oil spill off Louisiana - Ships Nostalgia
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oil spill off Louisiana

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  #1  
Old 14th May 2010, 14:25
mrcanoehead mrcanoehead is offline  
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Question oil spill off Louisiana

Just wondering why Smit , has not been called in to help deal with this oil spill & rig explosion/fire. After all they have the real equipment to help in such a situiation. Seems to me when in trouble, you call the experts to avoid further problems.
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  #2  
Old 14th May 2010, 16:31
doyll doyll is offline
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I think Smit is geared for ship salvage and containment, not deep sea well blowouts.

The experts in the field of deep sea well drilling and containment are the best bet at containing this blowout. This is 5000' of ocean with a 21" pipe pushing gas/oil out at 12000 - 15000 psi. For example 1 barrel of gas at 5000' is 1000 barrels when it reaches sea level...

Last edited by doyll; 14th May 2010 at 16:33..
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  #3  
Old 15th May 2010, 06:34
mrcanoehead mrcanoehead is offline  
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Question

Yes understand that, but did they not work at great depths to retrive the soviet sub, Kursk, seems to me this job would be right up their alley, along with peole like wild well, & and any other company in this field, this blow out has gone on long enough while people twiddle their fingers & nothing get done.
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Old 15th May 2010, 06:44
Peter B Peter B is offline  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mrcanoehead View Post
Yes understand that, but did they not work at great depths to retrive the soviet sub, Kursk, seems to me this job would be right up their alley, along with peole like wild well, & and any other company in this field, this blow out has gone on long enough while people twiddle their fingers & nothing get done.
Kursk was actually lying in relatively shallow water; about 110 m deep, as far as I remember. This is a depth accessible to divers. The Barents Sea is tough for many reasons, but depth isn't one of them.
1500 m is a completely different ball game.

Last edited by Peter B; 15th May 2010 at 06:48..
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  #5  
Old 15th May 2010, 08:31
doyll doyll is offline
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Like Peter says, different ball game.

Long threads by professional drillers from 21/4/2010 to present. Lots of info, calculations, theories, etc. of the blowout and how to stop it:
http://drillingclub.proboards.com/in...ad=4837&page=1
http://gcaptain.com/forum/offshore/4...-rig-fire.html

I assume it's okay to post these links.
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  #6  
Old 15th May 2010, 10:18
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eriskay eriskay is offline  
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mrcanoehead

Quote:
Originally Posted by mrcanoehead View Post
Yes understand that, but did they not work at great depths to retrive the soviet sub, Kursk, seems to me this job would be right up their alley, along with peole like wild well, & and any other company in this field, this blow out has gone on long enough while people twiddle their fingers & nothing get done.

I think the reference to 'people twiddling their fingers whilst nothing gets done' is a bit of a silly statement, to be perfectly honest. With the attention of the entire world upon them, the astonishing daily costs so long as this goes on, and the immediate implementation of plans to deal with this problem - and remember it is a bit unique with specific challenges to be overcome - those involved and who carry the ultimate responsibility are hardly 'sitting on their hands'. Notwithstanding the severity of the problem, threat to the ecology, peoples' livelyhoods, etc, I don't think emotive outbursts and accusations of this nature are either helpful or constructive.
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  #7  
Old 15th May 2010, 12:01
Don Matheson Don Matheson is offline  
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Mrcanoehead
Trust me, noone at Transocean ot indeed at BP are sitting twiddling their thumbs while the leak continues.
Smit are neither skilled in this work nor do they have the equipment needed for such a job. This leak is from a proven well but the well is at around another 25,000 ft, from the sea bed. Had this been a leak from a damaged or twisted pipe at 100 ft it would have been over by now, capped and in storage for future use. Transocean while trying to fit the jacket around the leak did admit that it may have hydrocarbons freezing which may prevent its use but they still tried it as there was a chance it would work.
As for the time it takes to do these jobs, it takes quite a while to get another rig of equal ability into place to drill a relief well and quite a time for the drilling to reach and penetrate the underground casing where they will be able to contain the leakage.
I believe that the rig Development Driller III is in place and doing that at the moment.

Don
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  #8  
Old 15th May 2010, 13:32
mrcanoehead mrcanoehead is offline  
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it just seems a little odd that this blow out is still flowing & creating a bigger mess, never worked in the offshore so i guess i'll mind my p & q on thisone...
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  #9  
Old 15th May 2010, 14:25
Don Matheson Don Matheson is offline  
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Mrcanoehead dont worry about your Ps and Qs on this subject, your question was a very good one. I know Smits are a wonderful company and do a first class job on almost everything they do but very few people have the ability to work in 5000 ft of water. Most of the rigs you see on tv and in movies do not have the capability of working in deep water. Transocean and the companies they have either amalgamated with or taken over had foreseen deepwater drilling and had geared up, building special rigs to do this work.
That is why they need a deepwater rig brought in to do the relief well as all the equipment has to reach 5000 ft, in this case, before it can go to work.
As I said, there is a lot of work going on behind the scenes which will help but even if fitting a jacket over the leak works and they can get the oil to the surface for collection they still have to stop the well flowing and that most likely will require a relief well being drilled into the existing well at some depth and entering the casing from the side. A very heavy drilling mud would then be pumped into the well which due to its weight would stop the well flowing. Packers would then be set to allow cement to be set for hundreds of feet up the casing and finishing the well.
I do believe that this well/field will be developed later but this requires even more special equipment.
Dont worry about the questions, my answers may be wrong but if you have any more just fire them on or send me a message and I will try to answer as best I can,

