Acquisition of airborne imagery in support of Deepwater Horizon oil spill recovery assessments
Bostater, Charles R.
Müller-Karger, Frank Edgar
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Remote sensing imagery was collected from a low flying aircraft along the near coastal waters of the Florida Panhandle and northern Gulf of Mexico and into Barataria Bay, Louisiana, USA, during March 2011. Imagery was acquired from an aircraft that simultaneously collected traditional photogrammetric film imagery, digital video, digital still images, and digital hyperspectral imagery. The original purpose of the project was to collect airborne imagery to support assessment of weathered oil in littoral areas influenced by the Deepwater Horizon oil and gas spill that occurred during the spring and summer of 2010. This paper describes the data acquired and presents information that demonstrates the utility of small spatial scale imagery to detect the presence of weathered oil along littoral areas in the northern Gulf of Mexico. Flight tracks and examples of imagery collected are presented and methods used to plan and acquire the imagery are described. Results suggest weathered oil in littoral areas after the spill was contained at the source.