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Could Pouring Cement Help Plug the Oil Spill?

05/30/2010 10:01 PM

How about pouring cement (concrete) to plug the mouth of that spill ? Cement is heavier than water so it will sink, and it hardens naturally under water. The Romans poured cement underwater to build Herod's port in Caesarea, Israel, some two thousand years ago, and it still holds firmly.

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#1

Re: Could pouring cement help plug the oil spill ?

05/30/2010 10:22 PM

The oil is under pressure. Lots of pressure.

Haliburton is the cement supplier here and the talk on the street is that the cement was "rushed".

Who will ever know. Lawyers will distort any facts that may come to light.

The Romans weren't trying to plug a flood of hot, gaseous fluid pouring out of the earth at 100's of PSI.

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#32
In reply to #1

Re: Could pouring cement help plug the oil spill ?

06/01/2010 11:42 AM

The solution is to build a weighted box to cover the area of the leak, not to cut the pipe and add a sleeve. Simply weight the corners of the box lets say round concrete and and iron pylons dadoed with steel 2" plates forming a box. Then create a hinged lid chamfered to a 12" outlet pipe. Once the box is set in place close the lid using an offset cam lock system. Once the lid is closed the oil will begin to rise out of the 12" pipe, drop sleeves on to the 12 " pipe until it can be piped to the surface and recovered in container ships. Then the proceeds from the recovered oil should be distributed to the states that have been affected by the spill until the well is dry.

Just my thoughts.

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#2

Re: Could Pouring Cement Help Plug the Oil Spill?

05/30/2010 11:16 PM

Just do a few tests:take your garden hose and let run water out of it.

Keep it upwards and try to drop a nail in it or something heavier.

The theory heavier than.... doesn't count when fluid dynamics rule the forces applied.

Why can rivers cause mud streams in the water?

How do beaches come and go?

And the forces there are even many times less than the pressure out of the pipe.

When was Herod's port build? With cement?

When you bend the hose there is coming less water out of it,

cutting the pipe will let X times more oil escape.

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#3
In reply to #2

Re: Could Pouring Cement Help Plug the Oil Spill?

05/30/2010 11:55 PM

But if you have a riser extension ready to pull over the freshly cut stub, with a ring seal as in sewage pipe....

The riser extension could be topped with an open valve. This assembly could be moved into place with moderate interference from the gushing oil, clamped solidly to the riser stub, and then the valve closed gradually to prevent liquid hammer. Then, at leisure, run a new pipe to the sea surface. Open valve, fill tankers.

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#4

Re: Could Pouring Cement Help Plug the Oil Spill?

05/31/2010 4:27 AM

I knew a man who lived in California and wanted to live in Hawaii. He built a concrete sailboat and so he went and return ten years later. Wow the stories he had to tell then he left for a leisurely trip around the rim. I don't expect him back again...

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#5

Re: Could Pouring Cement Help Plug the Oil Spill?

05/31/2010 8:41 AM

The unsucessful top kill approach tried to do something similar.

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#6

Re: Could Pouring Cement Help Plug the Oil Spill?

05/31/2010 11:27 AM

Short-term efforts

BP engineers have attempted a number of techniques to control or stop the oil spill. The first and fastest was to place a 125-tonne (280,000 lb) container dome over the largest of the well leaks and pipe the oil to a storage vessel on the surface.[118] This option was untested at such depths.[118] BP deployed the system on May 7–8 but it failed when gas leaking from the pipe combined with cold water to form methane hydrate crystals that blocked up the steel canopy at the top of the dome.[119] The excess buoyancy of the crystals clogged the opening at the top of the dome where the riser was to be connected.

Following the failure, a smaller containment dome, dubbed a "top hat", was lowered to the seabed.[120] The dome was lowered on May 11 but is currently being kept away from the leaking oil well.[120] The dome is meant to funnel some of the escaping oil to a waiting tanker on the surface. Like the first containment dome, the dome has been deployed successfully in the past but not at such a depth.[120] The 4 feet (1.2 m) wide and 5 feet (1.5 m) tall "top hat" dome is much smaller than the first containment dome, which was 40 feet (12 m) tall and 125-tonne (280,000 lb).[120] The "top hat" dome originally was planned as BP's next attempt to control the spill and there has been no explanation for why BP engineers decided to try the insertion tube first.[119]

On May 14, engineers began the process of positioning a 4-inch wide riser insertion tube tool into the 21-inch-wide burst pipe.[119] After three days, BP reported the tube was working.[121] Collection rates varied daily between 1,000 and 5,000 barrels (42,000 and 210,000 US gallons; 160,000 and 790,000 litres), the average being 2,000 barrels (84,000 US gallons; 320,000 litres) a day, as of May 21.[122][123] The collected gas rate ranges between 4 and 17 million cubic feet per day (110×10^3 and 480×10^3 m3/d). The gas was flared and oil stored on the board of drillship Discoverer Enterprise.[124] 924,000 US gallons (22,000 barrels) of oil was collected before removal of the tube so shutdown efforts could begin.[125]

