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Huge Gas Cloud Building Around Rig In North Sea.

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posted on Apr, 5 2012 @ 06:43 AM
A helicopter took off at 10.30am UK time this morning with a specialst team to land on the Elgin to assess.

Flytime i roughly 60 mins so they should be onboard now all going to plan.

A helicopter with a specialised team has taken off in a bid to land on board the abandoned Total Elgin platform which is leaking gas in the North Sea.

The team will assess how best to stop the gas leak, which is now into its 12th day.

The helicopter took off from Aberdeen at about 10:30.

posted on Apr, 6 2012 @ 06:44 AM
Here's the latest from the experts who drilled into a high pressure reservoir and are now unable to plug the holes. The gas from the reservoir is now pressurising the limestone above which is forcing out the methane that was trapped in the limestone. Later it will be gas from the reservoir passing through the ruptured pipe. Possibly the pipe failed due to stress fractures caused by the vibration experienced when gas was extracted at high speed. It was possible to slow the gas extraction and reduce the vibration. Decisions were made that have resulted in this situation.

This from

"High-pressure, high-temperature (HPHT) reservoirs, like the one feeding the Elgin platform, exacerbate matters because they combine higher costs to drill and maintain with "the inherent risks associated with them," the auditor said. "I have seen things on some platforms that HSE would be extremely unhappy about," he said. Maintenance on systems critical to safe-guarding life in some cases has been pushed back by up to a year, he said."

posted on Apr, 6 2012 @ 11:51 AM
It sounds like a top kill is possible.

Dangerous conditions and a tough job.

posted on Apr, 7 2012 @ 07:17 AM
reply to post by Kester

thanks for the update kester mate. so what does this mean?
that they are looking at a smaller problem than first thought.
or that its still really bad but they could fully asses the damage and overall sitiuation?

sorry i dont know much about this sort of thing but am willing to learn from others on ATS

posted on Apr, 7 2012 @ 08:27 AM
reply to post by jerseychannelislands have this for us....

"Engineers preparing an operation to stop the gas leak on an offshore platform have welcomed the arrival of specialist equipment key to the plan.

A plane carrying the emergency supplies landed at Prestwick Airport on Saturday.

It comes as experts from Total, the company that runs the Elgin platform situated 150 miles off the coast of Aberdeen, and Wild Well Control gave the go-ahead to a proposal to plug the leak with mud.

A team of specialists inspected the leak on Thursday, the first time anyone had landed on the platform since it was evacuated two weeks ago,

They approved the so-called “kill plan” after confirming the gas was leaking from the well head but not from underwater.

A spokesman for Wild Well Control said: "We achieved our goals. Everything went as we would have hoped and the planned well intervention is achievable. There is certainly no showstopper to launch the well control operation."

If you look in the mainstream media you'll see a good, clear photograph. It looks like the pipe blew downwards off the wellhead. An inner pipe is still inserted into the wellhead but is perforated. Possibly vibration stress fracture.

I'm sure this can be fixed.... for now. The long term problem is steel and concrete don't stay together in those temperatures. Plugging high pressure wells ranges from difficult to impossible.

posted on Apr, 7 2012 @ 10:20 AM
reply to post by jerseychannelislands

Just noticed The Scotsman has said this....

"The company states: “The Elgin G4 wellhead assembly with a clear view of the source of the gas leak coming out of four ports – release points. Localised deposits of condensate and drilling mud were expelled on the wellhead area of the Elgin Well Head Platform at the beginning of the leak and have solidified."

Ports? Release points? Does this mean the rig was hastily evacuated because gas and condensate came out of holes it was supposed to come out of? Surely this is either a safety valve blown open or something similar.

posted on Apr, 7 2012 @ 10:24 AM
reply to post by Kester

Sounds like the gas pressure in the ground may be increasing also. It doesn't have to be a defective part. Have you read of any other wells in the same area having problems?

edit on 7-4-2012 by rickymouse because: I hate error correction, sometimes it replaces words with other words if you don't pay attention.

posted on Apr, 8 2012 @ 08:48 AM

Originally posted by rickymouse
Have you read of any other wells in the same area having problems?

As I understand it all the wells there are difficult because those are the hottest, highest pressure reservoirs being tapped. The technology isn't up to it.

Daniel F. Eby of Wild Well Control tells us this in Offshore Magazine.....

"Pre-planning for well control events is not done as a matter of routine. No operator enjoys playing what-if games regarding a blowout. However, as the industry continues to drill more difficult high temperature high pressure (HTHP) wells, the likelihood of well control problems for these types of wells will increase."

"In addition to the standard well control training, rig crews, mud loggers, mud engineers, etc. can be trained in the aspects of HTHP drilling that are different than normal operations.
This training should include abnormal pressure detection, well control shut-in procedures, kick handling methods, and other subjects directly related to the project. The training can take different forms. Recently, an operator drilling an HTHP well in the North Sea constructed a one-day HTHP school for the rig personnel that was very effective."

Is this operator Total and the rig on which the one day school was held the Elgin Platform? The highly competent staff of the Elgin Platform aren't qualified to teach handling an HTHP well. No one is qualified for that yet. It's cruel putting trusting people in a dangerous environment and telling them the obvious risks have been overcome with technology.

Beefing up the old technology isn't going to work. All HTHP wells are going to be dangerous and potentially un-pluggable.

posted on Apr, 9 2012 @ 07:54 AM
reply to post by Kester

maybe they should think of putting a resin and carbon fibre mix with a siliconseal like i said dont no about this sort of thing just a thought...... let the ripping commence lol

posted on Apr, 9 2012 @ 02:09 PM
reply to post by jerseychannelislands

Super glue might work, you can glue the beak on a chicken with that stuff and it won't fall off.

posted on Apr, 13 2012 @ 04:03 PM
check this thread out about sea creatures that can live in oil

full story here

posted on Apr, 22 2012 @ 07:14 AM

This video shows the enormous efforts made to safeguard the seas and plug the well.

I'm confident the experts in charge will do an efficient repair in dangerous conditions.

Less confident about the causes of this expensive gas leak.

"Everything proceeding as planned." ???

posted on May, 2 2012 @ 04:04 PM

This is where we are now.

The leak is being dealt with. Public opinion has been swayed in favour of fracking on the mainland as the lesser of two evils. Looking at the history of this enterprise it's difficult to see how anyone could be surprised at the equipment failure. The timing of this leak couldn't have been more convenient for the industry. Just when it was being decided whether the fracking operations near Blackpool should continue after causing minor earthquakes. Fracking will poison the groundwater for ourselves and future generations. A well timed 'accident' can fool inebriated, grasping politicians into backing something as obviously insane as fracking.

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