Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Katrina And Rita Provide Glimpse Of What Could Happen To Offshore Drilling If Gustav Hits Gulf

Date:
August 29, 2008
Source:
Rice University
Summary:
Shortly after Hurricanes Katrina and Rita hit the US, engineers studied damage done to offshore drilling platforms in the Gulf of Mexico. If tropical storm Gustav strengthens into a Category 3 hurricane, as forecasters are predicting, the damage could be extensive.

Different type of platforms/rigs used in the Gulf and how they are secured. In lay terms, platforms in shallower water are fixed securely to the sea floor. The floating drilling rigs and production platforms in deeper water are tethered or moored -- as in conventional ships -- to the sea floor.
Credit: Image courtesy of Rice University

Shortly after Hurricanes Katrina and Rita hit the U.S., Rice University civil and mechanical engineering professor Satish Nagarajaiah studied damage done to offshore drilling platforms in the Gulf of Mexico.

If tropical storm Gustav strengthens into a Category 3 hurricane, as forecasters are predicting, Nagarajaiah’s findings could provide valuable knowledge about what to expect if Gustav hits the Gulf of Mexico oil platform regions.

Katrina and Rita (both Category 5 storms with sustained winds of up to 175 mph) caused the following damage on an estimated 3,000 platforms and 22,000 miles of pipelines that were in the direct path of hurricanes:

  • 52 platforms with major damage
  • 19 of the floating drill units exposed to hurricane force winds went adrift or were damaged
  • 115 platforms destroyed
  • Eight rigs destroyed
  • 535 pipeline segments damaged

“Predicting how much damage will occur to oil platforms and rigs is a difficult task,” said Nagarajaiah. “These platforms and rigs may have sustained damage due to past storms, and like anything else, become more susceptible to threats of wind and storm surge."

The costs could be steep to an energy company.

“If one major deep-water production platform is destroyed, you’re talking about a $1 billion or more loss,” Nagarajaiah said. “If it’s multiple rigs and platforms in a variety of water depths, then we’re talking billions of dollars.”

When Katrina and Rita struck, gas prices soared as a result of damage to oil facilities. With oil prices at all-time highs this year, U.S. oil production in the Gulf of Mexico has a direct impact on gasoline prices.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Rice University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Rice University. "Katrina And Rita Provide Glimpse Of What Could Happen To Offshore Drilling If Gustav Hits Gulf." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 29 August 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/08/080829104949.htm>.
Rice University. (2008, August 29). Katrina And Rita Provide Glimpse Of What Could Happen To Offshore Drilling If Gustav Hits Gulf. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 3, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/08/080829104949.htm
Rice University. "Katrina And Rita Provide Glimpse Of What Could Happen To Offshore Drilling If Gustav Hits Gulf." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/08/080829104949.htm (accessed September 3, 2014).

Share This



More Earth & Climate News

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Raw: Thousands of Fish Dead in Mexico Lake

Raw: Thousands of Fish Dead in Mexico Lake

AP (Sep. 2, 2014) — Over 53 tons of rotting fish have been removed from Lake Cajititlan in western Jalisco state. Authorities say that the thousands of fish did not die of natural causes. (Sep. 2) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Raw: Iceland Volcano Spewing Smoke

Raw: Iceland Volcano Spewing Smoke

AP (Sep. 2, 2014) — The alert warning for the area surrounding Iceland's Bardarbunga volcano was kept at orange on Tuesday, indicating increased unrest with greater potential for an eruption. Smoke is spewing from the volcano, and lava is spouting nearby. (Sept. 2) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
U.N. Says Ebola Travel Restrictions Will Cause Food Shortage

U.N. Says Ebola Travel Restrictions Will Cause Food Shortage

Newsy (Sep. 2, 2014) — The U.N. says the problem is two-fold — quarantine zones and travel restrictions are limiting the movement of both people and food. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Halliburton Reaches $1B Gulf Spill Settlement

Halliburton Reaches $1B Gulf Spill Settlement

AP (Sep. 2, 2014) — Halliburton's agreement to pay more than $1 billion to settle numerous claims involving the 2010 BP oil spill could be a way to diminish years of costly litigation. A federal judge still has to approve the settlement. (Sept. 2) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins