Cloud Computing: Google Keeps Eye on BP Gulf Oil Spill with NASA Images
Google Keeps Eye on BP Gulf Oil Spill with NASA Images
by Clint Boulton
On April 20, an explosion rocked the Deepwater Horizon oil rig, which was drilling in the Gulf of Mexico off the Louisiana coast. The blast and subsequent fire killed 11 rig workers, injured 17 others and caused the drilling platform to sink several days later.
The resulting oil leak has been catastrophic to the ecosystem and coastal fishing communities. Google has partnered with NASA to offer satellite images of the leak's slow spread across the Gulf.
Reports of how much oil is leaking vary from 5,000 barrels to 20,000 barrels per day.
The spill, the largest ever of its kind in the United States, has contaminated 140 miles of coastline.
BP is trying to divert oil leaking from its Gulf of Mexico well to a ship on the surface.
Areas at Risk
Google said this image represents areas at risk to the spill.
MODIS Satellite Images
Google worked with NASA's MODIS (Moderate-Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer) satellites on the images.
MODIS satellites offer multiple views of the spill from above.
Googles Gulf Crisis Response
Googles Gulf Layers
Google offers Google Earth layers of the spill, including the spread of the oil and YouTube videos of the spill, affected people and witnesses. Users can download these layers and view them in Google Earth.
The backlash against BP is nothing short of severe, including this satirical Twitter account mocking BP's public relations.