Friday, August 06, 2010
Aug 6: BP announced that it completed cementing operations at the MC252 well at 2:15 PM CDT, as part of the static kill procedure. Monitoring of the well is underway in order to confirm the effectiveness of the procedure. Operating with the guidance and approval of the National Incident Commander and government officials, BP continues the ongoing relief well operations. Depending upon weather conditions, mid-August is the current estimate of the most likely date by which the first relief well will intercept the Macondo well annulus. The latest operation completely seals the well and should assure that no more oil leaks into the Gulf.
At noon today (August 6), Thad Allen, National Incident Commander for the Deepwater Horizon/BP provided a further update indicating that BP had complete a layer of fluid on top of the cement and then put more mud on top of that to press it down to help add pressure and cure the cement. That will be going on for 24 hours through today. Then BP will start pressure testing to make sure the cement is set and is holding in the well.
At the same time, BP has commenced drilling through the cement shoe that was covering the end of the casing on the relief well, and will be proceeding forward. He said now that the well has been cemented from the top they are moving ahead with the relief well and cementing the well from the bottom. He said, "we are unequivocally committed to completing the relief wells, drilling into the annulus and cementing the annulus as the bottom portion of this kill."
Allen said BP will "do a ranging run over the next 24 hours, and then drill approximately 30 feet further down into the well, and between the 8th of August and the 13th of August, there'll be three patterns where we will drill 30 feet, do a ranging run. That's putting the wire down the hole and sensing where the pipe is at on the Macondo well, and we expect to be somewhere around the annulus around the 13th of August, and the drilling portion into the annulus is expected to occur somewhere between the 14th and the 15th of August. The company, however, is prepared to move ahead and deal with the annulus somehow if they encounter it on the way down. As I've told you in previous briefings, we're starting about 4-1/2 feet away from the well horizontally, and we'll drill down at a very, very slight angle. If for some reason they penetrate the annulus in the process of doing that, they'll prepare they'll be prepared to go ahead and assess the condition of the annulus at that point and go ahead and cement the well in."
Access a release from BP on completing the cementing operation (click here). Access the transcript from the briefing by Allen (click here). Access more information on BP activities from the BP response website (click here). Access the Restore the Gulf website for more information (click here). Access the Unified Command website which contains additional information (click here).