Cleaning Up the Oil Spill: BP's Doomed Dome and Foreseeable Design Flaws

Email a Friend
From and

Over the weekend, ice crystals clogged the inside of a 98 ton steel dome that BP hoped would contain the ongoing flood of crude oil spewing from the site of their broken rig. The crystals, called hydrates, which formed inside the dome made the structure too buoyant to settle on to the seabed, where it could have formed a water-tight seal around the site of the oil drainage. As BP plans more attempts to cap the gusher, we listen back to what has been tried so far.

The Takeaway discusses BP’s short-sighted solution to their long-term environmental problem and wonder: how much planning went in to a design which many engineers concede was fraught with foreseeable flaws?