1. Report this comment

    John D said:

    This idea is risky, but drilling a bore hole next to the existing well and setting off a substantial explosive charge in the new bore hole might be sufficient to pinch off the leaking well.

  2. Report this comment

    Joseph Sanchez said:

    What is needed to stop the oil spewing out of the under water well. BP needs to design a Tower designed like a Vase or like the throat on a Carburetor. This should be desidned to be installed upside down whith the large bowl area at the top. This will give the oil some where to go for a while so that it does not push up on the tower. The bowl area of the Tower can have an outlet to be tapped to realease the oil for transporting to the surface. The design needs to be this way so that there is no upward bush on the Tower as it is being installed over the area. If there is a little leagage at the bottom that can be sealed with mud and concrete since there will not be the preasure working against it. Something to look at!

  3. Report this comment

    Jon Carr said:

    Inspired by a cocktail umbrella, I envisage a ‘plug’ that is fired into the leaking pipe. Streamlined on the way in, but forced open by the pressure of the oil flow it might block a hole.

  4. Report this comment

    DAVID LEE said:

    How about just SIMPLY dropping a Heavy large pipe over it as a whole? like 5 times the size or something large enough to get in place without interference from the gushing preasure. Then simply stack another and another till narrowing can be achieved? I’m sure you all can get the idea from that? Begin to control it then work on caping it.

    please respond at

    Am I really so far of base with this simple thought?

  5. Report this comment

    Robert Jesperson, PE said:

    Casing oscillators are used to install pipe for deep fouudation installation. The oscillator is able to apply down pressure while rotating the pipe back and forth a few degrees. The pipe would likely be able to be forced 15 to 50 feet below the sea bottom. If the oil is still blowing out around the pipe, that will free up the pipe and allow it to be twisted again until a seal is finally achieved. The pipe weight will become sizeable with depth. This should be able to be balanced by welding hollow cylinders or similar to the outside of the pipe as it is lowered. The amount required to balance weight can be easily calculated. The big unknown to me is how much lateral pressure there is from currents. They are obviously able to control small diameter devices as they have already hit the existing pipe in their efforts to stop the flow. I assume cables could be attached at predetermined levels to the pipe and subsequentially to 3 or 4 barges/ships to maintain the pipe in the proper lateral position. Since the oscillator only moves in small arcs, cable entanglement should not be an issue. The pipe diameter could be any size, but likely in the 5 foot diameter range to allow more ability to be centered and still minimize lateral forces. I believe it is a viable option.

  6. Report this comment

    dennis freeman said:

    Immediate stoppage of flow doesn’t appear likely and attempts substantiate that thought. In the hope of a short term control possibly a displacement vacuum would work. Large inverted bell with holes allowing seawater in (slightly exceeding current well outflow rate). Hole at apex of the bell with riser pipe to avoid collapse in the lower section (length needs calculation based on depth)then to hose.

    Lighter gas and oil will bring seawater with it to the surface/tanker. Maybe Kevin Costner’s oil/water separator would have some merit at the tanker to reduce transport.

  7. Report this comment

    Chandru Putta said:

    It will be tough to try something against the pressurized upward flow. Remove the broken pipe at the flange by removing the nuts. Have a new pipe with flange on both ends and one side has already welded bolts. Once the broken pipe is removed, lower the new pipe on top of the existing flange with the welded bolts getting aligned with the fixed lower flange and tighten the nut from bottom. Connect enough number of pipes in the same sequence. Since no pressure stopping is performed this process should help to reroute the flow. After connecting enough length of pipes the oil can be diverted to the required place.

  8. Report this comment

    Jo-Ann L Hunter said:

    Not sure if this is already the case, but they should try developing a magnetic ring with the capability of being controlled mechanically (able to be reset, should it connect improperly). And once securely locked into place, can serve as a temporary fix until a more permanent one is available.

  9. Report this comment

    Marina Donker said:

    Put a huge funnel on top of the oil well of strong flexible material with a flexible wide tube all the way to the top.The flexible tube should be made of very strong material and provisions against the current should be made.

    The tube is open on top and oil tankers can suck out the oil and store it in their ships.

    This does not stop the leak, but at least the oil doesn’t spill in the water any more.

  10. Report this comment

    Peter Lavergne said:

    I have an idea to stop BP oil leak.I’m not sure if this would work but here it goes. Why not use whatever pipe they have and put a deflated air bag around the pipe.Stick it into the well casing and inflate it to seal off the pipe and inner casing and allow it to flow to tanker ships until they drill a relief well.The air bag will not only seal on the pipe but inside the well casing as well.If you have ever followed a tandem truck with suspension air bags you will understand what I am trying to say.It could be a long shot but you never know.Everything they have done so far has failed.Good Luck.

  11. Report this comment

    Richard P. Grant said:

    “substantial explosive charge”?

    A nuke. That’d do it.

  12. Report this comment

    Marlaine Peltonen said:

    My husband Ahti Peltonen has a suggestion for a solution to this problem.

    He has come up with solutions to problems with machinery defects in the past. FOR EXAMPLE: He came up the idea how to cut frozen timber with shears which ended up with Timbejack Machines than on to the Swedish Government

    If BP is interested in his idea, you have our e-mail address

  13. Report this comment

    Tom Eberhard said:

    Drill a side hole into/near the well, and circulate liquid nitrogen to slowly freeze the oil. See drawing here:

    Liquid Nitrogen boils at -196C. Gasoline melts at about -57C, so crude oil probably melts at a higher temp. Plenty of headroom.(?)

    Upside is it might work, downside is it might damage the equipment at the top of the well, and other unknowns. A chemical engineer and physicsist would have to calculate how much power would be needed to make the liquid Nitrogen.

    email me at to discuss ideas, etc.