BP tried to shut down the well completely using a technique called "top kill".[126] The process involves pumping heavy drilling fluids through two 3-inch (7.6 cm) lines into the blowout preventer that sits on top of the wellhead. This would first restrict the flow of oil from the well, which then could be sealed permanently with cement.[127] The top kill procedure, approved by the Coast Guard on May 25, commenced at 1 p.m. CDT on May 26 and, according to BP sources, while failure could be evident in minutes or hours it may take "a day or two" before its success could be determined. [128] On May 27, U.S. Coast Guard Adm. Thad Allen, who is coordinating the government response, indicated that engineers had succeeded in stopping the flow of oil and gas into the Gulf of Mexico. He further stated that the well still had low pressure, but cement would be used to cap the well permanently as soon as the pressure hit zero.[129] However, BP officials said it was not possible to tell how far down the well the mud may have reached and declined to speculate on the odds of actually stopping the flow. "We have some indications of partial bridging which is good news. I think it's probably 48 hours before we have a conclusive view."[130] On May 29, BP announced that the attempt to plug the ruptured oil well had failed.[131]

After three consecutive failed attempts at the top kill, on May 29 BP moved on to their next contingency option, the Lower Marine Riser Package (LMRP) Cap Containment System. The operational plan first involves cutting and then removing the damaged riser from the top of the failed Blow-Out Preventer (BOP) to leave a cleanly-cut pipe at the top of the BOP's LMRP. The cap is designed to be connected to a riser from the Discoverer Enterprise drillship and placed over the LMRP with the intention of capturing most of the oil and gas flowing from the well. The LMRP cap is already on site and it is currently anticipated that it will be connected in about four days. [132][133][134]

Taken from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Deepwater_Horizon_oil_spill

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#11
In reply to #6

Re: Could Pouring Cement Help Plug the Oil Spill?

05/31/2010 11:51 PM

I'm impressed on how you have been following the whole senario. good report !

On CR4 26th may I sent my comments as a guest (because I pressed the wrong key)

Sure non of the big guys read the analysis but at least they are now doing the right thing.

This will work. Hope they know that they should keep the pumps running continuously before they reach the oil , if not they will clog the tube.

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10

Re: Help Stop the Oil Spill with Real Ideas!

05/26/2010 1:18 PM

I have been following this thread for quite some time hoping that someone would come up with a good solution but time is passing and nothing seems to work. Although I know nothing about oil wells I was somehow involved in the extinction of the famous 600 wells which were blown up in Kuwait after the first gulf war. I would like to express my opinion which makes sense from a logical point of view and may give a lead to a better idea.

Comment on the freezing process proposed:

With the pressure coming out of the tube it will be virtually impossible the freeze the water (or oil). You will have to stop the flow , even for a few seconds, but it has to stop if not you get nowhere even with liquid nitrogen.

Comment on heating the tube to close it:

I agree with Tornado that you should not heat the . If you have sufficient tube o work on, you can however squeeze the tube with a good hydraulic clamp at different intervals reducing the flow progressively until it is minimized or closed. I don't know the alloy of the tube but if it has too much carbon it may break instead of squeezing.

I did not understand why the bell system did not work, probably I missed something.

Clogging the tube with mud. You have to centre the tube (right now impossible) and inject the mud at a higher pressure than the gushing oil, I have my serious doubts they can do this at that dept under the seal level.

Throwing gravel of whatever to suffocate the well will not work. They have tried to do this in Kawait and really messed it all up because the oil gust spreads around and makes it more difficult to close the flow.

I would work on the idea of Jt for the clamping device. However to proceed we need to have a clear cut on the tube (which I presume is not so) to do this you should use a shear (like the ones they use in the Junk yards) or make a hydraulic device like the tool used for cutting tubes from the circumference. Once you have a clear cut on this tube "A" you should drop down another tube B from the supporting ship with a Jt clamp fixed on to the end. This tube should be connected to a pump with a capacity of at least 20% more than the flow rate of the well. Lowering the tube B you should be pumping water until you reach the mouth of the tube "A". Having a negative pressure inside the tube B it should be easy (relatively easy) to centre the other tube A. Now if you can close Jt's clamp you can even close the well cut if you cannot you will be pumping oil (and water) into a container ship and not into the sea. Reducing the flow of the pump you could eventually pump only oil.

This would be a temporary solution to avoid polluting the environment. When they get to the main stream with the other two wells they are boring, they can then pump mud and block the well for good.

It's a pity that we are capable of destroying nature (our home ) and not capable or repairing the damage we create.

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#13
In reply to #11

Re: Could Pouring Cement Help Plug the Oil Spill?

