The Entrainment and Migration of Crude Oil in Sea Ice, the Use of Vegetable Oil as a Substitute, and Other Lessons from Laboratory Experiments

O'Sadnick, Megan Eileen; Petrich, Christian; Dang, Nga Phuong


Journal: Proceedings - International Conference on Port and Ocean Engineering under Arctic Conditions, p. 12, 2017

International Standard Numbers:
Printed: 0376-6756
Electronic: 2077-7841


Understanding the interaction between oil and sea ice is essential in the development of oil spill detection and response technology in the Arctic. Laboratory experiments were performed to examine oil migration in sea ice during the cold phase and during warming, and investigate the behavior of different oils in sea ice to identify suitable substitute oils for crude oil. Vegetable oil and Troll B crude oil were injected underneath laboratory-grown sea ice with oil lenses
either 1 cm or 3 cm in thickness. Results show similar behavior of vegetable oil and crude oil in sea ice both shortly after oil injection and during the warm phase. Further, results are independent of lens thickness. The implications of this result are discussed. In addition, the
impact of cylindrical confinement of ice is shown on crystal and brine channel structure, and the energy balance of the tank are discussed.