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Author Topic: Why don't BP use a shape-memory metal to stop the oil leak in the Gulf?  (Read 11106 times)

Offline tommya300

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Why don't they insert a double walled tube with the outer portion made from memory metal alloy with a seal gasket jacketed made of cured oil resistant silocone. Push it deep down the throat far enough into the hole and pump super heated hot water down between the double wall making it expand and flair out making a positive full seal.
At the top head have a restriction valve ready to slow the flow and then control the flow.

They are trying to seal the top of an overflowing champagne bottle,when they should be doing it from the inside out. Look at the shape of a champagne cork and deduce the affect.

How ever you need to restrict the flow from the inside out and fast.

It is simple hydraulics, in a deep, deep, global need.
You look at it any other way, we are defeated. Your company/our backyard, not backhouse.
« Last Edit: 10/06/2010 09:29:10 by chris »


 

Offline daveshorts

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My guess is that doing anything down there is very very difficult, and that getting anything in there which is a good enough fit to be useful would be very difficult. Particularly considering that you are trying to thread a hose pipe into a slightly larger hose pipe which is on full power from a mile away. If you insert something over something else you can use a funnel to make the alignment easier, putting something inside is more difficult.

Your suggestion makes perfect hydraulic sense, but the engineers trying to fix the problem will know this too, so there must be some good reason...
 

Offline chris

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I suppose one unlikely benefit of the Gulf oil spill is that at least BP know there's some oil down there! Hats off to the geologists for hitting the nail on the head.
« Last Edit: 10/06/2010 10:19:53 by chris »
 

Offline Geezer

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I suppose one unlikely benefit of the Gulf oil spill is that at least BP know there's some oil down there! Hats off to the geologists for hitting the nail on the head.

Is that supposed to be funny? Considering the consequences, it would seem to be in very bad taste.
 

Offline doppler1

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Hey Chris, the spin off of this oil leak is pretty rough and I also think that it needs to be taken very seriously and although I always try and see the lighter side of things, this is a difficult one to laugh at. Just shows how greedy the world has become. I saw an article where BP annouced that they had spent US$40Million to try and contain the spill as if it was meant to create gasps of awe but I just felt that they should have spent ten times that to fix there blunder quicker and I cant help but think that this is one of those problems that money can fix.
 

Offline tommya300

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I think Chris was not making a joke. Way I read it is a bit of damp sarcasm directed at the idea that the devil can show you how to stir the sauce and not give you the knowledge to seal the cover of the bucket.
40 million should of been spent on the prevention before the fact. See what happens when you cut corners.

This may be another an idea...

 

Offline Geezer

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Ah yes! I see what you mean. A little dark humour perhaps. He was probably taking a shot at JimBob. (KIDDING!!)

I see this is even starting to turn into an international incident between the US and the UK. If they could figure out a way to at least stop the flow of oil, it might give everyone a chance to calm down, but as long as it keeps coming, emotions are going to run high.

I don't know anything about oil wells, so this is probably baloney, but how about some sort of umbrella like device that opens out at the bottom of the casing and is held in place by the pressure of the oil (kind of like a stent in reverse), or is there so much junk down there that it would be impossible to get it into position?
 

Offline tommya300

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Good idea also Geezer but it may take more then one in succession. What is the I.D. of that flume?
Cascade set of expansion plugs. There is some pressure that raw petrol is flowing at.
1 million gallons in 24 hrs, 11.5 gal/sec. Only opposing force is the 1 mile of ocean water??
There are vents designed in that top hat apparatus for some pressure relief. They need to cork it from the inside. I have seen how to plug a drain before it is flooded when there is a fluid flow it has to be deep and fast. Smash it shut

Nuke is out of the question... Personally if there is a choice, I rather see a pollutant and walk around it to clean it, then be surprised by an invisible one.

You mention International incident it is the bureaucrats and politics getting things messed up. Us little guys are the door mat. The pollution if not stopped what part of the ocean will not be effected.
Damage control needs to stop falling over each other.
No joking, Mars might be the next best place to start all over again?

 Here is another idea

http://www.noort-innovations.nl/
« Last Edit: 11/06/2010 02:34:51 by tommya300 »
 

Offline Geezer

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I certainly would not suggest a nuclear explosion. I was just wondering if the bore hole could be closed with explosives, but JimBob points out that it might opnly make matters worse.

BTW a rough clculation says that 5000 feet of head is about 2500 PSI, so presumably it must be greater than that. A plug would only have to resist the difference in pressure.
 

