How can I stop a large oil well from leaking?

So there's this offshore oil rig here, and it won't stop leaking. Anyone have any suggestions?

Already tried putting a pipe on it, didn't work. And tried clogging it up with tires and golf balls, didn't work.

Now trying to pump fluids and heavy mud into it to stop the flow, but no idea if that will work.

Any suggestions are welcome as this is becoming a major problem.

Please call: (281) 366-5511 if you have a good suggestion.

I don't have a picture, but I do have a webcam.

If we can figure out how to stop this thing we'll all be famous, so any ideas?

Update

Pumping mud into it didn't work, now trying to put another tube on it?

Update #2

now trying to put a THIRD dome over it...

Update #3

Okay new complication, a ^^*# robot that was supposed to be sawing off a pipe is stuck in there now.

Update #4

So now a key pipe has been cut, hopefully this makes things easier

Update #5

So now there are some giant underwater plumes appearing, some as large as Rhode Island.

Any ideas on how to clear those up?

Answered! View the answer I have this problem too

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So the method that's worked so far is seal by welding a tight metal cap and drill relief wells, I believe then the idea is to bury everything under cement, which sounds like it'd work. Judging by the test results I've read, this method is working and will continue to work and this should be the solution. Obviously a further preventative measure that should work would be to shut down all offshore rigs (or why not onshore as well?). It'd also probably not be a good idea to then appoint the head of BP in the Gulf as its CEO. But oh well, I hope they follow some advice and this never happens again. Long live renewable energy.

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I have a serious solution, this is my dad's company, Mobius Technologies, and they have been trying to get known so they can be heard and finally clean up this whole mess. Please pass on the word and video through facebook or anything you can to help. They have two demo videos here is one.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uFNOnI3M_...

Thanks

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That looks interesting, seriously, call this number: (281) 366-5511

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Who's number is that?

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ahh its BP, I think the company has already tried that, it's just so many people say they have a solution...My dad was telling me its not that easy, i'll have to talk to him about it

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Looks like you're getting some of the coverage, iFixit tweeted about it and it has 7000+ followers, add that to the retweets that were there, maybe someone will notice.

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Nuke it.

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Not cost-efficient though, might have even worse ecological effects too. Interesting idea.

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If we had done it day 1 I bet the ecological effects would have been MUCH less than what they will be now.

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Yeah but no fishing there for 100 years=massive economic damages

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This seems to be the best idea so far now, now that I'm seeing all these fails I'm starting to think you have the right idea here.

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As the Top Kill doesn't seem to work, the idea doesn't get out of my mind. I've read in a newspaper that the russians really thought about that as a solution.

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Gosh, I'm surprised no one has suggested the obvious answer:

Chuck Norris.

He could swim down and blow the oil back into the hole.

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yes!!! yes!!! yes!!!! why havn't i thought of this!!!!

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Chuck Norris doesn't swim, the water just moves away because it's scared.

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Oh sorry it's "Chuck Norris doesn't get wet, the water gets Chuck Norris," however, considering Chuck is your average "drill baby drill" i don't think he'll want to help us out.

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Oh come now rab... Just because he's conservative doesn't mean he wants to see the gulf go to pot. :)

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We have a winner!

-Me-

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Use the Large Hadron Collider to provide a black hole to suck the whole mess up.

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Let's try not to destroy the whole earth too though

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+ for a humorous question to a dire problem. Let's fix the planet!

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Or try to stuff it with nuclear waste - so we get from bad to worse.

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How about we use some of the Red Matter from Star Trek to suck the oil back into the core of the earth? Oh wait- that might cause some other problems...

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The question is, how do you get the Red Matter INTO the hole? The gas/oil pressure just throws everything back out!

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Maybe a tractor beam from Star Wars to stop it?

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lots of bubble gum

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Yeah. The oil could make a big bubble and they could tow it to shore like a tanker. + Ralph

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Lulz, what flavor do you think would have maximum effect?

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Original bubble gum, of course!

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What brand? Oh I know! We can tape it with bubble tape!

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I'm not the sharpest tool in the shed, but I am a driller. Although, the deepest hole that I ever drilled was 300 feet, I have an idea. I hope that I don't embarrass myself. I suggest dropping a large diameter (4' to 10') casing to the sea floor, over top of the well. I know that it will take a long time to weld the casing together, not to mention finding a mile of it, but hear me out. By the way, my idea can't be all that much worse than using golf balls and rubber to plug it.

The weight of the casing will be enormous, so when the weight of the casing has reached 1/2 the capacity of the crane lowering it, start adding air bags to offset the weight. Once the casing hits bottom, use the submersibles to start releasing the airbags. Hopefully the weight of the casing will make it sink deep into the ocean floor and oil will be diverted to the surface. Upper airbags can be left to help keep the casing upright and relatively stable. The oil could then be loaded into a barge or ship and removed. Tremie pipes, or grouting and flushing pipes could be installed on the entire length of casing to jet the casing deeper in to formation at the ocean floor and then used to grout (cement).

Head pressure in an obstacle, but will basically only be the weight of the oil inside the casing (don't forget to subtract the weight of the outside sea water from that, and the added weight of up-hole velocity restriction (line loss). This approach could possibly make it more difficult to stop or shutoff the well, but it may make is easier since there is a clear path to the wellhead.

I have dropped 16" casing into a well and welded it together. It can take two guys .5 t. 75 hours, so I know that this will be tough, if not impossible. Just something that I was thinking of on the way home from work. I'm sure that the rocket scientists have already thought of it. Not the first time that I thought that I invented something that has already been invented.

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Experience, +

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So much BS has come from BP, I say take that BS and plug the leak!!

