Where’s Waldo? In the Gulf! - Oceana USA
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July 19, 2010

Where’s Waldo? In the Gulf!

From top Cory Boyes and Jason Wolf both employees of Mote Marine Laboratories deploy the marine robot called Waldo with the goal of tracking oil that might have traveled over from the BP spill. A crew of scientists deployed the robot off the coast of Key West at about 3:30 p.m. on May 25, 2010. The robot has special sensor technology that detects pure oil, oil mixed with dispersants and weathered oil. Waldo will began its voyage 25 miles west of Key West and it will travel almost due west to a point about 50 miles north and thirty miles west of the Dry Tortugas. Manuel Martinez/Naples Daily News Staff

Today Oceana and NRDC, in collaboration with Mote Marine Laboratory, are launching an oil-detecting underwater robot off the Florida Keys as a first line of defense against underwater oil plumes from the Gulf oil spill.

For 25 to 30 days, the robot, a.k.a.Waldo, will travel undersea in the water column, an area that satellite imagery cannot access, gathering data every few seconds and transmitting the information to researchers via satellite every three hours.

If oil is detected, Mote Marine Laboratory will provide the local government with this information so that emergency resources and response plans can be activated to help protect the Keys’ important ecological resources.

You can check out Waldo’s location and data throughout his expedition at Rutgers University’s web site.