Back to top

Fire and Ice, NOAA and U.S. Coast Guard Partner to Study Oil in Ice Environments

April 26, 2021—This week, OR&R’s Senior Scientist Lisa DiPinto led a project funded by the U.S Coast Guard’s Research and Development Center entitled “Advancing Detection Capabilities for Monitoring Oil Spills in Ice Environments.”

People standing on ice with a square cut into the ice.
CRREL technicians preparing the test squares. Image credit: NOAA.

The collaborative research team, including scientists from the U.S. Coast Guard, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, WaterMapping LLC, and Applied Research Associates, spent a week at the Cold Regions Research and Engineering Laboratory oil and ice research facility in Hanover, New Hampshire developing and testing new remote sensing tools to characterize surface oil in icy waters. 

The researchers, flying a quadcopter drone carrying multispectral sensors over various configurations of oil and ice, are advancing our ability to visualize oil in more complex ice, and icy water, environments. 

Additionally, the team partnered with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to monitor smoke plumes from in situ burns using UAS mounted sensor packages. These projects demonstrate the utility of UAS for spill response and assessments.

For more information, please contact

Return to the OR&R Weekly.

Last updated Tuesday, November 8, 2022 1:44pm PST