  14. Report this comment

    Valji Sonara said:

    Have two 50 metres round inflatable rings joined one top of another, having total height of say 20 metres. The top ring is inflated with air and n the bottom ring sand is pumped into it. The air pressure on the top ring is controlled as the whole thing is lowered centrally on to the faulty BOP container valve. Air is replaced with sand in the top ring once down, creating a large containment ring for special concrete mix to be poured into. The large existing steel cap is lowered when the concrete level has reached top of the oil flow. Then the rest of the concrete poured fully to the top sealing the steel cap inside. I have seen large machines on discovery channel pouring sand and concrete in middle-east projects. Just need to make the large tubes, may need steel panels lined on the inner-side of the tube with steel ring to contain the outward pressure of concrete. Now that’s what you call TOPKILL!

  15. Report this comment

    Valji Sonara said:

    Second Thought Why not replace the faulty Blow Out Preventer Valve with another????

  16. Report this comment

    Ben Winton said:

    I would try to simply stop the leak. 14ft x 14ft x 4ft concrete block should do the trick. Simply lower onto well placing the first block on top of the leaking pipe. Crush the pipe and the leakage. Surround the leak until the flow stops. If the first block does not stop it put another block on top then around the sides as needed. It may not completely stop but it should reduce the flow until the new well is finished.

  17. Report this comment

    Laszlo Horvath said:

    I don’t think they are trying to stop the leak. I think they are trying to cap it. So they can continue get oil from it.

    At least I would charge them with that.

    To stop the leak, I saw them to cut into the pipe with a circular saw. And it stuck. Now if a circular saw gets stuck across a circular pipe, would that not block the flow ?!


    Make a small incision in the pipe. Then make larger cut (in the open end direction) to slide a plate (round or rect. if you make the cut on both sides). Now because it would leak around the edges put something in (and blow up) in the first hole. At this would go up against the plate.

    This could have been done in the first week.

  18. Report this comment

    Guenter Huss said:

    If there is enough pipe exposed, to be able to mount two large rollers on either side of the pipe connected to each other. Having the ability to apply pressure from each side of the pipe, to create a pinch point to squeeze the pipe in the center,thus shutting off the flow of the oil. There would have to be a mechanical or hydraulic power supply to pull or push these rollers together to achieve the collapse of the pipe.

  19. Report this comment

    Sedna Andes said:

    Have a robot turn a die into the well head to create threads for a valve. Then have a robot screw a valve into the well head with the valve open. Once the valve is screwed in place, have a robot close the valve.

  20. Report this comment

    anthony szot said:

    As being a plumber and steamfitter this leak can be stopped by tempoarily slowing oil and putting chamber over broken pipe push pressure of water and oil out with air and cementing pipe and restraint then shutting off let bp get in touch with me and I can give them several ideas

  21. Report this comment

    alexander mcrae said:

    HOPE SOMEBODY READS THIS, what we should do is 1. make a bubble with four holes that a pipe can attach to (the bubble is to keep the oil from coming out) 2. have 2 oil tankers have a pipe attach to one of the holes and suck the oil into the tanker 3. when the oil tankers are full have 2 more tankers attach to the other 2 holes to suck out the oil. 4. take the 2 full tankers to port to be draiened and the oil used. 5. keep doing this process until all the oil is gone from the well. P.S. I am only a 10 year old. SO I HOPE SOMEONE FROM BP READS THIS!!!

  22. Report this comment

    shawn lansberry said:

    Freeze end of pipe until you can lower dome over top

  23. Report this comment

    Pete Paulin said:

    I use about 18,000,000cf nitrogen per year. Two tankers Ln2 at surface. 2"Vacuum line down 50×100′ lengths. Attach VL to verticle cable for 5000 foot weight support. (#10,000)

    End of line is a zig zag of 20×3′ lines on a flexible insulated blanket the size of a door sideways. Flex blanket around oil stand pipe, band in place. Det cord two sides of oil riser pipe 180 degrees to pinch top of pipe. 12,000psi IP Pinch reduces internal velocity 70%, then freeze in place. Cap.

    flows will be reduced/stopped by venturi shape internal freeze wall, fragging into the pinch, ever slowing velocities, until ultimate solid stoppage. (velocity is the enemy of freezing) Self cumulative ice buildup will solve the issue. We tried this on an open line which would not freeze….pinched…it froze.

    non toxic no harm no foul

  24. Report this comment

    dwayne maison said:

    i have few ideas im poor speller sorry can us your top kill idea when your house is backed up there is a black rubber tube you hook a hose to place it in the pipe then turn it on it swells up then presure of the water shots out to try to free clog have a bigger one built to fix the pipe relef valve will be biger then may be your top kill will work all presure will be foced in to hole no leaks…just found out you have drill pipe in hole is oil coming out of drill pipe only or on both sides of dill pipe….no.2 idea after cutting the top off i do not no the presure coming out of pipe doorman makes engine freze plugs steel with rubber turn nut squeze rubber presureing side for tight seal have bigger one built for the pipe………no. 3 ..big self tapper srew with hole in center with a valve on top valve open when in stalling to releve presure untill it is installed then switching valve closed depening on the end of the valve can still pull oil out or pump top kill in to kill it

  25. Report this comment

    Peter Keyte said:

    Bomb it with sand bags. Big bags like we saw used during Katrina. After the pile gets big enough their combined weight will smother the flow until the relief well gets completed

  26. Report this comment

    Bob Wilken said:

    Use a continuous flaring “fabric” tube “twist-tied” tightly to the base of the riser or the blow-out preventer. (The “fabric” would have to be unaffected by the corrosive effects of the petroleum.)The other end would be fastened to a “hoop” which in turn would be raised above sea level, secured and controlled from shipboard. The effect would be to create a controlling corral for the petroleum which would then be pumped and transferred to to tankers. In some ways it would look something like a flexible “funnel”.

