocation of 1 million compute hours on a supercomputer at the Texas Advanced Computing Center at the University of Texas to study how the oil spreading from BP's gusher will affect coastlines.

The goal is to produce models that can forecast how the oil may spread in environmentally sensitive areas by showing in detail what happens when oil interacts with marshes, vegetation and currents.

Source: ComputerWorld

This could help in events of hurricanes and other tidal movements of the affected areas. There have already started economic maps of the coastal regions.

With finer data, they possible could deploy strategies that'll reform and clean-up the now abundant crude oil. They could target reformers in the currents to prevent the affected area from going beyond the Gulf.

I can only imagine the possibilities of how this will evolve.

Be apart of the solution, as many of you can get involved with this project:

A public demonstration Web site built by geographic information systems vendor ESRI adds a social spin to GIS mapping as it pertains to the BP oil spill situation in the Gulf. The Gulf Oil Spill Map at the ARCgis Online site shows not only the latest maps of the Gulf of Mexico and the oil plume so you can track it's spread, but also lets you see where people are who are talking about it on Twitter, in news reports and on YouTube.

Source: Social Map of the Gulf

It's an interactive map with real GIS data. You can add links to the map to update other about specific locations with photo or other social links.

[edit on 26-5-2010 by dzonatas]

posted on May, 26 2010 @ 06:05 PM
Good find.

Shouldn't they do some simulation to see what would happen if a Category 3/4/5 hurricanes hits the Gulf? And how deep oil would go?

I think this would be very important.

And if they need computer hours, they should use WCG, World Community Grid, everyone download a part to process, they process it on their computer then send it back...

I've seen some projects can reach up to 9/10 million computer hours/day...Way more than they need.

[edit on 26-5-2010 by Vitchilo]

posted on May, 26 2010 @ 06:11 PM
They don't have to enter the data the old hard way. There is proof they could gather the many photos taken and use that to do directly model the 3D data.

Here is a detailed example of Qi Pan's: On-line Rapid Model Acquisition

If they plug all this data into OpenCL enabled systems, they could distribute the computation load and create a very high detailed simulation of the entire Gulf.

The World Community Grid is an excellent suggestion ready to deploy probably faster than OpenCL.

[edit on 26-5-2010 by dzonatas]

posted on May, 26 2010 @ 10:47 PM
Many people turn down alternative energy because they think the addiction to crude oil is a cheaper means for energy. The fact is, it is not carbon neutral, and it costs more energy to return crude oil to a environmentally neutral state.

People underestimate alternative energy, especially ones that require time to harvest, that start from environmentally neutral sources and are returned to environmentally neutral solutions. This is the key to renewable energy.

I know its hard for people to accept that as the solution we need to do, yet the truth is that is the only road we really have for the future. The emissions we have left behind that are not carbon neutral are messes we still have to clean-up.

It's time for all of us to grow-up.

Closing the Carbon Loophole and Cracking Down on Polluters

We must take immediate action to reduce the carbon pollution that threatens our climate and sustains our dependence on fossil fuels. We have had limits in place on pollutants like sulfur dioxide, nitrogen dioxide, and other harmful emissions for some time. After decades of inaction, we will finally close the carbon pollution loophole by limiting the amount of carbon polluters are allowed to pump into the atmosphere.

* Closing the Carbon Loophole. By stemming carbon pollution through a market-based cap, we can address in a systematic way all the energy challenges that we face: curbing our dependence on foreign oil, reducing our use of fossil fuels, and promoting new industries right here in America.

* Protecting American Consumers. Revenues generated by closing the carbon loophole will be returned to the people, especially vulnerable families, communities, and businesses.

* Promoting U.S. Competitiveness. Ensure a level playing field for domestic manufacturing and secure significant actions to combat climate change by our trading partners.

Recovery Act

My work and my hobbies have been into hydrogen technology since the '90s. Studied bombs to fuel cells. Maybe people can't quite see how a 3D model like this above would help, or maybe you are still skeptical about hydrogen itself... I look at hydrogen technology as a tree of knowledge, and there are many low hanging fruits

[edit on 26-5-2010 by dzonatas]

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