Thursday, June 24, 2010

New general

So McChrystal is out, just like that,
And Petraeus steps in to take his place;
Seems him and Obama got into a spat,
These events happened at a rapid pace.

Almost as if McChrystal wanted to leave,
He gave a interview criticizing Pres. Obama,
Perhaps preparing the way to get the heave --
A preplanned scenario executed with drama?

Whatever the case, we have a new one in charge
Of an unending war, sapping our strength and will;
I sincerely hope this person can achieve large
progress in dislodging the Taliban hidden in the hills.
Gen. Petraeus accomplished good results before in Iraq,
Hopefully he can do the same with the Afghanistan map.

(this is an unmetered elizabethan sonnet)

Friday, June 04, 2010

In addition to booms rounding up the oil in the Gulf, here is another possibility:  build and deploy screens to harvest the oil off the surface of the gulf.  These could be approximately one meter high by ten meters long, and pulled behind boats.  The screen would allow water to go through, but would get most of the tar and heavy oil.  Another system would be needed to then collect the oil from the screens.  Perhaps a larger container vessel that could winch the loaded screens up and over, to scrape them off or even "wash' them with dilutant, collecting the resulting oil residue.  Then the screen could be re-deployed to scrape more oil off the surface of the gulf. 

     Another possibility would be that these oil-laden screens could be collected in a large vessel and brought to a shore processing facility, to harvest the oil that way.  Two benefits:  you clean up the gulf, and you harvest oil that could be used.  Something to consider anyways.

Thursday, June 03, 2010

Some wacky ideas to solve the oil leak in the Gulf of Mexico.

They have been trying this and that and the other. So here are some suggestions, take them or leave them, FWIW.

1. Dump some concrete chunks, boulders and dust over the pipe, as many as possible. This would mute the oil flow, so the seepage pressure would be reduced - oil leaking from underneath many concrete boulders. With the direct pressure reduced to a seepage, then more rock and concrete could be dumped over this. Eventually it might take a small mountain to contain most of the leak. Then, a plastic polymer or concrete cap could be placed over the whole, stopping the flow. The oil flow would be held in by a rubble mountain sealed over.

2. Construct a conical concrete cap with a hole at the center. Lower same down carefully until it rests over the pipe. The hole would be fitted with flexible pipe or hose, and would capture the flow of oil, enabling BP to collect the oil. The concrete cap would need to be around 30-50 ft in diameter - very spacious and heavy, to rest atop the gusher and channel it to the center pipe. Problem solved.
The act of lowering such a massive object seems daunting, but considering the other macro construction done by the oil companies, it seems entirely possible.

3. Outfit a small bathyscaph type submarine that can withstand high pressures to journey to the gusher. Attach a heavy metal cap to one side of this vessel, and remotely pilot it to be positioned over the gusher. The sub could be driven to the correct spot, and lowered over the gusher. At the same time, a large fitted hose at the top of the cap could be subjected to negative air pressure, to draw the flow up into attached piping. The cap could be muscled over the flow, the flow pulled upward. The Robot vehicles could then seal any leakage underneath, once the cap is on securely and channelling oil to waiting ships/piping/etc.

Anyway, there they are - hope they help :-) Thanks for reading.