  27. Report this comment

    Lee Howard said:

    BPp should create a large concrete chamber, one that would totally cover the damaged valve, maybe 20X20X60 with thick walls around 2 or 3ft thick. Attach a new valve on top of the concrete chamber and lower the chamber over the damaged valve. The chamber will be heavy enough to sink into the sea bed to create a seal. Then the chamber will fill with the oil escaping from the damaged valve an create pressure and push the oil out the new valve attached to the top of the concrete chamber. You could make the concrete chamber in less than a week.

  28. Report this comment

    Bruce Maclean said:

    Many good ideas so far! A few more: Insert an inflatable device deep into the well cavity and then inflate it. The newly inflated device will rise to block the flow from within. I also think the idea of placing a valve in open position (from Huss) around the pipe, securing it, and then slowly closing the valve thereby constricting the flow of oil is one of the better options. ALSO, can the plume be ignited at the well head? Burn it off at the source.

  29. Report this comment

    Cory Stevenson said:

    Here is my idea:

    Drill a control hole in the side of the pipe below the failed valve. There are a number of rubber stopper valves on the market that can be placed in this new hole and blown up (like a balloon) to plug the hole. This would only be a temporary fix until a form of leancrete/concrete could be placed in the top of the pipe. The rubber stopper would hold long enough for the concrete to set up and then the problem is solved. The hole drilled in the side is a control hole with a valve (like a hot tap on a waterline) on it so it can be shut off when the job is done and the connection to the rubber stopper can be removed and the stopper left in the hole. Once this is all done then the well can be capped and safety taken for future release can be made.

  30. Report this comment

    Rich Deworter said:

    That old riser tube looks like it has a flanged connection to the BOP. Why don’t they just unbolt what’s left of it, re-connect a flanged gate valve 180 degrees on one side, open the valve, slide it across the opening, bolt it up all around and then close the gate valve? This is how we capped dozens of blown wells in Kuwait in 1993.

  31. Report this comment

    douglas corbett said:

    I know airbags are used to plug pipes at oilrefineries when repairs are being done on pipe lines.BP already has a pipe shoved into the riser pipe if you place an airbage around this pipe (donut style) and place it back in as far as possible. Then inflate the airbage with any luck this should hold. Oil can then be put abourd ships giving you some time to solve the problem or may even cap the well.Depending on the pressure.

  32. Report this comment

    Tim Williams said:

    This is killing wildlife! and soon distroy peoples lives!!Many millions! So I think our government has the wright,To step in and make a solid steel,Guided,Self propeled,Very Very heavy,missle,Shoot it directly into the hole.Causing the surounding sediments,Rock,To be compacted,as it pushes into the hole at a very fast rate,With it’s heavy mass.Non explosive Of corse!!You don’t need to have any explosion! It’s own weight will compress and seal this thing shut!!I don’t want to hear,This cant be done!We send bunker busters into the ground every day in our armed services,Deep into the ground! Thank you for your time! Tim williams

  33. Report this comment

    Lidia Alfano said:

    Why not bend the pipe and narrow the opening, then crimp it closed and bend to close and seal the opening.

  34. Report this comment

    Kevin O'C said:

    a flexible spire plug, the largest diameter being slightly larger than the well diameter, which could be gradually inserted into the now vertical pipe, could have a surrounding attached platform to load sandbags, gravel, rocks, evenly around it to gradually push it down into the well further and further until blockage is achieved. Then pile on top gravel, sandbags, boulders – whatever.

  35. Report this comment

    GARY MUSICK said:
    1. 1 they should have left the pipe a lot longer instead of cutting it so short.they could have placed a large shutoff valve over the pipe with the valve open to release pressure ,then welded the bottom part,then with valve sticking out past the cutoff pipe about 6 ft then after the bottom was welded ,then the valve could be closed
  36. Report this comment

    Jordan Sim said:

    DUCT TAPE!!!! AND LOTS OF IT!!! OR just blow the whole plant up. Or you could kink the whole pipe line butt nooooo someone had to go and cut it off

  37. Report this comment

    Lawrence McKeon said:

    What if a long, fairly rigid hose were put into the oil pipe. This hose has a large, long rubber inflatable portion at its tip. Once inserted to desired depth, the balloon portion at the tip of the hose could be inflated, gradually so as to lessen the pressure slowly. Hopefully this balloon would hold in place by friction within the pipe, for a long enough time to cap the pipe’s opening more permanently.

  38. Report this comment

    ian munro said:

    use the water pressure at that depth to form a clamp the metal at that depth depending on thickness will crush around the pipe outer body would have to be of submarine strenght but inner sealings could be made of less strenght so as to crush around the leaking pipe

  39. Report this comment

    jerry schell said:



  40. Report this comment

    jerry schell said:

    Split a gate valve in half. Leave it open clamp it to the

    flanges with a segment added to the bottom of each half of

    the split gate valve desighened to fit the O D of the flanges with a lip to secure the assembly. Keep in mind Bolt

    clearances on the lip.

    Clamp it and close it.

  41. Report this comment

    gwendolyn granade said:

    why can’t they use expandable foam, such as to fill in a hole in a wall for insulation. if it can blow out to 10 times its actual size why cant’t it stop this leak

  42. Report this comment

    Paul Mueller said:

    Build and lower a large open bottom steel box with cutting edges over the well.(40×40×20 meters)

    The cutting edges will dig into the ocenfloor. Add concrete blocks to increase the weight of the box.

    The oil is now contained, not under pressure and can be removed through a riser pipe.

    This is similar to a Steel Caisson used to build Bridge Piers

    P.H. Mueller

    Construction Consultant

  43. Report this comment

    Michael Engineer said:

    Here are several possible ways to stop the oil leak.

    If a long heavy rod can be inserted straight into the open well shaft a variant to consider would be to try to lodge the rod in the pipe as an obstruction using explosives and spines.

