EMT specializes in alternate fuels and has experience in environmental security concepts. The following is our best effort concept to prevent further damage from your oils spill off the Louisiana coast. Please don't hesitate to contact me or to pass this on. I sent a preliminary concept to your online suggestions email, but I am concerned that it may be overlooked. I have spent many years in PR and handled press relations for the Canadian nuclear group, Canatom, during Three Mile Island. I realize that your team on the spot is probably overwhelmed with just trying to keep abreast of the damage control efforts.
Please excuse the rather off the wall naming of the idea, but I believe that in the strange world of the Oil People, the name will at least give our ideas a 15 second recognition factor. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to call me.
A way to arrest the oil spill from the BP Platform
The Kevlar Kondom Koncept
Summary: The effort to date have been aimed primarily at capping the well head without spending the time or effort to understand how best to recuperate the oil and pumping it back into the system. This proposal will allow for 95% of the oil to be contained in a storage facility as deep as the surface of the ocean to the wellhead floor.
Once contained within that storage it can be pumped out into large tankers who will deposit it directly into the Louisiana processing center.
Manufacture a Kevlar or other suitably resistant sleeve that will have an interior diameter large enough to encompass the wellhead as well as the surrounding ocean floor. We estimate a 30’ diameter should be sufficient, but are still waiting for actual dimensions of the project.
The bottom part of this sleeve will be in the form of a rolled up and sealed ring that when lowered will conform to ocean bottom, provide a flange-like extrusion and be flexible enough to shift as the sea bottom shifts. Heavy mud, such as pumped in the recently unsuccessful TopKill operation can be injected into the flange.
A one way valve of sufficient diameter will be placed at the base, but on the side of the flange to allow water to be pumped out as the oil pushes upwards
The sleeve will rise from the bottom to the ocean surface in a sealed and uninterrupted tube, with no leaks or openings.
On the surface, a large floating doughnut, for want of a better term, will rest on the surface with a retractable top to allow sealing off of the tube. It is believed that this may be required in order to optimize the ability of the oil to propel the water downward and ease the work of the water expelling pumps.
The bottom flange is lowered along guiding cables anchored to the sea bottom in order to completely surround the wellhead.
The flange is filled with heavy mud so that it rests securely on ocean floor conforming to undulations of the floor. Mud is then pumped inside and outside the flange to completely seal off the sleeve and pin it to the bottom of the ocean and avoid the entrance of any water.
As the oil rises, it is rising in its own column and independently of the surrounding ocean. Although the weight of the oil is a delta factor, the volume displaced is not, so water can be expelled from the bottom of the sleeve as the oil rises.
You will have created a flexible storage tank about a mile high and 30’ in diameter containing pure oil at the surface which can be pumped off as it rises and shipped to the processing facility in Louisiana.
4) Why this will work:
It is pressure independent because it is a “soft” solution based on ambient pressure and conditions
It immediately isolates the oil from the water in its own environment
It allows the flexibility of increasing or decreasing pumping ratios
It will permit all parties enough time to review their options and come up with a permanent solution
It will allow repair operations to be performed inside the sleeve in a “sterile” environment
It is relatively inexpensive compared to other operations because it allows the recuperation of the oil for sale.
It uses existing technologies and materials that can be used should this type of disaster ever occur again.