Salvage of the Deepwater Horizon

While many engineers are focusing on ways to plug the gusher in the Gulf of Mexico, some are still focussing on raising critical parts of the sunken Deepwater Horizon, such as the rigs blowout preventer, that may hold keys to better understand what happened on April 20th.  The New York Times has this good article on the matter:

In recent days, experts from BP have spoken cautiously of raising components of their shattered drilling operation from the ocean floor once the leak is sealed. That could be a distant prospect: officials have warned that the leak might not be plugged until August or later, after BP drills two relief wells. And some potential evidence has been destroyed by the failed efforts to shut down the well.

Still, experts say that some of the equipment, intact or in pieces, will probably be recovered.

Officials seem most intent on retrieving the rig’s blowout preventer, a 325-ton stack of pipes and valves that failed to seal off the well when the explosion occurred on April 20. It is designed to be raised and lowered multiple times, for use on many wells.

You can read the full article at NYTimes.com HERE.

According to the article, the BOP was the focus of a USCG subpoena to Transocean on April 30th, instructing it “to maintain the blowout preventer and to not allow anyone or anything to tamper with it” without the Guard’s permission.

Photo credit: BP PLC, via Associated Press