    If for instance a 100 foot rod can be inserted straight into the pipe (under it’s own weight if heavy enough and streamlined), then attach flush with the rod some explosive spines that are attached to the rod. The spines could be attached to the rod itself or attached by cables. If cables are used, build a small net of interconnecting cables to catch debris coming up from below. Use two explosive sites, one near the top of the rod, and one at the middle. Set the explosions off at the same time to drive the rods into the well casing walls. Put some knobby bulb shapes, or grappling hooks on the spine ends to anchor the spines into the wall when the explosions go off. The spines should act like a piton does when rock climbers attach to a rock wall.

    Use 8 or 12 spines at each site to help insure that some good anchors are formed.

    Build into the lower half of the rod some positive buoyancy pieces that can detach. Wood might work, but someone who knows the affects of the pressure at that depth could recommend the best material to use. Let there be about 200 pieces of buoyant materials that can get caught by the cable webbing and the anchor spines. Attach some of the buoyant pieces together with short cables to help them catch the netting above. The bigger and cabled together pieces should be higher on the rod than the smallest pieces. The bigger pieces will catch on to the netting first and the smaller pieces will fill in the gaps.

    Run some detonation cord down to the buoyant pieces to make sure they separate at the time of the explosion.

    When the explosion goes off, the rod gets anchored securely to the walls and the netting deploys. The buoyant materials come up with the rising oil and get stuck against the webbing, and the oil leak may become almost completely blocked as a result. Finish with a top kill.

    If the rod is long enough and heavy enough to fall under it’s own weight, it might be best to let the anchoring occur 1000 feet or so below the surface so that the oil doesn’t have a good path through the damaged pipe to rise to the surface.

    Regarding the idea of inserting a long tapered rod into the well that has enough weight to fall against the oncoming oil, there is another variation that is interesting to consider.

    If there is straight up and down access to the well casing for 100 feet or so, this idea might work.

    If the interior diameter of the pipe is 21 inches across, make a steel cylinder 21 inches across in diameter and 50 feet long (or as long as necessary to provide the sufficient weight). Machine it to taper it from 21 inches down to 10 inches or so. On the 10 inch end of it, attach a needle nose that can be inserted into the pipe. Taper that needle nose to the 10 inch end of the cylinder so that it will act as a guide. When the needle nose is inserted into the well, there will be turbulence to overcome, but once the needle gets inside of the well casing, then the shape will act as a guide. There will be more turbulence when the thicker parts start entering the pipe but the guide should keep the device in the pipe. Keep lowering the device into the well, as long as the cylinder weighs enough, as the thicker part starts entering the well, it should be able to keep going in until the 21 inch diameter part is flush with the top of the well. Add some gaskets at around the 19 inch diameter to try to form a good seal. If part of the cylinder remains outside of the pipe that would be fine as the pipe may be strong enough to support any weight that is not being counteracted by the pressure from the oil.

    Note that if this device and all the cables are too heavy for a crane to manipulate without risk of the cables breaking, then some bouyancy floats could be attached to the device to counteract the weight and allow a surface crane to position it without breaking the cables. Boayancy floats could be attached to the 5000 foot cable to the surface if that cable would tend to break under it’s own weight (5000 feet of cable does weigh a lot). The bouyancy floats could be detached when the plugging object is put in place.

    Variations on the guide mechanism can be imagined. 10 or 20 feet from the tip of the needle nose, spines could be tapered out to 19 inches or so, and then attached to a 19 inch diameter cylinder that is long enough and heavy enough to counteract the force of the oil coming out. Attach a plugging device at the top, or let it drop to slow the leak rate, etc.

    Note that ball bearings could be attached to the bottom of the rod to help make sure that it doesn’t catch any seams in the pipe as it falls into the well.

    Another possible option instead of blowing up the pipe would be to attach bladders to the rod that could be inflated deep below the surface which would press tightly against the walls of the well casing. Airbags in cars use a small cap of liquid explosive to inflate the air bags (airbags are like a bladder). Imagine a 1000 foot pipe where 500 feet of super airbags/bladders are attached which inflate on the same principle as an airbag does. If they all inflate in a quick sequence from the bottom to the top, they may provide enough friction in pressing against the well casing to stop the oil, or at least to lower the pressure for a few minutes where other methods could be quickly tried.

    I do like my other idea to fracture the pipe better than this one, to tell you the truth, but there may even be some merit to this inflatable bladder idea.

    Regarding the idea of trying to sink a very long and very heavy rod into the oncoming oil stream, if that idea is determined to be viable by engineers, then an option to consider would be to attach high explosives to that rod, and to let it sink several thousand feet below the well head, then detonate and let the explosion break the pipe and fracture the surrounding soils to create blockage and obstruction of the path for oil to come up. I would use several explosive charges to go off simultaneously. Use a very large explosive charge at the bottom of the rod, to go off deepest into the well to fracture as much surrounding soils as possible. Use successively smaller charges in several places up the rod towards the surface. At any of the explosive locations, if the well casing is split or tumbled or if soils or slabs of rock get in the path of the oil, the obstructions should decrease the flow rate, making the top kill a more viable option.

    A pressure sensitive detonator could be used, or a timed detonation could be used.

    Options for making a heavy enough rod to sink against the oil flow would be to encase depleted uranium with steel. Engineers can figure out the best materials.

    Obviously if the engineers conclude that a larger diameter metal rod could sink into the oncoming oil flow, the larger the better.

    This method could be attempted several times too. Send the first rod as deep as possible, then blow it up. Send the second rod less deep if the first attempt fails.

    Note that these attempts should not increase the flow of oil and they would very likely leave the well head intact where other methods of containment could still be tried.