Don
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  #10  
Old 15th May 2010, 15:21
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Nick Balls Nick Balls is offline  
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What Don says is so true. It is difficult to even comprehend the difficult involved in working at 5000ft, In the 1980's I worked offshore Brazil where the first really deep sea technologies were being developed. We worked to around 1000ft which was close to the limits then and the problems encountered where enormous. In fact the Brazilians lost a whole platform (Enchova) At this time. There have been many many accidents around the world and until we can find an alternative to fossil fuels we will get more. My experience in more recent times working for the oil majors is that Safety and Environmental issues have been top of the agenda for years. These groups already had some world beating standards. Less so the smaller companies, yet even so when you see the level these considerations have been taken too in comparison with most commercial or even government organizations in most other spheres of commerce . they must still rank No. ! A lot has changed since the bad old days of the North sea in the 1980's

Last edited by Nick Balls; 15th May 2010 at 15:24..
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  #11  
Old 15th May 2010, 15:29
forthbridge forthbridge is offline  
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You may find this interesting
http://www.rigzone.com/news/article.asp?a_id=92765
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  #12  
Old 15th May 2010, 15:38
forthbridge forthbridge is offline  
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Horizon 1

This may interest you
Attached Files
File Type: pdf Horizon[1].pdf (1.33 MB, 39 views)
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  #13  
Old 16th May 2010, 09:41
mrcanoehead mrcanoehead is offline  
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remember reading about the Piper Alpha & it being on fire, terrible. am taking this all in & reading.
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  #14  
Old 16th May 2010, 12:23
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Pat Kennedy Pat Kennedy is online now  
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There is a very good and informative piece in today's Observer which details the massive effort that BP and it's partners are putting into fixing this.
One thing they can't be accused of is twiddling their fingers.
http://www.guardian.co.uk/business/2...xico-oil-spill
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  #15  
Old 16th May 2010, 13:52
Don Matheson Don Matheson is offline  
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Have been some amazing comments made in some of the forums discussing this tragedy. One even mentioned that he believed the explosion had been caused by the engines overspeeding while using the gas as a fuel and exploding, thus starting the chain reaction. Obviously something he had overheard in a bar, but had not heard about overspeed trips and rig savers and the many other safety systems fitted just to prevent overspeeding and engines running on gas sucked from the atmosphere.
I have also seen it mentioned several times that the rig should have seen the gas coming up from the hole. utter rubbish.
On a High Pressure High Temperature well one of the main problems is that gas coming from the hole during a kick will accelerate, and continue accelerating and expanding all the way up till it reaches free air. Most instruments wont be able to record and transmit a warning signal before the gas arrives.
The reports coming from the survivors seems to rule out my first thoughts that the gas had escaped through the diverter.

Don
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  #16  
Old 17th May 2010, 08:52
Billieboy Billieboy is offline  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Don Matheson View Post
Have been some amazing comments made in some of the forums discussing this tragedy. One even mentioned that he believed the explosion had been caused by the engines overspeeding while using the gas as a fuel and exploding, thus starting the chain reaction. Obviously something he had overheard in a bar, but had not heard about overspeed trips and rig savers and the many other safety systems fitted just to prevent overspeeding and engines running on gas sucked from the atmosphere.
I have also seen it mentioned several times that the rig should have seen the gas coming up from the hole. utter rubbish.
On a High Pressure High Temperature well one of the main problems is that gas coming from the hole during a kick will accelerate, and continue accelerating and expanding all the way up till it reaches free air. Most instruments wont be able to record and transmit a warning signal before the gas arrives.
The reports coming from the survivors seems to rule out my first thoughts that the gas had escaped through the diverter.

Don
Gas speeds have been measured at Mach 1,5+ coming out of deep wells without restrictions or chokes.
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Old 17th May 2010, 09:46
Don Matheson Don Matheson is offline  
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Thanks Billieboy, I knew there were figures around but could not remember speeds or where to find it.
My concern is that the average person sitting at home is thinking why have they not fixed this yet without knowing just how big the problem is. How could you tell someone about a well which seems normal suddenly coming in at a speed like that. As you know it doesnt happen very often but when it does its frightening.
We trained for HPHT wells and when going through suspect areas the drill floor went onto a different footing and were alert all the time for movement in the well. I am sure the Horizon was doing the same.

