Three Dimensional Numerical Modeling of Oil Spill Behavior in Marine Environment

Document Type: Original Research Paper


School of Civil Engineering, College of Engineering, University of Tehran, Tehran, Iran


In this research a three dimensional model is explained which simulate the oil spill behavior in
seas. This model is the developed version of previous two-dimensional study of Aghajanloo et al., 2013.
Because of three-dimensional nature of the oil dispersion/movement in water, this is a more realistic model of oil spill transport and fate in marine environment. The model is based on Eulerian approach and the governing equations have been discretized by finite volume method. The main model is a combination of several major sub-models that predict the oil slick transport on the sea surface, oil losses due to natural weathering processes and oil dispersion in water column. The oil pollution distribution in water column have been modeled in a sigma-coordinate system and the effects of current, wave and wind forces and turbulent diffusion have been included. Also a hydrodynamic model is provided to simulate the tidal current which is based on two dimensional depth averaged equations of shallow water. A test case including analytical solution is chosen to ensure the model capability in oil spill simulation. The oil spill accident in the Persian Gulf has been simulated by the model.