    If a long length of metal pipe or rod can be inserted into the well, then it might be best to taper that rod to make it easier to insert. The tip of it should be needle shaped like a jet fighters nose, and then the diameter may be gradually increased over the length of the pipe. If enough weight is hanging in the well, eventually the taper could be widened to the point where the diameter of the rod approaches the diameter of the well. Some rubber or plastic gaskets could be attached at some point to get pulled into the well pipe and form a seal but there would need to be enough hanging weight to hold the seals in the pipe and not have them suspended outside of the pipe because of the pressure while it still leaks some (but at a slower rate due to the obstruction of the rod and stoppers)

    No tapering would even be needed if the length of 1 inch rod hanging in the pipe become heavy enough that some wider stopper mechanism could be attached at the top. 1000 feet of 1 inch rod might be enough weight to do the trick. Someone who knows the exact pressure could figure out how long the rod would need to be.

    If the rod breaks off and falls down the well pipe, it shouldn’t do any harm. It will reach a terminal velocity and go to the bottom of the well 30,000 feet below. Any obstruction at any depth should reduce the pressure behind the oil. Another option is to keep dropping obstructions until the flow decreases significantly. 30 or 40 rods dropped down the pipe should eventually clog it at the bottom or someplace along the way. It may be desireable and possible to lower the rods into the well hole far enough to make sure that it will not be sticking out of the top when it is dropped. Lower them to the point where they can be released, then lower them another 20 feet and pull them back up that 20 feet. Then have the robotics cut them off so they can fall cleanly into the pipe.

    A tapered solution may be able to plug the well in one fell swoop if it is long enough and heavy enough.

    Imagine a one inch rod of steel that is 300 feet long. It may weigh several tons and it’s weight could be enough to overcome the flow of oil coming out if it is dropped into the oncoming oil.

    If a heavier metal like depleted uranium is used, a shorter length of rod could used which might be beneficial to the surface operations and the undersea robotics.

    If there is straight access available down into the drill pipe for a thousand feet, it may be possible to lower a long steel (or heavier metal) pipe or rod into the well. Since steel is heavier than water, if you get a long enough extension of pipe or rod hanging down into the well, eventually the weight of the rod will have enough force to hold a stopper or plug in place as the hanging weight would be greater than the pressure of the oil coming out. Engineers can calculate how much steel pipe or rod has to be hanging into the well before welding on a stopper. The stoppers could start out as small spheres to reduce the flow progressing to larger spheres. If the flow rate can be slowed this way, then the top kill may eventually work. The long steel pipe could even be cut loose from the surface ships to drop into the pipe once there is enough weight hanging in the well to prevent the pipe from being pushed out by the oil pressure. If piping is used it might be best to put some slots in the pipe to allow oil to escape as the pipe is being inserted.

    If may even be possible to slow the leak rate down by dropping very long depleted uranium rods down the pipe. If a 300 foot rod of depleted uranium can be inserted into the pipe, if may be heavy enough to drop by itself into the well. Small diameter rods could be used at first, for example just one inch in diameter. If allowed to drop into the well, this would start restricting the flow as the effective diameter of the pipe available for the oil to flow through would be reduced, and the pressure would reduce. Engineers can figure out how long a rod of depleted uranium would be needed to be heavy enough to fall into the well and overcome the oil flowing out. Dropping 20 or 30 rods into the well eventually may reduce the flow for other methods of containment to be successful.


    Michael (an Electrical and Software Engineer)

  44. Report this comment

    vince smith said:

    Machine a long tapered steel rod, let the engineers figure out how long it would have to be. have the rod come to a point of about of 1 inch in diameter on the bottom. with the top of the rod the same inside diameter as the pipe leading out of the blow out preventer. coat the thick end of the rod with rubber. lower the rod slowly into the BOP, as the diameter of the rod increased as it was slowly lowered it would gradually slow the flow of oil, until you finally reached the portion of the rod that was the same diameter as the inside diameter as the riser. If lowered slowly you would have no pressure blow out as it would be a gradual slowing of the hole. Think of it as a cork, a long steel tapered cork!!!!

  45. Report this comment

    vince smith said:

    after you got the cork in you could weld it to the riser pipe with the robot welder!!

  46. Report this comment

    PERCY GRAVES said:

    Just from what I’ve seen on the news, it seems you need to add a large cylinder around the oil spilling out the new containment apparatus, to funnel up above the sea surface to be sucked up by super tankers! Why are they still allowing oil to flow freely into the sea?! Why allow this to continue?! I think they’re cheap bastards unworthy of license to drill or operate ever again!

    Jo-Ann L Hunter and I agree it won’t stop the leak but virtually stop the spill progress from source!

  47. Report this comment

    PERCY GRAVES said:

    I also thought of a metal cork that started narrow and graduated until it is larger than the well hole, pressed shut, and welded, preceded by an inflated bag, then cement.

  48. Report this comment

    will brown said:

    Make a carrot shaped plug. Lead internal, rubber external. It could be 50 yds long and have it tapper 5" to 50" and anchoring pionts at the top. Cables can be attached to large concrete blocks as anchors.

  49. Report this comment

    Theo Arrenbrecht said:

    All methods of plugging have failed so far, so why not just “vacuum” the oil out of the riser pipe now that it has been cut off neatly.

    The idea would be to have a barge (or similar) with a pump capable of at least the oil volume plus a little, connected to a suction line which is loosely placed over the throat of the spill source. Oil and excess water can then be discharged into tankers and separated elsewhere.

    At least this will buy time until the relief wells are drilled and operational.

    Only uncertainty in my mind with this idea is how many light components there are in the crude that is spilling that may form vapor on the way to the barge which is at atmospheric pressure vs very large pressures ~1500m below sea level. This may vapor lock the pump suction.

  50. Report this comment

    Tim Casidy said:


    Large parachute over the hole and anchored to the sea floor around the edges . A hose at the top to catch most oil and bring it to the surface.

