Monthly Archives: November 2017

GoMRI Students Grad Student Snider Examines Seaside Sparrows Diet for Food Web Impacts from Oiling Allison holds a Seaside Sparrow after a muddy day in the field. (Photo credit: Anna Perez-Umphrey)

Seaside Sparrows live and forage in coastal Gulf of Mexico marshlands, some of which were oiled following the Deepwater Horizon incident. Sparrows in these oiled marshes likely ingested invertebrates that were also exposed to oil. Allison Snider uses DNA analyses to investigate potential long-term changes in the diets of Seaside Sparrows following Deepwater Horizon. She hopes that her findings will Read More

GoMRI ScientistsPublication Highlights Study Finds Clay Nanotubes Yield More Efficient Oil-Water Emulsions than Spherical Particles Addition (spray) of natural clay nantubes (a) to oil spill spot coverts to tiny microdroplet coated with the nanoclay (b-c) which are stable in water (d). These microdroplets can be easier biodgraded. Image provided by Yuri Lvov.

  Researchers assessed various structures of clay nanotubes or halloysites, which are being studied for their potential in oil spill emulsification. They tested the nanotubes to identify which structures generated the most stable emulsions and smallest oil droplets and if catalytic reactions improved at the oil-water interface. The team found that nanotubes between .4 and Read More

GoMRI SciencePublication Highlights Modeling Study Analyzes Sperm Whale Recovery after Environmental Disturbances Dr. Azmy Ackleh reviews modelling simulations of how environmental disturbances impact sperm whales. The contour plot on the left shows that a small change in survival rates over a long time period results in a large change in population dynamics. Photo provided by A. Ackleh.

Researchers used population models to investigate how reduced survival and fertility after environmental disturbances, such as an oil spill, might affect sperm whale populations. Model simulations indicated that the magnitude of a disturbance had a stronger impact on recovery from lethal and sublethal effects than its duration. When comparing lethal and sublethal effects of the Read More

GoMRI StudentsPeople Grad Student Shi Uses Chemical Fingerprinting to Investigate Oil in the Water Column David uses mesocosms to simulate conditions in the natural ocean environment. (Photo credit: ADDOMEx)

  – November 7, 2017 David uses mesocosms to simulate conditions in the natural ocean environment. (Photo credit: ADDOMEx) David takes fluorescence measurements to identify the presence of PAHs in his samples. (Provided by David Shi) David (back row, far left) and the ADDOMEx research team in June 2016. (Provided by David Shi) Crude oil Read More

GoMRI ScientistsPublication Highlights Study Describes How Marine Particle Aggregates Influence Oil Spill Fate Evan Variano (left) along with doctoral students Madeline Foster (middle) and Kimberly Hyunh (right) is continuing this research with a focus on sediment processes in wetlands.

Researchers analyzed simulated interactions of oil droplets and marine particle aggregates to understand how they could affect the behavior of an oil spill. The scientists found that the attachment of oil droplets to particle aggregates changed the distribution of oil droplet sizes over time scales of hours. As oil droplet sizes got larger, a greater Read More