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Julian Bray provides: Opinion, comment, forward thinking speculation, keynote presentations and workshops for corporate organisations on Travel, Cruise & Aviation: conflict zones, terrorist impact, drone (UAV) issues, safety (black boxes, emergencies), airline operations, aviation finance, political implications, and all forms of incident risk. He operated at board level with several airline and aviation groups, including Alitalia, British Island Airways, British Airways, Galileo , British Aerospace, Skyways, former CEO City firm Leadenhall Assoc. Founder CNS City News Service. Director NTN Television News (joint co. with ITV Wales TWW) Debretts People 2017 and in launch edition of PRWeek Black Book. Journalist and Broadcaster. After-dinner speaker and presenter.
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Sunday, 9 May 2010
America & BP Try This! Oil Spill Urgent Solution Offered.
Eureka! Maybe a daft idea but so was the invention of the pizza! Sitting in the garden staring at an empty canvas garden refuse pop up bin and an extending cat play tunnel whilst nursing a large gin and topic. The mental lamp bulb exploded.
A true Eureka moment! Also must admit feeling somewat guilty the bin remained empty of garden refuse, my justification is that I might have just saved the plight of the USA shrimp industry and that of countless USA ecology systems and even partially restored British Petroleums tattered oil splattered image.
So hear me out and try to stay with the core concept right through to the end then feel free to copy this to wherever it might be of use and become a reality!
The BP Oil Spill problem can be resolved with basic schoolboy science...anyone who has tried to attach a garden hose to a tap when the water is running will tell you it's impossible but in reality that is what BP has been trying to do over the last few weeks. Taking a traditional heavy engineering view when a much lighter touch or construction is called for.
To contain or divert the oil flow is just so simple provided that NO top pressure is exerted and I offer this to BP if they will make a substantial contribution to a charity of my choice and some pocket money for me !
BP are trying to place a small but heavy rigid metal covered box over the leaking pipe. WRONG! What they should be trying in my humble opinion is to place a collapsed much larger circular base rim (ie no bottom) on the sea bed, say ten-fifteen times the diameter of the metal box construction, and much easier to position!
Once that is in place, attached the base rim is (ie retrofitted) to a series of flexible circular curtain wall sections, which simply rise upwards on guide chains or wires. The upper section of each curtain wall being partially inflated, the circular curtain wall attached in the manner of a window roman blind... now still with me?
Imagine one of those circular spring loaded canvas garden rubbish bins. When it arrives it's in the collapsed position held in place with velcro straps, release the straps and the bin springs up and open.
Outside of this spring section are further sections slightly conical which rise but remain overlapped, held in plasce by external guide wires. Oil will naturally rise to the surface of water so further overlapping curtain wall sections can be attached until the tube reaches the surface and the crude oil and carbons can be pumped out of the bund so created.
The upward journey of the crude oil will also suck in clean sea water through each overlapping curtain section creating a slight vacuum and speeding the route of the oil flow upwards inside the sectioned tunnel.
Another illustration, imagine the conical rubbish chutes used on building sites to decant rubbish from several floors up, they look like a series of inverted nesting dustbins with the bases removed . Extended this forms a tunnel to shoot the rubbish downwards. For our oil spill exercise the process and nesting would be reversed.
As the guidewires for the rising circular curtain wall sections are not loadbearing, just an upward guidepath, the wires at the top would be attached on a drum each to a floating crane barge held in position by a geopositioning system. The final advantage is that it would be quick and easy to fabricate, being light even easier to position. The bigger the base rim to start with the greater the containment.
What it won't do is stop the spill but if it is contained and pumped off until such time that the new drilling is completed in three months, the problem is solved and the kit can be used over and over again. Go to it!
Julian Bray, London England
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