Hope this syphon installed yesterday will help at least with the oil spill, the well still needs to be plugged and capped, in itself no easy job. Hope they manage it.
One tiny point on this latest job with the syphon, I wonder where the gas is going?


Don
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Old 17th May 2010, 10:51
Billieboy Billieboy is offline  
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What I would like to know is the total rate of oil, as I heard the day of the explosion that about 1500M/day was spilling.

Another unusual fact for tanker mates and engineers, on Ballast and Cargo Educ-tors on VLCCs, the jet passing through the educ-tor nozzle, (usually made of Monel), also has a speed in excess of Mach 1.0 at sea level. The, 'crackling', that can sometimes be heard is droplets from the jet passing through the sound barrier. I came across these odd facts when calculating flow rates in cargo pipelines during operations, in the mid Seventies, the Gas speed fell in one day, can't remember where from, but it was during some research I was doing.
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Old 17th May 2010, 10:56
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Andrew Craig-Bennett Andrew Craig-Bennett is offline  
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I've been a fan of eductors for many years, but I never knew that. So that's what that noise was! Filed away in my mental storehouse of things that are nice to know. Thanks!

More generally it is nice to come here and read some informed comment on this horrible accident, without posturning nonsense.

Last edited by Andrew Craig-Bennett; 17th May 2010 at 15:05..
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Old 17th May 2010, 11:58
rcraig rcraig is offline  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Don Matheson View Post
Thanks Billieboy, I knew there were figures around but could not remember speeds or where to find it.
My concern is that the average person sitting at home is thinking why have they not fixed this yet without knowing just how big the problem is. How could you tell someone about a well which seems normal suddenly coming in at a speed like that. As you know it doesnt happen very often but when it does its frightening.
We trained for HPHT wells and when going through suspect areas the drill floor went onto a different footing and were alert all the time for movement in the well. I am sure the Horizon was doing the same.

Hope this syphon installed yesterday will help at least with the oil spill, the well still needs to be plugged and capped, in itself no easy job. Hope they manage it.
One tiny point on this latest job with the syphon, I wonder where the gas is going?


Don
There was a passing reference on radio to its being burnt off now.
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Old 17th May 2010, 12:38
Peter B Peter B is offline  
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Originally Posted by Billieboy View Post
Gas speeds have been measured at Mach 1,5+ coming out of deep wells without restrictions or chokes.
Really? Bear in mind that a "Mach" is not a fixed figure but rather a relative one, representing the speed of sound in the present environment. Are you suggesting that the gas is escaping the well (at sea bed level) at a speed of about 7800 km/h ?

From Wikipedia ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mach_number ):
"Mach number (Ma or M) is the speed of an object moving through air, or any fluid substance, divided by the speed of sound as it is in that substance".

From Wikipedia ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sound ):
"In 20 C (68 F) air at the sea level, the speed of sound is approximately 343 m/s (1,230 km/h; 767 mph) using the formula "v = (331 + 0.6T) m/s". In fresh water, also at 20 C, the speed of sound is approximately 1,482 m/s (5,335 km/h; 3,315 mph). In steel, the speed of sound is about 5,960 m/s (21,460 km/h; 13,330 mph)".
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Old 17th May 2010, 14:24
Billieboy Billieboy is offline  
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Yes Peter, it's the speed that it comes out of the unrestricted hole, at or slightly above sea level in the atmosphere so mach 1.5 is about 1900kph or as this is a nautical site, about 1000knots. This speed would be attained at the initial, "kick", and is related to the standing wave, which travels through a pipeline system full of fluid as a "Water-Hammer", as a pump starts, stops, or a valve closes. The celerity of the wave being variable with fluid,(the temperature and gas content of that fluid), and the material of the pipe, i.e. steel, concrete, glass fibre, plastic, etc.
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Old 22nd May 2010, 12:21
forthbridge forthbridge is offline  
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This report may be of interest

http://msnbcmedia.msn.com/i/MSNBC/Se...alysesrev5.pdf
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Old 22nd May 2010, 13:44
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eriskay eriskay is offline  
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Thanks for all those who have provided lucid explanations and descriptions of the various aspects on this disaster - good to learn from those whose knowledge, training and experience is shared here. Given the incredibly high pressure breakdowns and velocities involved, gas/fluid two-phase mix effects, etc, and having seen the damage that relatively low-grade cavitation can cause in less complex and volatile situations, using quality materials such as inconel, monel and superduplex alloys, hard to imagine what devastation the Deepwater Horizon catastrophe caused.

Again, thanks to all contributors for an excellent, albeit depressing, thread.

Angus.
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Old 26th May 2010, 19:17
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May have been posted before .. but live webcam view of the 'leak' here.

http://www.bp.com/liveassets/bp_inte...ov_stream.html
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