06/01/2010 12:10 AM

Oh yeah, excellent report for reply #6 copied from Wikipedia. Original thinking

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#24
In reply to #13

Re: Could Pouring Cement Help Plug the Oil Spill?

06/01/2010 8:35 AM

it does say at the bottom of the link where it was taken from.

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#12
In reply to #6

Re: Could Pouring Cement Help Plug the Oil Spill?

06/01/2010 12:01 AM

I think I think if they had attached tubing to the dome and fed it down with the dome and begun pumping water before setting atop the leak we would've been done already.

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#14
In reply to #12

Re: Could Pouring Cement Help Plug the Oil Spill?

06/01/2010 12:16 AM

Sure it would have worked. The speed of the oil and water would not allow the formation of crystals.

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#17
In reply to #14

Re: Could Pouring Cement Help Plug the Oil Spill?

06/01/2010 4:46 AM

Angelo - maybe have a look at this;286

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#18
In reply to #17

Re: Could a Really Fast Car Help Plug the Oil Spill?

06/01/2010 4:50 AM

Missed by "that much"

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#19
In reply to #18

Re: Could a Really Fast Car Help Plug the Oil Spill?

06/01/2010 5:51 AM

That is no way to treat your Miata!

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#16
In reply to #12

Re: Could Pouring Cement Help Plug the Oil Spill?

06/01/2010 4:43 AM

Too big a volume of water in the dome. Too small a pipe. No submersible pump to match the velocities.Then there is the hydrate thermodynamics on top.

One thing to notice is the 4" pipe they have had running gave a surging discharge.

Tends to answer that question way back in "Oil Spill" 229

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#31
In reply to #16

Re: Could Pouring Cement Help Plug the Oil Spill?

06/01/2010 11:36 AM

That's strange the system wasn't built to accomodate reality...

Why is the pipe so small? wouldn't 12"-16" be more realistic?

If the pumping began just before final lowering to seabed the volume of water would be great only for a very short time before being replaced by oil??

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#37
In reply to #31

Re: Could Pouring Cement Help Plug the Oil Spill?

06/01/2010 6:40 PM

"That's strange the system wasn't built to accommodate reality..." What can I say but Yes!. If you can't empty the box as fast as it fills.........

"Why is the pipe so small? wouldn't 12"-16" be more realistic?" Again - no idea - if you mean the one on the box.

Ref the one inserted - just guessing - I'd say that's what they had at hand and was an experiment (to see if the hydrates would clog it). Why not 2 or 3 or 6 inserted? no idea.

Clearly their thinking is focused on "stopping the leak" - not "how can we capture all the products?"

Had they approached "capture" from day one, this would all be sorted by cutting off the bent bit, sheathing or inserting a similar pipe, suspending the big box at at about 600 ft down, using it as a gas separator bell, pumping the gas into one line of tankers and the oil into another.

Only problem they'd have is, not being able to turn it off.

I suspect this is why they are not listening to capture at source solutions. Uncontrolled outflow would effect all the supply deals around the world - so the price of oil and gas. However that's Suit territory, and the more I learn, the more it looks like the box was designed and built more a placebo for concerns that a thing that they ever thought would be practically employed. They Certainly didn't understand the flow requirements, or even enough gas physics to get the best use out of it when it failed that capping function. Which means they don't understand enough to be drilling at this depth.

I saw a documentary the other day on the pursuit of absolute zero. The first part was on discovery of critical points and gas states. Spent most of it thinking "this should be sent to BP"

Anyhow back to "turning off" an uncontrollable flow through a mass of shonky hardware - They don't understand how the hydrocarbons got in the well, meaning the drill never broke through.

What if this flow is just leakage through a permeable strata - which is gradually eroding?

What happens with the pressure when you turn it off? How good are the fixes being proposed?

What should be the overall 'fix' methodology approach?

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#39
In reply to #37

Re: Could Pouring Cement Help Plug the Oil Spill?

06/01/2010 7:29 PM

There are many good points in your post. If you build a 100 floor building, make sure your fire equipment can handle that. In short, that your ladder is that long and you can get water to it.

Otherwise DON'T BUILD THAT BUILDING. it is as simple as that.

And that BP is actually a oil company: they get the oil from a well, transport it, refine and sell. They hire drillers, and all the people involved in the process.

Probably they are good at this. But their disaster policy has proved to be a disaster.

There will still be a lot of discussion of where the liability in this case lies.

I appreciate that BP takes responsibility.

In the worst scenario they would be fighting for who did what and who pays for the mistake.

Probably BP is the only one that can insure the risk. How it will end, we will find out later in court.

The banks have proven not to be able to handle their responsabilities before and it is only a longer fuse to the explosives. Now a big oil company

Computer monopolists, idem ditto risks

Same goes for the News Media

And many more, not my business. The bill is always for the little man,

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#26
In reply to #6

Re: Could Pouring Cement Help Plug the Oil Spill?

