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RE: oil leak

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Excellent initiative Steve.  You are right.  There has to be someone(s) out there with a practical solution ...


With what little I know about it, I actually liked the first concept but thought the sharp necking at the top would cause probs, which it did; high rates of compression/expansion together with the actual gases coming up with the oil …  I would have thought they would have designed something that gradually restricted/guided the flow to accommodate that effect ….  I also thought they would try to construct a valve on the seabed around the opening and like on land (I know.  It’s 2mi deep!), gradually shut it off … they’ve prob thought that through and rejected it …


Thor A. Tandy P.Eng, C.Eng, Struct.Eng, MIStructE
Victoria, BC



From: Steve Gordin [mailto:sgordin(--nospam--at)]
Sent: Wednesday, May 26, 2010 8:13 AM
To: seaint(--nospam--at)
Subject: Re: oil leak


Just called BP, suggested they formulated the problem on the engineer's lists (including this one) and provided an email address to send the ideas. They promised to call back - we'll see.   

Steve Gordin SE
Irvine CA

vicpeng(--nospam--at) wrote:

Anything is poss with the will. Canada has an indiv in Toronto somewhere who has access to surface vacuum ships but the experts obviously don't need the help.

Sent on the TELUS Mobility network with BlackBerry

Date: Wed, 26 May 2010 07:17:50 -0700

Subject: oil leak


Good morning,

The issue was already raised (I think, by Darryl), but at the time it appeared that we were close to a breakthrough.  Well, it looks like the oil leak in the Gulf is winning so far, and becoming a bigger problem by the hour.  It looks like BP and other parties involved can use some engineering ideas.    

For example, would it be physically possible to lower powerful pumps to remove water and oil and water from the immediate area of the leak?  Something like a giant vacuum cleaner - without any enclosures, pipe capping, etc.  That may limit the amount of oil lost into the ocean (albeit, temporarily), and allow some time for finding a more permanent solution.

Steve Gordin SE
Irvine CA