THE OIL DISASTER: POSSIBLE FIX

We’ve been playing with the new Newsy app for the iPad, a good source for news videos. A recent Newsy video shows the containment dome, which so far isn’t working.

On the New York Time’s Earth blog, Harvard physicist Richard Wilson explains a technique that was used 10 years ago in Brazil to stop a seabed well from flowing.

Bob simplifies it this way: You have a broken pipe that’s gushing oil into the ocean. Part of that pipe is underground. If you could cap the underground pipe, or connect a new one to it, you could contain the oil or capture it. The trick is finding that underground pipe. That’s what the Harvard physicist’s idea is all about. He describes a system of plotting a field of magnetic flux on the seabed floor as a method of gradually zeroiing in on the steel or iron pipe. This worked for Brazil after a zeroing-in process that took about 40 days.

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