06/01/2010 9:45 AM

Cut and pastes from Wikipedia are not good answers. Anybody can copy stuff. GAs should be original thinking

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#35
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Re: Could Pouring Cement Help Plug the Oil Spill?

06/01/2010 6:06 PM

Dear Guest

We are out of school now and are allowed to help others with their homework. A good answer is a good answer, never mind if it is original or not.

It helps people like me to stay up to date because surfing the net all day is not on at the moment. Peter is showing good will and you are being a bit of a guest with attitude. Your comment did no one any service at all. Why even post it.

Being original all the time, or at least once, is what should be aimed for but that would unmask the geniuses here on CR4. Do we really want that?

Einstein is dead, Socrates is dead and I am not feeling well today. That is problematic and not original.

I thank the poster for helping me out during these times of lack of time.

GA from me, Ky.

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#28
In reply to #6

Re: Could Pouring Cement Help Plug the Oil Spill?

06/01/2010 10:01 AM

I saw a report that they were planning to cross drill into the Oil reservior to relieve preassure from the busted oil well, what happened to that plan?

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#50
In reply to #6

Re: Could Pouring Cement Help Plug the Oil Spill?

06/04/2010 2:39 PM

I believe BP is lying about the use of cement becuase they don't want to shut down the well completely. Remember the maximum lawsuite allowed is 75 MM which was most likely meet the first week of the spill therefore they have very little pressure financially to cap the well. I hope the one good thing that come out of this is it changes the course for Industrial Oil forever and companies like BP pay dearly for their negligence!

Scott

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#7

Re: Could Pouring Cement Help Plug the Oil Spill?

05/31/2010 1:40 PM

Thanks bwire, here again is the link to place ideas and suggestions for plugging the oil-spill: http://www.horizonedocs.com/artform.php

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#8

Re: Could Pouring Cement Help Plug the Oil Spill?

05/31/2010 2:00 PM

This is a link to an article that mentions cement used in subsea drilling:

http://www.nola.com/news/gulf-oil-spill/index.ssf/2010/05/hearings_only_deepest_well_cas.html

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#9

Re: Could Pouring Cement Help Plug the Oil Spill?

05/31/2010 10:53 PM

Try this. After cutting riser. Use a cone shape stinger with channels along the cone surface connected internally to a single orifice at the top. Insert in pipe, letting it flow through until attachment is made. Then shut off valve at top. This would alleviate problem with tophats. The smaller tophat will probably wobble all over the place on approach and act like a "bluff body".

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#10

Re: Could Pouring Cement Help Plug the Oil Spill?

05/31/2010 11:36 PM

I think if you could get cement to block up the jets in a spar bath, whist it's running, you should immediately take the video to BP.

Just be prepared for them to ask you to rerun the demo using a length of 1/2" conduit from the other side of the room.

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#15

Re: Could Pouring Cement Help Plug the Oil Spill?

06/01/2010 1:59 AM

Many years ago, I worked for a coal company that supplied coal for an electrc power plant in Western PA. They had 2 tunnels under the Allegheny River to deliver train loads of coal from the face which was 7 mies away. One tunnel for westbound and one tunnel for eastbound frains. The tunnels were 8 or 9 feet high. There was 28 feet of solid rock between the tunel roof and tnd the river floor.

Frequently, a crack opened up and water poured in. To stop the water, they mixed concrete with rolled oates, The rolled oates allowed for expansion of the concrete and held the concrete in place. They used pressure to shoot the concrete into the cracks. Often, we would read in the local newspaper that a resident in a local town went into their backyard and found a pile of concrete (it had followed a crack in the ground, and became a mystery as to who dumped a pile of concrete in their backyard. Perhaps something like that would hold. Time is of the essence when adding the rolled oates. Water pressure is tremendous at the bottom of a large river.

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#20

Re: Could Pouring Cement Help Plug the Oil Spill?

06/01/2010 6:15 AM

Why not use an inflatable pipe plug. They make them for all size pipes, though you would have to use seawater or othr fluid to inflate it at those pressures. This would solve the problem.

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#21

Re: Could Pouring Cement Help Plug the Oil Spill?

06/01/2010 6:34 AM

yes, cement can be used to stop oil leak from wellhead, however, the wellhead must be capped prior to cementing ops.

once the cement is set, then a directional driling must be actioned to pump mud from depth of 1000' from sea bed to kill the well.

thank u

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#22
In reply to #21

Re: Could Pouring Cement Help Plug the Oil Spill?

06/01/2010 8:23 AM

"...to kill the well..." - Or divert the gush to alternative stock or collector

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#23
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Re: Could Pouring Cement Help Plug the Oil Spill?

