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Dye sensors to be placed in area waters
GPS drifters that have dye sensors, will be placed in several bodies of water in our area today.
The devices will collect visual data on the movement of currents.
A team of Surfzone scientists released GPS drifters near East Pass late last week. The GPS drifters will help study how the currents move down the beach.
Rows of pipes stretch out from the shoreline, and are loaded with sensors to measure waves, currents and temperature. As part of the study the team put bright purple temporary dye in the water, to look at how substances spread and mix in the surf. Dr. Jamie Macmahan says the data they gather will help build better prediction models. If a spill comes again, they'll be able to answer questions like how soon, how much, and exactly which sections of shoreline will be affected.
Dr. Jamie Macmahan
"We're gong to have dye sensors in the water, we're going to have wave-runners, swimmers, boats offshore, and we have little remote helicopters that will be hovering above with go-pro cameras"
Dr. Ad Reniers
"If you have oil offshore, how does it get into the surf zone, and how does it end up on the beach. That is what we're trying to figure out."
In addition to oil spill tracks, the study will also help us learn more about local rip currents, information that could be helpful in providing better beach safety.