Oil Slick in the Gulf of Mexico

Oil Slick in the Gulf of Mexico

Oil from the Deepwater Horizon rig was visible on the surface of the Gulf of Mexico on June 18, 2010. The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Terra satellite took this picture the same day. The oil appears as meandering, interlocking patterns of varying shades of off-white. The angle of the Sun plays a role in the oil slick’s visibility, as the oil is illuminated by sunglint.

  1. Related Resources

  2. Gulf of Mexico Oil Spill Response, the official site of the Deepwater Horizon unified command.
  3. Current information about the extent of the oil slick is available from the Office of Response and Restoration at the National Oceanic and Atmosphere Administration.
  4. Information about the impact of the oil slick on wildlife is provided by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

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  • Data Date:

    June 18, 2010
  • Visualization Date:

    June 19, 2010
  • Sensor(s):

    Terra - MODIS


NASA - National Aeronautics and Space Administration