06/01/2010 8:33 AM

It looks as if they now want to end up with a 21" pipe sticking up. They will then place an open flange over it while letting the oil/gas stream through the open flange, which they then lower onto the cut end of the pipe. They will then weld the flange to the pipe and seal all cracks - all the while oil/gas streams through the open flange. Then an open valve/blowout stack is bolted onto the flange - still letting the oil/gas stream through it.

Once this is in position, tested and ready, then the valve can be gradually closed while they monitor pressure etc. This valve will also have side ports with their own valves that can be opened and will allow cement to be pumped in below the valve to fill the pipe as far down as will hold - 1000 feet??.

Under the gulf with the weight of the sea floor you can get 10,000 psi or more, so this is a problem. As the reservoir pressure is depleted by this flow, the problem will get easier.

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#25

Re: Could Pouring Cement Help Plug the Oil Spill?

06/01/2010 9:22 AM

Let's put murphy's law to work for us.A tiny pinhole will drain an entire tank of gas, eventually.Why?Because it is not supposed to leak.

On the other hand, a 1 1/4 inch P trap on a sink will clog totally, not allowing a single drop to pass thru.Why?Because it is meant to drain.

Here's all you gotta do:Put a P trap on top of the hole.The methanes in the oil will freeze and clog the trap.

Simple, eh.?

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#27

Re: Could Pouring Cement Help Plug the Oil Spill?

06/01/2010 9:59 AM

While trying to figure out how to plug this thing why not channel the oil into large (and I do mean LARGE) bladders to contain the oil. It won't stop the leak but it would contain it, minimizing the damage to the marine environment.

The bladder's content could then be pumped into surface vessels and hauled away.

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#29

Re: Could Pouring Cement Help Plug the Oil Spill?

06/01/2010 10:34 AM

Hi Yuval,

It's possible to plug the arrival of the oil. It's important to cut the pipe or tube to close to the sea-floor. Isolate with a large tube around the leak high enough and solidly attached to the sea-floor, three or four time higher than the top of the broken pipe or tube where the oil escapes to compensate the oil pressure. And pump fast curing and special, high density cement to fill the tube around the leaking pipe or tube. They have to contain in the large tube the poured cement. It was the biggest mistake. The cement leaked everywhere on the sea-floor, and the sea-water diluted the moving cement and never get hard and/or tight enough. The pressure of escaping oil was higher than the cement on the top of the leaking broken pipe or tube. They have the pressure of the oil, they have to create a few times higher than it is.

Now, we have to understand that I am not an expert of fill in a broken oil pipe or tube. However, we can use our brain and find something better than an oil company who have no experience on repairing and stopping accident like we have in the gulf. It's the same that Bill Gates accepted and hired disrupting people in his organization who created the Excel or/and the Word programs. BP's president has the courage to accept disrupting people in his organization? This is the question because they don't have the solution, Gil.

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#30
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Re: Could Pouring Cement Help Plug the Oil Spill?

06/01/2010 11:24 AM

Check this site, I still think this would work and would allow time to backfill with concrete. http://www.pipeplug.com/inflatable_plugs.html

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#34
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Re: Could Pouring Cement Help Plug the Oil Spill?

06/01/2010 3:17 PM

Gil,

The main thing in my opinion is for those whoever-in-charge withing the BP organization, to take advantage of the current global brainstorming held in forums like this one, and let their professionals soak any viable idea into consideration.

This "idea clouding" may just prove an endless stream of viable ideas, presented by good willing individuals - free of charge.

I hope they do not overlook - vanity could cause it, you know.

My God, I hope there will be an end to this nightmare - the sooner the better

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#36
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Re: Could Pouring Cement Help Plug the Oil Spill?

06/01/2010 6:25 PM

Explosives Experts, Could This Be Done?

I'll give it another go, Ky.

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#38
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Re: Could Pouring Cement Help Plug the Oil Spill?

06/01/2010 7:04 PM

Ky, if I used a few turns of det-chord to cut the pipe off - would this make you happy?

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#40
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Re: Could Pouring Cement Help Plug the Oil Spill?

06/01/2010 7:41 PM

No, not at all. That was my first suggestion weeks ago. Tabula Rasa I called it. Never mind.

What would make me happy is to be taken serious. Nothing but nothing is wrong with my approach and it could still be done faster than any thing else on the table. I am now in contact with an explosives expert and am going through the details. More information about the bed rock is needed. A well was not stopped in a day.

This is with me at all hours of the day and only lack of time is hindering me to go faster and get real information and not some news report about an expert in strife. There must be thousands of them by now. Looking at their heavy toys like rabbits into a snakes eye. Poor bastards, I don't envy them.

For two reasons I would like my approach to work:

1. Stop an unnatural catastrophe.

2. Prove that my intuition can still be relied on.

Yep, I'll suit my self, thanks for the suggestion from earlier on. While your at it, could you please tell me which part of my concept you find unworkable? Maybe it is the way I put my words around it that confuses people.

Gotta go, hope all goes well, Ky.

