Oil spill simulation and validation in the Arabian (Persian) Gulf with special reference to the UAE coast

A. A. Elhakeem, W. Elshorbagy, R. Chebbi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

56 Citations (Scopus)


The use of numerical modeling in oil spill incidents is a well established technique that has proven to provide cost-effective and reasonable estimates of oil surface drift. Good predictability of such models depends highly on the quality of the input data of the incident and on the model calibration effort. This paper presents the results of simulating oil spillage trajectory in the Arabian (Persian) Gulf. The study employed a 3-D rectilinear hydrodynamic model combined with oil spill model. Typical representative environmental conditions of the Arabian Gulf were first setup into a hydrodynamic circulation model using data from various sources. The performance of the hydrodynamic model was then tested against measurements of tidal fluctuation and sea currents at selected locations. The spill analysis model was setup using the flow field produced from the hydrodynamic simulation and its performance was further validated against documented events of Al-Ahmadi historical oil spill crisis in the Gulf. The comparison of the actual and simulated oil spill drift was found reasonably acceptable allowing for further application in risk assessment studies in UAE Coastal water and in the entire Arabian Gulf as well.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)243-254
Number of pages12
JournalWater, Air, and Soil Pollution
Issue number1-4
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2007


  • Al-Ahmadi
  • Hydrodynamic modeling
  • Oil spill modeling
  • United Arab Emirates

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Ecological Modelling
  • Water Science and Technology
  • Pollution


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