The influence of oil particle size distribution as an initial condition in oil spill random walk models

Document Type

Conference Proceeding

Date of Original Version



The transport of oil can be modeled either by solving the advection-diffusion equation on the nodes of a grid (Eulerian models), or by tracking particles which represents individual portions of the spill (Lagrangian models). Random walk (RW) models, which solve non-linear Langevin equation, belong to the later category. For the simplest case 2D horizontal RW models, initial conditions including the number of particles and time interval need to be specified. For RW spill models involving the vertical direction, oil particle size distribution must also be specified, since oil buoyancy influences oil spill movement and spreading. In this paper a random walk model was employed to study the influence of oil particle size distribution on horizontal spreading by a vertical shearing current.

Publication Title

Water Studies



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