  51. Report this comment

    Paul Ison said:

    Top kill was a rediculous idea and everything else has involved BP trying to offset their cleanup costs by getting the oil onto tankers. Kind of sickening really.

    I’m no engineer but why cant a larger diameter sleeve with an open valve on the end be slid over the cut pipe, and firmly attached through the pipe and to itself to reduce the likelyhood of the pipe collapsing + also have a solid inner ring to firmly clamp around. once attached, the valve can be gradually shut off with the apropriate overengineering and gas pressure release contingencies. I just cant understand why something like this isnt possible, even with the limitation of using robots to perform the ‘fixing’…use the properties of the metal for the solution in the fixing part.

    Once closed I think the US gov should be allowed to employ a 3rd party to get oil from the well at a slow rate just to help with keeping pressure down rather than relying on BP to ‘pay back’. The proceeds from this oil should be directly controlled by the US government

  52. Report this comment

    Brent Easley said:

    Sinking a mothballed aircraft carrier dead center onto the well head would certainly stop this fiasco and would become an artifical reef. A rather uncomplicated procedure but definetly effective and permanent. Bp can sacrifice this particlar well and redrill elsewhere.

  53. Report this comment

    Lloyd Adams said:

    Oil always rises to the surface of the water, so catch it at the surface with mine sweepers fitted with special pumps that pump the oil into floating barges toed behind the mine(oil)sweeper. Floatable, or modified seacans to pump oil into and contain until you can organize shifts of barges to contain all the oil, and prevent oil escaping. DO THIS QUICK. TIME IS RUNNING OUT. Do you need GOD to slap your face?

    The military are not equipped for this type of shit, but they can get a mine sweeper in there with modified pump stuff communicated from oil personnel, and pump it into plastic floating barges that can be carried away, and be replaced by replacements…right?

    You’ve got to do something, before the whole eco world is destroyed!!!

  54. Report this comment

    Dan Gardner said:

    Using tube sampling technology and umbrella shaped cones; a fix could be mfg in a few weeks.

    Insert a shaft into the well head, the shaft will have several 24" dia cones that are in the closed position facing down (the well is 20" in dia) once a predetermined depth is reached, pull a second shaft that is inside the first to open the cones. The pressure will force open the cones against the well walls decreasing the pressure and slowing the leak.

    Each cone will stop a certain amount of oil and reduce a certain amount of pressure. Assuming a tight seal cannot be made between the cones and the well walls and the next cone will catch what passes the one in front. With enough cones, the leak should stop or slow WAY down.

    The length of the shaft, the quantity of cones and how to secure the shaft to the top of the well head to keep it in place needs to be determined by those who know.

    Sampling tubes are inserted into drums of powders, liquids or the ground and the inner shaft is twisted exposing a pocket that samples will fall into, twist the inner shaft the other direction and the pocket closes allowing to withdraw the sample tube and get the sample.

    Use the same technology on a much larger scale and using the inner shaft to open the cones rather that open a pocket for a sample.

  55. Report this comment

    Nicole Sharp said:

    My idea, is to use large nuts on the outside of the pipe and continue adding them in consecutively smaller diameters

    to slowly close the leak.

  56. Report this comment

    matt sisson said:

    Well I been thinkin

    and I recken that if you put a flow sensing torpedo like device down there it would go down the shaft and deploy an anchor at a suitable distance much like a umbrella with the fabric ripped off by a tornado!

    then the trailing line from it is sent back by an inflating device and a larger line threadded through that pulls the next few similar devices down the same path

    what Im getting at is an idea of the first device opening and steming the flow while all trailing devices activate after and have a cumulative effect that lets the last few activate on low flow rate and add a cementing agent … you get the idea and I need another beer so good luck mate an see yas on the flip side

  57. Report this comment

    Zergham Tareen said:

    1) Send heavy explosive charges from the bottom of the well to the top of a well and set it off collapsing the hole on itself.

    2) Watch the movie “There will be blood”

  58. Report this comment

    Scott Hageman said:

    Dear BP,

    The only way to contain this leak is to place a larger diameter pipe over the existing pipe on the ocean floor bottom. Drill this pipe down as far as you can. You need a relief on the top pipe so the oil can flow as you drill and flow out the top. The mud from the second pipe over the first will seal between pipes. install on the second pipe lock grabs like they have on quick connects to hold in place. Then cap or fill a tanker.. Scott Hageman

  59. Report this comment

    greg grabitz said:

    Run two small high pressure lines to the bottom of the well with a mixing tip at the end . Pump expanding foam such as polyurethane or maybe a harder expanding chemical . Blow in enough to make a huge plug . When it gets big enough it will float to the top of the oil plugging of the bottom of the oil shaft .

  60. Report this comment

    Arne Beyer said:


    Position rig over the well. Insert heavy duty drillstring in remains of riser which now is right on top of BOP. Monitor insertion with ROVs and jiggle the string past the shears of the BOP.

    There ARE openings there – uncertainty is how big they are. Perhaps they are fully open on which this method has a much higher probability of success. If the shears are part open the heavy duty drillstring with a coned start could force it open.

    Once drillstring is in the hole feed into the well until sufficiently deep – then pump killmud.

    This method once past the BOP is equally certain to work or better than the relief well method.


    Arne Beyer

    Odfjell Drilling Technology

  61. Report this comment

    Arne Beyer said:


    Actually realized the prior drill pipe is left in the hole and perhaps protrudes the BOP. If so there is definately space for the 2nd set of drillstring to be inserted and pass into the wellbore.

    arne beyer

    odfjell drilling technology

  62. Report this comment

    Lee Howard said:

    First, I’d cut the pipe behind all the breaches. Next I’d slip a beveled cone with an umbilical cord similar to those used by air tankers. The cone would secure itself to the pipe via barbs (slips on but not off). The umbilical would host a steel cable wrapped in braided steal ½ the diameter of the pipe and welded to the cable on the end. Once the cable was inserted ~200 ft into the pipe (at which point barbs would prevent the braided steel from coming back out)the braided steal would be filled with concrete. The steel cable would be pulled out which would cause the braiding to expand with the cement inside and the flow would stop.