Offline tommya300

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From some of the articles, I see about the same figures as you sea pressure is around 2500 psi on the well head. I also read that the casing extends down I am not sure if it goes  13000 ft to the well 100 million gallons of oil in the reservoir. Besides that there is methane mix and that is what is expanding as it transits the BOP (blow out prevention valve). The exiting pressure is not stable it spikes and the numbers I find are not absolute. What they say about how much oul is flowing 1 mega  gal/day that deduces, I think, to about 11 to 12 gallons a second out of a 2 ft square hole. What would be the bottom hole oil pressure?
« Last Edit: 11/06/2010 05:01:06 by tommya300 »
 

Offline peppercorn

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How long before the relief wells are active?  Anything else is going to be a 'band-aid' solution, no?
 

Offline JimBob

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I think Chris was not making a joke. Way I read it is a bit of damp sarcasm directed at the idea that the devil can show you how to stir the sauce and not give you the knowledge to seal the cover of the bucket.
40 million should of been spent on the prevention before the fact. See what happens when you cut corners.

This may be another an idea...



This is essentially what the "TOP KILL" was all about. Of course there is a huge amount of broken plumbing from the top of the animation to the place where the "top kill" was attempted.
 

Offline JimBob

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How long before the relief wells are active?  Anything else is going to be a 'band-aid' solution, no?

And "YES" - anything except the relief wells will be a band-aid solution.
 

Offline JimBob

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http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oil_spill

So far, the blow out of the Pemex 'Ixtoc I' well in the Bay of Campeche, also in the Gulf of Mexico, is the largest non-ship involved blow-out to date. If the relief wells are completed on time then the present BP blow-out will still be only the second largest non-ship related ocean oil spill. 
 

Offline Geezer

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Jimbob: If they put a cap on the pipe where it was cut, will the oil simply find other places to escape (like the plumbing they used to insert the mud for instance)?
 

Offline JimBob

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most probably

The cement job being done when the blow-out occurred in all probability failed, causing channeling up the out side of the pipe being cemented. Whether this channeling is above or below the first one or two strings of casing is something I do not know. I have not found any info about the casing design on the well.
 

Offline Geezer

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JimBob: I think that makes sense. It would not be too difficult to attach a shutoff valve by clamping it below the flange just below the point where pipe was cut and use the flange to retain it against the pressure, but if the grout is suspect, when the valve is closed, the pressure might just open things up even more.
 

Offline tommya300

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BP has known that the top kill was not the answer.
 If inefficiency in displacement is an issue for thermal matter. Well this is a small sample of documentation By a scientific journel
http://www.springerlink.com/content/mm3710n26510252t/



.

    








« Last Edit: 12/06/2010 14:18:26 by tommya300 »
 

Offline tommya300

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"Methane hydrate was discovered only a few decades ago, and little research has been done on it until recently."

This is a document dating 1999
https://www.llnl.gov/str/Durham.html

"Another Surprise
Once the team had large, pure samples they could work with, they began studying the material's physical properties and the way it forms and dissociates. This is research at its most basic. But its applications are clear when one considers that dissociation of seabed methane hydrate deposits could cost the lives of workers on an oil drilling platform."
 

Offline Bored chemist

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Methane hydrates have been known about since the 1930s at least.

To get back to the original question; how do you lag a pipe so that you can run hot water through it down through a mile or so of ocean then still have it come out hot at the bottom?
« Last Edit: 13/06/2010 14:26:38 by Bored chemist »
 

Offline JimBob

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MARINE DRILLING RISER PIPE!

It insulates the drilling mud as it is pumped down.



From SPWLA.org - as I am a member, I guess I can use it.


It is at a minimum 6 feet in diameter. For 5,000 feet of water, probably larger in diameter. The steel-lined hole in the middle of the insulated composite riser pipe is at most 36 inches in diameter.

The picture below shows a smaller version of riser pipe I have seen - notice the men for scale.



From http://www.lddrill.com/assets/uploads/sections/93fcf5dc-a673-48a4-99ab-c7cfb1083d7d.JPG
Length    396 ft     121 m
Breadth    256 ft     78 m

The blow-out preventer for the well that blew out would have been about this size



(from http://www.captainsvoyage-forum.com/showthread.php?p=19187)  This is for a sister ship to the one that sunk. It is important to remember just how huge The Deepwatrer Explorer was - 396ft/121m by 256ft/78m. That is over 1/3rds the length of the QE II and twice the beam of the QE II)

The next picture down shows a smaller marine BOP for a jack-up rig. Scale for the top BOP can be seen by referring to the closed ladders on the left side of the white structure. (The smaller BOP has a man in it for scale.)

(This page has a lot of info on it - although English is not this particular posters first language, he does a good job explaining a lot about the BOPs. This site also has a lot of info on offshore drilling.)
« Last Edit: 14/06/2010 16:00:54 by JimBob »
 

Offline tommya300

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Methane hydrates have been known about since the 1930s at least.

To get back to the original question; how do you lag a pipe so that you can run hot water through it down through a mile or so of ocean then still have it come out hot at the bottom?