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#41
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Re: Could Pouring Cement Help Plug the Oil Spill?

06/01/2010 9:11 PM

Ky, I think your expression of concept was perfectly clear.

As I said before; "I have thought about this a lot". I also looked at the Russian nuke solution and outcomes, including the one that didn't work.

This is why I 'adapted' your idea to an explosively fired in, and expanded, alloy plug.

Your concept needs a strata that is malleable, yet has high enough compression strength to crush the bore and pipe. If the strata is 'brittle' so shatters, then you have a million leaks. If the compression strength is too low, then the oil/gas pressure will force the material back into the adjacent cavity the explosives created and the leak 'un-heals'.

Basically you are talking perfect bang and the perfect "clay like" material, that then compresses to "solid" in the bore zone. This should be adjacent to an impermeable 'roof' layer, which does not fracture.

In between the seal points/s and the oil body, you must not have any other permeable layers with the capability to transmit the oil/gas laterally to another potential leak. So basically, it has be done as close to the oil body as possible, meaning very deep. So it is quite a lot of drilling and quite a lot of geology criteria to find and intersect rather precisely.

But find that strata arrangement and hit the ideal lateral distance with the drill, calculate the perfect bang magnitude - it's a winner.

But get anything wrong; it's a much bigger problem.

As geological unknowns seem to have a role in this event...........

For me it's not about your concept being "right or wrong" - it's just about the 'odds of success'.

Feel free to pass the 'malleable' observation on to the explosives guy and tell your geologist to look for a colloid layer between good layers of hard stuff.

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#42
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Re: Could Pouring Cement Help Plug the Oil Spill?

06/01/2010 10:27 PM

Thanks and let me explain were I think you are jumping to a conclusion. Very constructive points you are making otherwise.

If the compression strength is too low, then the oil/gas pressure will force the material back into the adjacent cavity the explosives created and the leak 'un-heals'.

You see, that cavity you are talking about, will it really come into existence? The force required to compact the bed rock will always be higher than the force required to squeeze a bit of malleable pipe and its concrete surroundings. In my opinion there will be no cavity worth while talking about. Were is that rock supposed to go? It can only expand up down and to the sides if it were an uncontrolled explosion. With a controlled explosion the energy will be directed one way, pushing the rock into the bore well and closing it.

It should never be strong enough to lift the rock above (steps of 50 feet?). Now, if a cavity exists after the explosion it could only be the size if the 'bore well space' it has replaced. This cavity would be sealed with a layer of molten material which would not allow the oil (at that stage the gasses are still dissolved in the oil, that was another wrong conclusion) to penetrate into the explosives drill hole.

I have not heard back from the expert and am not holding my breath. He could at least explain the cavity thing and if my assumptions are right and I think they are. This procedure will need data input from the explosives experts, end of story and speculation.

I am far from trying to be amusing or to entertain my self, because life is so boring. I still see it as something that needs further thought. I have seen a few suggestions, including the attempts by the culprit and never did it take longer than a few seconds to slap my hand against my fore head. Not that we had much detailed information about what they were planing and what the unforeseen failures could have been.

Thank you for your considerate input.

Hope all goes well, Ky.

PS: No time to edit, sorry.

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#43
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Re: Could Pouring Cement Help Plug the Oil Spill?

06/01/2010 10:53 PM

"a layer of molten material"

"at that stage the gasses are still dissolved in the oil"

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#44
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Re: Could Pouring Cement Help Plug the Oil Spill?

06/01/2010 11:09 PM

"a layer of molten material"

Heat from the explosion melts the surrounding rock and then solidifies. Time for this to happen?

"at that stage the gasses are still dissolved in the oil"

The gasses are only liberated when they go through a pressure change, which is at the water bedrock interface. Other wise the thing would freeze inside the bore well. That is why the big tank didn't work, it iced up, or did it not?

You are making the right observations, very encouraging.

Were else would I want to be but here, Ky.

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#45
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Re: Could Pouring Cement Help Plug the Oil Spill?

06/02/2010 12:42 AM

Too subtle perhaps

Unless you go nuclear it unlikely you will melt rock.

Heat at the oil bore will be from compression/deformation.

If the event speed is too high, the oil will behave incompressibly and the gases, depending on the oil temperature, may solidify (if they aren't already), with the pressure increase. (see all that Wiki stuff I linked to on critical points and change of state anomalies)

Solid gas or momentarily solid other things, means you have potentially have a layer of 'ice' through the 'closed bore'. Heat from the compression, then disburses, melting the 'ice' renewing a leakage path.

So explosives wise; you are looking for a 'slow' and sustained push - in a malleable substance that will compress 'fluidly' to a 'setting' state, as you need to displace the full bore diameter a considerable distance to 'wipe through' and disperse any leakage path.

Also, I would not think a shaped charge is the right practical design, as alignment needs be fairly precise. How you'd align it down there is a bit of a challenge. It also tends to be the faster end of burn rates to work - so a bit quick for this job.

