Part of: Proceedings of the Forty-first AMOP Technical Seminar, Environment and Climate Change Canada Ottawa, ON, Canada (Public Works and Government Services Canada, 2018)
In the Arctic, presence of sea ice presents a challenge to safe and sustainable operations. To optimize planning and minimize impact of inadvertent oil spills, oil-in-ice experiments were performed at the HSVA Arctic Environmental Test Basin (AETB) from 14 March to 4 April 2017 by participants from eight institutes. Following an under-ice spill and simulated springtime warning, the microscopic movement and distribution of oil in the sea ice pore space as well as the detectability of oil as it approaches the surface were investigated. Two ice types were studied simultaneously, i.e., columnar ice with and without a granular ice surface layer. Detection techniques included electromagnetic (radar, tomographic SAR) and optical (fluorescent hyperspectral, thermal) sensors, and microscopic distribution of oil in sea ice were determined through X-ray computed tomography (CT). This paper presents the setup of the experiment and general ice properties. It was found that the movement of oil differed considerably between the investigated ice types. Predicting the behavior of oil in ice based on environmental conditions will help optimize the approaches used in spill detection and response.