NASA releases time-lapse video of Gulf oil spill

NASA released a time-lapse video yesterday that shows the widening oil slick in the Gulf of Mexico. The video is made from selected images taken by the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) aboard NASA’s Terra and Aqua satellites, which pass over the equator each morning and afternoon, respectively, recording the surface of the planet.

The first image, at 0:46, shows the plume of smoke from the burning Deepwater Horizon oil rig. After that, the widening plume of oil as it heads toward the Gulf Coast. One of the first people to view the video commented, “Its a shame we can put a man in orbit but not one at the bottom of the ocean to weld a pipe and top a leak.” The video:

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NASA’s most striking image may be this image taken by the Terra Satellite on May 24, as sunlight illuminated the surface spill. Click twice for the full-sized image:


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