Gulf Oil Leak Capped

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carrielsal

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I hadn't heard this, so I took a look an CNN. It seems that this is a test to determine if the cap will work.
I had no idea that there was a possibility that it could blow below the sea floor.

'Integrity' testing on well cap will start soon - CNN.com

The test will measure pressure inside the well and will last anywhere from six to 48 hours. It will involve incrementally closing valves on the new cap, a process that would allow BP to do its pressure measurements. Workers completed seismic surveys around the well site earlier Tuesday to see if any hazards exist on the sea floor, Allen said.

Higher pressure readings would mean the leak is being stopped, while lower pressure indications would mean oil is escaping from other parts of the well.

Allen was asked what he thought the odds were to the success of being able to shut the well with the new cap.

"I think we are very confident we can take control of this hydrocarbon stream and then slowly close all these valves and stop the emission of hydrocarbons. What we can't tell is the current condition of the well bore below the sea floor and the implication of the pressure readings," he said. "That is in fact why we're doing a well integrity test."
 

dmoore19

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I hadn't heard this, so I took a look an CNN. It seems that this is a test to determine if the cap will work.
I had no idea that there was a possibility that it could blow below the sea floor.

'Integrity' testing on well cap will start soon - CNN.com

The test will measure pressure inside the well and will last anywhere from six to 48 hours. It will involve incrementally closing valves on the new cap, a process that would allow BP to do its pressure measurements. Workers completed seismic surveys around the well site earlier Tuesday to see if any hazards exist on the sea floor, Allen said.

Higher pressure readings would mean the leak is being stopped, while lower pressure indications would mean oil is escaping from other parts of the well.

Allen was asked what he thought the odds were to the success of being able to shut the well with the new cap.

"I think we are very confident we can take control of this hydrocarbon stream and then slowly close all these valves and stop the emission of hydrocarbons. What we can't tell is the current condition of the well bore below the sea floor and the implication of the pressure readings," he said. "That is in fact why we're doing a well integrity test."

Here is another link that you can find both the audio and written transcripts of technical breifings. It also has past breifings and updates explaining the operations.

Kent Wells technical updates | Gulf of Mexico response | BP
 

jonnythan

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No oil leaking at the location where the riser pipe was cut just above the BOP.

It's still gushing out at the top of the new stack though, which is about 20 feet high. They're slowly closing off valves to test to see if it will hold pressure, but oil is still gushing out severely at the top of the stack. If it does hold pressure and they do get the valves closed, it won't be for another day or two.
 

jonnythan

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I'm not sure I'd give that report too much credence. iReport is a blogging site - anyone can post anything. There are no confirmed reports of that or even of that "report" existing or Sagalevich and his "exploration" team even doing anything at all.

Besides, the relief wells are intercepting way way way below the point of possible bore breach, so it won't ultimately matter that much anyway.
 

GoIllini

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2nd that.

I'm not going to rule out the possibility that there are some cracks in the sea floor, but whenever you have an event of this magnitude, conspiracy theories and panic run pretty rampant- and any indication of something being much worse than it really is tends to get overplayed- especially when the estimates on leaking oil keep rising. During TMI, it's my understanding that people were speculating about 3-4 rem radiation doses to the general public while the containment was being vented when in reality, the maximum dose was about 1/100th that after a long series of studies.

Bear in mind that the GOM leaks tens of thousands of barrels a year naturally, and I didn't see oil billowing up at a rate of thousands of barrels an hour in those videos. I'm also not sure how oil goes 11 miles sideways underground from an unnatural oil well but can't seep up two miles naturally. My take is that it's something to be concerned about, but not something to panic over.


There's a lot of IFs and unanswered questions in the scenario where the well has fractured and is leaking oil out into the rock beneath the seafloor (like, why isn't it leaking out naturally, how does oil leak sideways for 11 miles, and how come we can't see it in the videos at the drilling site where one would think the phenomenon would be more severe), but even if it's the case, the relief well they are drilling could help mitigate or even totally resolve the situation by reducing the pressure above the intersection with the well. Less pressure-> less flow, not just through the BOP, but through any cracks in the well, as well.

BP getting the well capped will only mark the BEGINNING of the cleanup.

Disclosure: I have an engineering background, but I'm not really qualified when it comes to oilfields or geology. (Computers on the other hand...) I also have a small holding in BP.
 
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AfterDark

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It wasn't Obama's fault so put blame where blame belongs.

Credit is the opposite of blame. I'm referring to when Obama was taking credit for the topkill method attempt to cap the well like it was his guidence that inspiried BP to try that method. This time I'm thinking he'll wait until they are sure its capped before he takes credit for inspiring BP to use the new cap to stop the leak. Being the phony,lair that he is.
 

GoIllini

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Guys, just to be clear, oil is still flowing into the Gulf through vents on the cap. The engineers say it will be at least 48 hours until the vents on the cap are closed, but given how optimistic everyone has been in the past, it could be weeks.

My view is that there's a 70% chance that at least 90% of the leaking oil will at least be getting collected within two weeks.

BP had been planning to start a test on capping the well- if anyone's taken a first-aid course for treating an arterial wound, the principal is the same- they're trying to apply a lot of pressure to the wound and to keep it from bleeding. The only problem here is that if they increase pressure at the top of the well, that means increasing pressure further down. And BP is paying attention to some of the more rational concerns that the IReport cdolphin linked raised- they don't want to risk damage to the well by applying too much pressure.

Since the goal here is to keep oil from getting into the Gulf rather than getting into the well, thankfully, BP also has the option of simply pumping the oil spewing out via ships on the surface. If I were BP, I'd be playing it safe, pulling the oil out as it came out of the top of the well, and waiting for the relief well rather than attempting another top kill (which they called off due to concerns about possible cracks in the well.)

I *DO* think they'll eventually get all of the unnatural leaking via the well stopped, and it's hard for me to imagine unnatural leaking that wasn't coming up through the well unless the drilling triggered some sort sort of change in the geology in hundreds of square miles of rock over two miles of depth. I think they'll be able to get most of it from pumping on the top of the well, and the rest can be solved by the relief well. In the very worst case- assuming all of the doom and gloomers are 100% correct, they may have to drill additional wells to take oil out of the reservoir. That said, there's a finite supply of oil in every well, and you only have to draw a small percentage of the total reserves out to get rid of the oil that's bubbling out of the ground and gushing to the surface. Unless this well is of the kind that's so big it would solve the energy crisis (IMHO, just as big of a long-term threat as the oil spill), we'll be able to stop the leaking.
 

AfterDark

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http://www.facebook.com/cmriverside?ref=mf
This is not breaking news, but a sad story that the leaks will continue due to sea floor damage....

http://ireport.cnn.com/docs/DOC-461896 - Russian remote camera finds irreparable damage to the sea floor in the Gulf
http://www.facebook.com/ajax/minife...491233894598461996&story_type=22&handler=prof

There was someone on coast to coast radio program saying the same thing 3 weeks ago.
I've been waiting to hear it from a "conventional" news source. He didn't tell a happy story. If he is right none of this capping is going work as there are large open gaps in the ocean floor spewing oil. I hope he's wrong.
 
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