    Minneapolis, MN

  63. Report this comment

    greg grabitz said:

    I think this would work . BP had the right idea stopping the oil from the bottom just didnt use the right materials .

    My version . A rubber bladder much like a drain cleaning bladder slipped into the center of a wire hanger . Blatter must expand larger then the well hole . Run blatter into well beyond the vacuum point in the well . Expand the blatter with some sort of hardening cement that cures hard . Be sure not to have no air what so ever in the bladder that may cause it to pop . This would create and rubber coated hard ball with steel straps . Pull the ball devise up blocking the well . I think a long narrow devise would expand wide enough to block the hole .

  64. Report this comment

    Dave Linamen said:

    Would freezing the leak using liquid nitrogen or another liquified cryogenic gas work? It is already extremely cold at the depth where the leak is. The gas would slowly increase the viscosity of the oil, and it would eventually freeze. Most cryogenic gas would not polute the ocean. Perhaps once the leak was frozen, it could be more easily plugged with another material.

  65. Report this comment

    james corbett said:

    Use a freeze-wall like the one used in the Boston Harbor tunnell to hold back Boston Harbor Tunnell. I believe the freeze-wall company is from Japan. (the Big Dig) –

  66. Report this comment

    scott thomas said:

    After reading all of the posts in this list… BP clearly, for what ever reason does not feel any urgency to solve this problem. I have heard of and read many ideas that a far more superior then what they have tried thus far. My idea is to use a very heavy cone and drop it onto the top of the pipe. Of course there would need to be some sort of stabilizing framework, I am envisioning a tripod of some sort with adjustable legs for aiming and a lowering mechanism. The cone could be shaped in such a way to gradually slip into the end of the pipe flaring it out as it goes in creating its on seal eventually.

    Scott Thomas 951-698-2509

  67. Report this comment

    samuel cofield said:

    use a pipe 1 inch smaller than the well pipe at least 20 feet long with ring grooves in the pipe 8 inches apart with inflatable o rings installed in the grooves which can be inflated with hydrolic pressure, all rings will be connected with small tubing from each side of o rings. not across the top of o rings the pipe will have a large cut off valve open while installing the pipe inside the well inflate o rings cut off the valve .oil stopped need flange on valve to bolt new pipe, pipes supported together with chains new pipe will have rings welded just below the valve so the chains can be hooked at least 3 chains the well pipe will have a flange ring in 2 pieces so it can be placed around the well pipe hooked with 2 large bolts and then 6 more bolts tightened against the well pipe after new pipe is connected to cutoff valve open valve to receive the oil should fix the problem until better solutions are found thanks.

  68. Report this comment

    Chris Morris said:

    I would just put my dick in the hole

  69. Report this comment

    PERCY GRAVES said:

    What in the world is wrong with a pipe that is tapered smaller than the well pipe which expands to a funnel with a diameter 10-20 times the well pipe diameter before forming into a cylinder and extends 10-20 feet or more if feasible to manufacture. It can be sealed by welding so you’d want to make the two pipes about the same diameter before having the apparatus pipe expand in size and the top of it far enough above the join point so you’re not risking getting blown up to do the weld. A large rubber tube to a size to cover the pipes that can have huge pipe clamps applied would be safer since the weight of the apparatus is enough to hold it in place over the well pipe assuming it’s metal and has a construction built under it that can be adjusted to raise and lower it so you don’t bust the pipe, or have it raised and lowered from the ship or ships if needed. You’d have to prop it up with construction on the sea floor at the bottom to also anchor it. You want it heavy enough so the ocean currents even in a storm doesn’t move it. 8 or more connecting steel rods positioned around the cylinder, going all the way to the top of the structure which should be high enough above sea level to prevent oil spilling into the sea! Might be able to build the rest of the cylinder with a strong plastic in sections that connect with rubber seals and use those rods to guide the section while also giving it strength. It could be made to expand really wide at the top to hold huge amounts of oil and enough ships to suck it up before it overflows. This should allow the oil to flow up with virtually no oil gushing out the sides as long as you are suctioning as fast as it fills the huge cylinder so there is no downward pressure so it does not gush out the sides. Ships can be used to support the weight of the structure. Just a free flow to the top to be suctioned. Pretty simple really. Should save a huge amount of manpower, equipment, energy, sea life, birds, sea shore, vacations, lungs from breathing it, economy, and money! The cost to build the structure should greatly offset what it will cost if you don’t build it and keep doing what you’re doing! Doesn’t make sense to leak oil faster than it’s can be cleaned up!

    I believe the solution has always been intuitive and could be perceive by even a none scientist like me. Tell me I’m wrong and I believe there are scientist that will tell you you’re a liar because it’s a solution that works. It only needs the will to do it! The only reason it could be deemed unfeasible is BP too cheap to build and apply it and Obama with too small a balls to make them. They’d rather throw a little money at it and deny later that they cleaned it all up, restored the environment and paid people for their loss fairly!

  70. Report this comment

    PERCY GRAVES said:

    Hey, just really, tapered pipe with rubber tube around the join section and clamped with huge pipe clamps. New cut off valve installed and cut the damn thing off! Pretty simple! It just occurred to me that the obvious is being completely overlooked. Cutoff valves are made to cut it off! Question is, why hasn’t anyone made them do it?!

    It’s like this, the Brit’s are playing us for fools and we’re doing everything to assure them they’re right!