Carry on pondering

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#46
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Re: Could Pouring Cement Help Plug the Oil Spill?

06/02/2010 1:28 AM

I doubt there is a solution to melt everything together with "conventional" stuff. We all know that underwater "shooting" is very compromised.

And against a flow that powerful even more.

A bunker piercing projectile will not even go as deep as in concrete.

And most of regular ammo desintegrates in water into scrap (nels)

In Russia they have under water guns with bullets of a special shape and many inches long and with some luck they hit a target in a few meters.

At a few bars pressure. Al this is new terrain for most.

Maybe the French have some more data about nuclear reactions under water?

How big of a nuke is necessary? And what type?

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#48
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Re: Could Pouring Cement Help Plug the Oil Spill?

06/02/2010 1:44 AM

No need to go nuke, at all. I betcha they have explosives we can only dream of and the people to handle them. Not long now and persisting with this will come to an end. Which ever way, I'll be happy. Just my peace of mind and that I tried is important.

Hope all goes well, Ky.

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#49
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Re: Could Pouring Cement Help Plug the Oil Spill?

06/02/2010 1:48 AM

I SO Know I'm going to Regret this;

But pay careful attention to the detail and steps. Also to the appearance of other rigs 'relieving' the deposit, the start size of the flame and the size of the one extinguished.

Also what happens with the capping and strata leaks. Note the "hat" function and effectiveness. Remember this is circa 1980 Russian technology and ask why they stopped doing it when the 5th one 'failed'. Then go back and look at the strata fail.

So here we go;

http://anz.theoildrum.com/node/6532?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+theoildrum+%28The+Oil+Drum%29

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#51
In reply to #49

Re: Could Pouring Cement Help Plug the Oil Spill?

06/04/2010 7:45 PM

Why regret?.......?......?

Interesting animation. It looks like it jumped out of my imagination. I find it overkill. All it takes is a few smaller ones and not nukes. I am now going to present my detailed plan to

http://www.horizonedocs.com/artform.php

I have seen enough and have no idea if they have even thought of using a string of explosives instead of going all the way to nuke power.

My concern is the hydraulic shock wave going down ward but like I said, it would only be one wave, extending down ward and the amount of super compressed oil could only be in the pipe under neath the first charge. The upper section would have an open ending and the water pressure against it.

I'll better go and work on my submission. I have enough information now, still not sure though what the details are they are dealing with. Surely they have the core samples somewhere, so they should know the bedrock parameters. They have the hardware in place to drill a much smaller hole I assume.

Its Sunday morning here and I have nothing else to do but save the world. If you could see me now you would be forgiven to mistake the scene for a tragic comedy. Why am I not losing my humor? Ky.

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#52
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Re: Could Pouring Cement Help Plug the Oil Spill?

06/04/2010 8:37 PM

Well, for a start you're already a day ahead of yourself

And hey!

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#53
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Re: Could Pouring Cement Help Plug the Oil Spill?

06/04/2010 9:14 PM

Yep, these time zones do put me ahead somewhat. I just sent my submission and am now holding my breath. To much strain, so I'm breathing again.

I would love to be able to animate this and put a thud track to it, Ky.

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#47
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Re: Could Pouring Cement Help Plug the Oil Spill?

06/02/2010 1:36 AM

How you'd align it down there is a bit of a challenge.

They would be placed inside the explosives pipe before they are sunk down. Just put a red mark, with wax crayons to were the thing will blow. I mean really, this would not be done by people like me but people who know their trade. It should not be too difficult to get everything into the right position. Come on Mate they can send a man to the moon and not be able to navigate a charge into the right position. Laughable.

If the event speed is too high, the oil will behave incompressibly and the gases, depending on the oil temperature, may solidify

All it would do is increase the flow at the moment of impact. By exactly the amount the crimped pipe replaces in volume. Event speed? who cares, it would only speed up the flow from the hole for a moment. If the second crimping causes another pulse of oil to move a bit faster, who cares.

I don't think the gasses would go to a solid state if they feel just fine being kept in solution in the oil under huge pressures. I see it as a reverse cavitation process in some way but can't be sure. Isn't that exactly how this all started? There are so many complex things happening that it will take years to get a grip on the matter and I am talking about the people that have the tools to search for answers.

It is about weighing up in the end, you are right, Ky.

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#33

Re: Could Pouring Cement Help Plug the Oil Spill?

06/01/2010 1:28 PM

It is denser than water and can be placed below water, as the reaction is actually a permanent reaction with water. However,it must be placed through a pipe (or some other confining /protective structure) to get the homogeneous mix to remain consistent and reach the point of discharge. Can not pour cement straight through water need a tremie pipe of some form of confinement that will keep it from separating in the water and the fines constituents (the cement itself) dispersing through the water column. The shearing pressures of the cement falling through the water column spearated the mixture, and the fines once separated are like silt or clay size and may not sink themselves, rapidly enough to reach placement before the set has occurred (if at all). The other thing to consider is the pressure from the exiting oil which will push the cement away from the hole. I believe they were pressure grouting a mixture of cement and drilling mud to seal the hole, which could offset the pressure from the oil releasing.

