Ocean Optics Contributes to Gulf Air Quality Monitoring in Wake of Deepwater Horizon Spill

HR2000 used in Argos portable UV DOAS air monitoring system

Modular HR2000 spectrometers from Ocean Optics (www.OceanOptics.com), are enabling air quality monitoring in the Gulf of Mexico as part of Argos Scientific’s portable UV DOAS air monitoring system. Argos Scientific is working in conjunction with Hillsborough County, Florida, to monitor the environmental impact of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.

The project has special significance to Ocean Optics as the company is located on the Gulf side of Florida and its community will be affected in coming months as the oil advances, upsetting both water and air quality.

The HR2000 High-resolution Miniature Fiber Optic Spectrometer is a small-footprint spectrometer that provides optical resolution to 0.035 nm (FWHM). The modular spectrometer design allows users to select optical bench options such as the detector, grating and entrance aperture (slit).

Argos custom-configured the HR2000 spectrometer used in its portable UV DOAS air monitoring system. In the Gulf, the system has already analyzed a number of environmental samples, containing a mixture of oil and sea water, from the spill area. Vapor analyzed from the samples indicate the presence of two gases with unique UV spectral features being emitted from the samples. The data from these initial investigations will be used to update the system’s spectral libraries. A UV DOAS system has been set up in Mississippi for continuous monitoring, with real time data posted at: http://fenceline.org/test/map.php .

A second Argos system has been sent to the University of North Alabama, where a calibration and test facility has been established to accommodate future samples associated with the oil and dispersant material collected by community members in the Gulf area.

About Argos Scientific
Argos Scientific (www.argos-sci.com) is an environmental and natural resource company with over 25 years experience. The company specializes in air quality management, environmental permitting and compliance, leak detection and repair, ambient air monitoring and stack monitoring. The company serves both public and private clients who are faced with challenges that demand a multidisciplinary approach with practical solutions. The technical staff includes professionals from the oil and chemical industry, former regulatory specialists, environmental scientists, certified industrial hygienists and chemists.

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