    They are going to pump oil profits from that well until we wise up and stop them, kick them out of our waters forever, and lock a bunch of them up because they are serious criminals!

  71. Report this comment

    pep head said:

    First A very heavy big cilinder able to cover the hole well and blow out preventer, the base open, the upper top closed with a very, very heavy layer (in lead for example). The down edges of the circular wall of the cilinder made in rubber to avoid all the leaks by that side. You could put heavier and heavier weight on it by means of circular weights of lead that could be inserted in appropiate metal bars.

    Secon. Another very heavy big cilinder bigger than the other. Connected with the water surface with tubes able to inyect concret at hig pressure and lead balls in the space between the first and the second cilinder.

    Who knows?

  72. Report this comment

    pep head said:

    Another idea is to use a bell as they have used, but a very big one inside another even bigger. They should be able to sorround the whole blow-preventer until the bottom of the ocean. To close it to the bottom you would need a inflatable made of rubber. You could fill the space between the two bells with hot nitrogen, as they do know to avoid those christalls. While it functions you coud begin to surround the outer bell with lots of heavy concrete (mixed with lead balls for instance).

  73. Report this comment

    pep head said:

    Another idea. A bell just enough to cover the blow preventer. To avoid a high surface to the pressure of the inside oil. The bell connected with surface trough a bar. You can send very big and heavy lead rings down the bar to press on the top of the bell. You can compesate the big pressure on the top of the well with lead rings with a much bigger diameter. You can think on the weight of a halterophilia on the bar putting it vertical. At the bottom you should have some inflatable closure to attach it to the bottom of the sea.

  74. Report this comment

    Fred Astaire said:

    Possible inside information….

    When BP tried the top kill method it was noticed that mud was leaking up from the ocean floor in several locations.

    The well casing has holes which are used to fracture rock and allow oil to flow into the well.

    Fear is that with the amount of pressure in the well and flow containing mud, rock, etc., it has begun eroding the interior of the pipe. Trying to plug the well may cause the well casing to fracture, thus allowing oil to enter the fractured rock and oil to leak out from multiple locations.

    This information has not been substantiated and i’m no expert, but this does make some sense as to why they are no longer trying to plug it.

  75. Report this comment

    Gerald Longhibler said:

    Lower a large pipe over the oil spill with the top portion connected to a large oil tanker. When one oil tanker is full, disconnect and reconnect to a waiting oil tanker. If some water is sucked into the oil tanker, it is better than the oil being released into the ocean. The oil can then be pumped into wherever they stored oil before the leak. Hopefully this will give BP time to remedy the problem and reduce the balance of the oil spill into the ocean.

  76. Report this comment

    Gerald Longhibler said:

    Instead of drilling ahead of the leak and sucking out oil, drill ahead of the leak and insert a device that would expand and block the oil flow.

    In simple terms, it would be like pulling the tab on a large self-inflating ball and simultaneously inserting it into the oil flow ahead of the leak and having it expand and block the oil flow. Stop worrying about sucking the oil out and only worry about stopping the flow of oil for now.

  77. Report this comment

    Gerald Longhibler said:

    Place bars over the opening of the oil spill (similar to the bars of a jail cell). Then drill ahead of the leak, insert something similar to a bunch of balls (sort of like the colored balls you find in a childs ball pit at Six Flags or pizza joints) where the balls eventually BLOCK all flow of oil.

    This sounds too simple, but people are only thinking of blocking the oil leak 100% with one attempt instead of thinking about a partial block over the leak first and then taking a second approach to resolve.

  78. Report this comment

    greg grabitz said:

    A mile long tube made of canvas about 5 or 6 foot in diameter

    Weights at the bottom to hold it down and floats on the top . that would allow the oil to float to the top containing inside and would allow the frozen gas to float up . Simple cheap problem solved . Either burn it as it comes to top or suck it up onto tankers . Floats would have to be made of burn proof materials

  79. Report this comment

    Harriet Deg said:

    Couldn’t they cut the pressure in the original well by Drilling two shafts (pressure release vents) along side and into the original well. Picture it like Triton’s three pronged fork then block each entrance.

  80. Report this comment

    franklin brogdon said:

    machine a long tapered spear, on the spear machine a seal that increases in diameter that is larger than the casing on the wellput a valve on the top of the spear where the well can be used when pluged, the bottom of the spear can be hollow of any diameter where the oil can flow thru after being pluged, the spear can be dropped if heavy enough, or put on drill stem and screwed into the well until sealed, the well is sealed and the well can still be used

  81. Report this comment

    Charles Childs said:

    I know how to stop the spill 100%. I’ve written the whitehouse and several other orgs, but no one is taking me serious.

    BP needs to get with me. This can be done in a 2 – 5 day period!

    Mr Childs

  82. Report this comment

    Charles Childs said:

    I see quite a few people on here that are on the right path to stopping the oil leak. so what does that tell us, hmmmmmmmmm, maybe bp really doesnt want the leak sealed!

    Why would they, that damn thing is a gold mine. It can run for years. They will take several billion in loses, to gain 10’s of billions in gains from a gusher like this one.


  83. Report this comment

    Charles Childs said:

    Oh my, where the hell is MIT??? Save us will smith!

  84. Report this comment

    José Parodi said:

    How about placing over the source of the spill a huge very heavy metal(Brass?)bell with a 6 to 12 inch hose or pipe (as necessary) on the bell top to channelize the oil thru the hose/pipe to the surface.

  85. Report this comment

    sally mamales said:

    How about sticking another pipe in the hole, then covering the base of the hole with some water proof material and then piling sand bags on top of that. The pipe could be attached to movable joints which are attached to more pipes so that the ocean currents won’t damage the pipe. After the pipes reach the surface, a suction could begin to syphen the oil out and create an alternative place for the oil to go, a floating oil resevore but still better than polluting the gulf any further!

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