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#54

Re: Could Pouring Cement Help Plug the Oil Spill?

06/06/2010 6:31 PM

Why does everyone speak of using "cement" when they mean concrete? I thought we had engineers and scientists on this forum.

Concrete cannot be used in this way, there is a high pressure, high speed jet to contain. Uncured concrete can be washed away with a garden hose and normal household pressure.

I wondered if they had cut a hole in the side of the first containment monster, they would have found it usable, with the methane stuff going to the top.

The weirdest suggestion I've come across was to build a one mile deep coffer dam.

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#55
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Re: Could Pouring Cement Help Plug the Oil Spill?

06/07/2010 11:33 AM

They probably mean cement, because as engineers, it is common rudimentary knowledge that a typical sealer for wells is a cement/bentonite/synthetic mixture with no sand or rock (thus not concrete). This or sometimes a grout mixture of this is used to pump in and pressure grout some critical wells sometimes (sometimes they won't use bentonite). As long as the pumping pressure can resist the well flow pressures, and they install a long enough plug. Thus they need something inside the well to seal it during pumping that resist the 4,000 psi of well head pressure while they install the cement mixture. What you can not do is pour concrete through a long column of water or elsethe cement, sand and rock will separate.

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#56

Re: Could Pouring Cement Help Plug the Oil Spill?

07/15/2010 4:15 PM

Pouring cement underwater has been around a long time. A former expert in this field is former Professor Ben Gerwick, previous professor of contruction techniques from the University of California at Berkeley. I was a student of his in 1975 while obtaining my Master's Degree.

The method is known as tremie concrete, wherein, a concrete mix design with appropriate additives are placed underwater. The concrete is placed usually with a conveying device called a tremie which is usually for deep water applications a steel pipe. The application is usually for placement of concrete piers/foundations for wharfs and other similar seaside structures. Tremie concrete to depths of 250 feet is typical. Therein, lies the problem for the use of tremie concrete for "plugging the leak", which is the logistics of the equation. The depths of the equation of where the oil leak is---is nearly a mile down. The quantity of concrete to plug the leak would be immense, and, thus, a concrete batch plant with concrete coase aggregate, sand, clean water for mixing, the cement would have to be positioned on a barge or huge vessel and supplies of materials to that effect would have to be continuous. The depth of the tremie pipe would be astronomical. The wave actions of the ocean would make concrete batching from the plant problematic. The leaking pipe is some distance above the ocean floor, so a mound of concrete cover over the leaking pipe would be impractically large---unless the pipe was cut at the floor level which brings into the technical equation new and different problems. The reliance of the method is to have a huge mass of concrete over the leaking pipe. I believe the BP experts are going forth with the technical concept, with their new cap, of capping the leaking pipe itself. In other words, with a mass of concrete over the pipe, there is no guarantee that the leaking pipe will continue to leak under high pressures, and even if tremie concrete is placed over it, the high pressures will work a pathway thru the tremie concrete before the concrete can achieve final set, and, thus, even in the end there will be a leakage, which could be a significant stream right thru the tremie concrete.

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#57
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Re: Could Pouring Cement Help Plug the Oil Spill?

07/15/2010 4:46 PM

Dear Guest

Although you have put quiet a bit of words towards this, I think you have missed the point completely. Most of what you say as been covered in various other posts and the situation has changed dramatically. Closing the top bit is not the aim but coming from the bottom, where the relief wells are heading, is what they are aiming at.

Don't ask me how they plan to do that in detail. I was wondering from the beginning of the relief well construction what they are going to do when they get there. I have my doubts and am still convinced, that in the end, they will have to resort to the explosives solution which I have been propagating, suggesting since day 3 after the blowup.

I appreciate your thoughts on this but it has been all said before. Sorry if my assessment of the situation is gloomy. There are many aspects that we are not informed or deliberately misinformed about. BP is a ghost, they know it, share holders know it and even Ghadafi has more insight than the people in charge. What a shambles.

Hope all goes well, Ky.

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#58

Re: Could Pouring Cement Help Plug the Oil Spill?

07/15/2010 4:55 PM

My take on it is how do they keep the cement from setting before it could travel that far after mixing.

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#59
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Re: Could Pouring Cement Help Plug the Oil Spill?

07/15/2010 5:07 PM

Either they are delusional or they have some trick up their sleeve. It reminds me of the over unity guys that keep insisting they have found a way to open the holy grail. If I could only be a fly on the wall for one day.

My anger on a scale 1:10. No comment, Ky.

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