We may think outside the box, as I discovered, you can see my above thread, with respect to your valid question.

 http://www.thenakedscientists.com/forum/index.php?topic=32112.msg312405#msg312405

When reading the rest of the off site documentation
http://www.springerlink.com/content/mm3710n26510252t/

High energy electrical oscillation can make water boil.
The concept is to insert plumbing, deep into the hole, that can expand by heat. If memory metal can expand to the shape of the inside diameter to a press fit do this over a length that will resist a shear pressure exerted greater than 9000 psi linear slippage. I think that was a number explained in the variables pressures coming out of the flume. Couple to this with a regulator apparatus using the standard procedure. I would think the casing wall inward pressure, below the sea floor, must be great enough to keep any rupturing to occur?

Or some light thermal charges can be introduced in several locations inside the forward part of the insertion tube, before insertion.
When at the proper depth inside the hole, detonate the charges to shape the insertion tube, as though it had bulges pressing against the already set casing walls in several locations.

If Methane Hydrate has possessed a clogging problem Use the characteristics of the beast to setup a seal clog.
.
True politician: some, having a condescending attitude, just can not suggest alternate measures and tries to stump the other guy! Some insertions are there just to get someone's attention.
« Last Edit: 14/06/2010 06:06:41 by tommya300 »
 

Offline tommya300

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JimBob; I have more than one question that I can not seem to find the values for.

At the junction of the where the flex joint is coupled to the BOP, what is the ID?

With respect to this area, what is the ID of the casing below the BOB coupling as it continues below the sea floor.

If I need to be  more specific, relate this to the Well problem in the Gulf, please.

These values can help me determine that my idea needs adjustments.

Let me rephrase that, whether my idea might have some value for inspiration...
« Last Edit: 15/06/2010 17:13:22 by tommya300 »
 

Offline JimBob

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JimBob; I have more than one question that I can not seem to find the values for.

At the junction of the where the flex joint is coupled to the BOP, what is the ID?

I would imagine that they are using a 5 or 5.5 inch drill sting with the same size drill collars

The size is the size of the joint for the drill pipe but the weight needed t drill is supplied by the drill collars on the bottom of the drill string and these are the same O.D. all the way down to add weight.

6.25 inch drill pipe and collars does exist but that is normally used for deep on-shore wells where there are very hard rocks to be drilled.

So the flex joint needs to be large enough for the solid steel 5.5 inch collars to get through even tho it does bend it does not bend as easily the drill pipe. Depending on the amount of weight they want on the drill bit there are 6-12 drill collars of about 30-32 foot in length each or 180 to 360 feet+ of solid pipe (well all drill pipe and collars have a inside hole for the drilling fluid to be pumped down to the drill bit, then back to the surface) that needs to pass through the flex joint.

I have been on the drilling floor when test tools have been pulled out of the hole. Looking up into the derrick, drill collars have an apparent 1-2 foot curve in them - (over a 90 foot section of the collars) 

Quote
With respect to this area, what is the ID of the casing below the BOB coupling as it continues below the sea floor.

I have no idea. BUT a guess. Remember, I am a geologist with some engineering experience - mostly on-shore experience.  Were I thinking of doing this I would want room to work in the hole drilled. It would also depend on if I were going to use this for two or more lateral wells. I would start with a minimum of 12 inch surface pipe, and were I spending this much money on a well, I would set 24 inch surface casing. After 2-500 feet of hole I would set this surface casing to be sure I could control the well. The decision of size for one well would depend on how many more strings of pipe I would be setting. From what I gather reading between the lines, this well had an overpressure zone at the bottom where the pay was. An over-pressure zone is a zone of trapped pressure that is closer to the surface than is usual. It has a higher hydrostatic pressure than would be expected. So two strings of pipe, minimum. I would want the production sting to be large so there would be a good flow rate from the well - either 7 inch or 9-5/8 inch. Depending on the weight of pipe needed (pound per foot = pipe weight  - this is proportional to the thickness of the pipe wall. I just do not remember what all the ID-OD relationships are. This site - a commercial sire - http://www.drill-pipes.com/drill-pipe-specifications.php - probably has standard industry sizes listed.


Quote
If I need to be  more specific, relate this to the Well problem in the Gulf, please.

It can be anything for the ID of a 5 inch casing string to a 12 inch casing string.

Quote
These values can help me determine that my idea needs adjustments.

Let me rephrase that, whether my idea might have some value for inspiration...

Bottom hole pressure is a minimum of 8,000 psi and probably at least 12,000 psi.

 

Offline tommya300

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On TV they show the oil gushing from the top mouth of the BOP? Are we seeing this 5 to 12 inch ID casing?
Is there many diffferences between this horizontal drilling, other than being horizontal?
I can visualize a drill at the end of a sort of a flexable rod.
How do they keep it tracking in the same direction?
Is this only exclusive to the off shore type drilling?
 

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