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NOAA: 1 of 3 Gulf well leaks halted but oil flow same

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G_j Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed May-05-10 10:15 AM
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NOAA: 1 of 3 Gulf well leaks halted but oil flow same
http://in.reuters.com/article/businessNews/idINIndia-48...

NOAA: 1 of 3 Gulf well leaks halted but oil flow same
Wed May 5, 2010 7:31pm IST

MIAMI (Reuters) - One of three leaks from the ruptured Gulf of Mexico undersea well owned by BP has been capped, but oil is still flowing out at a rate of 5,000 barrels (210,000 gallons/795,000 litres) per day, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) said on Wednesday.

"Remotely Operated Vehicles (ROVs) cut off a section at the end of the riser pipe, which used to lead from the well to the rig, and capped it with a valve," NOAA said in a posting on its web site.

"While this stopped one of the three leaks, oil continues to enter the Gulf of Mexico at a rate of approximately 5000 barrels per day," it added.

"We made good progress yesterday, including the cap on the drill pipe," BP spokesman John Curry wrote in an email, referring to shutting off one of the leaks.

BP Chief Operating Officer Doug Suttles had said on Tuesday that although the undersea repair work on the riser pipe was expected to plug one of the three leaks, "I don't believe that will change the total amount leaking".

..more..
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ixion Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed May-05-10 10:17 AM
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1. So they closed one that wasn't leaking
way to go! :sarcasm:
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Statistical Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed May-05-10 10:21 AM
Response to Reply #1
2. No the pressure and flow is the same.
Edited on Wed May-05-10 10:21 AM by Statistical
Take a garden hose and make 3 cuts in it.
Turn faucet on and measure the amount flowing out of the three cuts combined.

Now tape up one of the cuts. The flow out of the other 2 cuts will rise to compensate because pressure hasn't changed.

The goal of sealing one of the breaches is it allows them to focus on the other 2.

Originally they were going to need to use 3 containment domes now they need to use 2.


2 leaks is better than 3 or 5 or 100 even if the total flow is the same.
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ixion Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed May-05-10 01:41 PM
Response to Reply #2
3. depends on the size of the like
whether or not one is better. Also, there's the possibility that plugging one will cause shear on one of the other ones and make it worse.

But yeah, you make a good point.
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BeFree Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed May-05-10 03:33 PM
Response to Reply #3
6. You're right... increased flow in the others
The flow out of the other two leaks will increase by the amount that was capped, so you are right. It could increase 'shear' on the other two.

The real question is how much pressure is on the reservoir of oil in the ground, and where is that pressure coming from?

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ixion Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed May-05-10 02:51 PM
Response to Reply #2
4. Hmmm... you're also assuming a non-stratifed pocket
which may or may not be the case.

Again, not disagreeing with your physics, just not clear on the geography, and that would affect the reaction.
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Statistical Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed May-05-10 02:55 PM
Response to Reply #4
5. There are no three leaks into the pocket.
The wellhead is intact (single shaft into oil pocket).

The riser collapsed and bent and in 3 locations oil is leaking from the riser pipe.

Now that is 2 locations.
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BeFree Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed May-05-10 03:40 PM
Response to Reply #5
7. Garden hose
Cut your garden hose in two places with an open end.
Now cap off the end. The pressure and flow will increase at the other 2 cuts.
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Statistical Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed May-05-10 03:48 PM
Response to Reply #7
8. Exactly. That was what I was saying.
Edited on Wed May-05-10 03:49 PM by Statistical
The flow at reaming two holes increases but overall flow rate (2 holes now vs 3 holes before) remains static.

Still IMHO even though overall flow remains the same (because nothing has reduced flow or pressure at source) it is a good thing.
If this cap holds it means they only need to concentrate on 3 remaining leaks instead of 3.
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