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Tell the Saudis that we're switching to the "Pickens Plan", http://www.pickensplan.com/act/ to wind power on a massive scale and natural gas. They'll get it plugged in a hurry! Where's Red Adair when you need him? http://www.redadair.com/

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Actually most of our foreign oil comes from Canada, not Saudi Arabia

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Also rab, thanks for lighting up enough to let us all treat a very serious "off topic" matter with humor on a Saturday night. Atta boy!

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Can we put a cork in it and move this to meta?

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Why on earth? This is a repair related question

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I'd also like to keep those 12 upvotes haha

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Using an explosion would cause incredible damage because water does not compress. It would kill sea life for hundreds of miles.

The best solution is to corral the leak and pump the oil into containers.

BP is talking about siphoning. This shows how stupid they really are. Look up "siphoning".

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I haven’t looked it up yet but if memory serves me siphoning employs differences in pressure. In ambient atmosphere it’s 32 lbs per square inch, thus I can raise water 32” by suction. i can siphon if the output is lower in level than what I'm drawing from. If I’m sucking, I can only draw to less than ambient atmospheric pressure. Seems like it was p= f/a pressure = force divided by area. When I was scuba diving we figured 1 atmosphere for every 33’. Now the well is over 5000” deep which makes it over 150 atmospheres. At that pressure a gold ball would go through a garden hose at Mach 2. Sorry, nothing and no one can suck like that. Blow maybe, but not suck or siphon. Sorry boys, someone’s trying to blow smoke up my skirt with a siphon solution.

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+ yes

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You can make a hurricane go thru the affected area, thus picking up all the oil, so it will be a part of the hurricane. Also its summer time so its hurricane season!

Then where there are hurricanes, there are charged electrons everywhere, thus LIGHTNING

Lightning (spark, source of heat)+oil in the air=kaboom

Sure, it'll destroy a lot of things, but hey! the oil is contained!!!

Please click here for a illustrated representation of what I am proposing

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LOL, wow, I thought the raining oil would be fun, but FLAMING RAINING OIL! Man, that's pretty awesome!

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I think it'd have to be a heck of a strong hurricaine

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Looks like xkcd has got the idea.

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I especially like the "oh ###&!" part

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There really aren't too many permanant solutions, BP claims that the only way to stop the leak is to drill a "Relief Well" which gives the oil annother place to leave the ground.

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1. they friggin fix the pipe that's already there and shut it off

2. how would a "relief well" work? you'd still have crude oil coming out of the other well...

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first of all: dont let BP dril in your back garden...

call Harry S. Stamper. he and his team have stopped the whole asteroid on its steps to Earth, so i think, one small oil rig should be piece of pi*s for them...

i have no idea, hows that drill done, but drilling another one, to ease the pressure seems to be a good idea. also, they could pump down a lot of mud to stop it from leaking...

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I'm thinking a robotic welder, high amperage and gas to control scope and metal rod feed. A lot of metal rod feeding into the well casing, then shock it for a weld. Worth a try if such a device exists, or one can be built or modified.

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Yeah but how to do that when 10000 gallons of oil are shooting up at 75 MPH

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Going back to my weld. The saw go stuck, and they used giant shears to cut it. But what if they took the blade out of the shears and 'crimped' it. That would slow the flow of oil and you can get the welder in there after that.

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Blame Canada.

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Meeeeek, wrong side of the continent.....Try again with something like.......Cuba.

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That's a 'South Park' reference.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=huVvsxyFn...

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Sorry i should have known :-)

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Use toxic waste, when its corrosive enough it might close the well and if not the oil is not the main problem anymore.

P.S. Blame the UK as BP means British Petrol. It could be a late revenge for the Boston Tea Party. Now its the Gulf Oil Party.

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Position a large Cylindrical steel "CAPNUT" Over it equipped with 5 rocket engines (four around the circumference angled upward slightly and a fifth at the top). Using a controlled burn fire all five engines simultaneously driving it down and screwing it over the wellhead. wellhead sealing nut solution Proposed by Dan Terry, Austin, TX

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BP has already screwed us over, and it didn't work.

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Have Mario goomba-stomp the leek.

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My personal idea is to launch such a bloated PR campaign it plugs the hole.

Otherwise, redirect a meteoroid using nukes (that goes along with eliminating waste- getting rid of nukes), and direct it directly on top of the well, the force would be so great that it would destroy the well and the molten meteorite plus bedrock would seal a cap over the now-buried well.

Somehow I don't think that one Senator's idea of throwing beer-making ingredients in there will work though.

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B + P = Big Problems

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All serious and not-so-serious answers aside, the simplest answer is to NOT DRILL in the first place. Sure, lots of people (especially the oil companies) will say "OK, Mr. Smarty-Pants, where do we get our energy sources from if we don't drill for oil??" To those folks I say: Solar, wind, wave, geothermal and other emerging technologies can be utilized instead of fossil fuels.

Some people push nuclear power as an alternative but I don't because it has the potential for global problems on a grander scale than fossil fuels.

Narrow-minded thinking has gotten us into this predicament and that same type of thinking is not going to get us out.

BILL

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Crimp the pipe coming out of the ground in a few places using the JAWS OF LIFE !! BP

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Contain the bulk of the leak source with a 12' to 20' dia hollow screw shaped like a flower pot but without the bottom. Position 4 to 6 rockets near the top pointing slightly downward that are somehow deactivated after a certain screwed depth through the sea floor is reached. The top of the flower pot would have to have attachments for making a connection.

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I'll bet Mario can fix it:

http://29.media.tumblr.com/tumblr_l3cudu...

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Put 4.2 billion shrimp in the oil and the whales will eat the oil with the shrimp. That's were whale oil comes from

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rab777hp will be eternally grateful.
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