News & Events

Answering a Burning Question

When an oil spill occurs in open water, fire can be the most effective tool for cleaning it quickly before the oil can settle into the water column and cause ecological damage. But experience with open-water oil fires has shown that they can be difficult to sustain, produce thick smoke, and leave behind a tar-like residue that can harm marine life. A team of researchers from Worcester Polytechnic Institute has developed a new technology that promises to overcome these shortcomings while also significantly accelerating the clean-up process. This simple and inexpensive technology was recently field tested with the United States Coast Guard and the Bureau of Environmental Enforcement.

In the News

  • Brian Meacham, associate professor of fire protection engineering, was interviewed for the second of a two-part series on last month’s Grenfell Tower fire in London. In an interview in his lab, Meacham described the concerns regarding the combustibility of materials used in the tower’s cladding system. 
ABC News Nightline