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Wednesday, July 28, 2010 - 11:50am

UGA Scientist Returns To Oil Spill

A University of Georgia oceanographer says a research team will return to the Gulf of Mexico next month to map underwater plumes of oil and gas.

A team led by oceanographer Samantha Joye tracked one plume during research voyages in May and June. She said Tuesday that no one has made a systematic sweep around the massive oil spill in the Gulf to find other plumes.

A report released Friday confirms the existence of oil plumes. Joye says plumes of methane and other gases could be as big a threat to deep-sea life as oil.

Joye says it's been about two months since anyone measured underwater oxygen in the area.

Joye and other researchers plan to spend about four weeks looking for more oil and gas drifting from the well.