posted on May, 30 2010 @ 12:25 PM
Apparently they don't teach physics in school anymore...
If the well was at the surface this wouldn't even be news anymore. The expertise for killing blown out land-based wells has been around for decades.
Killing this one is hard to do because of where it is.
The fact that the problem is in 5,000 foot of water, on the edge of a steep drop off into the Florida Plain, complicates the effort to kill the well.
The fact that the pipe is still in place complicates the effort to kill the well.
Lets go with an extreme hypothetical case and assume that the nuke option is a great idea
which it isn't. They can't even cut the pipe off and
weld on a tree so they can simply close a valve, exactly how do the nuke proponents think that they can cut the pipe off and stuff a nuke into it?
Even the so called tactical nukes are much, much bigger than the diameter of the well bore at the depths that have been discussed. Aside from being an
incredibly dumb idea... it's not technically feasible.
Someone said that the formation contained an unusually high amount of methane. No it doesn't. Typically gas and oil wells that flow on their own are
in the 85% - 90% range for methane concentration. That's what natural gas is. The heavier components make up the total but methane is the dominant
component. Have you ever seen the wells with pump jacks on them? They look like some kind of horse bobbing it's head up and down. Do you know what
those are? Those are called "oil wells" and the pump jack is moving a long rod connected to a bottom hole pump. The pump jack is the pumps power
source. Do you know why there is a pump down hole? It's because "oil wells", as in those that produce a lot of oil and not much natural gas, don't
have enough pressure to push the oil to the surface in sufficient quantities. Sometimes they don't have enough pressure to move any oil to the
surface. The gulf produces natural gas and oil is a by product of producing those wells. Because the leak is in 5,000' of water the pressure is high
enough and the temperature is low enough that the heavier components of natural gas are being liquefied. Add the Joule Thomson effect to the situation
and the stream leaving the openings in the pipe is behaving as if it is in a processing plant. That means the natural gas stream is being liquefied to
a greater degree than if it was an open hole to the atmosphere at the surface. The net result, imho, is a stream of liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) that
is stratifying in the depths. As it warms up, the lighter components will rise, eventually reaching the surface. Some heavier components will rise
with it and the sheen that we've been hearing about will appear who knows where. Maybe the Atlantic. A lot of it is going to sink to the bottom and
unless it hits a volcanic ridge, that's where it will likely stay. Then of course there's the effects of hurricanes... who knows what that's going
Everyone keeps comparing this to the Exxon Valdez. It's not anything like the Valdez disaster. The Valdez dumped a huge amount of oil onto the
surface of a pristine natural bay and the surrounding landscape. Then people rushed to "solve the problem" and exacerbated the problem to the degree
that all these years they are still suffering from the affects of the spill.